It is time to introduce the pets.
Dog Three (”The Jitters”) had the bad luck of being brought into our household to cure the depression suffered by Dog Two (”The Wildebeest”) after the death of Dog One (“The Brainless Wimp”). She was an excitable creature and spent the first two weeks hiding under furniture. Later on, the doorbell would set her off on a full throttle lunge at the front door with a vicious sounding bark that would strike fear in the heart of the most committed dog whisperer. And there was absolutely nothing to back it up. She is actually a wimp too, and has never harmed a soul. Now at 14, she is basically deaf, blind, and increasingly senile. Her back legs tend to give out and she is on pain medication. She sighs a lot. When she sleeps on the couch behind me, she snores and ”perfumes” the room, and I know that it will be hard to wake her up and get her to her bed when I want to go to my own. She suffers Dog Four with the patience of a martyr, preferring to take her wrath out on Cat Five, who now lives on the second floor where the dogs aren’t allowed.
Cat Five doesn’t quite understand the world anymore. He used to sleep between Dogs Two and Three on the couch in the library, but now the door is always closed at night because Dog Four (”The Turd”) peed on the carpeting in there once too often. Still, Cat Five loves Dog Four and the feeling is mutual, but Dog Three has a problem with that. So Cat Five stays upstairs, drinks from the toilet and pees in the shower drain. He squawks like a chicken and eats like a pig. Once a day, we carry him downstairs and past Dog Three so that he can spend some time outside. There he gently captures a mouse which he then brings into the house and graciously sets free.
Dog Four is the newcomer and a spoiled brat – our first grandchild dog which means she is being adored instead of trained. She can do pretty much whatever she wants and we are proud. She is a chewing machine with a noteworthy list of accomplishments already under her belt: two halters, three leashes, five sets of earphones, seven piano books . . . She is the reason I no longer have shoes.