Monday, March 17, 2008

New Addition

For a while now Ian and I have talked about getting another puppy, in part so that Spackle would have a friend, but mostly because puppies are really cute and we’ve always known that we eventually wanted two dogs and we definitely wanted Spackle to help the puppy understand what we expect from a dog.

So: meet Hoover! He’s a lab mix (we’re trying to avoid the huge potential costs—actual in our case—associated with the dodgy hips of the purebred Lab) whom we adopted last week from the Humane Society in Longview, Washington (puppies in our home city of Seattle seem to be primarily pit bulls, and we just didn’t want to go there, regardless of the fact that it’s the training that makes the dog, blah blah blah.) I suppose it’s fortunate that a “friend for Spackle” wasn’t, in fact, our primary motivation in getting Hoover, because we would be sad failures.

Spackle hates Hoover. All Hoover needs to do is look at him and an almost subsonic, Mack-truck-downshifting-on-a-distant-I-5 growl issues from deep in his throat, his lips curl back, and his whole body tenses. This does not, in fact, deter Hoover one bit, so he races over, in his galumphing puppy way, right on to Spackle’s bed. This drives Spackle mad, and he lets out an infuriated, giant-dog bark, and lunges. Hoover dances out of the way, and approaches, maybe the slightest bit more cautiously, again.

We’ve ended up spending a lot of time with Spackle shut out of the kitchen simply so he can have a break from the endless prickly fawning adoration. Also, if Hoover is shut into the kitchen, we can monitor his chewing and piddling activities moderately well. His bed looks like a toddler’s favorite place to play—five or six different chew toys that he’s collected all over it, him (frequently, blessedly) conked out in the middle.

He’s been okay at nights—if one of us takes him out once (usually me, usually around 3am) he’ll piddle and poop and then sleep for several more hours until about 7:30 when one of us (so far exclusively Ian, bless his heart) gets up and feeds him and Spackle. Ian then lets Spackle back into the bedroom where he and I sleep for another two hours.

We’re starting puppy manners classes next week, which I’m hoping will appease my mother, who was a bit peeved that we decided to get a puppy knowing that she’s going to be stuck taking care of him when Spackle comes for his 2 ½ week summer vacation while we’re in Cabo Verde. But Hoover’ll be about six months old by then, and his bladder will have grown to grapefruit-size instead of lentil-size, and the needle teeth will be replaced, and he’ll be a perfect, farm-dog angel.

1 comment:

Joel said...

It is appropriate that you selected a nice Republican name for Hoover in this election year. Hoover looks real nice. I'd vote for him!