Sunday, May 15, 2011
As readers of this column know, I split my time between two households. My husband is in Aiken with our four dogs. I live with my daughter Jayme and her two dogs here. So during the week, I spend time with six dogs.
My daughter has two labs. One is a 97-pound chocolate lab named Reese and the other is the newly acquired black lab puppy Daisy Mae.
In the past four months, Daisy has gone from six pounds to 40 pounds.
What is it about dogs that every one of them has such a distinct personality?
Reese and Daisy love their mom. They do the dance of joy when Jayme comes through the door.
They love their dad Justin too but working varying shifts, he doesn’t get to spend as much time with them as he would like.
But Grandma, as Jayme refers to me, they love to torture.
They steal my stuff. And I do mean steal.
Every time I turn around they have another item in their mouths running away from me with it and passing it back and forth between them.
Lately they have stolen various clothing items, shoes, slippers (oh, how they love my slippers), and my phone’s blue tooth device.
Just this past week one morning while I was getting ready, Reese went prancing by with my high-heel in his mouth. Shortly after I retrieved that, he ran by with my blue tooth earpiece in his mouth.
I was not too happy about that considering he chewed up my last $100 earpiece a month ago and I had to replace it.
While getting that from him, Daisy came by dragging my daughter’s tennis racket.
Apparently she and Reese were headed out for a tennis game while he wore my high heels and talked on my phone.
But despite their aggravating ways, I love them both dearly.
I think Reese was a little lonely before Daisy came to stay. He loves her and I love watching them play.
Is there anything more joyful than watching two dogs at play?
My favorite downtime activity in Aiken is watching my four dogs interact.
Harry, the Coon dog, who was terribly abused before he came to live with us, finally has a safe home.
He loves my husband almost desperately. He’s the only one big enough to handle Harry.
Jeff decided recently to build them what we refer to as doggy condos for those days a sudden rainstorm comes up and we’re not home to let them inside.
He spent weekend after weekend building the four houses just right. He insulated them. He gave them liftable roofs. There is a room within a room so they can be protected from driving rain.
The only one smart enough to use them is Harry.
When it cools off at night, Harry heads to his warm house with his warm pillow in it. We have to go get Harry from the house to bring him in for the night. He sleepily stretches and saunters inside.
Our other three dogs don’t seem to know what to make of the houses and want nothing to do with them.
I worry terribly about my 15-year old cocker spaniel, Toby. But he isn’t smart enough to go in the house to get out of the elements.
Toby is my heart. He follows me everywhere. We have Toby-time every chance we get where I talk intently to him while staring into his eyes. We both love it.
But he is aging rapidly. His back legs shake now at times.
He is deaf and blind and falls in the pool quite often. We’ve fished him out on many a cold night and used the blow dryer to dry him off.
He can swim out but I worry about the day he can’t.
He’s so blind that recently when unpacking from a trip he tripped on my suitcase and fell inside it multiple times.
My husband and I couldn’t help but laugh after he did it over and over.
I love my dogs. All six of them.
I know each of you has some stories you’d like to share about your pets.
Whether you’re a cat person, a dog person, a horse person, or all of the above, we’d love to hear them.
Drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org with your stories and a photo of your pet, if you want to share one.
Who knows, it may make it into a story or a future column.
Because I know my fellow pet lovers are out there in droves.
We’d love to hear from some of you if you have a special story to tell.
In the meantime, I’ll be the one in Best Buy buying the new earpiece when Reese chews up this one. I think I’ll put it on Justin’s credit card.