The new dog, in a cyclone of sharp little puppy teeth and a flood of puppy pee, has arrived. Boy Z is besotted, Dr. O’C resigned and Not Max slightly confused. Along with the peals of laughter and declarations of love, however, have been fits of tears. Puppies nip. It’s what they do. Not Max has borne it with his typical aplomb. He’s spent the first year of his life receiving various injuries and insults from his older brother, so the occasional nip on the ear is nothing out of the ordinary.
Boy Z, on the other hand, is struggling a bit with a rambunctious pup. The new dog seems to have summoned memories of the old dog for Boy Z. After Timmins bit Boy Z we used the standard “gone to a farm with lots of other dogs” line. As we were driving back from the pet store this morning with new collar, lead, toys and other puppy paraphenalia, Boy Z asked “When is Woody going to go the farm?”
This isn’t something we’ve talked much about in the last six months, so I was a bit confused. “What do you mean, Boy Z? What farm.”
“The farm that Timmins went to, with the other dogs. When will Woody go there? I don’t want him to go there. I like Woody and I like Timmins.”
The cracking sound you heard from wherever you’re sitting in the world was my heart breaking.
Later today, after being nipped whilst playing with the pup, he moaned. “Woody bit me. Like Timmins bit me yesterday on the beach.”
It surprises me that the memory is so seared into his little brain, especially since he’s been so keen to get a new dog. It also brings all that back to the front of my mind.
But Woody isn’t Timmins. He isn’t really even a replacement for Timmins. He’s a new dog. A fresh start. But with any fresh start comes the, pardon the pun, teething pains. I just hope a bad memory and bit of playful roughhousing doesn’t turn Boy Z off the new dog. Any advice on quickly curbing puppy biting would be gratefully received.
And speaking of dogs, or Dawgs if you prefer, it is college football season. At long last it is college football season. Another few months of late nights/early mornings spent listening to football games on the internet that are being played 10,000 miles away. If there’s one thing besides my family that I miss from the U.S. anymore it is Georgia Bulldogs football. Since I escaped in 2004 I’ve spent many an autumn (or spring) Saturday (or Sunday) . I’m not going to lose any sleep tonight, however, as I don’t expect the University of Louisiana-Lafayette’s Ragin’ Cajuns to give my boys in red and black much trouble. But the season gets interesting starting next Saturday when the Dawgs roll into Columbia, S.C.