Wednesday, December 20, 2006

All in the Family
(with apologies to the t.v. show)

There is something unique and a lot the same about the dogs we make part of our famalies. They all do a good job of seeming to be glad to see us when we've been away for a while. We must remember, of course, that these loyal pals don't have apposable thumbs and cannot work the can opener. But, aside from their dependence on us, they have been bred over the decades to be our unquestioning friends.

They all (for the most part) get excited when someone comes to the door. They all use a fore paw to encourage us to scratch them, especially if we try to stop. But, what is more interesting, at least to me, is how they differ in their personalities. Some of this is apparently breed-specific and some is just a reflection of their personalities.

Sir Ansel, who dwells in the house of Silbs, is a gentle and passive soul. He scares the hell out of people when he barks with enthusiasm at their appearance at our door. What they don't realize is that this over sized baby is agog that someone has come to see him...perchance to play. In spite of being 8 years old, he still likes to burrow into the snow and stay put. When the occaission arises, however, he can run like the wind.

A bit stubborn, he is the love slave of my daughter, Tammy, whose commands he follows without hesitation. Another of his behaviors is that he "purrs" when hugged and stroked. At least he vocalizes sounds that convey the idea of feeling loved and content. Then, there is his cousin (Tammy's dog...actually, one of her dogs...but I digress), Simon.

A pure-bread bull dog, he can only be described as a rascal. When he and his step brother, Milo, are here, a playful brawl usually ensues. Ansel and Milo (who will require an entire post to describe) get into it while Simon climbs onto a foot stool. When the action is just right, Simon will leap into the fray only to be tossed out and sent tumbling as he tries to get his stubby legs beneath himself. Then, it is back onto the stool for another jumb. It is a scene right of The Road Runner. You cannot lose hm in the house since his breathing and slobbering is audible for miles.

A few months back, we thought we might lose him. He was constantly vomitting and wasn't keeping food down. X rays and other tests (that aren't free) were all negative. Afraid to leave him alone, Tammy left him with us one day when she had to go to work. Sure enough, he soon started gagging and trying to vomit. Lady Linda watched (which is unusual considering her gag reflex) and noticed something just at the tip of Simon's tongue. With great courage, she grabbed it and extracted an intact thong. Instant cure. He is now, of course, in therapy.

Here's to man's, woman's and child's best friends

Paddle safe...



Buncher said...

It was the Native Americans that said it best. A dogs affection towards humans is the best example of true love..."the unconditional giving of one's self, expecting nothing in return".

Silbs said...

And it was Teddy Roosevelt who said, "Speak softly and carry a big pooper scooper."

Michael said...

A thong? Need I athk more?

Silbs said...

Simon is my younger daughter's dog. Need I say more?

Mine's said...

Poor Simon. Never gets a break. Just waiting to see what you have to write about Milo.

Buncher said...

Now that could be funny. I guess I better watch what I say, otherwise the next entry maybe about Tofi.