Friday, July 30, 2010

We're In The Doghouse

Did I mention that we are doggie-sitting for some friends?

My friend Susan and her family left for a three week cross-country trek. She and Dave loaded up their mini van with snacks and soft drinks and their two very good-natured teenaged sons. We waved good-bye after taking possession of their elderly schnauzer and an eight month old schipperke puppy. As we saw the mini van head down the road, John looked at me and said, "Jul. There's more of THEM than there is of US," with a meaningful glance down at the pack of doggies which had already melded into one big swirling blob of grey and black fur.

Woo hoo! Skippy's here!

Overall, we've enjoyed having the two woogies join our pack. Mags and Lulu have a ball running and chasing with the others and it seems that they all get along well.


It's a real circus getting all four of these critters into their kennels for the night. Come to think of it, it seems strikingly similar to the experiences I remember with my kids when they were small.

OK! Let's go beddy bye! Kisses all around! Everyone have their blankie? And favorite toy? This said to the dogs, not my children. Yikes. My kids did not sleep in kennels, although there were those days........just kidding, guys. Hehe.

Skippy! That's Shadoe's beddy bye.....Out! Out! Good boy.....Lulu! Get back here this instant, young lady. Just where do you think you're going? Maggie? Maggie? Where are you, missy? Oh, Shadoe, you're in your bed. What a good girl. I knew I could count on you. 

Klink. Latch. Sproing. Snap. All kennels with appropriate doggies inside were closed for the night. I tiptoed out of the room and turned off the light.

Woo! Woo! Scratch, scratch scratch.....Hooooowwwwlllllllllll!

What? Oh, no. You can't have to go potty again, do you? Really? Go to sleep! 

Aaaaooowwwwwooooooo! Scratch, scrabble, scratch scratch....

Settle down, you guys! Don't make me come in there!

Whimper. Whine. Scratch. Scratch. Rustle rustle rustle. WHINE! WHINE!

I impatiently headed back to their kennels and was greeted by four smiling slobbery doggie faces and happily wagging tails. As I crankily unlatched and unsproinged and unsnapped and unklinked all their cage contraptions, I gave them all a very stern lecture. Which I'm sure that was about as effective as it was with my children.

Did I or did I not tell you all to go potty about fifteen minutes ago when you were outside? Yes, I did. Remember? Now we're going to have to go all the way downstairs and out the basement door and outside AGAIN! So this is it! Last call! Last time for potty and drinks and a last little snack!

And I mean it this time!

The herd thundered down the stairs ahead of me and pranced outside as I slid the door open. As I grumpily turned to head back indoors to wait for them all to do their doggie potty thing, I glanced up at the sky.

A bright, almost full moon was just rising in a clear night sky. Far in the distance, the northwest slope of Mount Hood's snow fields seemed to glow in the moonlight. Pretty, I thought. My hair was tousled by a gentle cool breeze and I could hear the subtle sounds of a summer night. My hammock chair swayed enticingly in the night wind.

I can't remember the last time that I sat outdoors, alone, and watched the moon rise on a glorious summer night. I rocked gently in my swing and listened to the dogs tussle and play and the distant soothing splash of my neighbor's fountain.

Not bad, I thought. Not bad at all.

The dog pack eventually gathered at my feet under my swing and looked expectantly up at me. Shadoe trotted to the door and gave it a decisive scratch.

What? You woogies want to go indoors already? Really? Please can't we stay outside? Do we really have to go to bed? Do we haveta? Aww gee......

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