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Thursday, November 19, 2015

Parental Inconsistency Kills Socks

DogCondo Food Rule #1:
If I don't personally hand it to you, you don't eat it.

Exception to DogCondo Food Rule #1:
If , after a long, exhausting day, I am no longer in possession of the energy required to bend over and pick up the edibles that just fell off the kitchen counter, or the dining room table, or the couch, or pretty much any surface that is not your bowl, you may disregard DogCondo Food Rule #1.

When I first adopted these little canines, I researched various parenting theories, thinking that, aside from some obvious differences that the most fanatical pet parents often fail to recognize (thereby giving those of us who are only mildly fanatical about our pets a bad name in the process), pets and children share some remarkable similarities (the most important of which, I have learned over the years, is that you should bring neither puppy nor baby into your life simply because you want an effortless relationship with a cute, cuddly little being. Yes, they offer that loveliness, but only after so much lost sleep and lost money and lost sanity that by the end of the day, the only thing you're good for is hugging. And drooling. And muttering "Why must you seek to destroy me day after day after heart-wrenching day?").

During my beginner DogMom years, first to the highly anxious, familiarly phobic, at times a little depressed Beckett and then, three years later, to Gatsby, who blew into our family with his unique (read: demanding) personality and his interesting (read: terrifying) ability to sense the slightest crack in my determination to discipline him, I did manage to find some hope in all the books and experts and websites out there. I also noticed that they all agreed that consistency is the hallmark of raising healthy, well-adjusted little ones with good impulse control and calm, obedient personalities.

Bingo! It's all about setting boundaries and following through. Every. Single. Time. How great to have this kind of information! How helpful! 

Unless, of course, you're so wiped out and busy as heck and lulled into a false sense of "My dogs are over that whole chewing/misbehaving/destructive stage," that you once again forget to apply all your brainy book-learnin' to real life. 

And so, tonight for dinner, Gatsby ate his carefully measured Lamb and Brown Rice dog food, a "please leave me alone for 2 minutes so I can get a few things done" beef stick, the spoonful of chickpeas that fell off the kitchen counter (and that I couldn't scoop up in time) the two baby carrots that fell off the dining room table (and that I couldn't scoop up in time), the single pumpkin seed that fell out of my hand (and that I didn't even have the energy to pretend to pick up by then), and half of my grey sock (that likely beckoned to him "Bon appetit, Dude! She's way too out of it to care at this point!").

 Beckett simply watched the whole messy scene unravel, his anxiety disorder on high alert, til he finally ran and hid behind the downstairs toilet (his refuge during bad weather, town fireworks displays, and Gatsby episodes).


As for the sock - may it rest in peace after living such a short time on this Earth (and leaving behind its sad widowed mate, now destined for the cleaning rag bin). I s'pose, as with every other personal item I've lost over the years, this, too, will all come out in the end. I'll let you know in about 10 hours.





2 comments:

  1. How I just adore reading about your life with your boys ♡

    ReplyDelete
  2. How I just adore reading about your life with your boys ♡

    ReplyDelete