Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Pet Foibles

This week's Writer's Challenge from Mama Kat tickled my fancy with the topic:
2.)Describe the most destructive thing your pet has done.
(inspired via Twitter by @alisha41481 from A Day In The Life Of Okie Rednecks)

L and I have had three dogs so far in our married life: Sam, Beau, and Molly. All have been either adopted from animal shelters or given to us. And all have had their foibles and destructive moments.

Sam (short for Samantha) was the first, a pit bull mix we adopted as a very young pup from the city pound in Los Angeles. She was a tiny piteous creature who looked forlornly like she desperately needed us, so we adopted her. As she grew, she was not too destructive until she hit the doggie equivalent of teething. And then ...

I came home from work one day to discover that her wooden dog house was gone - literally gone. All that was left was a couple of nails and a few splinters. She had gnawed it all to pieces, leaving nothing behind. We waited anxiously for Sam to get sick and die after consuming the dog house. We also bought a really tough plastic dog house that survived all further attempts at gnawing.

Not long after that, I came home to find all the rose bushes in the back yard were gone, thorns and all, right down to the root. Sam had gnawed/eaten them all. Not one of the finest moments in human-dog relations.

The piece de la resistance - the last act as the teething phase faded - was the attempt to install her own doggy door.  I came home to discover the a hole in the stucco beside the patio door. A certain dog had gnawed through the stucco, through the wire mesh, partway through the 2x4 framing the door, and then gotten distracted by the aluminum frame on the sliding glass door. The tooth marks were distinctive and pointed directly at the culprit - Sam.

That was fortunately the last time that the teething woes were to surface for Sam.

After the passing of Sam, we acquired our next miscreant - Beau (short for King Beauregard III). Beau was a Bassett Hound given to us when he was three. Beau was perhaps the dumbest but most devious dog we have ever owned. Beau was a closet chewer. You could be sitting at the table eating a family meal when a moment of silence would be filled with the distinctive sound of wood being munched. A quick look to the floor would show a Beau lying on the floor happily chewing on the legs of the chair. If you threw Beau off the couch, you could count on catching him calmly chewing on the fabric skirt later in the day. Slippers were never safe. Even shoe racks were an occasional target:

Fortunately, Beau turned into less of a chewer and more of a hoarder in his latter years:

After the passage of Beau, Molly came to live with us via the local Humane Society. Molly is a bit different in the mischief she gets into. Being a Border Collie mix, she is the most intelligent and most visual of all our dogs. She has an impish sense of humor and loves to play. If you have laundry sorted on the floor for washing, she will pick out a piece to come rub on your leg to see if you will play. Have anything that will roll with in her reach, she will get it and try to convince you to play, but if you won't, she'll throw and catch it all by herself. She always has the glint of fun and mischief in her eyes:

One like Molly shares with Beau - chewing on the kitchen table chairs. But unlike Beau, Molly is sneakier about it. You can be sitting there and in the sudden silent break you do not hear the distinctive chomping sounds of Beau. Instead you hear the wet sloppy mouthing and dainty nibbling of Molly, often times laying on her back so that the rungs to chew on require minimal work. And if you scold and ask her what she is doing, she just looks back at you as if to say, "I'm not the first to do this, so why the brouhaha?"

In any case, the end result is kitchen chairs with the distinctive doggie seal of approval:

I'll leave you with that.


  1. I'm impressed with Sam and her ability to not only chew on things, but her architectural flare to design a doggie door.

    Does Molly try to herd cars or children? My friend's Australian Shepard tries to herd cars. It is quite amusing to watch her head butt a tire.

  2. Oh my word Dan! I can not even believe all the chewing those babies do! I think they are all very sweet : ) I especially love Sam. I am a sucker for anything with that name : )

  3. The only dog we've had (since my adult years) was watched like a hawk to prevent this type of behavior which is lucky because from the moment he entered our abode he was on Hubby's bad side. Thankfully he never chewed up anything larger than one of the boys' action figures. But, after pooping INSIDE of Hubby's work shoe, he didn't have much room left for error!

  4. Very funny--glad you are still a dog fan after this history of destruction.

    When I was single and worked an overnight shift, I would come home to a well rested English Springer Spaniel who had no interest in me going to sleep. Once as a puppy, we finished our morning walk and play and I dozed off on the floor for a little awhile and forgot to cage her.

    When I woke up, I found several electrical cords (none plugged into an outlet) had been chewed through. Nothing like a police officer on the midnight shift who is unable to recharge his flashlights due to a chomp-happy puppy.

  5. What great dogs!!! It's amazing how much we love our pets despite the destruction they do to our homes and possessions!

  6. You have the patience of a saint! Sam's chewing abilities break world records, it seems! Cute pups; thanks for sharing.

  7. I am so glad that mine aren't the only one who are destructive. I think I went almost broke trying to keep rawhides around for the girls... Thanks for choosing my prompt!

  8. LOL you gotta love em! Missed ya Dan...hopefully I'll get to stay around a while this time :)

  9. Now I'm wondering if it's possible to even have a dog that doesn't chew on things!


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