Friday, April 29, 2005

Little Rebel

My dog sheds twice a year. By "sheds," I mean that his fur makes a mass exodus from his body in chunks the size of hampsters and he begins to resemble a cancer victim, or a cat that has recently lost a fight.

I have a habit of reaching over to him and just pulling the already detached chunks of fur out, despite the fact that for some reason it really annoys J.

The way I see it, I would rather have a poof of fur in my hand to throw away than to find it strewn around the bed, couch, and carpet. A poof in hand is worth several distributed around the house. And it's not like it hurts the dog.

What always cracks me up is my dog's response, that when I pull a dangling tuft of fur from his hind quarters, HE WANTS IT BACK. You would think that we were on the playground in fourth grade and I had just stolen his lunch. He whirls around and does everything he can to TAKE BACK that poof.

I don't know what he thinks he's going to do with a mouthful of fur. Sometimes I'm tempted to give it to him to see if he tries to stick it back in. But then I think of what he looks like when he's hacking up hairballs.

That's when the fruitless arguments ensue.

"If you're so concerned about keeping it, then stop leaving it all over my house."

I can tell as I say it that I'm sinking into the pit of pointless communication. Not because my dog doesn't understand English - HE DOES - but because his standard response is that the house and everything in it are in fact HIS (did we not notice that he has marked the ENTIRE backyard???) and he may distribute pieces of himself anywhere he darn well pleases.

He has such and attitude sometimes. At first the talking back was kind of cute because we've never actually seen a dog do this before. To see it is very reminiscent of watching a teenager roll his eyes and silently mimic his parents' gripes behind their backs. Except that Hastings does it to our faces. He knows better to bark back, but boy can he mimic. And like most cute things, it gets old after a while.

It's scenarios like this that make me a wee bit anxious about parenting. If our dog thinks we're retarded, what will our kids think?


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