Thursday, December 8, 2011

Three Dogs No Cat

It's true. Sadly I don’t have a cat, not because I don’t like them, but because several family members are allergic to cats. My last cat died in 1986 at the ripe old age of 17 and I’ve never gotten another.

I do, however, have three dogs


The oldest is Oscar, a red/apricot Standard Poodle who will soon be 12. He is very laid back and is quite happy to let the other two bully him. He does however, love to be petted and can be quite a pest to get said petting. Unfortunately Oscar has a wiry texture to his fur/hair and petting him feels like petting a hairbrush. Not so enjoyable.

He used to love to chase frisbees and would jump high in the air to grab them and then return them to my feet. Well.. he still loves doing it but now he injures his shoulders and his hips so the poor boy has been grounded. No more high flying frisbees for him.


Dorcas is my 6 year old ‘alpha female’ bully of a Boston Terrier (or as I say, Boston Terror). She is the ultimate definition of hyper... particularly when someone comes into the house, or into my bedroom, or into our space. Unfortunately I am not consistent enough to have trained this behavior out of her. In addition she is VERY aggressive to other dogs. Taking her for a walk where she might meet other dogs is a challenge and I can NEVER take her to a dog park or to doggie day care.

Dorcas also loves chasing windshield wipers. I can no longer take her in the car with me unless she is in a crate because she will spend the entire trip running from the front to the back of the car in the hopes that she will ‘catch’ that nasty wiper. She yells and screams and cries and digs at the windshield. I have attached a video below of Dorcas chasing the wipers. The first few times it was hilarous. Now, not so much. (Sorry about the video quality. I'll try to do better next time!)

Dorcas will sit on my lap for hours but she is always tense. It’s like she’s this giant spring waiting to be released. So while she is a lap dog, she is not a calm companion.

Dorcas is also a champion tugger. She loves to play tug with her favorite cat toy and would play frisbee forever. She isn’t so great at dropping said frisbee when she returns it so I keep a second in reserve, throw it out and she drops the first.

She bullies my other dogs and will snip at them when she loses her temper. Mellow Oscar stays out of her way and lets her win any confrontation, but my third dog, Mr. Winston (having taking lessons from Dorcas on how to be top dog) will challenge her when she snips at him and all of sudden we have a full blown dogfight in progress.

I can’t play frisbee or throw balls for those two at the same time and if I’m outside playing with one, the other is screaming in the house.


Winston is the final member of our trio. He is a three year old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel who is extremely cute and is loved by everyone. Children love him. Adults love him. People who don’t like dogs like him (they don’t love him... like is as far as they can go). He is my calm companion and chief cuddler. Winston loves to chase tennis balls. At the dog park he can outrun almost every breed no matter the size to catch his ball. Everyone is amazed as they watch him go. He’s not a very big dog, but he is fast. Superfast. Lightening fast (well maybe that’s an exaggeration.)

Also, Winston's other mission in life is to keep my deck and yard free from squirrels and chipmunks. This task isn’t so important in Illinois because I don’t feed the birds there. But in Door County, I feed the birds and we have lots of trees and lots of critters (squirrels, chipmunks, raccoons and skunks). Both Dorcas and Winston do not like these creatures at all and as soon as we walk in the door of our cottage in Door County they are on FULL ALERT.

Below, Winston barking at the squirrels.

Then, when I open the door to the deck and the forest outside both Dorcas and Winston burst out like they are shot from the gun. Oscar stays back until the mission of clearing the yard and feeders is accomplished and then he leisurely heads outside. It is dangerous around Dorcas when she is on a mission.

As someone with no life partner at my side who is also extremely introverted, my dogs provide me endless hours of entertainment and companionship... plus very welcome unconditional love and affection and lots of warm laps with a few barks thrown in for good measure.

Cheers! K

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