Tonight we had long-time friends, a family of four over for dinner. Dinners hosted at our home are becoming part of “what we do” on Friday evenings. My wife took today off to prepare everything and clean the house – which becomes quite a chore when 2 dogs have the run of the house daily. But as part of tonight’s entertainment for the kids she set them up to make chocolate-covered peanut butter balls, which are her signature treat.
It was a great evening – for everyone except Dexter and Comet. With one of the girls who has been timid around dogs for most of her young life, we set out to keep the dogs out in the backyard. Where some dog-owners might take me to task, I have never successfully gotten Dexter – and now by observing Dexter, Comet – to stay in the backyard without trying to knock in the sliding glass door – when the doggie flap is pinned shut. To accommodate our friends, I set a tactical defensive perimeter – with benches arranged to inhibit the dogs from getting leverage on the sliding glass door.
Instead, all night there was a low sound, “like a gerbil cage squeaking as it turns” coming from Dexter followed by desperate banging and shuffling as the two tried to make their presence “known”. At one point, they successfully breached the defenses, worked the glass door open, and rushed the living/ dining room. This caused a little apprehensive flight by the girls, and some impressive moves by me to detour these hairy commandos.
For the rest of the evening we had peace. Dexter and Comet were closed into a back room, and all the humans resumed at the dinner table. But it was then time to say good night. With the dad shepherding the tub of chocolate treats my wife sent with them, I think his wife and their daughters will ensure that he gets a least some of them.
For the prior fifteen years before Dexter, we never had dogs be “inside dogs”. They stayed mostly outside. It always seems odd to me that these pets ( D and C) really don’t consider themselves “outside dogs”! Air conditioning, dog treats, good chow, and regular walks. Why go anywhere else? Yet it is sometimes true that we saw our adult children off into the world – and relished the time as Empty Nesters, only to realize that we have kids, canine kids, with us for potentially another 9 or 10 years.
I don’t know if dogs make for a homey home but the times we have people over in our home are some of the best times I know. While the dogs often like to be involved in what we are doing at the time, I think we will probably re-think the strategy for inside or outside dog – after the work to clean the house before folks come over, I think keeping the dogs in a back room is the least distracting. After all, these dogs are ‘inside dogs’. Oh, boy.