"None are as fiercely loyal as dog people. In return, no doubt, for the never-ending loyalty of dogs."
So here it is the big day, Tubby's tenth. A day I've been looking forward to: I love celebrating with him and treating him to something special, and also dreading a bit, for there is no denying Tubby is getting older. I can't believe how fast time has passed and my wiggly puppy is now officially a canine senior citizen. I've spent nearly a third of my time on this earth in Tubby's company and every day I've spent with him he has enriched my life in innumerable ways.
Dogs are definitely a model for aging gracefully and Tubby of course is unfazed by getting older. He gets up each morning brimming with the same joy and enthusiasm. So in honor of Tubby's tenth I've compiled a list of ten things he loves (warning: there may be some projecting and anthropomorphizing in this list)
- FOOD-(AKA: ummies, umm umms, kibs, patties, treats, biscuits, cookies, etc). Tubby celebrates life as unending banquet where nearly everything served is delicious. He is not as frantic an eater as Bob or Ping (who seem to gulp down food without even tasting it), but he is definitely a fairly indiscriminate gourmand. Every morning and evening when his bowl is filled with his Nature's Variety raw patties he leaps and runs like a puppy and barks with joy. His joy at eating another meal seems to be roughly equivalent to that of a human who has won the 3 million lotto jackpot.
- LEASH-I have a lot of dog books and magazines that advocate the importance of training a dog to sit politely when he or she sees the leash, and I do see the point: it makes getting the leash on easier, it teaches the dog some self control, it prevents a needless chase around the house, etc. However, Tubby (who knows how to sit very well by the way) never sits for the leash. Instead he leaps and spins with joy, thrilled at the prospect of going on an adventure. For awhile I made a half hearted attempt to train him to sit politely for the leash, but the truth is I love to see his joyful reactions. When he sees the leash he is like a puppy again.
- CAR-We didn't have a car for the first 6 and a half years of Tubby's life . No matter though from the day we brought the car home from the dealer Tubby has leaped into it eagerly. To Tubby the car means trips to the park, the beach, the woods, dog parties, etc. If your dog doesn't love the car then personally I think you are probably driving him or her to the wrong places.
- WALKS (aka walkies)-An opportunity to explore, sniff, pee on trees, kick up rocks and run on the grass, whats not to love? A walk with a dog makes you appreciate the most mundane things, Of course like many pugs if there is any sort of inclement weather Tubby is firm in his decision that he is not going outside.
- The Bed (by this I mean the big bed, i.e. the human bed). The first night John and I brought Tubby home he cried in his crate. Well we couldn't have that and this was the result
Tubby's love for the bed hasn't changed a bit. He cuddles up in there every night with my husband and myself and Norbert, Ping, and Bob (Dr. Zira chooses to sleep in her crate on the floor of our bedroom.) Tubby is also fond of an afternoon snooze and is always eager to take nap with anyone who is interested, but he prefers not to sleep alone.
6. TOYS-One thing that has changed about Mr. T as he has gotten older is he is less interested in toys then he used to be. As a youngster he would shop for himself pulling a toy that struck his fancy off the display (usually a toy that made some sort of obnoxious noise.) Of course we had to foot the bill for his selections since Tubby never caries cash. While these days he is less likely pull a toy of the store shelf or to run around the living room floor in pursuit a squeaky money or a shrieking stuffed parrot, he is still eager to leap and grrr and play tug when we are lying in bed reading or watching TV. Its great to see him playing like a pup again.
7.SOFT THINGS-(sofas, love Seats, dog beds, pillows etc.) Tubby has an unerring eye for the softest seat in the house. He will knock the couch cushions down or move pillows about to make an especially soft spot to rest on. There is nothing unusual about this of course dogs, like us, are creatures of comfort and woe is the dog never allowed to stretch out on the family couch. The pug though, in particular, was born into the lap of luxury. One of my pug books, Pugs in Public by Kendall Farr, reports that in the past when pugs accompanied the royal family on hunting expeditions, they didn't walk like the other dogs but where carried out to the field where they then spent the time reclining on silken cushions. Tubby would have fit right in.
8.PARTIES-I strongly believe that Tubby is a party animal he is definitely much more social then I am. He loves going to gatherings and meeting new people and definitely can work a room. This is one reason Tubby enjoys his pug meet up group, NNJPE, a room full of pugs and people who love pugs and a treat table, whats not to like?
9.MOVIES/TV SHOWS THAT FEATURE DOGS BARKING- Tubby really gets excited when he hears barking on TV. He runs around the house looking for the offending canines and barking in response. He always seems very pleased with himself when they stop barking, I guess he concludes that he has scared them away! We have an ample DVD collection and some of Tubby's favorite movies and TV shows include: The Wizard of Oz, Up, Milo and Otis, Babe, The Omen (he loves the barking hell hounds) and season 5 of the TV show Supernatural (the DVD box sets' menu features the sounds of hell hounds barking, Tubby also loves all of the episodes that feature the hell hounds).
10. HIS FAMILY-Spending time in the company of his family human and canine and feline alike is what Tubby loves the most and we love him.