Cannot imagine the absolute peace and quiet I find this morning, its still early, the roosters apparently aren’t up yet to terrorize the neighborhood. But my two little girls are. I have a strange combination, small black pug who is going on about 8 years, and a 6 month old Brown and White Australian Shepard.
After breakfast they seem to think its playtime, and the pug does her best to keep the baby girl entertained. Problem is, its under my feet. Trying to go from one location in the house to the other, they are circling and bite playing, growling and twisting and turning. Even to the point of pulling the same methods around my computer chair. This of course continues until both are exhausted and back to sleep they go.
So, that I don’t confuse anyone as I write. The pug is named Maggie, and the Shepard pup is named Shelia. Now, Maggie has been attached to Nana’s side since she was not much bigger than the palm of your hand and when I would set down at the computer, little Maggie would set behind me in the big chair and be just as content as she could be. Of course Maggie had the grand children to run and play with, and to spoil her beyond belief. So virtually Maggie ruled the roost. And the fact that Maggie also had cats around to chase and irritate which generally rounds a dog off.
Well, Shelia the new baby in the house, Grand-kids are just someone who comes by and grabs your toy and throws it, puts your food bowl down occasionally, and sneaks you treats. They really don’t have time to give the same amount of attention that Maggie would get as a pup. Of course Maggie had already determined that life with the Grand-kids had changed. Especially, after she decided she really wasn’t into the skateboarding thing, and she wasn’t gonna ever be that cute bull dog on the skateboard. Its a good thing the Grandson’s haven’t considered putting Shelia on the skateboard, I can assure you while trying to ride it, it would be a pretense so that she could eat it.
Raising a new puppy in the house is very much like having a new human baby in the house. Everything goes into its mouth, and you still have to have the same patience in pottie training, so you can get it right. Which of course means, while young mothers are getting up at 2:30am to feed their babies, I’ve been up at 2:30am taking my baby outside. And let me tell you what, its cold outside on some of these 2:30am lets stand on the back deck while Shelia does her thing. I can hear the.. You’ve got to be kidding me’s out there.. Well, I would rather get up at 2:30am and let Shelia and Maggie out, then worry about a smelly stain on the carpet. Thats what it takes, then thats what it takes, to get the job done right.
Shoes, I had forgotten how puppies love shoes, and it has been and still is to this day, not a shoe can be left on the floor. And the closet door must be shut at all times without Shelia inside the closet. I’ve been lucky so far, I’ve caught her before the damage could be done. House shoes have a few little marks on them, but no real damage. And the point is, even if she damages the shoes, you have to be rational and ask yourself. Does she know what she’s doing? Well you really can’t punish them, yelling and hitting is just not allowed. Have you ever tried to put a 35 lb puppy in time out? While she’s setting there turning her head at you, like What Mom? I guess the best way to describe these situations, pick your own battles. Now, toys!! What ever cute little toys Maggie had in her basket, squeaky little special things, stuffed long little wiener dogs, “Gone All Gone” and it wasn’t the family next door, its Shelia. All the sweet little things that My Oldest Granddaughter had taken Maggie down to Pet Smart and let Maggie pick out her own toys. Yea, I want to see my Granddaughter take time to take Shelia down to Pet Smart to pick out a toy, after she eats her way through the front end of the store, she’ll take on the back end. But, she will set and watch the birds and fish, and turn her head back and forth and then look up at my Granddaughter with this innocent little face, asking.. Whats that?
Now, I’ve seen that look on Shelia’s face a number of times. Her watching a Squirrel walking across the roof of the house next door. No barking, she just set and watched and then the look, Whats that? Or the cat that came strolling by the fence. This was a pretty good sized cat, long beautiful grey hair and he set down looking at Shelia who in turn is setting there looking at him, and then here comes the look, “Mom, Whats that?” we know that it isn’t necessarily instinct for a dog to go after smaller animals or cats, at least for Shelia it isn’t. Maggie would have had a fit to get near that cat and chase it, but of course Maggie grew up with cats and she knows its play time when she sees a cat.
Oh the living room, since sheila arrived the living room is off limits, which means a barricade between the living room and the kitchen, a gate, chairs what ever it takes to keep Shelia from her exploring. But, we are dealing with Shelia, expert escape artist. I had to run to the store the other morning, and of course it was raining outside. The girls had to stay in and I put up the gates to keep them in the utility room, the bigger Shelia gets the higher the gating system. So, gates were up, Shelia contained or at least I thought she was. I ran out and came right back home after grabbing a few things. Oh, the gates are down, Shelia in her innocents is setting by the fireplace, the tin/copper elephant was on his side, the plants are a little bit off center, and the barricade to the living room is not the way it was left. I walked into the living room and there is filling all over the floor, or what appeared as filling. My heart sank as I looked around terrified one of the pillows was going to be in pieces, or maybe an arm cover for the chairs or sofa.. I looked down and realized it was the bottom skirt for the Christmas Tree. Just for Shelia this year, I had put a small tree up and on a table, and Shelia had managed to get the skirt and pulled it away from the tree and then scatter its pieces all over the living room. Tree was fine, the small reindeer were scattered around on the floor, uneaten. As I thought about it, I was grateful that Shelia hadn’t eaten the kitchen cabinet doors to get to the bag of dog food or the treats, since she is well aware of where things are kept. Yes, I am thankful that the only casualty was the Christmas Tree skirt. I’m sure she tried to eat the elephant, and that was just not something she could do. He survived. The gates, well she did manage to dismantle the big wooden gate, at least she didn’t eat it.