Tuesday, November 17, 2009

My Chew Toy!

Sammy knows what is not his and more importantly, what IS his! He is not one of those dogs that has chewed on shoes, furniture, remotes, or anything that wasn't given to him. We were really lucky. Not that I wouldn't like to have a reason to remove the couch for a new one, but A: it's not in our budget and B: it's a habit he most definately does not need. Sammy creates his own bill in toys and bones that he can quickly demolish. Even then, however, he doesn't demolish his toys. He just cuts to it's squeaker. He will still play with the toy (be it rabbit, fox, devil dog, bone, etc.) without it's heart, just not with as much of his heart. Sammy sees getting the squeaker the way we see getting the toy from the cereal box, it just doesn't taste as good without the future prize. Anyway, this tiny little difference in excitement has filled our toy box with every imaginable color, animal, texture, size, etc. Then the fact that he really does enjoy chewing on things, habit started from the painful (for him and us) teething experience, has filled our apartment with chewy treats. We also have a wide variety of different bones and rawhides: footballs, curly sticks, corn on the cob (he chews the nylabone corn kernals off the cob, cutest thing I've ever seen), tons of rawhides (pork, beef, chicken. compressed, the other thing. rolled. frosted. EVERYTHING) and his favorite peanut butter filled. (Man if you didn't know Sammy or see his pictures, you would think he is chubby!) Anyway, he has stacked up our bill with new toys and chewy bones, but no new couch!
I should mention that he has gotten in some trouble by getting into my overnight bag on the couch while we were gone, and grabbed my razor out. He proceeded to chew it up. We came home to find Sammy staring at us through the window looking like he had a fat lip! His ears were down and he was not bouncing to see us. Yet, he did not look like he was in pain either. In hind sight, I believe he thought he looked normal and wanted to play it off to see if we would notice so he wouldn't get in trouble. Well, the thing is, he got a plastic chucked wedged between his teeth so hard I couldn't pull it out. Erik was barely able to pull it out. After the gig was up, he jumped up on my leg so I would pick him up and hold him like a baby and pat him on the back while he rested his head and paws on my shoulder. At first we had no clue what this lilac purple plastic wedge in his teeth could be. It could be a pen, but it didn't look like it. Then we saw the bag looked sifted through. Just after on the floor, Erik saw 2 blades, practically untouched on the ground. I don't know how he did it without hurting himself. I checked in his mouth, "lips" and paws. Not one scratch. I didn't discipline him thinking that having plastic stuck in his mouth where he couldn't close it would be enough of a lesson. I think it worked, no more problems on that front.
Other than that, Sammy has stuck to his belongings to chew on. One of his belongings is his leash and collar. I spent many, many trips to many stores and hours deciding which leash and collar would be his for his adolescent years once he was too big for his puppy harness. I found a winner from Petsmart. It is a brown leather with a golden yellow inside. Really beautiful, in a boy dog kind of way. Looks great with his fur! Semi-expensive. He must like it, too; he takes ownership quite well. In fact one day he took ownership enough to bite out the middle prong of the clip. That meant the next time we had to take him out, he was able to tug and pull apart the clip and be free. That meant back to Petsmart for collar number two. I got the same exact one so it would continue to match his leash thinking it was such a great one, looked good, stretched as he finished to grow, firm, easy to wash if needed, unique for doggie daycare, on and on.
Sammy didn't even notice his new one, to be honest. Sunday night I got home from work first. I found the new collar on the ground. Upon closer inspection, it had been chewed on in the exact same place. Erik came home, told us to get in the car and lets go get him a new collar. Back to Petsmart for collar number three! We go to our favorite Petsmart at the Shadow Lake mall (that new-ish outdoor mall in Papillion). It's a long drive, but maybe that long drive would be some good excitement for Sammy after being alone alot of the day. Plus with it getting dark by 530, it was too late for a walk. We arrived at Petsmart, and we park a little towards the back because Sammy is still too small and too timid to jump in the car, so I have to pick him up. He can however jump out now! Sammy jumps out and Erik comes around asks if I need anything. I told him I was good, I was just going to grab my debit card out of my wallet so I didn't need to carry my purse around the store on top of the Sammy duty. He said he would hold Sammy's leash 'til I got up. Just as this exchange occcurs, Sammy sees another dog. With all of his might he takes off. I don't think any of us are sure of all of his growing strength and muscle because he broke the whole freaken clip like it was a plastic necklace! That minor reverse tug didn't even slow Sammy's strut. He ran full speed towards Petsmart through the mall's parking lot. Let me tell you, those legs may be short, but they aren't slow. Erik yells Sammy repeatedly and runs for him. I jump out of my seat and close the door in one move and yell Sammy while running at the same time. I don't know about Erik, but I had visions of car accidents flashing in my mind. Alongside Erik running with the leash and collar dragging on the ground behind him I hear a couple of explicitives, so maybe he had the same images. This nice couple walking bent over and Sammy went running for them. They petted him until we were able to catch up. Man Sammy is fast.
Now the collar clip is beyond broken. It wouldn't make it through the store for a second. Instead, we were forced to carry him through the store, past other dogs, people, and toys. Unless you have done it, you can't imagine his 27 lbs of pure muscle with energy that built up all day, while you were running up and down the stairs for stupid customers, phone calls, and fellow employees at Borders, fighting you! Not to mention, that little guy isn't so little compared to me. Erik had to take him. I grabbed another identical collar and we headed for the checkout. Bought it, clipped it on and the nice checkout lady gave our bad dog (she didn't know what happened) a treat to reward him for being stuck in our arms through the store. I feel jipped, I needed a treat for my near heart attack.
Now every time we leave the apartment, we have to scan the floor for razors, pens, his collar and anything else that looks strangely inviting.

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