So I'm reading this book a friend got for me a long time ago - Can't remember the title right now and I'm feeling a little tired and grumpy this morning. It's about Merle, the dog, and this guy, Ted, who found him while on a river camping trip and he lives in Jackson Hole, WY and is a huge, huge, outdoor enthusiast/hunter and how Merle is this free thinking, free roaming dog who is his equal because Merle has been given his freedom to think things through and learn from his experiences etc. right?
I've been enjoying the book, the story is good and the author writes well and it's very clear this was a special relationship. I'm closer to the end and the author has gotten a little "preachy" and "judgemental" ... he was going on about how we've all dumbed down our dogs because we expect them to obey - most dogs only show devotion to their owners because of the Stockholm Syndrome - coming to rely on their captors while they are held captive by us for their food, pleasure, elimination and he was giving this speech about locking them in kennels all day... and so I'm skimming this part cuz not everyone can have these free roaming dogs and I really want to get back to the story vs. the preaching part....
And I get it - Merle was this exceptional dog and this cool, free relationship really worked for them and it really is a neat story... and everyone is entitled to their opinion.... also don't think it would work out well for most people given society and when you live in more crowded areas and I don't think it would work for all dogs because many would die from their experiences with cars, rattlesnakes, coyotes etc. before they had a chance to learn from their experiences....
This morning I get down on my knees and I'm loving on Toe and Bequia (while Sammy remains in his privileged bed spot - Keenan is having daycare day today) and they are licking me and I'm petting them ... asking them, "Am I ruining your lives? Are you guys kept stupid because of me, cuz I don't let you decide for yourselves and I make you do stupid "baby" tricks that don't mean anything to you and cuz I kennel you all day?"
So then I think - I'll leave them out and see what happens!
Well, we leave Bequia out much of the time and Sammy is left out - I only worry about Bequia and her seeming senility and forgetting she's inside and having some accidents tho' it's still only happened that one time (she's 13 and going deaf and blind), Sammy is a solid K9 citizen left to his own devices.
I'm looking around thinking what is the worst Toe could do? He's not a big chewer of weird things, other than socks and they are all picked up - he's too small to counter surf -- there are plenty of nylabones and elk antlers and bones around if he wants to chew.....?
Decide the worst he can do is get into the litter boxes and gorge himself on clumping litter and then the litter expands in his gut and he dies... so I think - well, I'll baby gate the room with the litter off from him and leave him out.... I get the baby gate which is in the room blocking off access to the litter box entries... but of course I think that he could dig at it or knock it over if left alone all day to think about it - it's only leaning against the litter boxes to block access, not really "baby-gated" in a proper way...
I decide I'm going to put it in the door and block access to the room entirely .... the second I take it away - he runs over and sticks his head in the litter box - I tell him LEAVE IT and he is ignoring me... I go over to grab him and out he pops with this giant cat turd sticking out of his mouth like a cigar.... and in a flash it's gone... in his mouth and he is chewing and swallowing as fast as he can...before I could take it away from him. Gross.
Fuck it. I kenneled the little turd burglar.