Hit by a Pitch

Free-Range Rottweiler

without comments

This dogSince we accidentally acquired her last October, Peaches has slept in her crate at night. The other dogs get to do whatever they want at night, which for Coltrane involves sleeping in his crate with the door open and for Sadie involves sleeping in bed with us (as the small dog, she gets special privileges, which yes, kind of makes me want to punch myself in the face) and occasionally pooping on the floor, peeing on the carpet in the one room in our house that has carpet, and coming back to the bedroom where she hangs out by the bed and jumps and jumps and jumps until somebody picks her up so she can get back in bed.

It’s not that we’re, like, breedists or anything, I swear. I have friends who are large black dogs. It’s that Peaches is the only dog we have who ever tried to eat one of our cats.

As I’ve mentioned before, I was afraid of Peaches at first. Even after I got over that stupidity, I wasn’t sure we’d be able to keep her. We got the usual, “Oh, you can’t have a dog like that around a baby” crap. Although I usually disregard this kind of assvice (Homebirth is dangerous! Uncircumcised boys get infections! Vegetarian children will be sad when they can’t eat awful shit at McDonald’s! Vaccines result in serial killers! Cut his hair!), the Rottweiler-baby thing, because I was so iffy on the Rottweiler, might have had the possibility of being true. What if something terrible happened? What if the Rottweiler ate the baby?

Wait, what? You guys. Have you ever seen a Rottweiler with a baby? Let me tell you, it’s Good Dog, Carl up in this hizzouse all day every day. Peaches and Soren are always doing crazy shit together like eating bread, putting on my makeup, swimming in the aquarium, and sliding down the laundry chute. The other day, they went to the park and found a missing baby duck and then went to the mall where they got crackers and set all the animals at the pet store free. One time, they even spent the day with Jose Mesa, driving the spay/neuter van around Commerce City. Soren + Peaches = BFFs, for real.

The problem was the cats. Here’s the scene: Soren is in bed. Ben and I are sitting on the couch watching tv and responding to emails regarding the Jose Mesa Fan ClubThis cat. There are cats on the couch. One of the cats on the couch is Valkyrie, more commonly referred to by her street name, VIP. Although VIP is always on the list at the club, she lacks the street smarts of our other cats and, to be honest, has gotten a little soft in her old age. Peaches is lying on the floor.

Eventually, Peaches starts staring at VIP. At first, we ignore it because it’s understandable. Chances are, you’d stare at VIP, too. She’s a cute cat. Very soft. She even lets me carry her around like a baby sometimes (she bites other people if they try to do that shit, though, so watch it, buddy). After a while, it makes me uncomfortable. I tell Ben I don’t like the way Peaches is looking at the cat. He tells me to lighten up. (“Lighten up” has been the story of my life ever since that time at Taste of Chicago I told my mom I wasn’t feeling well and she told me to lighten up and I guess you could call what happened after that lightening up.) Then, in a split second, Peaches gets a look on her face that Ben and I would come to refer to as “Mike Singletary,” which was a super-intense, beady-eyed stare of someone who is about to fucking kill you (I’m Samurai Mike!), and then lunges for the cat who runs away in sheer terror. Ben and I discuss how I was right and he was wrong late into the night.

The first time this happened, I was pretty sure we wouldn’t be able to keep the dog. I mean, the cats were here first, so you have to get used to them or get out. It happened again a month later. That time, it made me realize I couldn’t really trust this dog. That was a problem, because how do you share your home and your baby with a dog you don’t really trust? It might have happened again a month later. I read a bunch of shit on the internet and we did what we could to get Peaches to stop being all predatory and shit with the cats, including but not limited to breaking her concentration whenever she looked at a cat for too long. I didn’t have high hopes for this, to be honest.

But here’s the amazing thing. It worked. Peaches hasn’t tried to eat a cat in, like, six months now. She barely even looks at them any more. (I have to tell you, this is the smartest dog I’ve ever known, I mean, aside from the min pin who is so smart she knows she doesn’t really always have to do what we tell her because she’s all cute and tiny and sweet fancy hell this is how people end up on the Dog Whisperer with those evil little yappy dogs who have like entire wardrobes and college scholarships and shit.)

When you stop trying to eat cats in our house, you earn privileges. As of this week, Peaches doesn’t have to sleep in her crate at night. She gets to sleep on the glorious rug (aside from the patches of dirt in the yard, this is her favorite place in the world) in the living room. It’s super exciting for her, let me tell you.

It’s been a bit of an adjustment for us. The first night we let her stay out, she was in the living room and we were in bed (our bedroom is right off the living room). After a few minutes, I busted out laughing because I heard Rottweiler snoring. Holy shit that’s loud. Sometimes she tries to sneak into our room (we don’t let her in there because it’s a “safe space” for the cats). Ben thinks she might have been in there this morning but then shuffled out to the living room as we were waking up. Like I said, she’s smart.

So, please know that if you try to break into our house at night, our dog will kill you, unless you’re a baby, in which case she’ll want to be your pal and we’ll probably try to keep you, too.

Written by Tracy

June 7th, 2011 at 10:28 pm

Posted in and life,Animals

Tagged with ,