Monthly Archives: October 2016

Why a Puppy


So we have a puppy. Her name is Ella. I didn’t want one, but it turns out it’s mandatory, like death, taxes and having panic attacks during campaign periods.



My son found her mug shot on the Internet. She was behind bars for what we can only assume was a urine related incident, either that or death by adorable…ness.


She is a mix; Yorkie and something other than a Yorkie. We’re not sure what because, after asking a dog groomer and two vets, the best they could come up with was: a Yorkshire Terrier and some sort of terrier that is not a Yorkshire Terrier. It’s hard to say what the mystery addition is, except to say she is long and tall. I think it’s possible that she’s actually two short, skinny guys in a dog suit.


From what we can see of it, she has an adorable face. Her bangs (or fringe if you’re from the UK and can’t help saying things wrong, adding a u to words and eggs to everything else), partially obscure her face to the point that I think she might have cut someone else’s bangs too short in another life and is thereby facing her Karma.


She has two ears, which is a plus for just about everyone, except for people who live next to airports and air horn factories and Ella’s house.


These ears don’t seem to belong to her, as if she tried on a Great Dane’s ears and forgot to give them back. They seem to work independently from the rest of her body as well as each other, especially when she barks. Each utterance brings about a new configuration. Bark! One up, one down. Bark! One back, one up. Bark! One down, one juggling kibble.


We’ve had plenty of time to enjoy this phenomenon, as it appears Ella has been sent with a very urgent message on the level of R2D2, one that we have yet to decipher, but she is determined to deliver. It better not be, “I like chicken” or “Squirrels are ne’er-do-wells” or we have spent an inordinate amount of time with our ears ringing for nothing.


She has a condition, which our vet refers to as “The Zoomies”. (This is the same vet who declared her a Yorkie and something that’s not a Yorkie, so we are not sure if this is an official diagnosis). This condition takes place first thing in the morning when Ella feels the need to be convincing as half Yorkie/half Greyhound or coyote (pronounced Ki-yote to sound fiercer). She runs laps outside, pausing only to maul our nine-year-old Miniature Schnauzer/Yorkie. At first, this came as a surprise to our older dog, Rain, after all, with Ella’s face it’s kind of like being mugged by Shirley Temple.


Once the Zoomies subside, she ramps down to crazy, throwing her toys for herself and continuing to maul our Rain, who, over time has become resigned to her fate, yet cleverly signed up for Kung Fu in her spare time. She’s just that smart.


Once Ella is completely worn out she morphs into the animal we decide to keep. She blinks her eyes in exhaustion, reaches out to be picked up and settles in for a nap, where she adorably stops biting and fighting and sleeps the sleep of the damned…or the innocent. Doesn’t matter. She’s quiet and we can hear ourselves think.


Havoc is not the only condition she imposes when she is awake, however. She makes us laugh when she unconvincingly menaces her mirrored image. She makes us all mushy inside when she looks up at us with flattened ears and smiles. She creates a healthier environment when we desperately attempt to ward off future Zoomies by walking her around the neighborhood at what, for us, seems a pretty steady clip, but, for her, seems to be a frustratingly slow stroll.


For Rain, she has brought a friend to play with and cuddle with in sleep, neither of which was approved of by our late Lhasa-Apso, Grace Greco who seemed to find it weird when we would take her lovies and throw them as hard as we could into another room and demand some space in which to sleep.


Over all, and for the time being, we’ve decided to keep this creature that is almost potty trained and sometimes attempts to eat our rocking chair, which I think makes our family tolerant in the extreme. Consider our reaction if our son came home with a girlfriend and said person almost always used the toilet instead of pooping in our closet and also relaxed by settling down for a gnaw on our furniture.


Plus, there is hope for the future, because, all dogs, like all children, become adults and make us cry when we thing of when they were new and everything they did was darling in our memories. So, we’ll sit back and enjoy what we can and suffer through what we have to, knowing full well one day we’ll say to one another; remember when Ella used to bark at her reflection in the window, in the same way we currently say; remember when Grace hated it when we threw her toys? And cry just a little.