Perpetually Pesty Peetie

Just now I was sitting at my computer enjoying a cup of coffee when my intuition said to me “You might want to turn around in your chair right about now.”  So I craned my neck to the right just in time to see Peetie sail over the babygate at the mudroom doorway like it wasn’t even there.

She has, apparently, discovered the cat box in the bathroom.  She also took a moment to test the screen door to see if it were possibly not latched, so she could take herself on a self guided tour of the yard.  Then she popped right back over that gate and into the rest of the house again.

She likes to gather up the food bowls after breakfast and chew on them.  Every morning I take them away from her one at a time, and every morning she sets about collecting food bowls and trying to chew on them at my feet.  The first time I caught her carrying a food bowl around I commented about how charming it was, and my friend Connie warned that “the shine would wear off that real quick.”  Was she ever right.  Peetie is quite aware that I don’t like her food-bowl-chewing hobby, and has taken to hiding the odd bowl so she can chew on it with impunity.  DoDo’s bowl has been MIA for two days now; I can’t find it anywhere.  I have a really small house, so this is a mystery.

This puppy has no off switch that I can find.  Can’t reboot her.  I’d like to unplug her for two minutes and maybe do a system restore to a point in time where she wasn’t constantly on the prowl looking for mischief.  Are you a small dog trying to take a nap after we were outside playing Dumbball for an hour or so?  Peetie will poke you in the ribs repeatedly with her nose until you wake up.  If you wake up with four extra sets of teeth poised at her delicate nose skin and a rage that is unmatched in this earthly realm, Peetie will exploit it with a friendly tail wag and turn it into a wrestling match.  If you are persistent in ignoring her ‘friendly overtures’ she will take hold of your tail and drag you across the floor.  When you explode with outrage, she will play bow at you and delight in your enthusiasm for her efforts.

Are you Mr. Woo, trying to have some post-breakfast quiet time in a crate?  Peetie will  thrust her head and shoulders into the crate with you and then just stand there, tail wafting gently to and fro as though rustled by a benign autumn breeze, and stare at you 7 inches from your eyeballs while your growling escalates to a fevered pitch.  When you can no longer take the *staring* and burst forth from the crate like a freshly hatched god, she will follow you wherever thouest go in the house, tripping on her toes like your fairy godmother.

In the evenings when I’m curled up in my easy chair watching tv with a Fae noodled up against my thigh, Peetie stands on the arm of the chair (the chair rocks, incidentally, so this is double irritating) and plucks at Fae’s fur like she’s gathering material for a nest (in which, no doubt, she will hatch another plan to be an enormous pain in the ass)  while Fae gets angrier and angrier.  When I tell her to GO THE F*CK AWAY PEETIE!!!! she leaps backwards and – like a hairy boomerang – returns with yet more zest and vigor.

This dog is a PEST.  How could I have been so wrong about her?

I have fostered quite possibly hundreds of dogs in the last 20 years, so many I can’t count or recall them all.  I have seen lots of marvelous changes in shell shocked fosters as they unfold their mysteries and delightfully reveal themselves to me.  I have never been so fooled as I was by “No Drive” Peetie.  I should have named her Cerberus.  She definitely has the energy of three dogs!  And yesterday on our walk she rolled in something so vile (Michelle and I agreed, after much sniffing and gagging, that it was probably, ermm, a human “by-product”) so she definitely smelled like three dogs.

She’s staring at me RIGHT NOW.  I assume this means she is about to engage in some naughtiness I can’t even begin to fathom.

Her favouritest partner-in-shrillness is the Red Mop who is still with us for summer camp.  That’s another pest-in-training.

She doesn’t get into mischief in the house though (mostly).  She saves it for when we are outside, and she wants to chase down every single Dumbball ever thrown, and if she does not get there first, hang off the neck fur of the dog who does, or rebound off them over and over again whilst shrieking in their closest ear.

Peetie speaks this language and encourages her.

Dexter, bless his heart, tolerates it magnanimously.

This dog, however, has had quite enough thank you.

About two days ago, Fae lost her last shred of patience and beat 12 kinds of holy hell out of DoDo.  And I don’t mean she snarled and snapped at her, I mean she laid into her like a f*cking BOSS and kicked the living shit out of her.  There was red curly hair flying, flailing, screaming, voiding of bowels … and still Fae kept on coming.

My little doe-eyed darling is FIERCE.  She trounced the pesty ginger and I let her, and I laughed and laughed.  I only broke it up when the other dogs took notice and went to join in the fray, because frankly everyone but Peetie could take or leave DoDo and I was worried they’d gang up on her.

You do not want to mess with FaeFae.  Thirteen pounds of huggable, snuzzable, nose-booping, cheek-kissing futhermucking ASSASSIN is what Fae is.  In her previous incarnation, I’m pretty sure she was what they modeled The Sopranos’ characters on.

Poor DoDo.  Life’s lessons are hard.

(This is a senior-moment interlude, entitled “Why Is The Wootie Toy Not Moving?  I’m Confused.”)

One thing Peetie has gotten better about is leaving the terriers alone to their terrier games.

She used to be right in there like she thought she was an honoured guest whenever they would start wrasslin’, which would of course ruin and thus end the game immediately.  Because the terriers play on an alternate plain of existence that none of the other dogs can really appreciate.

Winter may have been an accidental addition, but he is the yin to Spring’s yang and the two of them make one whole (one whole ball of chaos, of course).  I can’t imagine them apart now.  They are twice as much trouble this way, but that’s a small price to pay.  Since I’ve taught Peetie to leave them to their shenanigans, they will now sometimes invite her to join them in a sort of modified version of their games once they have exhausted one another.  Sometimes I catch Peetie and Spring having a romp, which is nice.  Because even though Spring is a terrier, capital T, she is still a sensitive soul and for a while Peetie’s energy overwhelmed and frightened her.  She still won’t play ball unless I leash the puppies, as she doesn’t like being mowed down in the chase.

Dexter likes to play a chase game with Peetie that used to be the purvey solely of Tweed, where I yell “GO GO GO!!” and Dexter takes off at top speed barking and “snarling” while Peetie chases him.  Nobody ever played this with him except for Piper in her younger years, and then Tweed, right up until shortly before he died.  Now Peetie has taken up the mantle and Dexter is happy again.

These guys?  Off in their own world, hunting things, smelling where things were once, and actively looking for other things to smell after or hunt.  They would be happiest if the whole property was fenced, and they could spend all their days outside laying around and watching for threats to chase away.  Whilst collecting as many burrs in their coats as possible.

And this is just my delightfully naughty, super hilarious living hot water bottle.  She is Summer’s-End Barometer, as she has begun to burrow into my sweathsirts again in the last week.

And this is a chicken.

Peeetie has eaten all the dogs beds in the house.  ALL of them.  They are all outside in a pile by the fence waiting to be carted to the burn pile if/when my landlord ever returns my wheelbarrow, which he absconded with about two months ago under the guise of “borrowing it” for ” a couple of days.”  If you would like to contribute to my Replace The Dog Beds So Piper Has Somewhere To Rest Her 14 Year Old Bones Fund, feel free to throw some cash at my PayPal :)

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