“Handle every stressful situation like a dog.
If you can’t eat it or play with it,
just pee on it and walk away.”
Long ago, in the same place I live now, my hubby and I adopted a wee little puppy named Handsome. Being the kind of people who find names like that a bit odd, we renamed him Nimitz.
Since Nimitz is a far less odd name, right?
Nimitz was a shy little thing, malnourished, and bald of any form of fur. He was a kind soul, mellow. Although he was a bit timid of the world, he seemed interested in it, and of us.
Day 1. This scrawny, bald-patched pup entered our lives.
We brought him home, and began feeding the little fellow. Not used to such a tiny creature, we had, unfortunately, bought food that was too large for his miniscule mouth to grab onto and chew. And so, Pilot and I would spend an extra 20 minutes per pre-meal chopping each individual chunk of food into smaller bites until there was enough to fill his bowl. This included waking up at 5 AM to get ready for the day, and have Nimitz’s food ready by 6 AM, all the way into making sure Nimitz had enough food throughout the day. If only we hadn’t purchased a dog food bag so large that Costco would be proud.
We arrive home, with the “far too large morsels” dog food in tow!
(Mind the mess, will you? We’ve cleaned since then.)
Over time, he grew to love us, and allow us to pet him. His previous owner had failed to mention that poor Nimitz had consumed 2 condoms that were working through his poor little system before we brought Nimitz to live with us. It took 2 weeks for them both to pass through. Needless to say, we were horrified to learn these had been lurking around his little intestinal tract, and we were grateful he hadn’t gotten sick nor died from them. We did our (albeit reluctant) part of “helping” him remove these from his system.
Now, Pilot and I are not picky about breed. We just looked at this tiny wee pup in our lives and had fun guessing what he might turn out to be once his fur grew in. Much to our surprise, we were greeted with “Full Pom.” Nimitz’s fur began to grow back and we learned that this wonderful pup was not a Chihuahua, nor a Chihuahua/Pomeranian mix. As the fur grew longer and longer, our assurances were made more clear. It became obvious that this furry family member went “Full Pom” on us.
Oh the brushing. The constant, every other day brushing. The brushing doesn’t end. It requires clearing the bristles of his brush at least 4 times per brushing experience. I wish I was kidding. That’s during summer. It will be winter soon, and his winter coat will be arriving shortly. That requires 7 clearings of the bristles of his brush. Haircuts are a must with this little guy.
Brush time, you say? I LOVE Brush time!
As we taught little Nimitz to become housebroken and leash trained, we would walk him around and around our place, familiarizing him with the area. Teaching him the do’s/do not’s of areas that are fun and areas that are bad for him to venture into. Teaching him to be aware of cars, pay attention to his surroundings (as long as there wasn’t a squirrel around). We were proud to discover he was a pup who learned quickly and permanently.
This would become a double-edged sword to our lives.
Life is peaceful!
Life is good!
I want to say it was around Week 5. Pilot and Nimitz were commencing their midday constitutional, when a thunderous noise was heard across the land. The ground shook beneath his paws. His ears twitched in hyperawareness. Nimitz’s body shook at a rate surely to shred the fur from his body. Pilot and Jason had turned the corner, only to discover IT. The Green Evil Thing. The Garbage Truck!
Nimitz’s eyes widened. He backed up against Pilot’s legs. He hunched his back, trying to make his already mini canine body as small as possible away from the Green Evil Thing. As the mechanisms whirred, the motor churning, and the air brakes releasing a high-pitched whine, poor little Nimitz could only freeze. A little 5 pound puppy against a machine 100 times larger than Pilot!
Then, the Green Evil Thing did something worse. It collected the garbage. It’s giant mutant mechanical arm swung around and grabbed one of Nimitz’s favorite things to sniff: The garbage can. This terrific beast grabbed the garbage can without even blinking, lifting it into the air and dumping the garbage can’s inner workings, consuming it into the Green Evil Thing’s self! What horror beheld the hazel eyes of our wee little one! He had no idea such a monstrosity existed in this world!
Nimitz, shaking like a leaf on a branch, tucked tail and bolted back to our home, dragging Pilot behind him. Pawing at our front door, Pilot opened our place, and Nimitz ducked under our bed and wouldn’t come out for anything. Not toys, not food, not soft calling, or even his beloved doggy treats. Under the dark depths of our bed, Nimitz stayed for a full twenty minutes after the Green Evil Thing was gone, off to digest another poor garbage can down the street. Its contents of wondrous odors that are preferred by the canine species gone forever.
(For a few days, at least.)
PILOT! IT’S THE GREEN EVIL THING!
PILOT! WAKE UP AND SAVE ME!
Now, to this day, every time the damn Green Evil Thing (aka Garbage Truck), or a UPS truck, or FedEx truck, Groundskeeper vehicle, any large truck, or anything with air brakes is within a 2 block radius; or, if we’re having a family car trip and one of those things goes by, our dog goes full bezerker, barking as wildly as possible before tucking tail and running under the bed, (or in the back seat on the floor). It takes less time for him to recover, only 1-2 minutes. Sometimes Pilot and I can have him “sit” and “stay” early enough in the process that Nimitz won’t duck under the bed right away. But, he eventually does. He’ll cuddle in fear with his Guard Dragon (an orange toy) under the bed for a couple of minutes before rejoining us as if nothing has happened.
So, to the Green Evil Thing – I will never forgive you, but thank you for taking our garbage once a week. We know you’re just doing your job… but try telling my dog that.
What is your pet afraid of?
How have you conquered that fear, if at all?
What was something you or your pet wasn’t fearful of before, but you are now?
Is there an Green Evil Thing in your life?
Leave your comments below.