The Big Lug

I smell like dog.

When I was growing up, my family always had cats as pets.  And, just out of habit, I continued to have cats as pets.

Well, that’s not counting two random (and very short-lived) dogs.   One was a Spaniel (Springer or Brittany…not sure) that my parents got soon before I was born – George.

I have no memory of George, other than stories shared with me by my Mom and some pictures and a grainy 8mm movies (yes, they did have movie cameras back in those days… sheesh).

George was (per Mom) a goofy puppy who would retrieve anything… adding a cupful or two of his patented drool to the returned item.  Supposedly, if you picked a fuzzball off of your sweater and threw it to the floor, he would retrieve that and proudly present it to you in it’s barely recognizable and drenched condition.

George became my babysitter.   As I learned to walk, he was my Lassie who would narc me out for any little bit of adventure I would get into… which, according to my Mom, was every day and several times a day.  If George showed up at my mother’s side, without me nearby, and expressed the slightest anxiety, Mom would know to go and rescue me – – “GnuKid’s throwing rocks at a bee’s nest”…”GnuKid’s eating the neighbors jalapenos”…”GnuKid’s building an atomic pile with unstable uranium”… I guess he saved my life a few times in there*.

Unfortunately, before I turned two, George was stricken with heart worms and had to be put down.  Being so young, I can’t say I really remember him at all.

The reason I mention all this is that I’ve had the chance to doggie sit a bit for a friend’s dog.  Actually, just visiting at lunch to make sure he has a chance to go outside to pee and to give him a little human companionship.  Being that it’s damn cold outside here in The Wilds of Ohio, I quickly let him out to do his business, then proceded to wrassle him.  Playing keep away with a chew toy, trying to catch him as he ran around the living room.  I could almost see him smile as we did so**.  Finally, he…okay, I…collapsed from exhaustion and lay down on the floor.  He lay down beside me, seemingly content that the game was over.

Then he put his head on my lap and fell asleep.


What a warm, wonderful, wanted, comfortable feeling that was.   I wasn’t his master, but he accepted me as a friend and snuggled in.

A cat man for life?  Maybe not anymore…***

I smell like dog.  And I don’t care.  I am hooked.

The Big Lug…

*And, I guess, one of those three actually happened.  Must be why I like jalapenos so much to this day.

**Yeah… I admit I was smiling too…

***No, I’m not ready to get a pet of any sort right now.  I’m still learning to live alone…and need to do that without accepting the responsibility of another life, cat or dog.  But would now consider a dog, just based on my experience with this Big Lug.

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16 Responses to “The Big Lug”

  1. Sassy Miss P Says:

    Awwwwwwwwwwww. You big sap.

  2. Kym Says:

    I’m sitting here with my border collie asleep under my feet. Every once and awhile she sits up, sets her chin on my knee and looks at me as if to say. “I like hanging out with you.’ Because of her, I go on more walks. Because of her, my little guy romps through the house giggling. Because of her, my normally serious husband will start a rowdy game that involves laughter from everyone (including her I swear). Cats are great. But, almost everyone likes life more with a dog by their side.

    And, kudos! That post was nicely written.

  3. The Unbearable Banishment Says:

    When I was a kid, we had a white cat named Snowball who was hit by a car. So we got another white cat and named it Snowball. It was as though Snowball never left us! THAT Snowball was hit by a car as well, so we got a third white cat and also named it Snowball. After Snowball III was hit by a car, we didn’t get any more cats. True story.

  4. Stephanie of Stopbouncing Says:

    Did you say “wrassle”? OMG, you are from the mid-west.

    Doggies DO smile.

    Perhaps I shall read this to The Beans when we’re on the sofa tonight.

  5. daisyfae Says:

    there is nothing as wonderful as a dog… for me? gotta be big dogs – to get that “dog thump” sound when you beat on their ribs… not beat, but ‘thump’, like a melon. i do have a bit of Beagle Envy, though. dogs are worth every bit of annoyance they might bring… glad you’ve stepped away from the cat-side. it’s a little slobbery over here, but probably a bit warmer…

  6. hisqueen Says:

    Love my doggies. The puppy is crazy but he very loving. The 2yr old girl is just the most loving doggie around. She gives kisses on demand and will also narc on her “brother”. When she comes and sits on my feet with the worried look I know he is up to no good. Usually breaking into one of the kids rooms for their off-limits toys.
    I also love the the “dog thump”. It is just awesome to be able to roughhouse w/ them and not worry about breaking anything. If you can carry your dog in a large purse, it’s just too small ( and sissy).
    My feet are warmed each night by a furry ball of love sleeping on them (with the occasional snore).
    Big responsibility though. Planning a 3 wk trip to Syria and am already worried about kenneling them for so long. What if they forget about us or think we abandoned them again(they both were before)? Hard decision to make about where to send them.

  7. kyknoord Says:

    *** Thank god for that! Catwoman was bad enough.

  8. Rob Says:

    Ha ha at kyknoord!

    ElderD has a golden retriever/shepherd/collie cross. He’s a big suck and he’s her baby. And I am, apparently, “grandpa” to Loki. Fortunately, even though he doesn’t live here, he recognizes me as the alpha male of his pack.

    ElderD barely goes anywhere without him. Loves him to pieces.

    He “smiles” too and, at seven years of age, I think he’s finally been trained to not pee everywhere when he’s happy to see you.

    While I’ve talked of getting a dog (again) it hasn’t happened. Yet. We’ll see what comes.

  9. silverstar98121 Says:

    I’ve had dogs all my life. Had two or three cats, too. I’ll take a dog any day. Friday, my service dog has saved my life. I don’t know what I’ll do without her when the inevitable happens. But I won’t live without a dog anymore.

  10. thegnukid Says:

    Miss P – yeah, i have my moments of being just a soft-hearted guy.

    Kym – thanks for the kudos… i still like cats and would still consider one, but dogs are definitely under consideration now.

    t.u.b. – so the moral here is, if you don’t like something, name it Snowball? hmmm… [evil chortling]

    stephanie – awww, thanks! sharing this story with your puppy would be an honor.

    daisyfae – “thumping” his chest… yep, that’s what i was doing with this dog. he seemed to enjoy it and there was a deep satisfaction in me as well. i’m not going to try and understand it… just enjoy.

    hisqueen – agree on the ‘sissy dog’. they’re like practice dogs until you feel comfortable with getting a real one. and, yeah, the ‘what to do with your pet when you go away for a week (or 3)’ is a big stopper to me getting another pet of any kind.

    kyknoord – i was thinking of saving the small children from having to go through psychotherapy when i did that.

    rob – hmmm. yeah, there is that peeing and pooping thing i’ll have to consider. cats use (mostly) the catbox and no worries. if i’m late coming home to a dog with crossed legs, who knows where it’ll end up.

    silverstar – Your Dog, Friday… makes me smile hearing your story.

  11. nursemyra Says:

    was it Mr Pickles?

  12. beaverboosh Says:

    Yeah… and they eat cats!

  13. thegnukid Says:

    nm – hmm… could be, eagle eye, could be… 😉

    bb – you were tormented by a cat when you were a child, weren’t you?

  14. leavingevangeline Says:

    I lay reading this post, in bed with my 3 cats and 1 dog. They are all curled up with each other…my dog is snoring. (That is the most comforting sound I’ve ever known).

    When I was in my very early 20’s I got 2 dogs, one of which passed away a year ago. He was 15. My other sweet boy is 16 this month and is suffering with the effects of a stroke. I fear the day is coming very soon…when I will no longer hear his soft snoring.

    My life has benefited in every way by having spent the last decade and a half with these 2 furry children. I highly, highly recommend a canine child. You will not regret it.

  15. thegnukid Says:

    evangeline – reading your comment brought back afresh memories of The Big Lug snoring on my lap. but, you’ve mentioned yet another down side to owning pets – – they leave us much too soon. and, as members of our family, i find i grieve for them almost as much…

  16. leavingevangeline Says:

    I think I grieve especially hard for animals. They’ve always been my soul mates. But, I wouldn’t give back the time I had with them…just b/c the end is so hard. And I know that I gave them the best life they could’ve ever had. No one would have loved them as much as I did.

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