Having a puppy is just like having a baby. They told me over and over. And it is, except it’s worse because your baby doesn’t want to eat your baseboards. Having a baby means putting aside your gag reflex and occasionally becoming closely acquainted with another person’s bodily fluids. So, if having a puppy is like having a baby……well, you get the picture. I learned that all too well one fine Friday afternoon in our home with our new pup, Ace.
Ace is the first dog I’ve ever had in my whole entire life and, despite his devastating good looks, he is evil incarnate. Now, I’m not being mean. All puppies are the total personification of hell. And that’s not mean, it’s accurate.
Ace isn’t any special breed of Satan. He’s just your average puppy with your everyday puppy issues. He’s bitey and barky and sometimes super gross when it comes to bodily functions and overall annoying as hell. But he’s so damn cute you can’t even hate him for it. And that’s why puppies are evil. That’s how they get you.
All this puppy nonsense has truly tested the patience of the human occupants of the house and you can well imagine it has done the same for the non-humans too. Hell, I even think the fish are a little bit rattled by our new addition. But no one has been more flustered, confused, and frustrated than our 16 year old cat, Jojo.
Jojo does not suffer fools gladly. She already has the typical amount of feline aggravation. Plus, she’s super old, so she’s got a hefty dose of geriatric animosity on top of that. Then, we got a puppy. As you can imagine, she’s pretty damn homicidal by now. At this point I feel like the only reason she hasn’t smothered us all in our sleep is because she hasn’t figured out how to open up a can of cat food. But once that happens, we’ll all be dead. I promise you that.
They bicker, Jojo and Ace, but Jojo always wins and she knows that. She ain’t stupid. On any given day, though, Ace gives it his all in an attempt at pet supremacy. So, there’s always hissing and barking. The occasional swipe happens. Nobody’s been bitten. No blood drawn. But it’s a battle, sometimes, to keep the peace between these two. I never imagined there could be any common ground that would make them unite forces and bond like glue. But there was and that common ground is birthday cake.
For the purposes of this story, the term birthday cake is going to be used as a euphemism for the actual common ground that brought these two together. I’m using said euphemism because when I first wrote this story, with brutal honesty, it was so disgusting I almost lost my lunch. Which, coincidentally, is how the events began to unfold on that fateful Friday afternoon.
Friday was exhausting. Well, every day is exhausting with a puppy. They wake you up early and bite your toes and need constant attention all day long. They’re awful, terrible. Evil incarnate, remember? But they’re cute, so you let it slide and it’s so very tiring. In addition to the usual energy zapping stuff, I had a homeschool event in the morning and then needed to run some errands. I arrived home to happily find our pup well fed and walked and I settled in with my lunch and coffee hoping Ace would snooze for an hour or two while I was able to relax.
At first, that’s how the scene was playing out, but about 15 minutes into our rest Ace’s stomach had a different idea. From a deep slumber Ace stood up on his stumpy legs and flapped his seal flipper paws and meandered over to his dog bed. I looked up from my iced coffee and watched him fall flat on top of it as if to go back to sleep. I watched him for a minute and went back to reading the news. That’s when I heard it, the fury from deep inside that tiny pup’s gut. Then, retch, retch, retch, reeeeeeeeetch, and all over his perfectly clean dog bed a huge, putrid, pungent pile of um, er, birthday cake.
My first thought was, aw poor guy. I hope he’s okay. Every other thought spilled out in rapid succession over the course of maybe 15 seconds. Wow! That’s a lot of birthday cake. I mean, damn! That’s more than a slice. It’s like a whole sheet cake from the bakery. How did he fit all that in his tiny little body? And, is it funfetti? It’s awfully colorful. Then, I ran into the kitchen to grab some paper towels and clean up the mess.
In a span of time that could not have been more than 30 seconds I had returned to the um, er, birthday cake with my handful of paper towels ready to dutifully turn my face, hold my nose and get the job done. But, I was too late.
For, in that span of time, that whole 30 seconds, Ace had consumed nearly all of the um, er, birthday cake. And, there beside our very expensive purebred Corgi who was voraciously eating his own um, er birthday cake, was Jojo greedily gobbling along with him. It was a moment of peace and harmony not seen since Bill Clinton got Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat to shake hands at the White House.
I stood, slackjawed in disbelief. both at the the absolute sickening act that had taken place and at the joy that these two were mere inches apart and not a hiss or a bark was to be heard. It was a birthday cake miracle.
About an hour later, Jojo released some of her own birthday cake which was really birthday cake inside of birthday cake, the Russian nesting dolls of birthday cake, and then hissed at Ace as she walked passed him into the kitchen. Ace barking at her swinging tail and bobbing behind. Nobody went in for seconds. I think we were all a little tired of all the birthday cake. So much birthday cake. Too much birthday cake. Dear God, let us never have any more birthday cake. But for that one moment, it was divine.
*Featured image courtesy of Pixabay