Sunday, January 20, 2013


This is our dog, Lulu. She's older now, about 11 and she has taken to peeing in the wrong places to note her disapproval of us locking her in the bedroom if we go away--she pees on our bed. She's apparently fed up with car rides--she pees in the car. And, most recently, when her "cousin" Xena showed up for us to keep this week, she peed on Xena's dog bed. Xena is my daughter's dog.

So we have a rotating pack of three mutts racing around this house at any time. Xena, Moo my other daughter's dog, and Lulu. Our backyard is larger than the kids. We have critters--squirrels, skunks, raccoons, rats, mice, birds, and possums. They chase up our hill, then down to the gate by the front yard and back, perhaps to check the gate at the other side of our house. They run behind the bushes, and sometimes they come out smelling like rosemary or lavender, two herbs growing in our yard.

They race and bark as they run through the house to look out the front window at any passing human walking their dog. This demands barking, whining, running to the backroom, only to come charging back to the front for another grumble. It can be canine chaos whenever two dogs gather at Grandma and Grandpa's. (I admit, my own dog leads the others in this behavior.)

I'd like to say this noisy behavior bothers me, but in general, it doesn't. While Lulu is not a particularly social animal, she reluctantly suffers her company, and even can be caught joining in a game of tug of war with Xena. Sometimes, Xena will put her black furry face in mine in the middle of the night to check my wakefulness. A warm tongue in the face usually does the trick. Yes, I was awake.

So, the point? These three former pound puppies are always welcome. They join us here, all, for holidays and functions. They're family after all.

Perhaps the one of the things my wife and I can be proud of creating in our children and hopefully our grandchildren, is the love of dogs. It couldn't hurt.