It’s about time for basenjis to make their lists for Santa. Dasa and Ivan’s lists include mastodon-sized steaks and drumsticks, boxes of tissues to shred, and bunnies to chase. Stuffed animals are also on Ivan’s list. He loves them. I think his big teddy bears are his very favorite. He greets us at the door with a stuffed animal in his mouth and runs laps through the house with it. He brings his teddy and drops it by me as a signal that I should throw it across the piano into the corner so he can retrieve it and run a few circles. We do this again and again, sometimes while Eric is playing the piano. Eric just keeps playing, and doesn’t seem to notice a stuffed bear sailing past his head. Ivan gallops happily.
When I take out the trash, Ivan meets me at the door with his teddy; it’s time to play. He’s the only basenji we’ve had who likes to play with stuffed animals and not just eviscerate them. We often find Pooh Bears or stuffed ducks on the sofa or the people bed where he left them.
Ivan shakes stuffed animals and throws them in the air. The teddies and other stuffed animals are often missing ears or noses. If the teddy has a hard plastic nose, I remove it proactively. Occasionally a seam will burst from all the enthusiastic throwing and bouncing off the wall. These casualties are taken to the toy clinic on top of the refrigerator to await surgery. The life of a toy at our house is exciting and action-filled.