This is another long story that started four weeks ago when my step-son brought his 8 week old chocolate Labrador pup to visit for a week while he took off on a little vacation. Does this beautiful pup look like a stone-cold killer? Well, looks can be deceiving….this little guy, Marlin, can create havoc and drive a person from the heights of joy to the bowels of Hell!!!Despite the pup’s razor-sharp teeth, pee pads, poops in the dining room, and toys scattered all over the house, we survived that first week. Jane, who took most of the brunt on the pup’s needs, was tired, even though, she fell in love with the little bastard.
So, with that background, Marlin went to his normal home for one week before coming back for a two-week stint!!! And, Marlin would be our (mostly, Jane’s) sole responsibility for most of that time. Oh, boy!!!! First, let’s talk about Marlin’s potty habit. If you haven’t had a puppy in a while, Petsmart markets something called a “pee pad” that is designed for the dog to piss on when inside the house….instead of your carpet or hardwood floor! To induce Marlin, every time he wee-weed on the pad, he received a treat for being a “good boy.” Marlin, being a smart Tasmanian devil, soon figured that when he pissed inside, he got a treat. All he got when he tinkled outside was an “attaboy!” Ding….If I pee in the house and I get a treat!!! I tried, in vain, to convince Jane not to give Marlin a treat in the house, but give him the “newspaper motivator” inside and a treat for holding it until he got outside. No success!!
The first of the two weeks went fairly smoothly….as long as you define success as having not committed suicide or killed the pooch! Table legs were chewed, azaleas were attacked with reckless abandon, and the use of Band-aids to cover the nicks from Marlin’s teeth increased exponentially!! But, we were dealing fine until I pulled out of the driveway to go to the store (for more pee pads) when Jane frantically called out to me that my car was leaking oil all over the portico. As it turned out, my Lexus blew an oil line on top of the engine that has caused problems on our model. Long story, short, the car had to be towed and repaired at Lexus’ expense. However, after I washed the oil off the drive, Jane came sauntering out of the house barefooted, slipped on the smooth surface on the portico and landed directly on her tail bone! Of course, it was my fault that the car malfunctioned and she got hurt! Again, long story, short, the x-rays did not show a break in her tail bone, but she has been in considerable pain. For her, rest, heating pads, and narcotics will do the trick!
Now to my part of the two weeks from Hell! While rough-housing with Marlin (without gloves…idiot me!!), when Marlin jerked his head one way and I jerked my right hand the other way, the perfect storm happened and I was left with a one inch gash on my ring finger. The doctor would not put stitches in the wound for fear of “screwing up some nerves and tendons” so, for me, Kimberly Shur Stick sutures, antibiotics, hydrogen peroxide, and Vodka will do the trick!
Finally………..my step-son returned to pick up Marlin and spirit him away. Jane went to bed for two consecutive days! I grumbled about not being able to play golf for two weeks! But, we survived!!! The next time we see Marlin, we hope he has learned to pee and poop outside and his teeth have dulled a bit. I will be wearing the “gloves of death” when messing with Marlin in the future!
BTW, Marlin’s dad weighs 105 pounds and his mom weighs 90 pounds. He is going to be a BIG boy!