I got my annual 10% off holiday Petco coupon in the mail yesterday...and since my Chi's are going to be my only companions this Christmas I ought to buy "the kids" something or other for Christmas, lest they too flit off to a ski lodge in Vail or a week on the beach at Rocky Point for Christmas week.
One of the things I enjoy about owning dogs is you can screw em up real good, train them into near retardation and, unlike children, you won't be "owning"your mistakes by having them live with you into your Social Security years. I mean, after all, you drive a dog into total wackiness, ya got em for ten years or so, they wander over the Rainbow Bridge, and you can bring in two more puppies to wack out at your leisure.
Of course some of the dog's "uniqueness" has nothing at all to do with you. We learned quite by accident that my dear Rocky, now passed, loved to sing...and did whenever prompted. His favorites were "Happy Birthday", and strangely, the Neil Diamond tune "Song Sung Blue". Our old girl Ginger is by nature a grand thief, has no qualms about eating our supper if she has access to it, and loves her coffee and cream in the morning, a practice no longer allowed since half a cup gives her the jitters so profoundly she looks (pardon me please this bit of cruelty) like Michael J. Fox an hour late on his medicine.
Still, much of the strange and quirky behavior stems from my own personal torturing and teasing. For instance, I've learned that, while washing my face with a wash cloth in the morning, if I slide it up on my head to look a little silly my two dogs upon seeing it will both join in a cacophony of wild barking. I can achieve that same effect by covering my face with the clear plastic salad spinner bowl and peering at them through it....even a stare through the slats of a spatula sends them into delirious mayhem.
And both Chi's can be half asleep on their day bed, ready for slumberland, and if I, in crossing the room, do a little side jig with my feet they are instantly on their feet in pursuit of the offending feet.
One of my Chi's hates the vacuum cleaner and will disappear under a bed in the furthest room as soon as I fire up the vacuum...the other will sleep right through the commotion.
Rosie, the young Chi is quite the hunter, having learned early that my backyard quail leave their eggs in the Texas Sage where Rosie seeks them out like a kid at Easter. When she first started hunting them she would bring the quail eggs in whole, not sure of the texture and not decided on what she wanted to do with it. When she would bring on in I would work it out of her mouth and return it to the nest. Rosie soon learned to "eat out", crunching those quail eggs when found and eating the yolk on the spot. Ginger is not, nor has never been much of a hunter, tending instead to stand guard on the food bowl, often shoving it around the room until she's got my attention, then ruefully demanding a refill.
Now, anyone who owns dogs knows that none of this is special; every dog exhibits their own unique set of talents and displays of craziness. My Uncle Floyd once had a mixed breed spaniel who would sit at the end of the couch on his back haunches like a human, watch tv, and if you favored him with a lit cigarette he would hold it in his mouth until it was but a stub. Another Uncle Floyd canine prodigy was taught to pursue and bite you if he thought anyone was making fun of his "manhood". ..he was the canine version of the "socks in the crotch" crowd of the 1990's.
So the dogs and I, and all their quirks, will be hanging around together for the holidays. It's just too bad that my dear troubadour, Rocky, is no longer with us...if he were still around perhaps i could learn him a round or two of "Up On The Housetop"....:)