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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

A Tale of Two Dogs

I'm going to commit a cardinal sin and talk about my dogs today. :grin:

According to blogging experts, writers shouldn't blog about their dogs because readers don't care for it.

Honey, if I've never commented on your blog, you have a far greater chance that I will if you do talk about your animals. But that's just me.

Tank is getting old. It hurts my heart to see him grow gray.

In all fairness, it hurts my heart when I grow gray too, but Miss Clairol blinds me to the obvious.

Recently, Tank had one of those days. He didn't feel like playing, and his biggest joy in life, FOOD, had only minor appeal. He had to be coaxed to my bed that night. This from a dog who stakes out his half of the bed before you get there.

I don't like to admit when my dogs get old, but sometimes it hits you square in the face. Tank has gone through so many trials in his life. We rescued him when he was two years old, already a big hulking dog with a heart of gold. Judging by the way he behaves around strange men, knives and guns, he wasn't treated well, but he never let it color his affection for those who showed him pity.

Iko, now two years old himself, has never known a sad day in his life. --well, maybe once when a scorpion stung him. But he's never known hunger, or beatings, or a life on the street. He's spoiled rotten. And he truly believes he is the center of the universe.

Thank God he got over his chewing stage! That dog nearly drove me to drink. I stopped tallying how much that 'free' dog cost me, but it's in the thousands of dollars.

I could count on two fingers the number of transgressions Tank has committed. He once stole cooked liver from the stove top. (I was cooking it for him, but I don't like dogs to help themselves.) He also committed adultery. 

Tank had been with us a whole day when Chelly came into heat. Actually we thought she was over it because she was an old lady by then. Tank was fixed, but evidently the lure was too much for him. I was mad at both of them. But apparently they had a VERY good time.

Luckily, Iko will never know the charms of feminine wiles since he was clipped when he was very young. Hmm...maybe that's why he chewed for so long. Was this the result of repressed sexual tension? It might've been worth getting him laid if I could've saved my furniture.

...nah. I like my new furniture.

So that's my tale of two dogs. One who's led a full life, and the other, full of life the devil.

We love them both regardless. 


Linda Leszczuk said...

Oh heck, we're not supposed to blog about our dogs? But I love reading about dogs.

Hope Tank is having a better day today. Does he still have all his pieces and parts. Maybe a little female companionship would lift his spirits. (Oh, I did not just suggest that.)

Maria Zannini said...

Linda: We do want to get a third dog--a girl this time. But she will be fixed as soon as she's old enough.

Tank does like the ladies. :P And he adores baby animals. He's such a gentle giant.

Angelina Rain said...

I do not agree with the blog experts at all. I have followed blogs only because the blog owner had a cool dog, and then continued following the blogs because I find those people entertaining.

I'm sad to hear that Tank is getting older. That sucks. Dog's shouldn't be allowed to age. That's so sad about Tank's past. I hate people who abuse animals. I think they should be abused themselves. I'm glad you gave Tank a great life though.

Sarita said...

Baloney about talking about animals. I love to hear stories of family animals. They count, too!

So glad you shared about Tank and Iko. They both sound amazing, and I can tell they're both very well loved.

I'm smiling after reading this post. Thank you for that.

Hope you have a peaceful day!

Claudia Del Balso said...

It's okay to blog about dogs; it's your prerogative. Readers like me, who LOVE dogs, will read your blog. So did you find out what's wrong with Tank? Is it just age? He's had one of those exhausting days? I hope he gets better. Both Iko and Tank are lovely. Animals do make our lives better. We can learn a few things from them ;)

Lynn Colt said...

Just because blog 'experts' aren't dog lovers doesn't mean the rest of us aren't! lol.

Watching a wonderful dog slow down is hard. My Bandit just passed away last month. He was very old, though, and we knew this summer was likely to be his last. He had a full life of chasing baby bunnies and roaming the woods in defiance of our electric fence. I'm just grateful for all the time we had with him, and for being able to give him a loving home :)

Bandit's sister Freckles is still hanging on, but she's slowed way down too. I pet her tons when I visit (they're at my mom's house) since I know we won't have her much longer. Such good dogs!!

Lydia K said...

It always makes me sad when I see dogs with that white hair around their muzzles. Aw!

I think you should blog about whatever YOU want. :)

The Blogger Formerly Known As said...

Oh dear, we’re not supposed to blog about our dogs? Too bad, I’m not deleting my latest post.

I’ve only just got my little dog . . . a nine week old Dalmatian, and she’s chewing everything including me! But she’s a real sweetheart.

Mac said...

Oh Yeah. . . another Rottie fan.

Maria Zannini said...

Angelina: I've made friends with people for no other reason than their dogs.

Sarita: I always wondered why people say not to write about animals. Those stories always seem the most entertaining.

Claudia: I think it's just age. He's slowing down and it's probably more noticeable because Iko is getting into his prime.

Lynn: I remember your story about Bandit. It breaks my heart to see people suffer when their babies grow old and die. It's a reflected pain that only those who have lost appreciate the most.

Lydia: The dogs have always been top draws here. LOL. Maybe I should make this their blog.

The Blogger Former Known As: I saw that this morning! You're on my visit list when I take another break this afternoon. Nada is adorable! Bitey, but adorable. LOL.

Mac: If you follow Facebook, you'll want to 'Like' Nikita, the unconquered Rottie. I love reading those posts.

Theresa Milstein said...

I'm not a dog person. As a child, I was bitten by a dog. But my daughter is in love with them, so I think I'm breaking down and getting one next year.

But now your post is scaring me...

Krista D. Ball said...

*blink* We're not supposed to blog about our animals? Ah, crap.

Mike Keyton said...

Vaguely off topic - is 'de-barking' common over there? I read about someone having it done to one of their dogs, and frankly it chilled me - even more than the clip, which I don't identify with over much because I'm not a dog...but barking. I often go woof in the night.

Maria Zannini said...

Theresa: You're a good mom not to let your fear overwhelm your daughter's love of dogs. Look for a calm disposition in a dog. The only time I ever got bitten was by a little dog who hated kids. (I'm short and I must have looked like a kid from behind.)

Krista: It makes you wonder what makes them experts.

Mike: The vet I used to work for (decades ago) used to debark his show dogs because we had a noise ordinance in the city and he had a lot of yappy terriers. But I think it's very cruel. I would never do that to one of my dogs.

Angela Brown said...

I must have missed the memo that you shouldn't blog about your pets. I think it's actually quite touching and allows readers to get a chance to see something that touches your heart. Now setting up a temple for idol worship of one's pet may be a bit much...but...anywho.

Seeing Tank and Iko in that picture warms my heart.

Maria Zannini said...

Angela: Ref: Now setting up a temple for idol worship of one's pet may be a bit much...

Aww, Iko always wanted a temple. At least he thinks he deserves one. I decided to terrorize him a little more for the upcoming Friday post.

Cate Masters said...

I love reading about dogs too. I know what you mean about dogs aging. Our baby, Lily, is already two, and I have a connection to her like no other dog. I thought I loved our previous dog, who broke my heart when he collapsed in our yard and died without warning (turned out he had tumors that ruptured), but I'm going to be a complete wreck when Lily goes.
Hope Tank and Iko both live good long lives.

Maria Zannini said...

Cate: That would kill me if any of mine collapsed in front of me. I know what you mean about special connections. They live such short lives, but they wrap around you like nothing else.

jackie b central texas said...

Maria I feel for you, those gray hairs on my little Nikki are outnumbering his reddish brown ones now and at 13 he has slowed waaaayyyyy down. Of course having CHF and having been in a rollover wreck at 8 months and thrown out of the truck is all catching up with him too.

May Tank have many more good times in the future, treasure every one of them to help you get through the bad times!

Iko on the other hand still has many years of mischief and glad he helps keep "Ole" Tank young.

Bookewyrme said...

Hey, I'm with you! I like the occasional post about animals (or kids or whatever else is going on in a blogger's life). It makes the author seem more human.

Anyway, I feel for you about Tank. It's hard to see beloved pets getting old. My siamese who we rescued from the pound the day before she was scheduled to be put under when she was a year old is getting a bit long in the tooth, as they say. She's been going gray for years, but now at 15 she's finally starting to slow down. It always hurts my heart a little to see her unable to make the great leaps onto things she used to be able to accomplish.

Oddly, on the subject of dogs, my two dogs are similar in temperament to yours. The rescue dog who clearly had some harrowing adventures before she came to us is the best dog we've ever had. The other, gotten from a good breeder and raised by us from puppyhood is a spoiled diva! They're all lovable though. :)

Madeleine said...

Awh bless, what a lovely tale of 2 dogs. They sound like a real joy. I always wanted a dog from the age of 5 yrs old and poured over dog books choosing my fav breeds. Now I have 2 cats, LOL! Ah well I have to consider hubby's needs too, though I still love dogs and yours look/sound adorable. x

Maria Zannini said...

Jackie: Around the house, we like to say that Iko has many more years to annoy us.

Lia: Hi Lia. Long time. I think we are molded by our experiences. I haven't had an adult rescued dog yet who hasn't shown gratitude. The puppies that never had it hard have always been hooligans.

Madeleine: How does someone who wanted dogs get cats? LOL. I understand though. I didn't want rotties, but somehow we ended up with four and counting. They are the biggest sweethearts.

Marianne Arkins said...

What "expert" said not to write about dogs? They're CRAZY.

And ... seeing your gray-muzzled Tank reminds me so much of my Bailey. *sigh*

Wishing my many more happy years with you and Greg.

jackie b central texas said...

Maria you know what forgot to tell you but following animal lovers blogs is one of my favorite things to do! Even if the posts about their furry kids only come out once in a while those are the ones I immediately go comment on.{ I read the same blog no no but if you set up a site it is run to suit you so rules fooey!}
Kind of like the same thing there is a rule that says stick with only bookish things if you have a book blog, well like yours my online followers like more than just talking about books.

Renee Miller said...

Whoever said writers shouldn't blog about their lives, their passions, is an idiot. Yeah, I said it. And what?

Seriously, I like reading the little bits of life, especially when these bits are written by a person who knows how to make it interesting. I would read about dogs any day.

Tank makes my heart go mushy too. IKO is like my dogs. My furniture and my floors are toast. They've never known a day of hardship either really, except maybe when Harley got knifed while I was cutting up the old carpet. But it was a total accident and he's okay now.

Maria Zannini said...

Marianne: Aw, Bailey. What a good dog. Whenever I stop by your blog I glance at her picture.

Jackie: That's how I see it too. We're more than just one thing. And I figure if it bores you, you'll just come back another day.

Renee: You KNIFED Harley!? OMG! Poor dog. PS, Tank says if you come over he wants to hide the knives. Safety first.

Only you would accidentally knife your own dog. Bet he's careful around you now. ;-)

Cathy in AK said...

I love your dog stories! Give the boys big warm hugs from AK : )

Our new pup, Dally, has fit in like she'd been here all her little life. Our old dog, Bailey, tolerates her wrestling then the two curl up together. Even the cats treat her like they'd always been around her.

Maria Zannini said...

Cathy: I always hold my breath until I know the dogs and cat (if applicable) will get along.

You need to do a group photo.

Barbara Ann Wright said...

my posts about my dogs on my own blog get lots of hits, so I think that rumor about people not liking pet posts is bunk. My Daisy dog is getting on in years, too. It's always hard, but having dogs in our lives is so worth the heartache.

Dru said...

I'm glad you write about your pets because I get to enjoy the vicariously through your eyes and words.

Maria Zannini said...

Barbara: Next to my chicken posts, the dog posts get the most hits on this blog.

Dru: All the comforts of dog ownership without picking up poop. LOL.

Kim said...

I like dog stories. I like dogs. And I like reading about your dogs. :D

Hmmm... I should try it sometime. My dog is so weird, she should have her own blog. :D

Rula Sinara said...

Your dogs are sweet :) Blog about them all you want! I love animal posts. Pets are full of unintentional humor. Although the cost associated with chewing isn't that funny. My dog didn't stop until she was 2 1/2 to 3. We're talking carpet, drywall, furniture, pens, crayons, name it.

Angela Felsted said...

This was a very entertaining post. I'm probably not supposed to blog about my kids either, but that doesn't mean I won't do it sometimes.

Anonymous said...

Guess I should plan a post about my menagerie :)

It's so hard when pets get older and I hope Tank has more good days than bad. He's lucky to have you Maria! Wishing you all many, many more years together.

Tank reminds me of my Heeler, rescued her the weekend before she was due to be put down because she'd been there too long. Don't get me started on that one. She had been dumped when barely weened, picked up by animal control thankfully before she could starve to death, and I got her as a 5 month old. Best dog ever. It was like she knew she had been rescued.

Maria Zannini said...

Kim: When I read stories about someone's pet, it makes me learn a little bit more about the blogger. It says more than you think.

Angela: What is it they say to actors, never work with kids or animals because they steal the show. So true.

Raelyn: I know you're not supposed to assign human characteristics to animals, but I swear my rescued animals act far more grateful than the 'fancy' ones.

Clarissa Draper said...

I don't mind you talking about your dogs. I love. I have a boxer who is four and spoiled rotten. But, I often think about her growing old and it makes me sad. She's my little baby.

Maria Zannini said...

Clarissa: I know what you mean. Sometimes I feel silly to worry when they're young, but the years go by so fast.

Jayne said...

Aw your dogs are lovely! And we're not supposed to chat about our pets? Sheesh, those folk that thought up that rule can go play somewhere else!

Love the story of Tank and Iko. They have fab names - where did the name Iko come from?

Shelley Munro said...

No animals? Who knew? I'm actually waiting to hear about your chickens again *g*

It's so heartbreaking when they get old. Poor Bella still gets called Scotty, yet I wouldn't trade the time spent with either dog. They're great company and give so much back for so little in return.

I always enjoy hearing about your dogs.

Maria Zannini said...

Jayne: Tank arrived with his name. He was already two years old when we got him. We didn't like his name but when we finally met him, we realized nothing else fit him better.

Iko we struggled to name for days. I wanted to call him Moose (which I think is still appropriate) but we settled on Iko, from the 60s song Iko, Iko by The Dixie Cups.

Maria Zannini said...

Shelley: Oh, we still call Iko by another dog's name too. Why do we do that? I guess we never really let go.

Ref: chickens
I'm waiting for Greg to come back so he can take some video of the chickens RUSHING out for breakfast. It's unreal.