The dogs are driving me crazy . . .
It’s raining. It’s cold. It’s windy. And they want to be outside because they might miss Lovely Neighbor Mike and his nightly treats. But it’s raining, it’s cold, and it’s windy . . . and they don’t like being out in the cold, wind, and rain too much . . . so they’re running in and out every few minutes . . .
Which means I have to stop what I’m doing (cooking dinner) to dry them off and clean their feet . . . and then let them out again when they think they hear Lovely Neighbor Mike . . .
Once Lovely Neighbor Mike has given them their nightly treats, things settle down for a bit . . . until I go back into the kitchen to do the dishes . . . which means they are in the kitchen because, well, treats . . . I tell them to get out from under my feet . . . and they decide they need to go OUT . . .
Curse, swear, filth, foul . . .
Rocky doesn’t stay out long because, well, wind, rain, cold . . . and he has a short coat.
Millie, however, stays outside (and outside of my line of sight) just long enough for me to get concerned that she’s outside eating something she shouldn’t and expects me to call her inside. Well . . . Mommy got smart to Millie’s tricks and I turned off the porch light, turned off the kitchen light, and left the kitchen to go watch A Charlie Brown Christmas. Well, that lit a fire under Miss Millie and she “had” to be inside to see what I was doing. If she comes in on her own, that means she doesn’t get a cookie . . . for once her curiosity got the better of her and cost her . . . she’s still sulking over that one . . .
So please excuse me while I go watch my new guilty pleasure . . . The Christmas Baking show with that guy with the beautiful blue eyes . . .
These two pictures pretty much sums up their relationship – she loves him more than he loves her – and she has to be the center of attention.
And, no, I have no idea when she got so old. She turned 9 in August and still acts like a puppy but yet she has so much gray on her face.
Rocky is a year older but doesn’t look nearly as old as Millie.
Millie is part lab. Probably mostly lab. She has a lab appetite. She thinks she’s always hungry. Which is why she had a weight problem when she was a young dog. Which is why I feed her a half can of green beans with each meal – to help fill her tummy and keep her from thinking she’s hungry all the time.
I have bird feeders in the back yard. Most of the time she leaves them alone but sometimes she likes to eat the bird seed that the birds have knocked out of the feeders and is on the ground. Usually in the spring when it’s been raining and the ground is soggy and the spilled seed tends to stink. That’s when I have to go out almost daily and clean up the seed before she can eat it.
It’s been kind of cold here lately. We’ve had some snow. We’ve had an ice storm. Ground is frozen. Which means the bird seed on the ground is frozen. Which makes me think “whoo hoo!! I don’t have to worry about Millie eating bird seed!”
I. Was. Wrong.
That goofy little dog has decided that clumps of frozen bird seed are a new delicacy and she MUST EAT ALL THE SEED . . . which means every time she goes out, she heads to the area where the bird seed is and starts feasting on her new treat.
Rocky told on her . . . he came to the back door and looked at me like “Mom, she’s doing it again” and waited for me to step outside to see what she’s up to.
Curse. Swear. Filth. Foul. WTF is wrong with this dog?!
So I have to keep a closer eye on her than normal . . . and I have to go out tomorrow while it’s still daylight and chip up the old bird seed to keep her from eating it.
I swear that dog is responsible for a good bit of my gray hair . . .
There about a hundred things I should be doing . . .
Sending out Christmas cards . . .
Decorating the tree . . .
Going out shopping . . .
But I’m happily sitting here with Millie asleep on my feet and listening to Rocky snore.
Everything can wait a bit.
It’s been snowing all day. Nothing significant. Just enough to be annoying. And enough to risk black ice on the roads after sunset. So I stayed home with the dogs and watched TV.
It was glorious.
Yesterday was a sunny beautiful day . . . high temperature in the mid 50’s . . . unusual weather for Ohio in November . . . and I won’t complain . . .
The dogs were in and out the back door most of the day . . . drove me nuts . . . but we won’t have many more days like this so I won’t complain . . .
Today a cold front moved through . . . first with wind, then with rain, now with snow . . . nothing significant, probably about an inch or so . . . and it’s just covering the grass.
Rocky and Millie LOVE snow . . . they like watching it fall . . . they like running through it . . . they like running outside to see if anything has changed in the two minutes since the last time they were outside . . . and since it’s snowing, they’re covered in snow so I have to dry them off and wipe their feet before they can come back in the house.
If I’m working on my cross stitch, I have to wash my hands after I clean the dogs so that I don’t get my project all dirty. If I’m reading a book that I borrowed from the library, I have to wash my hands so that I don’t get the book all dirty.
If they’re barking at heaven knows what and I call them inside, they have to get a treat . . . because they came when I called them . . .
And if I’ve called them inside because they’re barking they look at me like I’ve broken their little hearts and made them stop having fun . . .
It’s November in Ohio . . . we’re going to have about three or four months of this stuff . . . and they’re driving me nuts after one day . . .
Yes, I’m complaining . . .
I did a lovely post on Rocky’s birthday . . . and it seems that he’s had a post on his birthday the last few years . . . and I realized that I haven’t done a post about Millie in a while . . .
This picture was taken the day we brought Millie home. Millie came to live with us the day after my beloved Luci girl passed away. It wasn’t my idea. XH and Rocky ganged up on me . . . and I never had a chance . . . I know it doesn’t look it in the picture, but Rocky was/is over the moon with his little sister.
I was all prepared not to like her . . . I was prepared to not bring her home with us . . . and then I heard her story and my heart melted.
She had been dropped off at the rescue group as a young puppy. She got adopted quickly but kept running away from her family because they didn’t pay attention to her and she was a bit of an escape artist. After her third escape, the family decided she was “too much trouble” and let the rescue group keep her . . .
How could I not want to give her a good home after that . . .
I still wasn’t prepared to like her . . . but Millie had other plans for me . . .
She’s a whirling dervish . . . on the go from the minute her eyes open in the morning until she falls asleep at night. Always hungry (she’s part lab). Doesn’t know a stranger. Will eat anything that won’t eat her . . . and will try to eat a few things that could do her serious harm (wasps, carpenter bees). The only dog I’ve ever owned that will willingly and happily eat lettuce and raw potatoes.
This picture sums up her personality perfectly . . . she doesn’t care about your opinion or doing what she’s supposed to be doing if there is a more interesting option . . . she’s the only dog I’ve every loved that didn’t go to obedience school . . . and she’s the only dog that will come IMMEDIATELY when she’s called and sit quietly for a treat . . . she has to be the first one to get pets and hugs when I get home from work. She has to be the one out in front during our walks. She has to be the one to get her supper first and her treats first. She tries to “help” the girls behind the counter at the vet’s office whenever she has an appointment. She will not stand still on the scale so we have to “guesstimate” her weight.
She goes off with the girls at the kennel or the groomer without so much as a backward glance at me . . . but she’ll knock anyone down if they get in her way when I show up to take her home.
She’s been pretty oblivious to the change in the household dynamic after Prince Charming died, but she’s the one that came running from the other end of the house and pushed me out of the way when I accidently turned on Prince Charming’s CPAP machine a couple of months after he died because she thought he had suddenly returned home. She hasn’t grieved the same way that Rocky has but I can’t play his voice mail messages when she’s around because she whines and tries to get to the phone if I’m playing a message and she hears it.
This is my very favorite picture of Millie and Rocky . . . it was taken about a month after she came to live with us . . . and I like to think Rocky was telling her what a happy life she was going to have her with us . . .
She’s a handful alright . . . and I’m thankful every day that she picked me to be her human.
Last night there was excitement here on my street. Some sort of stand-off with the police. Nothing serious but interesting to watch. Dogs were not happy with police officers out front or in the alley.
Tonight is the complete opposite. I’m watching Law & Order SVU and listening to them snore.
Things I think of while walking the dogs . . .
What in the world do I feed them that makes their poop stink so bad?
What is it about Millie’s personality that she has to be “first” to everything?
How awesome that Rocky is cool enough to let Millie always be the lead dog.
I think it’s hilarious that they remember the one time they found a cat under a big pine tree and have to sniff every time we pass the tree, they know when we get close to the house on the corner that has the dog that always barks at them, and which house their human friends with hugs and treats live at but they aren’t bothered at all to pass the house were the dog that attacked Rocky lived.
When the dogs sniff a spot and then have to pee on that spot, I wonder if that’s a dog version of Facebook. BTW . . . Millie ALWAYS has to get the last “word” in . . .
I learn something interesting from them every day.
This is about the dogs . . . no, there isn’t a health crisis or anything to worry about . . . they are fine . . . each of them got a clean bill of health at their annual check-up . . . and I heard the “as they get older . . .” speech from Lovely Vet . . . and in my mind I’m screaming “they’re just puppies!!!”
But they aren’t anymore . . . Rocky is 8 and Millie is 7 . . . according to Lovely Vet that classifies them as “senior citizens” in the dog world. Rocky came to live with us in February 2009 – he was just shy of four months old. Millie came to live with us in April 2010 – she was about 8 months old. They were babies when they entered my life and, for some odd reason, I still think of them as puppies . . .
Millie has a touch of arthritis in her front legs and is getting some gray on her muzzle. She has gray eyebrows and a lot of gray hair on her belly. Other than that she’s still as active as a puppy.
Rocky is just generally slowing down. Getting pickier about what he eats, slower to get up in the morning, sleeping a little more soundly and harder to wake up sometimes. But let the dogs next door start barking, a cat cross his path, or a squirrel make a dash across the yard and he takes off like a puppy.
They were with me during the last months of my marriage to XH. They were by my side when I was learning how to be a single woman for the first time ever in my life. They happily embraced Prince Charming when he came to live with us. They were the reason I got out of bed a lot of the time after Prince Charming died. They have been the one constant in my life over the past 7 years . . . and I can’t imagine my life without them.
But . . . but . . . but . . . I know that day is going to come . . . and with them being so close in age and so attached to each other it’s entirely possible that I might lose them both at about the same time . . . something I can’t bear to think about . . . .
But today is not that day. Today they are chasing the birds, meeting the new puppy that lives behind us, introducing themselves to the new kittens that live next door (long story involving Lovely Neighbor Mike and his feral cat). But in the back of my mind I know that I need to think about this . . . and I do my Scarlett O’Hara impression . . . I’ll think about that tomorrow, for tomorrow is another day . . .