Saturday, 8 July 2017

Misty's Diary: the weirdness that is Toffee

Right. That’s it. Official.

The new little dog – well, she’s not that new after six months, but you know what I mean – is absolutely the weirdest thing the humans have inflicted on me.

So far, I hasten to add. I don’t want to tempt providence by ruling anything out in the future. I’m not sure there’s any weirdity that’s beyond my particular pair of domestics. You won’t catch me saying, “they’ll never introduce that into our household”. They’d probably go out and get one the next day.

“A poisonous snake?” they’d say, “wonderful! I bet Misty would like one of those.”

Anyway, that puppy Toffee – I guess she is still a puppy, judging by her behaviour, whatever the month count may be – really is bizarre.

Every morning the domestics serve her and Luci the best kibble I know. A bowl for Luci in the kitchen where she does the sensible thing, and just gobbles it down.

“I don’t gobble,” says Luci, “I’m ladylike.”

OK. There’s some kibble in her bowl one moment. There’s none the next. Somehow it’s got from where it was into her stomach (I assume ladies have stomachs, though they probably don’t like to admit it). I don’t know whether the process that gets it from one place to the other is too ladylike to be called gobbling. Let’s just say that it that’s damn fast, and impressively effective.

What about Toffee?

She gets her bowl put in a little bed for her to think about. Breakfast in bed. And that used to be my bed before she muscled in on it.

What? What? It’s my kibble and I'll eat it when I'm ready
Think about it is exactly what she does. She sniffs at it from one side. Walks around behind the bed to sniff at it from the other side. Climbs in and pushes the bits of kibble around with her nose a while.

It’s maddening. I’d like nothing better than to get at it myself. It’s so much nicer than what I get.

“It isn’t any nicer, you know,” Domestic number 2 tries to tell me, “it’s just because it’s somebody else’s that you want it. I know you better than you do.”

He knows me better than I know myself? I don’t think so. I think I’ll be the judge of what kind of kibble I like or don’t like. He’s never even tasked any of the stuff – far too high and mighty to enjoy mere dog or cat food – so how can he possibly tell?

What amazes me with Toffee’s way of nosing around her food for ages and ages is that there are other things she just goes for straight away. Toys, for instance. She gnaws and pulls at them until they fall apart. Domestic Number 1 has even bought a new thing she pushes around to pick up the little bits of toy from the carpet where Toffee leaves them. The dog we used to have here, Janka, the one who went away and never came back, used to rip up toys too but she was a proper size and at least the toy would be dismembered in no time. This one takes forever, like she wants to make their suffering last.

Abused toys, their insides, and the push-around-thing to pick them up
And bits of wood! She just loves them. Brings them in from the garden. If she sees the domestics around she hurries into her little house – what used to be my little house – and gnaws and gnaws and gnaws. If she can get away with it, she jumps up on the couch and gnaws and gnaws and gnaws there. Then she gets bits everywhere and Domestic Number 1 has to get into action with the funny little push-around-thing to pick up the bits.

“Oh, Toffee, what have you done?” she says.

I hope the question’s rhetorical. Because it’s bleeding obvious what she’s done: exactly the same thing she did yesterday.

“Oh, you really are the naughtiest dog weve ever had,” she goes on, which is about right, except I prefer the word weird. In the context. 

So some things she gnaws enthusiastically, but then she walks away from her bowl in the morning, tempting me to move in while she’s thinking about something else. But she comes rushing back to push me away if I make an attempt on whatever’s left of her Kibble. And if she doesn’t drive me off, Domestic Number 2 will try to. 

Still, sometimes they both get distracted.

Determined plunderer in action.
Focus too soft for you? Don’t blame me.
That’s Domestic no 2. Can't handle motion photos
“Especially under a table,” he adds.
I’m a pretty determined plunderer when I can pull it off, so sometimes, just sometimes, I get away with it.

Satisfaction. I got the bed back And the bowl to clear
All the same, I still say she’s weird, that Toffee. I try to keep her a bit sane by beating her up from time to time. But nothing seems to work, not even that.

Ah, well. I live among strange creatures. Including the domestics.

A little beating up helps correct weirdness in a puppy
Still, doesn’t seem to work with Toffee

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