Monday, February 04, 2008

Can't figure out where this back ache comes from...

"Okay, when we move into the new house, no more animals on the bed."

This was me talking, the Dog Lady. I was tired of spending the night in some sort of evil yoga position, curled around a terrier who is suddenly twice its size once on a mattress. Dogs have no respect for clean sheets and are not above digging a burrow in a made-up bed. So I'd made up my mind. No more dogs on the furniture.

That was the agreement. No dogs on the bed, no dogs on the couch or the chairs. There is a body of canine discipline that insists this also prevents behavioral problems in that the dog understands that you are the alpha dog because you occupy this higher place of honor.

I suspect though it's a clever ploy on the part of the dogs making you think they think you are the alph
a dog when, in fact, they've trained you to open the door to let them in and out at will and feed them a specific times of day. The irony doesn't escape me, about the only advantage my so-called advanced brain seems to afford me.

Anyway, I've been pretty diligent about enforcing the ban on canine furniture occupation...

...until Topper got depressed.

Topper tends to be a bundle of neuroses anyway but it turned out that in addition to all his other phobias like water, clams, thunderstorms, bird calls, large beetles and moths, the sound of distant gunshots caused him to melt down; and this subdivision borders a gun club.

e result of this is now all his other minor triggers (pardon the pun) became major triggers and one night, during a particularly spectacular thunder and lightening storm, he practically went into shock. So Dirtman brought him onto the bed with us, where he promptly snuggled onto my side and went to sleep.

Apparently that set some sort of precedent, because since then there has been no end to the addenda to the
original regulation. There is the "invitation clause," wherein a dog may occupy the furniture if permission is obtained. There is the "lap law," stating that a dog in the lap is not a dog on the furniture. There is the "existential loop hole" stating that a dog cannot be considered as having laid on the furniture if you do not observe the actual occupation and merely observe a collection of loose fur at the site.

There is the Special Salt Dispensation Act that states Salt, and only Salt, may sit on a dining room chair when no one is in the dining room because he's just going to jump back up anyway the second you leave the room and you can keep going back and ordering him off, but he can outlast you because he's a terrier and a pain in the butt.

Gaspode has a special hardship clause that states he can jump on the bed when the puppies gang up on him because he is so much smaller than they and, if he decides to really lay into them, he could rip their fuzzy little hearts out.

Zsa Zsa has a note from her doctor dismissing all regulation les
t it upset her delicate digestive system and she starts throwing up blood again.

So this morning I wake up in my king size bed, hugging the absolute edge of the bed. Behind me is Topper on his back, paws askew. Next to my pillow, on Dirtman's extra pillow, is Gaspode curled up and snoring. In the middle of this is Whiskers, the cat, grooming Topper's toenails.

I think renegotiation may be necessary if I'm ever to walk upright again.


Gwynne said...

Awww, look at all these cute pictures. I especially like Salt and The Fruit Tart(s) (a good band name).

Yeah, see, we have the same rules in our house, all of which have been amended and ignored often enough that my husband and I are now the ones not allowed on the furniture. And actually, when I rolled over in bed the other morning to find one large dog turd (pardon my language) beside me (and two large dogs sitting on the bed, looking at me with that innocent "it wasn't me, it was him" look), I'd just as soon sleep on the floor. ;-)

Meg said...

Ooh, we have a Lap Law too. Mack and Clara are allowed on Clara's Couch (yes, it is hers) at any time, we invoke the Invitation Law on the beds, and that is it. Unless my roommate decides she needs a puppy on the lap and hauls Clara up onto her lap, but since that is Lap Law territory, it's OK. And Clara is the world's best boneless lap dog. Put her in your lap and all her bones dissolve until she's just a Ridgeback puddle.

We started out with a Strictly No Dogs On Furniture Law, until 12 months of holy Ridgeback puppy busy-ness drove us to allow Clara on her couch to make her calm down and relax. It's all been downhill since then.

I'm glad I'm not the only one with back pain due to dogs in bed (you have my greatesty sympathy!). I need a bigger bed, Clara routinely takes up 3/4 of the bed (it's a twin bed...I know, what was I thinking??).

Sisiggy said...

Gwynne: I think it attests to the uniqueness of dog people that I didn't cringe when you mentioned the large turd on your bed. I immediately went into problem-solving mode and came to the conclusion that obviously at least one of the dogs was a male and you know how guys are about turd size -- like they hatched a golden egg or something. However, we once had a male border collie mix rescue that refused to urinate anywhere other than on my oldest son's bed. That was one messed up dog.

Meg: Bed size doesn't matter. We have a king-sized bed and half of it is empty (my husband's side) and everyone piles on my side, including Dirtman, who moves in his sleep until he comes to an obstacle.

Jane G. said...

"...and everyone piles on my side, including Dirtman, who moves in his sleep until he comes to an obstacle."

Awwww, you guys are a pack, and you are the Pack Leader!

Meg said...

I have share wth you that I just read the entire entry out loud to my roommate and she was practically crying, she was laughing so hard. That is an Ultimate Compliment from her.

I have it on good authority from my roommate that sleeping in a queen bed with our Clara Bow pup is a whole different experience than sleeping in a twin bed. She tried it for a weekend at her parents' house and found it much more comfy. Twin bed are just way too small for more than 1 creature at a time.

Plus, Clara and I routinely break my current bed frame on a regular basis, so it's probably not safe to continue in this bed frame. You'll hear a loud "THUD" and suddenly the middle of the bed is now 1 foot deeper than the surrounding portions of the bed, and there's a very startled human and pup in the middle of the sunken bed. It was cheaply made and cost about $100 ages ago when I was much poorer, so I think I could get something better if this second tax refund thingie goes through...I'm tired of "fixing" the bed each time it breaks, which is at least twice a week. Between that and my own bed hog Clara, I don't get a very restful night's sleep!

Sisiggy said...

Jane: No, I'm more like Radar O'Reilly from M*A*S*H: I have no important rank, but the place would fall a part without me.

Meg: since moving to this house and getting a bed where the springs don't poke through, I'd highly recommend making sure your bed is comfortable. You don't even realize how much deep sleep you're losing.

Jane G. said...

And you can probably hear the helicopters before anyone else.