Friday, February 27, 2015

One Dog Nation

My daughter sent me a text last night:

"I think Delaney has the title for Sophie's memoir. One Dog Nation."
Delaney had misheard the title of her new Disney movie, "One Hundred and One Dalmations,"  and referred to it as One Dog Nation.  After being impressed that she knew the word "nation" at all, and fit it into her mistaken idea of the title, I had to agree: Sophie would totally use this as the title of her tell-all memoir.  Because while everyone else is cheering Murphy's return to health, Sophie is not even trying to hide her disappointment.  While he appeared to be on his way to the Rainbow Bridge, she had allowed herself to fantasize about being an Only Dog and having her Mommy all to herself, and then the ancient SOB got better!

While Murphy was feeling really poorly, there were no tandem walks.  She got separate and therefore much longer  and more fun walkies.  Now he's better and half the time she has to walk WITH him, and that sucks, because he's old and bossy and doesn't want to go far, and forget about going fast, or crossing the big road to sniff the great sniffs on the other side. Not gonna happen when the Old Dog is there.  Mommy can carry him at times, but a dog on one arm (and of course bags of poop in hand) and a walking dog on a leash in the other doesn't really encourage long walkies.

Last night I got home and leashed both dogs and took them out, because it was already nearly 7 p.m. and there was still dinner, etc., to think about. Murphy took care of his business and immediately wanted to go home.  He's much healthier but he's still nearly 15 and prefers a memory foam dog bed to a brisk walk.  So I had two dogs dragging me in two different directions as Sophie began resisting with all of her 12 lb. bowling ball might, urging me to go for a real walk, and I felt absolutely awful for her. She had been stuck indoors all day while I was at work, and she had every right to be disappointed and upset.  I told her we'd put Murphy in the house and I'd take her back out again, but she didn't believe me.  I followed one dog while dragging the other like an anchor and swearing under my breath, back up the stairs to our door, and put Murphy in the house.

When Sophie realized I was serious about taking her for a real walk, she actually leaped for joy, and danced around like a happy maniac!  And I realized once again how living with an old dog has been unfair to her.  Her presence is keeping him engaged and more youthful, yes, but during the day when I'm at work, she's basically a live-in companion to a tedious old man who pisses on the floor and then walks in it.  (Sorry, gross, but true. If he actually uses one of the many pee pads I leave in every room for relief spots, it's purely because he just happened to be standing on it when he Let It Go.)

Sophie has reminded me again that her needs are different, and Murphy can't always Be the Boss at this stage of his life.  I'm hoping that she'll be kind to me when she writes her memoir. Because I watch this dog's face, and I know she's Making Notes.


k said...

Good girl, Sophie!

KatyaR said...

Poor Sophie!

Joan said...

Sophie Darling, it's so good that you'll be on deck to cheer your Mama up when Murphy has gone... And you will TOO miss him, I know you will!

Brenda B said...

Have patience, Sophie---you will get old, too one day and as my 84-year-old dad would say, "What goes around comes around."