The kids grew up with a yellow lab named Ginger; she was the perfect family dog. They’d attach hats to her head, use her as a pillow and rode her like a pony.
When she passed, there was a hole in our family that couldn’t be filled nor replaced. But after several months, the kids were begging to get another dog so we went to the SPCA and other shelters.
You know when kids really want something, they tend not to be so picky? That was my kids that week; the first dog they saw they wanted.
At first, it was a beagle, which got off the leash, chased a bird, attacked a cat and almost got the kids killed running after it. They actually said, “Isn’t he perfect?” I couldn’t get him back to the kennel fast enough.
Then there was the three legged dog, the dog with bright red, satanic eyes, and the dog that was so huge he couldn’t fit in the van. Dog after dog, and all of them were wonderful and I was just being “judgmental."
One day, they found an ad in the paper; not one, but two labs were for sale. They had to go together. Of course, Matt and I were saying, “Not in this lifetime."
This was followed by a full week of tag-team whining, little sobs and heavy sighs. They were good, I’ll give them that. But our resolve was unwavering!
We were remembering with great fondness how united we were as we were driving home with two large labs slobbering over our kids in the back.
So, now we have two dogs, which the children renamed Mae-B (pronounced “Maybe”) and Bubba. Mae-B is a golden lab who loves everybody. In fact, if we ever get robbed, she’ll invite them in for tea and show them around. Mae-B wants attention -- all the time. Even though she’s half his size, she’ll knock Bubba down for affection.
Bubba, on the other hand, is a black lab -- about the size of a small pony -- with a deep growl and loud bark. He is, however, afraid of his own shadow. He’s also dumb and clumsy (which is part of his charm). He has a huge, Flintstone sized bone that he walks around the house with. Unfortunately, it’s so large he can’t get through a door with it in his mouth; but not for lack of trying. It’s kind of like watching a pin ball game as he tries and tries. We finally turn his head sideways for him so he can continue on his way. He knocks over tables, plants and the occasional human; with or without his bone.
We knew this was going to be a huge undertaking. What we didn’t count on was how much these two woolly mammoths would eat. I walk around the grocery store with my cart over half full of 40+ lbs. of dog food and bones. And the shedding -- I could knit afghans with what we collect off the floor on a daily basis. I had a dream that Bubba had climbed in bed with me and when he got up, my sheets were black. Turns out, it wasn’t a dream.
On the bright side, the kids love them and they love the kids right back. It is heartwarming to see them use these beasts as a combination of pillows and blankets. And, to their credit, they take care of all the walking, feeding and fur gathering. Even the broken tables, toppled lamps and other victims of their tails turned out OK. It’s a good excuse to redecorate; so in the end, it all worked out.
Oops, gotta go, I just heard something crash.