My grand-dogger: Potty training vs. paper training
Emily thought the stroller brilliant because to her there is no difference between rearing a child and raising a pet. To me, potty training and paper training are two different things.
When my daughter Becky was a baby, I mentioned how cute she was spitting out her first mouth-full of Gerber’s Oatmeal; Emily was heartbroken when she had to switch from puppy-chow to dog-chow. I was offended; they were two different species for goodness sake. How could anyone love a dog as much as a baby?
When I had my second child, Rachel, Emily bought another puppy and a cat. Our house was full of babbling babies, bottles and Weebles; Emily’s was wall-to-wall newspapers, a litter-box, yips and hisses.
Once my daughters became old enough to play with the dogs, and by then two cats, the comparison of rug-rats vs. ankle-biters ceased. The whole, talking and treating a pet like a child issue sort of left my psyche until my now grown daughter’s fiancé proposed, presenting her with a beautiful diamond ring and the cutest little miniature-dachshund on the face of the earth. I proudly proclaim that until the wonderful title of grandmother is bestowed upon me I have Hitch.
I call him my grand-dogger.
At work when pictures of grandchildren are passed around by proud grandparents it takes every bit of restraint I have to not blurt out how cute Hitch looks fetching and carrying a full sized Frisbee, or how sweet he is curled up in my lap, or how big he has gotten; all 8 pounds of wiener-dog adorable energy. When my boss expounds on the intelligence of her beautiful granddaughters or shows me the latest matching outfits she has bought them, I can’t resist sharing my latest Hitch purchase; the little green dish with tiny dog bones on it, and a natural-fleece lined zebra-print raincoat, with a hood. I must admit there is something about a natural-fleece lined animal-print article of clothing for a dog that seems so wrong, but it’s cute, how could I resist.
Yes, I have become one of those nauseating people who talks about a dog like it is a child. When my husband and I watch Hitch, I call it babysitting. When I hold him, I sway back and forth and pat him, like I gently patted my babies.
My husband, who thinks the only good dog is a big dog, and ours weighs over 100 pounds, speaks to Hitch like he’s a toddler. To him, every other small dog is defined as a yipping little tangle of dog-hair at the end of a mop handle, but not Hitch.
“The little guy had personality,” he says, and I must say, I do agree.
So until, and if, my daughters have actual children I will be one of those obnoxious people who follow every one of your cute grandchildren stories with one about my grand-dogger. Did I tell you I went back to that store to see if they have any of those strollers left? No, well okay then, enough said.