“Don’t do the whine, if you can’t do the time.”
It had to happen. It was inevitable. While I have complained about certain aspects of living with a dog over the past couple of months, CJ’s inane cuteness has always stopped me from completely being pissed off with her. However that time officially ended last night.
It had been building for the past couple of days.
Upon my return from New Zealand, Helen had tidied up the place and even unveiled my birthday present to me – a new beanbag! A lovely large, leather number that I couldn’t wait to break in with a little PS3 gaming time. Unfortunately, the burden of being away for two weeks meant I had a lot of things to catch up on, be it work or otherwise, however I still wanted to try it out.
On Tuesday evening, I placed it on the carpet, prepared my body for relaxational bliss and sat down. Barely a minute passed before Helen and CJ returned from their walk and my alone time ended. CJ bounded up to me and immediately started dribbling on the beanbag.
Due to her fluffiness, water seems to collect around her muzzle as if she is a big, cuddy sponge. What this means is that after she has a drink, anything she nuzzles be it your leg, laptop or beanbag is immediately drenched with water. Annoyed, I picked my beanbag up and placed it on the sofa out of the way.
Of course as she has grown over the last couple of weeks, getting on and off the sofa is no longer the challenge it used to be and eating breakfast and working on there has becoming increasingly difficult. Plus her new size means she has a lot more energy and her bark is much louder than it used to be.
She has also taken to digging in the garden which means every now and then, some mud comes into the living room with her (despite Helen’s best efforts to clean her beforehand). She has led to me occasionally scrubbing the carpet (because Helen, despite the official agreement, never seems to do it) and despairing how it is slowly becoming more and more stained.
All of these factors had been frustrating since I returned, but on Wednesday night the straw officially broke the camel’s back.
The great thing about Wednesday nights is that for me, there is nothing to do. There is nothing on TV, no martial arts and nothing that I need to do. Just a bit of freelance work and then an evening where I can do whatever I want – perhaps a movie? Some time on the PS3? An evening out with Helen? Just kidding.
That is what I was looking forward to and what I hoped would occur once I got an hour of freelance work out the way. I got home and immediately switched on the laptop to get it done. Five minutes later, Helen and CJ returned from their walk and my presence was marked by some excitable bounding and yapping. CJ then shook herself and half of Ashton Court fell out of her fur and onto the carpet.
“Yes, they cut the grass at Ashton Court so she’s a bit covered,” Helen said.
“Well, could you vacuum it up then?” I asked, annoyed that the living room and sofa was now covered in grass trimmings.
“Oh I will, but she has to dry first so it all falls out. I’m going to go to Asda. Is it ok if I leave you two alone?”
I agreed, hoping that the walk would have knackered CJ out enough that she would simply go lie in the kitchen and I could get on with some work. It was not to be.
As soon as Helen left, CJ started whining. First she sat at the bottom of the stairs and barked and then jumped on the sofa, sat down next to me and proceeded to bark in my face. I assumed she wanted to play so I humoured her with some tug of war for five minutes. Happy I’d done by part, I returned to my work. The barking continued.
For the next 40 minutes, CJ proceeded to run around the living room barking. My attempts to put her in the kitchen only increased the volume. Eventually, I thought she perhaps wanted to go outside, so I let her out into the garden.
It then started to rain. Heavily.
Ten minutes later, CJ came back with half the garden on her feet. I grabbed a mop and bucket and tried to clean the mess, but CJ thought it would be more amusing to start shredding the end of the mop. Exasperated, I went back into the living room and tried to finish my room. I left her in the kitchen. She continued to bark… for another half an hour.
By the time Helen came home, I was at the end of my tether. The freelance work that should only have taken an hour had taken two. My head hurt and the urge to simply lock CJ outside was rising.
While Helen was very apologetic and made me dinner and a few G&Ts to calm my nerves, I was done. I went to bed, grumpy and tired wondering how long this period of non-stop barking, chewing and drooling was going to last… and whether any of my friends would be interested in an 8 week old puppy.
Oh, and the grass is still on the carpet! When I pointed this out to Helen, I was told to “stop being so prissy” as “CJ will only do it again when we get home tonight.”
So apparently the mentality of dog owners is that there is no point in cleaning up after them, because they will only do it again. Wonderful.