Monday, August 17, 2009
The Matronly Day in Dogs
This is Satan's Familiar, resting Cloven Paw upon his preferred patch of creamy white carpet on which to poop and pee.
Recall that not long ago, Common Sense became a foreign country, wherein the Matron may never reside again? Yes, she signed on the entire family as volunteers with Small Dog Rescue Minnesota, meaning that instead of Satan's Familiar and one ailing geriatric dog, they now have two ancient (and decidedly needy) creatures.
Here is Abby the foster dog, perched upon a chair for more refined attack. Yes, attack (move? she attacks). More on this later. First, please note that the chair is missing a cushion.
That's because he of Cloven Paw destroyed the cushion by mistaking the most expensive piece of furniture in the house for his own personal kitchen table, suitable for the pound of raw hamburger he jumped ONTO the kitchen counters to retrieve. Lest one laments the Matron's lack of textile fortitude -- surely, one can clean those meat-soaked covers--know that once hamburger juice seeps deep and saturates the stuffing, well, that cushion starts to smell as if it might indeed be edible itself!
So Satan's Familiar ate (most of) the cushion, as well. Is there a Canine Hall of Fame for Bad Behavior?
Then there's Jekyll. He is 16 1/2--totally deaf and blind.
He spends his time sleeping or getting stuck--in chairs, against walls, in corners or at the top of stairs.
This morning was not an atypical start for the Matron (how's that for roundabout prose?). She hauled her fine self out of bed just before 7 am. Her tiniest bathroom movements alerted S.F. who was immediately at her side, demanding breakfast.
First, she picked up Abby (who can't jump up or down very far) from whatever child's bed on which she was sleeping (because this is like a dog HOTEL). Then she tiptoed downstairs to find Jekyll tracking his nightly accident across the hard wood floors.
While the three dogs are outside (two must be carried), the Matron cleans up the mess and mops the floor. She then carries two dogs back in, separates Abby and makes THREE SEPARATE MEALS for each (just like dinner for the children!!) and feeds them.
Sated, they are quiet for about 15 minutes which-today--was the highlight of the Matron's existence. The rest of the day was Dog Chaos.
Because, sadly, while Jekyll spends those remaining minutes getting stuck, he keeps bumping into Abby as part of that process. He has NO idea she even exists. So while she's sitting in the middle of the floor, here:
This guy, doing his circular swing through the kitchen and living room, simply walks into and over her
Causing Abby to attack. As in biting. Which she will also do if Jekyll paces near the chair she prefers, previously pictured. The chair allows her to all the more effectively case Jekyll, monitoring his shuffle until he's within biting range and then. . . . leap!
Between all the dog fights, there is also a lot of this. Here is poor Jekyll, battling Nature. You can see, Nature is winning.
Much of the time now, this old man's back quarters simply fail him. A child or the Matron will sort of lift those haunches up . . . or give him a lift, which he needs now, the other part of much of the time.
Sort of makes the days of whippin' up dinner with a baby in the sling seem easy. The Matron thinks that Jekyll -- who doesn't seem to even SMELL anymore and whose snout must be located directly INTO his dog dish in order for him to understand the concept of eating -- she thinks that he is operating entirely under the influence of some kind of Energy Heat Sensor. Because if anyone is in the room, he of no vision immediately does this.
Also making that toddler-underfoot while whippin' up dinner era seem like the good ole days, too.
Today, when she wasn't tending to Jekyll or breaking up fights, she was battling Satan's Familiar, who discovered (or created) a HOLE in the fence between her yard and the neighbor's, meaning he can stick his ugly snout through and engage in Barking Festival with the two german shephards next door.
Bark, bark, bark, bark! Then she hears the neighbor -- who is actually completely incapable of genteel anything -- SCREAMING at the all three (now four! here comes Abby!) dogs at the top of her lungs but never actually leaving her back door to come and physically haul her dogs home, which of course, is what the Matron ends up doing, one dog under each arm.
So she can bring them back in the house just in time to trip over Jekyll before Abby grabs his thigh, again.
Here is what her personal Greek Chorus sings. She imagines the tune goes something like, this.
"Mom!! I forgot the turkey wrap so the dogs are fighting over it and now Scruffy is in the neighbor's backyard and there is pee in the living room and vomit on the deck, and Abby is on top of Jekyll and her actual teeth are in his neck, and there is a pile of poop on the the third floor why doesn't anybody pick up garbage around here? and MOM!, Jekyll fell down the basement steps and his head is caught in the desk, and Scruffy is barking through the fence hole again only this time Abby is trying to get out, and now Abby is doing the potty dance and MOM can you please carry the old dogs to the third floor so we can play Jail with the dogs, and is this pee or vomit or water that I'm walking in?"