Wednesday, February 4, 2009

How I Wake Up.

Every morning between the hours of 4am and 6am there is a war going on in our house. The dogs always win, but the humans fight hard every time.

At 4am, my eyes snap open as the small dog shakes off her sleep, her collars jingling loudly in my once silent night. I call to her softly hoping I wont wake up the larger dog. Sometimes, on lucky days, she comes to me and I can put her in bed for an hour longer. She's a sucker for cuddling. But then there are those days where she sits down in front of the door to the bedroom. It's open. The door is open but the dogs do not enter. They stand with their toes on the line and they whine and back up. Then they hop forward. Whine and back up. Hop forward. One of them accidentally steps on a squeaky toy. The whining stops. The squeaking starts. The taller human yells from his sleep, "STOP STOP IT!" and the dogs fall into a stupor.

This must mean the humans are awake now!

They leap about the living room until either Ellison closes the door in their face or he takes them out. The dogs always win because at some point, one of us has to go to work.

One night, the night before my day off, I took the squirt bottle to bed. I cuddled it lovingly knowing the next morning would be different. This morning I would not be woken up at 4am and made to stay awake listening to the whines and hops of 122 pounds of dog.

Sure enough, at 4am, the collars jingled. The dogs approached the front line. I was already sitting up letting my eyes adjust to the dark, watching their shapes dance across my doorway. I took moment to orient myself to the larger one's big head. I squirted once. Direct hit! He immediately retreated with a shake of his big body and curled up, dejected, in his bed. The smaller one was harder. I squired and missed twice. The third one was a hit to the side. She took another hit to the butt before she retreated away from the door to her bed.

And from her bed, just out of reach of my weaponry, she whined from 4am to 6am when Ellison got up to feed them.

I have given up on the squirt bottle and we're just back to being the loser humans who are ruled by our dogs.

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