Murdering Dogs

I think it should be legal to hire a hitman to “off” your dogs. You know, that way you could dispose of them and not actually worry about feeling guilty.

For all you crazy animal fanatics out there, I’m kidding.

Sort of.

I am currently the proud owner of a wonderful cocker spaniel named Max. Max is the perfect dog. He’s absolutely adorable, incredibly obedient, utterly fantastic with children, and quiet.

But he’s only quiet when he’s with humans, or when he’s alone.

When he’s with other dogs, that’s a whooooole different story.

Don’t get me wrong, Max is great with other dogs. He’s that happy-go-lucky dog you see that all the other dogs just love to be around. There isn’t a mean bone in his body. I’ve never met a dog that didn’t like him. The problem is that Max likes to talk to other dogs when he’s playing with them. Since he lacks the proper vocal cords to do this quietly, this translates into Max barking at other dogs whenever he plays with them.

It goes something like this:

“Bark.”

BarkBark.”

“Bark.”

BarkBarkBark.”

“Bark.”

In fact, it doesn’t go something like that, it goes exactly like that.

“Bark.”

BarkBark.”

“Bark.”

BarkBarkBark.”

“Bark.”

It’s those four same doggy phrases, repeated over and over again. In fact, as I’m typing this, I can hear him starting it up again. It’s not a particularly loud bark. It’s just a lazy, quiet kind of a bark that only gets annoying because it’s so pointless. It’s not even that energetic. It’s like even Max can’t get that excited about what he has to say. Remember that scene from 101 Dalmatians when the dogs are trying to decode that important message? “Fifteen…. spotted… puppies….” Well, Max keeps repeating the same message over and over, as if it has some importance, but I don’t think it really does. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’ve decoded exactly what he’s trying to say. When translated from bark-ese into English, this is how it goes:

“Hey.”

“Hey. Hey.”

“Hey.”

“Over here. Pay attention.”

“Hey.”

Annoying, isn’t it? The worst part is that he only does it when I am inside the house. That may not sound like an important part of this horrible, irritating scenario, but it is. Why is that so important? It’s because every time I go outside to scold him…. he shuts up.

Not only is he silent, but he is UTTERLY THRILLED that I have come outside to say hello. He wriggles. He spins. He wags his little stump of a tail so hard it looks like his back end is going to dislocate from his body and take flight. He is just so completely and utterly and SILENTLY happy that there’s no way I can scold him for his barking. You can totally see that there’s no way he’s going to make the connection. Barking? What do you mean “no barking”? Who’s barking? He’s not barking. He’s just SO THRILLED TO SEE YOU! You can practically taste the the joy emanating off him in palpable waves.

OMG. OMG! OMG.OMG.OMG. OMG! It’s her! It’s her! It’s her! She’s back! OMG! She’s here! Yaay! Yaaaaay! YAAAAAY! OMG! IT’S HER! IT’S HERHERHERHERHER! Oh, no! She’s leaving! Why is she leaving? She just came out here, stared at me, and then turned around and left! She’s gone! Oh, NO! I’m all alone! She’s never coming back! She’s been gone forever! I’m abandoned! I’ll never see her again! I’m all alone…. Oooh. Another dog! Wait a second… that other dog’s not paying attention to me!”

(pause)

“Hey.”

“Hey. Hey.”

“Hey.”

“Over here. Pay attention.”

“Hey.”

In order to truly understand how annoying this habit of his is, you need to understand that the dog he’s barking at is NOT in the neighbor’s yard. It’s not on the other side of the fence. It’s not tied up to a tree in our front yard, it’s not looking at him from inside another house’s window, or anything like that. The dog he is barking is it about six inches from the end of his nose, and the reason she is ignoring him is because she’s probably just as sick as I am of his useless, apathetic noise.

Now, normally I just keep him in the house with me (except for potty breaks) and never have to deal with this oh-so-lovely habit of his. The problem is that I am baby sitting my mom’s dog, who is only somewhat house-broken at best, and has a not-so-adorable habit of chewing on everything. I figure it’s not fair to keep her in the backyard by herself, so Max gets to stay with her and keep her company.

She gets to enjoy a big back yard, all the bones she can chew on, and endless places to piddle to her heart’s content.

Max gets to enjoy “Hey”ing to his little heart’s content.

As for me, I get to sit in my little apartment and envision hiring a hitman to make the insanity stop.

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