Our dogs are early risers. Even before Duke came into our lives, Bonnie liked to let me know that it was morning and she needed a snack. She could not do Duke’s leap over the gate, but she could fling her considerable bulk against the gate to the point where the walls would shake.
Gibbs of the Long Nose
After Duke got here, we moved up to a new level. Duke leaps the fence while Bonnie and Duke wait on the other side, huffing and snorting. Duke then hits the bedroom door with a full body slam. Garry can’t hear it — or says he can’t hear it. Regardless, I’m sure if Duke keeps pounding on it, the door’s going to fall down. It’s not much of a door and enough pounding from The Duke will not improve it.
The dogs’ first foray into getting me up is generally around 6 in the morning. Why? Because they hear me get up and go to the bathroom. I’ve been known to try and avoid flushing in the hopes that they won’t hear me and I can go back to bed … but they have really good hearing. So I get up, give them each a biscuit, glare at them, and stumble back to bed. Then I lay there being as quiet as I can, lest they take any movement as a sign of my impending lively entry into their world.
Photo: Garry Armstrong
I drift back to sleep. At around 7, Duke hits the door for the second time. I get up, give them a very small biscuit and slink back to bed and generally get another hour, at which point the phone rings. That call would be (1) a pharmacy to tell us a prescription is ready, (2) a doctor to remind me that someone has an appointment three days from now in late afternoon, or (3) no one –my favorite call.
I sigh, wait for a hit on the door, get up, tell the dogs to shut up, they aren’t getting another biscuit and go back to bed. For one hour.
Duke is back.
BANG, SCRATCH, SCRATCH.
I get up. I give them the smallest biscuit I can find and switch on the coffee. I’m know I’ll be back but at least when I get up in an hour, the coffee will be ready.
Life is better when the coffee is ready. Just saying.
The problem is that the dogs don’t stay up late watching old movies or reading books. While we are doing that, they are sound asleep. They only start to wake up when we get ready to go to bed. That’s when they leap into action because … you got it … IT’S BISCUIT TIME AGAIN!
They get one full-size big crunchy from Garry and then they get one small (but much tastier) one from me.
Garry is impressed at how Duke is fully engaged with him from the moment he opens the bedroom door and for every other minute of the remaining day. If he goes in for a shower, Duke will be sitting outside the door. Waiting. When Garry gets up to do anything, all three dogs follow him. Well, to be fair, they follow me, too. It’s a parade.
Maybe what we need to do is keep them awake all evening so they will sleep late too? The problem is, when they’ve decided to sack out, nothing wakes them up. Nothing. They go completely limp and respond only to food. If they are in full sack-out mode, they have been known to sleep through an occasional biscuit, too.
Something’s got to give. I suppose I can quit going to bed at all and simply nod off on the sofa. It would at least save our door from destruction. Then, they can do what they enjoy the rest of the time.
Which is to bite my feet. They really love doing that.