Monday, May 18, 2015

Houdini and the Sausage

What did you think would happen to you after you ate your “sister’s” $1,500.00 not-covered-by-insurance hearing aid?  You'd already chewed your way out of your hard-sided dog crate.  And eaten your “mother’s” fund-raising pie.  And eaten all of her hair ties.  And you ate your “brother’s” leggos.  And chewed up your “sisters’” miniature plastic people.  Plus you kept finding new ways to open the back gate latch and escaping.  Your “parents’ were so busy and so tired and yet they still fed you and cared for you and forgave you.  And then … then ……………. you ate Emerson’s hearing aid?!?

Who?  Me?

 And that’s why, a couple of months ago, Angus’s brother, Baxter, came to live with us.  And why we spent most of a day last week setting up the outdoor dog kennel Baxter brought along with him.  We spent half our time driving to town to buy one size of rubber mat at Tractor Supply and then driving to Big R to buy another size only to discover the Big R’s pad cost waaaaaaay more than we wanted to pay which meant we had to drive home to re-measure and recalculate and by the time Dean had come up with a new plan he was hungry so we had to take a lunch break.  Then we drove back to Tractor Supply to return the pad we’d purchased earlier and bought two different ones, after which we drove to Home Depot and bought 10 paving stones.  And then, finally, we drove home.  We hitched up the cart to the John Deere, loaded the mats and stones, drove them over to where we wanted the kennel, carefully placed the mats on the grass, laid the paving stones in the area the rubber mats didn’t cover, set the kennel on top and ta da! we were finished!  

Nope.  That would have been the good enough way.  That would not have been the RIGHT way.  Oh, no.  And we always do things the right way.  Oh sure, we did carefully place the paving stones and the cumbersome, super heavy mats on the grass.  But then Dean meticulously cut the ground around the edge of the mats and stones with his utility knife so we’d know the EXACT boundary.  THEN, we picked up the super heavy cumbersome rubber mats, carefully lifted the paving stones, set them aside, and dug up the grass.  And smoothed the edges.  And leveled the ground.  And THEN, 


once again, we very precisely laid the super cumbersome, heavy rubber mats and the paving stones into the edged, scraped and leveled area.  And then and only then, did we …. FINALLY ….. carry over the dog kennel and set it down.  And it fit perfectly.  I mumbled “you were right,” and Dean barely gloated. 

So now, after two months, the dogs can be safely outside when we don’t want to play the odds and leave them alone in the house.  Not that they haven't been free range in the house many times before. Baxter had been over here to play with Angus most days of the week anyway so having him full time hasn’t really made a huge difference.  We were already used to the furniture-shifting wrestling matches and fur rising up like fog from a lake when we walked through the house.  The cats were somewhat hesitant at first but they have gradually adjusted.  I don’t worry about their panicked sprints through the house when Baxter chases them because it’s the only exercise they get and the vet did tell me they need to get exercise somehow.  

When Baxter first arrived I cringed a bit when I thought about what the dog food bill would be but Angus, aka The Sausage, is now on a diet so we haven’t had to buy all that much extra dog food after all.  What’s really increased is the dog poop cleanup which, between the two of them, is always a treasure hunt.  So far the fully intact four-inch square of bright red cloth I used (not anymore!) to clean my iPad screen mashed in Baxter’s poop pile has topped the small blue plastic foot nestled in Angus’s poop.  I did notice this morning, though, that I’m missing a bright green footie …. THAT could brighten tomorrow’s walk!



Leslie Fuhrman said...

Baxter loves his brother, and his new parents!

Art Elser said...

Oh dear!! I'll raise you a couch, a down comforter, and an eleven year old sister, a used-to-be-sweet Bichon, that Walker, our very sweet GoldenDoodle has either chewed into extinction or into a raving psychotic old lady. Has Leslie checked to make sure the kids are still around and not scattered around the back yard somewhere. Pups that chew can really get into some interesting, let's call them, adventures, can't they.

A new couch, two new comforters, and innumerable pillows, towels, socks, small rugs, and other things have gone the way of all flesh. Age, however, has mellowed Walker and he no longer chews--except for rawhide bones and chew toys. Principessa, the Bichon, is, however, still a raving lunatic. Shows all the signs of dog insanity except bay at the moon.

Poop patrol, as I call picking up the back yard, is no longer as exciting, maddening, and colorful as it used to be. But it's still huge.