Friday, March 09, 2007

I know I would miss it

You know, it is funny. Before we got Ruby, I never realized how much I missed having a dog. We always had dogs and assorted pets growing up. I like cats, and other animals too. But there is something about a dog. Always underfoot, so happy to see you when you come home. And Ruby is good for me, because she is so happy about such mundane things. She even dances for that disgusting dry dog food now LOLOL. When I come home she dances around me and jumps up for kisses. When we get up in the morning she does a HUGE stretch, then wags her tail and gives me kisses and acts very excited to get out of bed. At night, she is just as excited about bedtime. As soon as I turn off my lamp, she runs in circles and dances, and then runs to get a toy. Have to have a toy to go to sleep, you know. It is hard to be too serious with a pug around, because even when they are acting decidedly sorrowful it is still amusing. Most of the time they are hilarious to watch. Even when she sleeps, I find it hard to suppress a smile at the snores and snorts, and stretches and how she rolls from one side to the other with such determination. She is not here right now. I have started several times, upon not feeling her under the desk, and panicked thinking I have left her outside. Once or twice I even went looking for her to make sure she wasn't trapped in the basement (slippery floor, if there is something in her way and she can't take a running start she can't get up the stairs LOL). In other words, I am an idiot. She is off to the groomer to have a good bath and defurring, nail clipping, and other assorted indignities. I did tell them not to brush her teeth. There is no point of torturing her, after all. She always looks so sad and limp when I bring her there. She doesn't like strangers particularly, unless they are sitting on our couch. In that case she will climb all over them like a mountain goat, wag her tail like a fiend, and give lots of stinky pug kisses. All the better if she manages to give you a french kiss or two. Once she is done that, she is likely to get a wet toy and bully you into playing with her by forcing it into your hands. If you hide your hands she will balance it carefully in your lap, and look directly in your eyes as if to say "This is a TOY. We play with the TOY". If you ignore her, she claws at you with her pinchy toes. If you have never been toe pinched by a pug, then you are missing the oddest experience of your life LOL. Sometimes if you ignore her long enough she will wander away or come sit on my lap, but rarely are visitors that lucky. When the old 'put-the-toy-in-the-lap' trick does not work, she just might bring it up on the couch, wait for an ungaurded moment (which are few and far between once you realize she is a french kisser) and attempts to push the toy into your MOUTH. That is right, your mouth. After all, that is how SHE carries her toy. It hasn't quite occured to her that you might carry things...well....differently. But when she is thrust into a strange place with strange people, especially when she is on a leash, she gets all droopy and her tail goes limp and her paws sweat, and there is nothing more pitiful looking than a slouchy pug. I have been told, that while she does continue to have sad eyes, that mere minutes after I leave her ears go up and she will wag her tail at the groomer, and looks around with more interest. But she will NOT accept a treat until I come back. They give them to her, she rarely takes it from them. If she does take it, she carefully places it beside her until I get there. At that point she will pick it up and put it in my hand (to show it to me, not to carry because she thinks things are carried in the mouth, remember?) then eat it with gusto. Her favourite part of that ordeal is the conditioner. She likes when they massage it all over her, and I am sure it feels good when they let it sit for a bit. She always has itchy, dry-ish skin. She isn't so fond of the rinsing, unless there is more massaging at the same time. Now. Having just dropped her off, you would think that I would know where she was. But immediately upon returning home, I was worried when she didn't come to the door. Where is my dancer? Where is my baby? Oh. Yeah. Then a few minutes later when I opened the bathroom door and she wasn't waiting for me in the hallway. Where is she? Is she getting into something she shouldn't (just about the only time she leaves my side)? Oh. Yeah. I stretch my feet under the desk AS I WRITE THIS, and panic for a moment when they don't find a squishy warm snoring thing under there. Did I leave her outside? Is she trapped in the basement? Oh. Yeah. You know, I often say that she isn't smart, and really, I am beginning to wonder if maybe the intelligence deficiency is mine. Remember Ruby's "grandmother"? Well, we have made amends, and she has convinced me to let her give my baby the pug treatment. Some sort of drying that forces the water out of the fur (no drying cage thank goodness), grinding the nails instead of clipping. I told her good luck, as when I touch her paws she goes medievel on my arse. Once we went to a different groomer that also had a pug. She wanted to grind the nails instead of clipping, which I had never heard of but was interested in. Pug nails are thick and tend to get splitty and scratchy when clipped. The can go shorter and the result is smoother with the grinder. Now. When we got Ruby I subjected her to the same torture as I do all my animals. Every time she was near me, I poked around inside her ears and touched her belly and opened her mouth, and fondled her paws. The intent was to create a pet that didn't mind having these areas touched and could be easily pilled. It has worked a treat with every single other animal I ever used the technique for. But I had never met a PUG. They are truly an enigma (hey, that is Ruby's daddy's name). "Ha ha" she said. "I know pugs. I can do this. I can touch her feet". And I said you go and do whatever little thing you want, but have fun because Ruby is going to bite you a million times. She claimed that she was a pug-foot-touching expert and could not only GRIND those nails, she could paint them. I said WHATEVER, and smiled knowingly. Needless to say, when I picked Ruby up she had one or two ground nails, the rest were clipped, and there was no nail polish in sight. We were also asked not to come back. Strangers can clip her nails, because it is fast and the stranger factor is the saving grace here. She is wary of you, so she will tolerate some light paw touching. Hold her foot a little longer, and the tugging starts. Once she realizes she can tug and you aren't going to hurt her, all is lost. You are no longer a 'stranger', she is no longer wary of you. You will NOT be able to touch her feet, and if you persist she will give you pug pinches. Pug pinches are infuriating more than they are dangerous. It is like being pinched in a million places in rapid succession by a damp pillow. That is the only way I can explain it. It is started and overwith before you can even register it is happening. Advance that hand towards her again, and now it is a GAME. She weaves and bobs, dances towards you and delivers a good pinching, then dances back before you even know she did it. The only difference between her play pinch and her peeved pinch, is when she plays the teeth rarely connect with your skin. When she is peeved, it starts off fairly light then she gets you a good one! Now, don't get me wrong. Ruby is not mean at all. And as infuritating as it is, it is also absolutely hysterical. That is what makes it so diabolical. Plus she will pinch whatever she can get, so no body parts are safe. And pulling your hands in will not save you, she will follow them right to where they are, even if it means climbing inside your t-shirt. Don't ask me how I know that. She is also a pusher. She will come up to you, and sort of pounce/push you with her front paws. She is a solid little thing, and that bounce can knock you over if you are small or not ready for it. Or leave bruises. Sometimes if she is really excited about her dinner, she will eat a bit then come over and push you, then run back again. As if to say "Can you believe how GOOD this stuff is?". If you sit on the floor she will push you in an attempt to knock you down so she can lick your face. Seeing as she stands on your hair at the same time, it is difficult to escape. Don't tell me my dog is poorly trained. She KNOWS how she is supposed to act. She just chooses to do things her OWN way most of the time ;). I laid down MY rules. She is to be dry when I pick her up. DRY. Bone dry. Right to the skin. Pugs are double coated and when the top layer feels dry, the inside can still be as sodden as a sponge. This leads to mats. Mats do not make Dances happy. Be especially careful of her ears. Her ears are very sensitive to water and cannot get water inside them, or they will become infected. Ear infections do not make Dances happy. Please do not perfume her. She is a dog. There is no need for her to smell like a hooker, nor a chocolate chip cookie. Plus, every scent seems to give me a sinus headache. Sinus headaches do not make Dances happy. After that, do whatever you can before the sad eyes or the ever-loving pinching overtakes you. It is almost time to go get her. I might have to go early and wait. I just stretched my feet and panicked again.

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