Sunday, January 24, 2010

Playful Padraig Toto Lee Moore

The following was sent by Padraig's furever mom, who you may notice has a great sense of humor - a very important characteristic for a cairn owner.  In the interest of full disclosure, I must confess that Padraig, who is now also known as Toto Lee Moore, was one of my CP foster kids, and one of my favorites at that.  It's not so hard to let your foster kids "go" when they find such "high cotton" as Padraig Toto Lee Moore did.  Still, it helps that the furever mom loves to keep us updated on the little guy almost as much as she loves him!

Now, to use a few cliches, if it's true that 'owning a dog adds years to your life,' and 'laughter is the best medicine,' then it follows that I will live to rival Methuselah. There's the 'clown fish,' only to be out-clowned by Padraig.

How fortunate I am that my day starts out with a laugh, continues through series of guffaws, and ends with a tickle.

I come down the steps, first thing in the morning, to a black little Cairn, looking for all the world at the foot of the steps, like a helicopter on a landing pad getting ready for take-off. It is, without a doubt, my favorite part of the day. If you ever wonder if you have a friend in the world, or are 'loved,' get a dog. Should I not be coming down the stairs fast-enough for Toto, he's coming up them, then, to meet me -- sideways. What's that all about? NO carpet on the stairs, and after tumbling down them once, no -- twice, he's smart enough to not make that mistake, again.

Then, it's the mad dash, and this is with his trying to find traction on a slick tile floor, or even slicker hardwoods, until Toto hits the carpet and gets some traction. In the meanwhile, if I am heading in the opposite direction, it's like watching a locomotive come to a screeching halt on the tracks. Toto doesn't wait to 'switch' the track -- he jumps it.

Meal times, twice a day become the march of not the penguins, but all three of the dogs, little Padraig leading the pack. They'll settle, hineys planted firmly on the kitchen floor at the end of the island, where I 'cook,' and Toto leads a chorus of what appears to be Charles Schultz's Snoopy's-Meal-Happy-Dance. I guess these feeding times rival a McDonald's Happy Meal. Toto adds sound to the scene: an almost inaudible whine that builds to a barking crescendo if breakfast/dinner isn't coming fast-enough. The only thing that keeps the ASPCA at bay is the dog's weight. Hard for him to make the argument he doesn't eat regularly, if not steadily.

The day then proceeds to watching for intruders, guarding the door, running for leashes -- I know before long Toto will be watching the clock, fetching his leash, and Maxx's, and meeting me at the door. Mark my words. There's the romp around the house, with me in pursuit of him, while he teases me with his toy(s). "Catch-me-if-you-can" as an AFV tape.

Even quiet, and still, at nap-time is funny, with the little fellow, stretched-out his full length, on his back, paws in the air, and eyes rolled back in his head. I keep looking for that cartoon cloud above Toto's head, "ahhhh, but life is dog. . . err, g-o-o-d."

And so it goes.

He is content, if not cracking-me-up in the evenings when we relax on the sofa, and he gets his belly rubs or scratches, or brushing. Like with the leash, I fully expect him to start bringing me the brush, the slicker, the comb and the furminator, and I suppose if I want to save him the three or four trips, I could find a nice little bag in which to keep the tools, so he can bring them all at once and lay them within arm's reach.

Bedtime is, in his mind, 'c-o-o-k-i-e t-i-m-e,' and there is the scurrying across the slick floors again, gaining some momentum and traction on the carpets and throw rugs, until he's at the end of the kitchen counter where the treats are. Mind you, this is not the island where the meals are put together, and he knows that, too. Treats not getting out of the jar, and off the counter, fast enough result in bruises to my right hip where he bounces like a spring-loaded child's toy. I know if I turn too quickly one day, he'll probably get as high as my head, knock me out in the jump, and I'll awaken to a dog on the counter, the treat jar demolished, and treats, h-i-s-t-o-r-y. There IS that momentum. He makes it to his crate in zero-point-zero-one -- heaven forbid if the door he can't open (then add sound)-- jumps onto his blankie in his bed, turns around at least once to face me, tail just-touching and beating the back of the crate, while he awaits his good-night cookie. As I close the door, I well imagine his dismay -- "what, Momma, NO lullaby?!"

Lest Toto beat me to the punchline, "Life IS d-o-g."

Humbly submitted for your own pleasure, and edited by Padraig,
Cary, NC

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