Sunday, January 30, 2011

Mine, All Mine!!!!

Good things are happening.

Lola is not being allowed on the bed anymore. And Annie prefers laying on the floor, where it's cooler. So at night, the bed and Daddy and Mommy are all mine! It's blissful to lie there up against them, all snugly and warm, and then all of a sudden a soft hand reaches out to gently caress my face or body. I could definitely get used to this!!!

And I will.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Food Rationing

A full dish from the good old days...
I'm lodging a complaint: Daddy and Mommy are starving me!

It used to be (in the good-old days), that my food dish was always filled and available, and I could eat as much or as little as I wanted throughout the day. But no more. Now there's breakfast and there's dinner, and that's it. And to add insult to injury, there's altogether less food than there use to be. Mommy is actually measuring it out in a cup now!

Daddy used to come home with these huge bags of food and just kept my bowl filled to the brim. But then three things happened: 1, Mommy didn't think the food Annie, Lola and I were getting was very good for us. It was corn-based, she said (which I thought was just fine), but prissy-picky little Lola didn't like the food very much and started spilling it everywhere rather than eating it. 2, Mommy also said that our coats (especially Lola's) weren't as soft as they should be, and we needed a better quality food. And 3, once Daddy saw the price of the new lamb and fish dog food, he said we better measure it out each time, rather than just pour it in the bowls, or we'd all wind up penniless on the street in no time.

The result is that while we might be eating better, I'm going around starving all day. Mommy says that me and Annie are losing weight, and that's good for us and our health. But I don't see her and Daddy rationing their food... The hypocrisy of it all!!

This is all Lola's fault. If she just ate her kibble like a good dogie, my stomach wouldn't be growling right now. I'm going to have to find a way to punish her... mea culpa!

Monday, January 17, 2011

My Current Situation...

Here is my current lot in life, and I can't say I'm very happy about a lot of it.

Let me start with the positive, though: I really love Not-the-Daddy. I can see why Daddy is so attached to her. She's caring and cuddly and FUN! She feeds me most of time these days, and also picks up my poop. What greater expression of love is there for a human towards a canine? Not-the-Daddy also plays with me more than Daddy does. But he's the Alpha, so I understand that he has to be more serious so he doesn't lose his position. Daddy always refers to her as "Mommy," and I think I finally now understand the concept of "Mommy" as it differs from "Daddy." Here's what they actually mean: "Daddy" is the name for the #1 top dog and "Mommy" is the name for his bitch. I guess the human word is "mate" or "partner"... kind of a #1.5 Alpha, I guess. I'm still #2 in this home, by the way, just like I've always been. But I'm now going to start referring to the female human as "Mommy." 

Moving on to the bad stuff:

First of all, Mommy brought home this other dog last April, and Daddy did nothing to stop it. I was pissed for a long time. Her name is "Lola," and when I first saw her, my heart actually skipped a beat because she looked so much like my long-lost "brother," Beau. But she's a lot scrawnier and schitzo-ier than Beau ever was. They're both full-blooded Treeing Walker Coon hounds, and it's amazing how she and Beau have a lot of the same traits. For instance, they both always walk around with their noses in the air... like they were better than everyone else. This, of course, is bullshit, because I rule in this house. And believe me, I made sure Lola knew who was in charge pretty darn quickly. And tell me: what self-respecting hound keeps its nose in the air? The mark of a good hound is that it has its nose stuck to the ground all the time, like a good vacuum cleaner.
Lola's main redeeming feature is that I can open a can of whoop-ass on her at will, and she'll back down. Except when food is involved, and then she stands her ground. When she first came to us, she was starved. I mean, you could see each of her ribs pretty clearly. So even though she's filled out around the middle now, I think she's still hypersensitive about food. I feel badly that she was once so hungry. Still, I know that if I had to, I could take her down. And I have to admit that over time, she's kind of wormed her way into my heart since she's so gullible. I have such fun with her. I can make her squirm and fidget just by looking at her. And if I feel like piss and vinegar and running around the house wildly, Lola is the first to sign up and join in on the mischief. I wonder if I stared at her long enough and meanly enough if I could get her to pee on herself... it's something to think about trying someday.

The next negative thing was that Daddy and Mommy started to foster dogs in our home. The first one they brought in was this squirt named "Buddy," Boy, was he a filthy, stinky, matted little runt of a punk. He once tried humping me, but I opened the can on him immediately and he proceeded to keep a lot of distance between me and him ever since. He did continue to hump Lola, though. After a few days, Daddy and Mommy cleaned him up and found a home for him, so he was no longer a problem.

Buddy, before and after...

Then a month later, Daddy brought home Annie, our next foster, and my life has been a living Hell ever since...

Anastasia, a/k/a "Annie"
"Ahhhhhhhhhh!," sang the heavenly choirs as this one-eyed bitch walked into the house. And I have to say, I was a little freaked out by it. I mean, this dog had a halo around its head, angel wings coming out its back, and invisible voices were singing wordless hymns of praise. It was freaky. I gave her a wide berth for quite a while.

Daddy and Mommy kept dishing out the loving to her, and that was really hard to take. They tried to console me by saying that Annie had had a rough life, and that she only had six months to live because she had cancer. And because of this, they explained, they were going to keep Annie, rather than find a different home for her. So my only real consolation at this point was that this new situation would only last, at most, for half a year.

But a few weeks into her arrival, we all went to the dog park and Annie started running. No, not just running: sprinting. Now, I'm no vet... but what dog dying of cancer sprints all over the place for 10 minutes? I knew this was bullshit, and that a conspiracy was afoot. Clearly, Annie had snookered Daddy and Mommy, playing upon their incredibly kind and generous natures. But I could see how all the angelic stuff was a sham, and that when Annie looked at Daddy and Mommy, all she could see was a big, endless sugar rawhide.

I still don't know how she pulls off the wordless choir in the background, though, but I'm working on it.

Since I'm on to her, I don't give her any distance anymore. If she walks up to Daddy, I just step in and push her out of the way. If she tries to get up on the bed, my eagle eye sees it, and I jump up on it first. I watch her like a hawk. My mission in life now is to protect Daddy and Mommy from Annie until I can gather all the proof I need in order expose her wickedness.

I'll be 12 years old this Spring. These are my Golden Years, and I shouldn't have to deal with this crap. But in spite of myself, it seems my sense of canine loyalty to my Master and Mistress is greater than any personal bitterness. So I will do what my species and destiny requires...

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


All this snow recently has reminded me of past problems I've had with snow. Especially last year when the snow was really deep.

Don’t get me wrong… I usually love snow. And deep snow is kind of fun to jump in and out of. And it's certainly better now that Daddy has fenced in the backyard. But there are some real practical problems deep snow causes me.

First, I can’t get to the woods to run because Not-the-Daddy and Daddy can’t even get into the parking lot there. It hasn’t been plowed yet. So we have to take long walks, most of the time with me on leash, since we live in town and there are cars going by. I worry for the health of my anal sacs…

Secondly, the snow is taller than me. Now, you might wonder what difference this would make, but let me ask you something… have you ever tried taking a crap on a toilet that was higher than your butt? It would freak you out. Imagine poor me. Normally, I squat, curve my back and poop. My butt is about 8 inches off the ground, so I start to push and gravity does the rest. End of story. These days, though, gravity has taken a vacation because it can’t do its job. My butt is freezing because it’s in contact with the snow, and when I start to push I get this uneasy feeling that I’m sitting in my own shit.

Peeing is no bargain either. The only spaces available are cleared sidewalks, so as you squat and let it rip, it forms a puddle around your feet that you’re now standing in the middle of. Then, to add insult to injury, if you’re emptying a full, overnight bladder, it starts to freeze around your toes as you squat there trying to get all out.

Last year I lodged a protest. When I pooped, I made sure it formed letters. I started a message, which took a couple of weeks to finish. Unfortunately, I could only form one letter at a time, so it was a rather lengthy process.

I thought I could save time by forming Oriental glyphs that were conceptual in nature. I first formed the Japanese letter for ‘my butt is freezing, so please shovel off some space in the yard for me,’ but Daddy misread it. He excitedly went to Not-the-Daddy and said, “Oh, honey! Ellie crapped the Japanese letter for ‘wisdom’… isn’t that amazing?” So I had to go back to one letter at a time.

The humility of it all… I sure hope it doesn't snow that much again this year!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011


I saw a fat yellow labrador retriever on TV last night. I hate labs. It made me think of the time last year that Daddy and Not-the-Daddy took me to Kenyon College’s main campus to go running. I hadn’t been able to get to the woods or the dog park because of the snow, so I was really looking forward to being off-leash for a while and stretching my legs.

When we got to Middle Path, I could see there were some other dogs there, too. Friends! So I started running toward them, then stopped about 20 yards away. All of a sudden, this fat old yellow lab started running towards me and barking his head off. He had a really uncouth accent, too… like a toothless Brooklyn cabbie.

The next thing I know, he goes for my rear, and I feel a stinging pain in my left back leg. The bastard bit me, although he did it so quickly, none of the humans saw it! Normally when a dog comes after me, I quickly tell him who’s boss. But this time I felt scared, so I just sat down. It was like a refrigerator was coming at me… Not-the-Daddy and Daddy quickly got their bodies between me and him, and then the fatso’s owner, a mousy, little old academic bitch, came over and said, “Sorry… he’s never like that.” Yeah, right! Whatever.

The sting went away quickly, so I stood up and started playing with the other dogs. Then Not-the-Daddy, Daddy and I took off down Middle Path, and I started running and jumping in the snow.

All was well until we got home, and I started feeling sore in my leg. Not-the-Daddy noticed it, and checked it out. Then she called Daddy over. It turns out I had a gaping tear right by the tendon. Luckily, it only ripped skin, but it was still about the size of a quarter and wide open.

Not-the-Daddy and Daddy talked about whether or not I needed something called “stitches.” Daddy said if I did get stitches, I would have to wear a lampshade on my head for a few days to keep me from worrying the stitches. It was around 6:30 at night, so I would have to go to an emergency clinic if they decided on the stitches.

After a few minutes they decided to wait until the morning to see how the wound was. They sat me down and Daddy took my face in his hands and talked really seriously to me. “Look, Ellie,” he said. “You have a choice. You can either go the vet route, which means getting stitches which hurt, taking an antibiotic for a few days which will give you diarrhea, and walking around inside and out in public with a ridiculous lampshade on your head. Or, you can let us clean it for you and you leave it alone so it can heal by itself. The choice is yours. We’ll see how you do tonight.

I don’t like going to the vet. It always turns out badly for me. This second choice sounded a lot better.

So they cleaned the wound out with hydrogen peroxide. Daddy held me and petted me, and Not-the-Daddy poured in the peroxide. Man, did that ever sting! I cried out and slunk away. Not-the-Daddy felt just awful, like she was killing a puppy or something…

For the rest of the evening, Not-the-Daddy and Daddy showered me with lots of attention. They stopped me every time I went to lick the wound. So I realized that if I wanted attention, I just had to start licking and one of them would come running. I felt so powerful, but I tried not to abuse my new-found ability too much!

And you know what? That night, Not-the-Daddy decided to sleep on the couch so I could sleep comfortably on the bed with Daddy all night. That was an awesome treat!!!

It was because of this incident with the yellow lab that I decided that Not-the-Daddy was one of the good ones. She was a good addition to this home, and I knew I wanted to keep her.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

A Bum Deal

Not-theDaddy says I have a "windy bottom"... I hope that's all it is and not my anal sacs filling up. I HATE getting them "expressed," which is a polite term for "forcibly squeezed open." It's a humiliating experience that last happened almost one year ago, when it was blissfully just me, Daddy and Not-the-Daddy living together. Here's what happened back then:

Daddy told me that if I didn’t run enough each day, my anal glands would compact, and I’d have to go visit the vet every once in a while. Apparently, running around wildly outside keeps all the plumbing running smoothly inside.

I hate this procedure. First of all, the vet has fat fingers. He was a football player in high school, so he never developed a velvet touch. He must have been a line backer with a seek-and-destroy mentality. It really hurts! At least his fingers are short…

As embarrassing as all this was, though, it was nice to have Not-the-Daddy around to hold me. She’s a sucker for doling out the pity, and dishing out extra potions of loving. She just kept hugging me during it all.

After the violation ended, she kept telling me how beautiful I was and how good I smelled now. That was a lie, but an appreciated one. I sure did stink, even for me Luckily, as soon as we got home Daddy took a wash cloth and wiped me down, down there. He was very kind, and even made sure the water was warm before he wet the cloth. I sure wish the vet had Daddy’s touch! Then he sprayed something on my butt… he said it was a "natural deodorizer." Anyway, it must have done the trick because Not-the-Daddy was all over me with mountains of babying and cooing. At least something good came out of all this.

Being cooped-up stinks. A hound dog’s gotta run free, not just for her spirit, but also for her anus!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

New Year's Resolution

I will soon be 12. It's fitting, therefore, that I should start to reminisce and write about my life. I think I now have a perspective that only age can give an intelligent creature like myself.

I was adopted, as are most dogs. I might even have been an orphan. So as I begin my blog, I feel compelled to paraphrase one of my favorite orphans, David Copperfield: 'Whether I shall turn out to be the heroine of my own life, or whether that station will be held by any other dog, these blog posts must show. To begin my life with the beginning of my life, I record that I was born (as I have been informed and believe), although I have absolutely no memory of that potentially momentous event, and no one in my proximity seems to, either. I can well imagine, though, that at the moment of my birth a clock began to strike--and I began to suckle--simultaneously.'

I hope, dear reader, that you do not mind a stream-of-consciousness approach to these thoughts. I will talk about current and past doings in this blog, weaving them as a counterpoint throughout, and as it suits me. What the final product will look like... only time will tell.

But let us begin the journey then!