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12.27.2010

When You Lay Down With Dogs

Okay, I spoil my dog. For example she sleeps on the bed curled right up under my chin or back to back. Tish rolls her eyes because she never imagined I’d allow a dog on the bed, let along cuddled up like a teddy bear. I guess I didn’t either. When we go to bed we slip upstairs as lightly as possible trying not to wake wife nor beast. Especially Zoe who’s 14, which is like a million and six in Aussie dog years. If she gets up she’ll pace around and need another pee, drink a gallon of water, want a snack and then do it all again until she can finally settle down again.

Bunnie’s usually warming up the bed before I get up the stairs but the last few nights she met me at the landing looking indignant.
“What’s up?” I whisper to her.
‘That old sack of hair is on the bed again’ her expression says.
“Won’t she let you up?”
‘Are you kidding? She’s hogging the whole thing! Where are we going to sleep?’
I sigh. I know where this is headed.
‘Just kick her off,’ my dog’s expression says. Dogs are such mercenaries.
“You wait on the floor and let me handle it,” I say.
We go into the dark room and I slip under the covers working my legs awkwardly around the old girl, thinking ‘please don’t wake up - I really don’t want to go back downstairs for another half hour’. With Zoe satisfied by my moves, I slide back as far as I can without disturbing Tish while Bunnie jumps up with an impatient harrummph to stake out her territory practically lying on my chest.

So there I lie on my side spooled around these two dogs like the chain on a bike derailer. ‘Man,’ I think to myself, ‘how did it ever come to this?’

My smelly red dog leans her head back and laps my chin before letting out a long, slow sigh of satisfaction. ‘Hey,’ she says, ‘feel free to sleep on the sofa.’