Monday, August 20, 2018

Purple Shoe, Pink Shoe





     I have two pairs of Crocs by the back door, one purple and one pink. Their original purpose was to wait, at the ready, for me to rush out the door. They still occasionally act in that capacity. However, their more frequent occupation is to provide entertainment for Miles. Seldom are all four shoes lined up anywhere near their post. Earlier today I discovered only one shoe waiting for me.
     “Miles, where are my shoes?” I searched the first floor. “Here’s one in the living room. Oh wait. That’s another left.” Miles thinks I have two left feet. “Miles where are my right shoes?”
    I find a shoe in the bedroom. The need for colors to match is negligible at this point. One purple, one pink, off I go. After I watered the tomatoes and returned inside I found another shoe on the porch. There were, however briefly, four shoes side by side once again. Then Miles wandered over, deftly grabbed a shoe and trotted away. A little later I found the Croc on our bed, next to a sleeping Miles.
    Tiegan does not bother with my shoes. With Tiegan, everything is a game. Catch me, catch me if you can. Tiegan is so very irresistibly cute when she plays on the bed. She bounces into a play bow and then nimbly hops sideways on the bed, stopping in another play bow as she pretends to nibble the blanket. She is so light, quick, and wonderful to watch. I think this is my favorite play time with her, when she bounces around on the bed and I trot around the bed pretending to chase my pretty girl. I say pretending, because even if I intended to catch her, she is much too quick for me to actually capture her.  
        Tiegan loves the screened porch and is content to perch on a chair or recline on the love seat as long as I let her. If it’s hot out, I turn on the ceiling fan. The porch is surrounded by trees, so our back yard is always much cooler than being in the direct sun. Still, I check on my girl all the time, making sure she isn’t getting too hot and Miles hasn’t tipped over the water dish so he can lope around the yard triumphantly carrying the empty dish, trying to initiate a game of chase. I make them come inside in the AC periodically, just so I know they aren’t too warm. We have a doggy door to the porch and then a doggy door from the porch to the yard. When the humans are away, they don’t have access to the porch or the yard. Tiegan is so content on her porch, I feel bad about making her come in when I go to work.
    If I arrive home while they are languishing with no parent to entertain them or let them out for squirrel patrol, they greet me and then immediately rush over to the doggy door waiting to dash out, check their territory, and terrorize squirrels. I pull the cover free and off they go, racing about. They eventually come back to see if, by chance, I’m preparing food for them. Miles comes for snuggles. Tiegan flits about, dancing close and leaping out of reach, delighted that she can so easily evade my attempts to catch her.
    If I arrive after Eric is already home, I get a royal welcome. I kneel on the floor exclaiming what good babies they are. Tiegan waves her front paws at me, high fiving me and dancing about. Miles makes sure he’s within snuggle range, sometimes leaning on me. They both talk to me, roodling and offering commentary about their day.
  When they feel I’ve been sufficiently greeted, and no food appears forthcoming, they go off to tell Eric I’m home; just in case he somehow missed all the jumping about and general commotion.
  And then I make the rounds of the house and back yard, tracking down my Crocs. Purple shoe, pink shoe . . . .

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Death to Cave Beds



    We bought cave beds for Ivan and Dasa several years ago. I washed the covers now and then and they were still in good condition when we adopted Tiegan and Miles. The life expectancy for a cave bed in our house shortened considerably when we brought Miles home. The one remaining cave bed from the first set is shredded. The other was too mortally wounded to save. The second set of cave beds is in critical condition. They will be able to maintain their positions during the summer when Tiegan and Miles lie on top on them, but when fall comes along, the battle-worn cave beds will have to be replaced with fresh intact models. We will pull them from the front lines in the kitchen and put them in the living room where there is less action. The beds are not damaged (yet) but the covers are in tatters. 
 

     Our house used to be dotted with dozens of little free range dog beds. Now, fluff-filled dog beds are so endangered as to be nearly extinct. Miles seems to feel they must be destroyed. This is a mission to which he devotes much time with impressive results. Stuffed animals must also be destroyed, and we quickly learned we cannot leave stuffies out to gambol about the house when we are away, because the kill rate is alarming. The real concern when returning home to daily stuffed animal massacres is that the carnage might contain only partial remains which could pose a very serious threat to the Miles puppy’s health. So all stuffies are put in their basket to rest in safety atop a cabinet until we are home to monitor the proceedings
     We now introduce only the sturdy stuffed toys for dedicated chewers. Their survival rate is much higher and I don’t feel quite as though I’m sending innocents to the lions’ den. In the evening, Tiegan stands in front of the toy basket and looks at us expectantly. If we do not respond without delay to our Princess of Sunshine and Magic, she places one dainty white paw on the cabinet and looks at us again. If we are still so incredibly negligent in our duty that we don’t jump up to fulfill her wishes, she makes a small sound, something like a squeak crossed with “ahem,” which causes me to spring to my feet and start tossing the basket’s inhabitants on the rug for her perusal. When it’s time for bed, I round up the toys and send them safely to slumber in their basket until their presence is again required.

Monday, April 23, 2018

The End of the Story: Ginny & Tristan

I had posted a happy ending story on Ginny and Tristan back on December 3, 2010. Unfortunately I must report the real ending to Ginny and Tristan's true "notebook" storybook life together.

They did live a wonderful full life together. They were rescued from a puppy mill in Louisiana when they were around 4 1/2 years old as a mated pair and could not be separated. Ginny had recently had a litter of pups taken from her.  They were fostered in Baton Rouge, LA in a very loving home. A few months later adopted together in Maryland but that was not a good fit for Ginny. Another wonderful foster held them in Delaware until we picked them up to take them to Philadelphia, PA. It was only to be a foster situation but we fell in love immediately with this special pair. 

Ginny had emotional scars and trust issues and Tristan was very jumpy and underweight. Ginny was a little escape artist with such a funny little personality. She was the boss out of the two. Tristan was always a big sweet tempered puppy. 

Over the last couple of years, Tristan developed dementia and seizures, but he hung in there the best he could.  It was truly quite sad. When he got really ill, it seems Ginny just knew.  She went into kidney failure. They passed away together side by side around two months ago.  

~ Joyce Kennedy

Ginny and Tristan