Thursday, 2 February 2012

How to cope with a destructive puppy

Phyllis wanted a dog. Despite trying to coax her off the idea with kittens, hamsters and even a chicken, she still wanted a dog.

Now I like dogs, don't get me wrong, but they are a lot of work and with 3 kids (4 if you count hubby) and a full time job, a dog wasn't something I really wanted to consider. Phyllis begged and pleaded, and hubby- a confirmed dog lover- sided with her. Feeling outnumbered I borrowed a friend's dog for a week to see what would happen. Phyllis and hubby dutifully walked, fed, scooped poop and generally did everything one would expect a responsible dog owner to do. I gave in. Phyllis got her dog.

The dog is the smallest dog in the world ever: the runt of a litter of chihuahua x bischon frisse puppies, and I have to say I fell in love instantly. I am happy to eat my words, he is adorable and no bigger than a guinea pig so doesn't really count as a dog at all.

Much as I love pup, he is messy. We take him for walks, buy him toys and play with him lots, but he still has that puppy instinct of chewing everything he can. We got him to the point where he was perfectly behaved, except for one thing. For some reason, pup could never resist the kitchen bin. If we turned our back on him for a second he would tip the bin over and throw the rubbish all over the kitchen. He knew he was doing wrong as he would immediately go and hide, and give us the puppy eyes, but there was something about the bin that for him that made the telling off worth it.

In the end, I gave up. I went off to work one morning, leaving hubby at home with pup. I 'suggested' (as only a wife can) that hubby clean out the cupboard off the kitchen and store the bin safely in there. Good idea, said hubby.

By the time I got home from work hubby very proudly led me to the kitchen to show me his solution to the bin tipping problem. Rather than carrying out my 'suggestion', which hubby admitted he didn't like because it would require a small amount of effort in opening and then closing the cupboard door, hubby had taken matters into his own hands. As I looked around, I noticed that hubby had NAILED THE BIN HALF WAY UP THE WALL!

Me: What's that supposed to be?
Hubby: He can't reach it now, look. (Baits the dog who indeed can't reach the bin)
Me: But it looks like modern art. It looks like something you would display at Tate Modern.
Hubby: I know! Cool isn't it?!

To be fair, the dog can't get in the bin, it is still handy, and it's a 'talking point'. It's just odd. But then so our we.

Today: Our family motto
This is drummed into my 3 small fry every day, and they recite it on cue:
Remember, as far as anyone knows we are a normal family.
How many families does that apply to I wonder...?

Mama Jax