Tuesday, May 26, 2009

My Bloodthirsty Puppy

Though several friends emailed me in appreciation of my last blogpost, which extolled the wonders of friendship, just as many people were more intrigued by a blog topic I recently proposed, tentatively titled "My Bloodthirsty Puppy." It appears, among the readers of this forum at least, that sentiment is out-trumped by sadism.

So, here's the story. It's a very long, tragic tale, so read on only if you must:

Once upon a time, there was a woman who was a Lover of All Creatures Great and Small. Sucker that she was, stray animals flocked to her doorstep, seeming to have her number. Pet rescue agency folks grinned as they crafted "Home Needed" ads, with subliminal messages targeted specifically for her.

Her menagerie grew to four cats, two fish and--not to be excluded from her collection, for they were the most animalistic of all--two teenage sons. Then, she drew the imaginary line. She began pawning off homeless creatures on her family, friends and co-workers. Acquaintances began scurrying to hide when they saw her coming.

Yet still, something was missing in the woman's Wide World of Animals. In her infinite lack of wisdom, she decided the void could only be filled by a dog. Consequently, a tiny ball of fluff came to live with the family. For the sake of story-telling, we'll call him "Ringo."

Gradually, Ringo grew from an indistinguishable breed of chubby pup to a 75-pound dog whose parentage clearly included golden retriever.

And golden retrievers, by nature, are hunting dogs.

The woman was NOT a hunting enthusiast. Not only did she eschew shooting down innocent pheasants and deer, she went out of her way to secure the safety of all wild creatures.

The mice breeding in her garage sensed this, of course. They knew that, once discovered, they wouldn't be condemned to neck-snapping mousetraps. No, the woman would spend several consecutive nights live-trapping them, dozens of them, and whisking them all safely away to a field where she released them.

And once, the woman ordered an iced tea at a restaurant, only to discover a large black spider swimming lazily in the glass (apparently the caffeine-buzz hadn't yet kicked in). To the horror of the wide-eyed waitress, the woman actually TOOK IT OUTSIDE, to carry on its merry, though sloshy, eight-legged way.

She was a hapless, pathetic individual. So, wasn't she just a bit dismayed when Ringo, her affable golden-retriever mix, acquired the urge to kill?

Mid-walk, leash and all, he suddenly took to lunging and scooping up unsuspecting birds in his jaws. The playful bunnies in the woman's yard, lured there by her bowls of wildlife feed that became inadvertent traps, had no chance. When Ringo returned from a midnight potty break, rushing inside from the dark with a half-frozen rabbit carcass in his mouth that BRUSHED AGAINST HER LEG as the dog ran into the living room... Well. It was a moment of lost innocence for her.

Weeks went by, however, and the bloodbath appeared to be over. The woman witnessed no more of Ringo's gaily-tossing-in-the-air-of-small-creatures in the back yard. The birds and rabbits had seemingly passed along the word that the Last House on the Right on Hickory Lane was the headquarters of Wildlife Public Enemy Number One.

Believing she'd finally reformed the mutant killer dog, the woman began sleeping better at night.

Until one fall night, when Ringo came in from finishing his nightly duties. The woman washed her face, put on her nightshirt, and finally climbed in bed, where Ringo lay serenely waiting for her.

She reached over to pet him. And suddenly, she stopped. Her hand hovered above a small, dark object. It took her a moment to realize that the object, placed there so thoughtfully by Ringo, inches from her shoulder, upon her newly laundered sheets, was a dead mole.

Much as she was impelled to scream, the woman did not. For if she did so, she knew that the dog would quickly seize the poor thing within its jaws once again, and she'd be forced into a late-night game of tug-of-war. So, she casually reached for a tissue from her nightstand, and grabbed the dead creature. The flimsy tissue did little to disguise the sensation of slobber-coated dead rodent in her hand.

Ringo howled in protest as she carried it to a garbage can in the garage (only after being certain, the sad and sick woman that she was, that it was truly beyond reviving).

So, the woman rewashed her sheets, placed Ringo on permanent parole, and prayed to the gods of Lost Causes for Canines that he might somehow be rehabilitated.

Alas, they did NOT all live happily ever after. At least not the wild creatures still stupid enough to wander forth into the depths of 444 Hickory Lane.

The moral of the story is: If one has a mountain of a molehill, the solution is only a dog pound away. (Though Ringo can't be rented, because the woman doesn't want mole blood on her conscience.)



  1. OK...did you say DOZENS of mice in the garage? I vote for Ringo on this one. You go dog!!

  2. I know someone that helped you clean that garage and nary a mice was found before or after. Ringo is quite the watchdog and hunter and needs to be recognized/rewarded!!!

  3. I feel your pain...