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A morning in Doggy Hell February 16, 2008

Posted by emsgeiss in Humor & Satire, parenting & family, Uncategorized.
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So, we’re dog sitting one of my sisters-in-law’s two Kieshounds. Which is not fun, to say the least and I am not thrilled. Don’t get me wrong, I love dogs…just not this particular pair. And, for most things, I wouldn’t hesitate to help out a family member…except in the cases where you get sucked in to the dysfunction and end up enabling the continuance of bad patterns. But I digress.

My husband and I actually had a bit of a row this morning about the dogs. They are not the best-behaved dogs, and one doesn’t obey very well. I will allow and concede that they are great with kids, but among the biggest problem is that they have a hygiene problem that my sister-in-law refuses to recognize. She prefers them to look full and fluffy instead of clipping their butt hairs so that they don’t end up with a smear of cling-ons.

Rewind to Monday and press “play”

When I’d heard earlier in the week about the decision that had been made for us to watch the dogs, I was a bit miffed. In fact, my mother-in-law cooked up the whole idea and relayed it to my husband who relayed it to me. Darling Husband, (for whatever reasons) said to me during our initial discussion about dog sitting that “we really owed it to her to watch the dogs.” WTF? I suggested that we “owe her” by paying for their boarding in a kennel. He said, “No, no, we should just watch the dogs. It’ll be fine.” I asked when did we have to give a reply about the dogs.

He said “as soon as possible, since they’re leaving in a few days.” So, reluctantly, I told my mother-in-law that we’d watch the dogs, but needed to know when they’d be arriving, so I’d have enough time to get the house straightened up and move Bean’s stuff. She said she didn’t know all of the details yet, but would let me know as soon as she did.

Fast forward to this morning and press “play”

Around 8:45 this morning, I learned they’d be arriving around 9:30, which I’m pretty sure, Darling Husband had only learned himself not too much before that.

In response to my “Niiiiiiice,” Darling Husband tells me that he’d mentioned to his mom the other day, the idea of us paying for boarding the dogs (I guess he rethought the idea), but she had told him that I already agreed to keep them.

The questions start flying through my brain like fighter pilots:

Why do I feel conned? Duped even, into this whole mess? Why are the arrangements being made with my mother-in-law and not with the actual owner of the dogs ? Why and what exactly do we owe my sister-in-law? And a whole host of others not fit for print.

Amid bitching and fuming, I ran around doing dog-sitting prep, and then took Darling Husband’s suits to the dry cleaner, got my car washed and picked up breakfast all in an effort to leave before sister- and mother-in-law dropped off the dogs before heading to Vegas for the weekend. I was not in any state to see them, especially since civility could not be guaranteed. Did I mention that I am not thrilled? I actually, skipped returning to the house after I thought enough time had passed, because I saw the car still in my driveway, and decided to dilly dally a bit longer—taking a cruise around the subdivision along the route that I knew they wouldn’t be taking to get to the airport.

Okay, I’m feeling a bit of guilt about the carbon emissions. Sure, I could have parked the car and taken a walk, but that could have meant a close encounter of the worst kind. I may have also just saved some poor TSA agent from getting the backlash of my sister-in-law’s ire at me should an argument have ensued had she and I been in the same place at the same time. It only took an extra seven minutes though, and they were gone. I slid into home plate, with the base uncovered…SAFE!)

Back at home

Darling Husband had let the dogs out, but when they came back in, their butts were filthy. I’m trying to keep the boy away from the offending asses, while my husband heads for some paper towel to clean them while asking me where the gloves are. I keep the gloves upstairs, so I scoop up the boy to take him with me, but not before noticing that already, a piece of poop has landed on my kitchen floor.

The boy and I return with the gloves. I hand them to Darling Husband and put the boy down to grab some paper towel myself to wipe up the little present, but not before Speedy Gonzales has made a bee-line for this new thing on the floor that looks like chocolate. Yep…you can only guess where it went as I howled, “Noooooooooooo!” He immediately, upon tasting it, realizes that it is indeed not chocolate and wipes off his tongue, which is only making things worse. In a single bound, I grab and scoop him up, carrying him to the sink to wash out his mouth with a washcloth. I then run up with him for some Scope, which was probably not the best thing for a toddler, but hell, neither is dog shit. (He’s never even tried to play with or taste his own, for what it’s worth.) We then wash his hands.

We return down stairs, however I don’t realize that during the scoop-and-wash Darling Boy hand smeared the poop that was on his hand onto the back of the left shoulder of my sweater where he had been holding me. So we must wash the hands again and Darling Husband has to get the offender off of my sweater so that I can carefully remove it so as not to track crap anywhere else upon my person.

We get the damn dogs corralled: one in the basement the other in the bathroom so that we can get a handle on the situation. Darling Husband is now suddenly in the same “This-is-a-sucky-idea” camp that I was in back on Monday and he heads for doggy butt-clipping and cleaning detail, while I mop the kitchen floor and check for any other presents that may have been dropped or smeared anywhere else. (We never had this problem with our old dog.)

So, to say the least, this Saturday morning has been interesting.

Things have quieted a bit. Darling Boy is napping peacefully. Darling Husband has retired to the couch to veg out in front of the telly, and I just may be able to get some other writing and editing done.

But, today has not been without its small victory. After having become more familiar with female doggy anatomy that he ever wanted, Darling Husband declared, “we are never getting a dog!” This was a lot coming from a man who grew up with dogs, ours dying only just over a year ago. But Darling Son loves dogs, so I did get Darling Husband to agree to revisit the issue in a few years, when, should the time come, the boy will be able to take responsibility for his dog (which will not be a long-haired breed) and be well beyond the age of checking out strange-yet-familiar-looking things with his tongue.

Copyright © 2008, Erika-Marie S. Geiss



1. Dawn - February 16, 2008

OMG!!! Oh. Ugh. How AWFUL!!

At the beginning of the blog, was trying to understand why SIL’s dogs (whether boarding costs or dog-sitting) were yours and hubbies responsibilities at all, but figured it was family politics and thus, not my business. If she wants to go away, shouldn’t she pay to board the dogs? I mean, it’s kind of like having a kid…. kind of. (In that, you have responsibility and the responsibility does not fall on others).

But then you got to the part about poor Bean and his… tasting… awww… that POOR boy. On the bright side, the experience may have, in one fell swoop, broken him of *ever* again tasting anything from the floor. LOL Or maybe he just won’t eat chocolate again?


2. Amy Doodle - February 17, 2008

Omigosh, what an awful experience. Hubby REFUSES (capitals indicate his true and distinct tone of voice) to have a dog whose butt he has to wipe. We have a Lab/Dalmation mix. No problem. We have a Dachsund/possible Corgi mix. No problem. Animals with more hair behind than we collectively have on our heads? Not interested. Your experience? Priceless! Essay time.

3. Smells like teen spirit « Musings from the Mitten - February 22, 2008

[…] that is. It’s been three days since the offending canines have left my house. (See “A morning in doggy hell” for that horrid story.) I’ve finally reclaimed the house, or rather, returned it to […]

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