I know the whole intervening dog thing is not new. I’ve been reading Dear Prudence letters on Slate.com for years. About once every few months she’s a get a letter like this*: (*wasn’t exactly “like this” because I didn’t write it, so it was only funny in a pathetic sense and not a laugh out loud sense and who the heck wants to read a funny blog that’s not funny? No one, that’s who.)
“Dear Prudie – I have had Baby, my teacup chipoo (you know, half teacup chihuahua, half teacup poodle?) for 4 years. She is the best dog ever and goes with me everywhere. I even found a place an hour and a half away where we can get our nails done together. I recently started dating a great guy named “Chad”. He’s super sweet and I love him so much and he has a good job and really nice apartment. I think HE is the one. We haven’t talked about it yet, but I know he thinks so too. He’s got really pretty eyes too! And he works out, like everyday. This all sounds wonderful, right? But it’s not! Baby and Chad hate each other. We have to sleep at his house because the first time he slept over Baby wee-weed all over his head and every time he picks me up she bites the bottom part his ankle really hard. He yells and she growls – she’s never bitten me, but I guess that 1.75 lb dogs can have a very vicious bite. I don’t know what to do! I love Chad and I love Baby, but I know that I can’t have both – With Tears, The One Stuck Between her Baby and The Cute Guy”
(I have to digress for a second – that may be my shtick – but anyway, I needed to tell on myself. As I was writing the above, I seriously got into “character”. I sat up straight, sucked my cheeks in a little, made my eyes really big and sported a little pout. I didn’t realize I was doing that until I put the end quotes. I am such a dork! Do any of you do that?)
You’ve seen letters or heard problems like the above? They made/make me roll my eyes. And then came Rusty.
I was online looking for a Great Dane for my parents to adopt when I saw a picture of Rusty with his big long Basset Hound ears lounging in the grass with the sun shining on him and his big Basset Hound eyes looking up at me and I knew he was our next family dog (Our 14 year old Cocker Spaniel was nearing the end of his days (sad face) and I wanted to get another dog in the house before we lost Andy to help ease the heartbreak – for all of us.) I emailed the picture (I wish I could find it – he really did look like a dog angel) to SAH and the next thing you know I was filling out the application for the adoption. (Which by the way – and I understand why – is more complicated than doing your taxes.) The lady at the rescue place asked what kind of Basset I was looking for and I said “Rusty” and she laughed and said usually their adopters meet several bassets before they decide which one to adopt. I said, “Well. I don’t want to meet any other bassets. I want Rusty.” She laughed again. I’m still not sure what was so funny. I know what I know. I knew SAH was going to be my husband and I knew Rusty was going to be our next family dog.
Anyway – as you can see above – I knew way more than that lady at the rescue group (and lots of other people who I will never, ever mention by name. Except Rush Limbaugh. I know way more than Rush Limbaugh.)
Rusty was around 3 when we got him (he’s about 7 now) and since Day One, Rusty has made it clear that he is mine. Not that he doesn’t appreciate and love the rest of the family, he just loves me the best. He follows me EVERYWHERE when I’m at home. To protect me I guess, although I can’t imagine what’s in the bathroom that’s going to hurt me. He pouts when I leave for work in the morning and kennels himself even though SAH is still at home if I’m gone. If I go out of town for a night or two, despite the fact the rest of the family is here, he doesn’t eat.
Also. SAH and Rusty in entangled in a bitter battle – basically to nuzzle their head in my neck. Rusty sleeps at the end of the bed. Unless SAH isn’t in it. Then he’s under the covers with his head on SAH’s pillow. Which really ticks SAH off and he comes in the bedroom and stares him and growls things like “She’s mine” (I’m not kidding. GROWLS) and they glare at each other until Rusty sighs and goes to the foot of the bed.
In the morning, SAH wakes up and makes a move for the morning cuddle, but every single time, despite the fact he is the slowest dog in the entire world, Rusty makes it to me first and by the time SAH’s arm is around me, we are making a Rusty Sandwich. Again SAH growls, “She’s mine.” And then they glare at each other some more.
This happens anytime SAH wants to sit or lay down next to me. And if Rusty doesn’t make in-between us in time, he just forces his way in. It’s a battle of wills that neither one of them will give in on. And the most annoying part of all? Rusty is a DOG. SAH is a HUMAN. You would think that SAH would pick someone else to get in an epic battle over me about. (Like maybe the twenty-something checker at Target whose line I always go in because he is HOT. I can just see the fight in the parking lot now – baskets flying every where. It would be SO awesome.)
They didn’t really start off on the right foot. Rusty’s first week here he ate our dinner. As in he pulled the fruit stuffed pork roast off the counter and ate it (this was before I started only eating plants). We knew Great Danes were counter surfers, we had no idea that a Basset Hound could will his body that upright to get to food. Lesson learned, but since SAH still brings it up to both Rusty and I, I’m pretty sure he hasn’t ever forgiven him.
(Jimminy Christmas. I have typed 1092 words and I have so much more to say – nobody wants to read about a dog for that long. Sorry. Also. 1117.)
Anyway – I really just wanted to tell you that he is a co-dependent weirdo. And Rusty is too. And I am hopelessly in love with them both. (And 1162. I went back and added a couple of words I missed. 1172.)