Sunday, August 9, 2009

A Dog Named Blitz - Chapter Three: "Puppy Troubles" Part 1

For background on this serial, please click here. You can also start at the previous chapter.

Despite all of the reading, preparations, and purchases, my wife and I were definitely complete rookies when it came to this whole puppy thing. The first nights were filled with a lot of crying by Blitz, as she missed her momma and her littermates. This also translated into a lot of missed sleep, mostly by me. It was a long couple of days filled with waking, crying, outside, inside, pooping and peeing.

Then, with just a couple of days of this under my belt, I did what most loving husbands do: I headed out for a long weekend up north to host my brother's bachelor party. I walked my wife through the drill, kissed her on the cheek, exclaimed that "I'm just a cell phone call away," and toddled off for a weekend of golf, meat, sports, and beer.

I was hopeful of the situation I left to my wife. The dog had a good couple of days under her belt to establish comfort in the new situation. Likewise, my wife suffers from a genetic hearing loss disorder, and I was thinking that this might be another one of those situations where her loss was a good thing. In case you're wondering, for someone like me that seems to have an excess of gas that needs to be expelled (regardless of from where), having a spouse with a hearing loss provides a lot of "cover."

In all seriousness, my wife deals with her loss in a dignified and amazing way. It has never slowed her down, and I've always admired her attitude and approach. It is one of the reasons why I love her so.

Hearing loss or no, lonely puppies can really turn up the volume when necessary, and my hopes for sleep-filled nights for my spouse were dashed by the perpetually wakeful hellion in the basement. Hence, my calls home from the guys' weekend were never very fun. I was met with comments like "How much can one dog pee?" "Why do I even bother to go outside when the first thing she does when she comes in is pee?" and the most popular, "When, exactly, are you going to be home on Sunday?"

It was threatened, and I fully expected to see Blitz sitting at the end of the driveway on Sunday, with all of her little bags packed, all set to back to live with Randy Bartz and his wife. Luckily, all that I found when I arrived home was one very disheveled, sleep-deprived, and semi-angry spouse, and one very happy little yellow dog puppy. We had all passed the first true test.

The area we had for Blitz was a fairly large unfinished laundry room in the basement. It was blocked by a gate to keep her confined to that room, and we filled it with the requisite paraphernalia - a big dog bed, toys galore, and the ever present puppy-pads. The pads themselves were touted as a Godsend. They were infused with scent that would attract the puppy to eliminate on them and not on other areas. Armed with this knowledge, I set up a target area of three pads and hoped for the best. During the work day, Blitz would be confined to this area, and my hopes were that her intelligence and nose would lead her to mess in the defined target area.

Nothing could have been further from reality.

In coming home from work, I would often find that Blitz had picked out her own spot, and in her midday boredom, had moved the clean pads into her mess. She was delivering the elimination double whammy - a floor to clean up, plus soiled pads that needed to be replaced.

Knowing that dogs tend to eliminate in the same place, I'd preempt her next "movement" by placing pads in the previous scenes of the crime, and upon leaving for work, often noted that the basement floor looked like a bingo card. And, unfortunately, I would come home at the end to find that I had, yet again, lost a game of Tic-Tac-Poop to the yellow devil.

I'm quite confident that my wife and I were fully and completely responsible for the 3rd quarter 2000 sales performance of the Wee Wee Pad Company.

Despite the nice little area that we had created for Blitz, she developed an early aptitude for the JAILBREAK. The JAILBREAK is defined as any episode where a yellow dog has inappropriately escaped their confines and is on the loose. It can also serve as a warning to others that such an episode has occurred, and you can expect to have a yellow dog in your lap/garbage/bed in 4, 3, 2...

And we were soon to suffer the full impact of Blitz's first JAILBREAK.

To go to the next chapter, click here

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Please feel free to include any thoughts you may have. Know, however, that kiddos might be reading this, so please keep the adult language to yourself. I know, for me to ask that language is clean is a stretch...