Last-day Boundary Pushing

Cochise, on new dog beds
Cochise tells the tale

Roscoe is leaving us this afternoon, and I’m glad. Everyone else loves him, but I find him annoying.

This morning he is again snoozing in the den with Hairyface. Lately Roscoe has been forgoing that, preferring to stay in his crate until it’s time for the pre-breakfast yard run. I’m pretty sure that’s his way of pouting. He wants to sleep free-range like the rest of us, but Hairy won’t let him.

HairyFace crates him at night not because he’s afraid Roscoe would do anything in the house, or chew up anything, or get into anything, but because he still likes to pounce on me and yell, “HA! I scared ya.” And he does, and that bothers me, and we have a “discussion” about his penchant for spooking me. This discussion sounds worse than it is, neither of us wants bloodshed, but it always brings Hairy rushing onto the scene to “break it up”. Hairy says he doesn’t want one of these tiffs to happen while he’s in bed asleep (unable to quickly moderate) and I get up for a drink of water or something.

It is demoralizing to me: here I am The Big Dog around here, and nervous around the newbie. But I have reason: at 85 pounds I’m a good sized dog, but Roscoe has 10 or 15 pounds on me, is 6 years younger, is solid bulging muscle, and could do serious harm to me if he took a mind to. I’d get my licks in too, of course, and it would end up with two torn up dogs. No one wants that.

Hairy says Roscoe’s not like that. He’s sure Roscoe means no harm, just wants to play. But I am not into rowdy play anymore. Hairy says I’m being a grouch.

I say I’m the Big Dog here and should not have to tolerate Roscoe’s disrespect.

So, Roscoe was snoozing in the den with Hairy until Josephine and I got up and wanted to go outside. Hairy closed the door on the den so we could pass unmolested and let us out, and in, and gave us treats, and I went back to the bedroom. Josie pushed the door to the den open to say good morning to Roscoe and they both came out to the picture-box watching room. Hairy sat with them a while. Then Josie went back to bed. Roscoe went to sleep, and Hairy went back to the den to peck at his button-thingie.

When he got to a stopping point, he went to get more coffee and to check on Roscoe. Roscoe wasn’t on the futon where he had been. He wasn’t in the food-room either. Hairy knew Roscoe did not go back to the den, and he wasn’t in the clothes washing room wanting to go outside. Hairy turned on the light, and found him.

In OUR house there is a No Dogs On the People Furniture rule. It is, of course, completely unfair but that’s the way it is and we all know that and respect that. Roscoe knows it too. But, here he was snoozing on the sofa, looking all adorable and comfy.

Hairy said, “No Roscoe, you know better.”

Roscoe didn’t move except to look up through his eyebrows (to use a Peoples term) to look at Hairy as if to say, “This is my last day. I’ve earned this.” He didn’t say it, but he was referring to the crating, and the fact that Blondie and I both got super-cushy new beds for Christmas. Hairy was tempted to let him stay for a while, but Hairy knows that if we see Roscoe up there, we’ll want to do it too, and insurrection is a difficult thing to get back into order.

Hairy said, “No Roscoe. Rules are rules for a reason.” and gently got Roscoe off the sofa and led him back to his crate. Roscoe went docilely, curled up on his blankets and went back to sleep. “Well, it was worth a shot.”

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