I read a quote online today. It said:
“The only creatures that are evolved enough to convey pure love are dogs and infants.”
-Johnny Depp (supposedly).
I’ve been thinking a lot about Chloe (our dog) lately. I have conflicting emotions over our fuzzy beast. Recently, most of my conversations with her seem one-sided and include phrases like:
“You *&$%(# dog.”
“Ew! Chloe, your breath reeks like a tuna’s butt!”
“Damn it, Chloe get OFF the PLAYMAT!!!!”
“What smells?… UGH!! What did you roll in?!”
“Why do you have to chew up every tissue and every piece of paper? WHY?!”
“CHLOE!!!!! GET IN HERE!!!!”
“Really, Chloe??? Really?”
Compare these “conversations” with phrases uttered less than a year ago…
“Babe! Get in here! Look…look,look,look…hurry! Oh, you missed it! Chloe was just doing the cutest thing E-VER!”
“I wuv you wittle girl.”
“Chwowey, roll over! Goooood girl.”
“Hey, Chloe-girl. How was your day?”
“Babe, I don’t want to be one of those people who have a baby and then ignore their dog and the dog just exists in the house. I want to always love her just like we do now.”
How did this happen? When I vowed to not be one of “those people,” I really meant it. Yet, here I sit. Typing out the hateful things I (and Nick is guilty too) say to her daily.
Chloe somehow went from being the wuff of our life to a total nuisance. Where there were fields frolicking with leisure time before, the grass has died and left hair bunnies, pet dander, and food crumbs I now have no time to sweep. Our walks and jogs together after Bubbalooshki Bear was born grew fewer and farer between until…..__________________ (beeeeeeep – flat line).
I feel so guilty. I can’t blame her for who she is, or even how she smells (although, how she smells is kinda part of who she is). But we blame her nonetheless.
I was on the cusp of really wanting to get rid of her, but feeling trapped because I’d never give her to someone we didn’t know and trust. Because of Chloe’s *eh hem* “special attributes” (barking at you until you get off the couch, humping house-guests like it’s her last conjugal visit at the pound, smearing slobber-snots all over your walls, etc.) I figured anyone else would abuse her (once they’d snapped). The only people, other than my parents (who don’t want her) I would consider giving her to would be Ellen Degeneres and Portia de Rossi (Animal lovers with an animal sanctuary? Woof! Bliss!). The odds of getting my request for adoption in the hands of Ellen are slim. I might consider Cesar Millan, but Chloe is pretty much immune to being hissed at and poked in the neck simultaneously. (Trust me, we went through the Dog Whisperer phase. We stopped when, one day, I zapped Nick and the neck and spit “TTSSSSSST” when he failed to replace the empty toilet paper.) That means, she stays with us.
To be fair, Chloe and Bubbalooshki Bear are neck in neck when you consider the attributes and downfalls of each.
Snot and Slobber.
Requires undivided attention.
Requires you to feed them.
You must clean up their poo.
Satisfied with Chew Toy.
Sounds like a rabid monkey when riding in the car.
See. They’re pretty much tied. Except a car ride with Bubbalooshki is a peaceful zen experience which requires no earplugs and no feeling that catching your neck in the window is better than listening to a dog screech. I guess there’s the whole “mailman” thing too. Chloe is such a cliche, but alas, the mailman truly does hate our dog (which we realized the day he scrawled “DOG ATTACK” along with the date on a piece of our mail when Chloe barked at him). Also, I birthed little Bear out of my very own body. I mean there’s that.
Last week Chloe spent the week with my parents. We thought BB might be allergic. We attributed his watery eyes, snotty nose, and sneezing to the dog. (It couldn’t be a cold, teething, recovering from an ear infection, or anything like that. Nah.) Looking back, I’m pretty sure we both kinda, sorta, maaaybe wished that he was allergic. Just a wee, little bit. So, you know…we’d have an excuse to…um…getridofthedog.
When it was time to pick Chloe up, after our little experiment, B-Bear and I made the trek to my folk’s for the weekend. Three dogs in a house smaller than ours didn’t worsen his symptoms. In fact, they kind of got better, which we attribute to the luxurious humidifier in my parents’ home, but anyway….
The time apart did is all some good, and I realize I still love Chloe. When we got home, I went back to giving her a pat on the head every day. My hand smells like dog afterwards, but you know… Getting back to the quote though – it’s true (sigh). No matter what awful things we say to Chloe, she still wags her tail at us and usually greets us when we come home. No judgement from her.
There’s one more thing I forgot to mention. Bubbalooshki absolutely, irrevocably, completely loves Chloe and thinks she is the most hilarious thing he’s ever seen. He is completely oblivious to the fact that she really doesn’t want too much to do with him. He’s oblivious to the fact that she isn’t there for his entertainment. He’s oblivious to her annoying hair bunnies all over the floor, her slobber stains on our walls, how she smells that particular day, and all of the other faults that Nick and I hate. If Chloe steps, barks, whines, licks, drools, or otherwise moves, Bear giggles and smiles. Every time.
*I guess we’ll keep her.