Saturday, July 12, 2008

My first child: Chewie

This is Chewie.

He is our first fur-baby. Chewie is an Akita / German Shephard mix that we adopted in March of 2004 at 7 weeks old. He is about 96 pounds of hammer-headed stubborn dog. He is sweet and smelly and really loves people.

He has trained my mother so well, she doesn't even realize she's working for him! The best is when he works in tandem with our other dog Bridget the Catahoula. While I was on bed rest every day I would watch the canine antics. Chewie will sit in the middle of the stairs and look out of the tiny window portals of our front door. He will look down at his sister Bridget and give a deep woof. Bridget will then go to my mother's bedroom door and scratch until she comes out. In baby French my Mom will ask what's wrong and Bridget will walk to the front door or the back doggie door whining. That's when my Mom will open the front door (aka Chewie's television with one channel to chose from) and then escort Bridget to the back deck so she can go potty. A very clever way to turn on his television.

Chewie knows when Drew is coming home before he even turns down the street. We don't have many visitors to the house, and yet he knows the difference between close friends and family members vs. acquaintances and the medical staff that come to the house to help with the babies. He is so empathic, always knows when you're having a down day and will come to snuggle and press his face against yours. He knows when you've really hurt your self vs. when you kind a hurt your self but are making a big deal out of it and he will console you accordingly with more love and affection for those times when you really hurt yourself badly. His favorite toys are his Nylabone, his latex rubber mailbox, and an empty milk jug with the cap still on it. He loves to bite the caps off of plastic bottles. They're so good.

One of Chewie's worst habits is that he nibbles on our bed quilt. I have no idea why he does this and we can't get him to stop!! Chewie also has strong aspirations of being a lead sled dog contestant in the Iditarod race. Digging random holes in the backyard is good fun because the rain collects and makes puddles for him to stomp about in. He loves both the cold and the hot and demonstrates this by having pink under-fur skin and being frisky in the winter, and black under-fur skin and being really laid back in the summer. He will bake in the 95 degree sun for hours with all three coats of dark fur until your hand hurts just to touch him.

He has one sworn enemy in this world: Dozer, an unfixed, extremely well trained Anatolian Mastiff that lives two doors down from us. Chewie is certain that guy is nothing but trouble and they yell insults to each other every night back and forth across our fenced yards. Full moon nights are especially fun when all the other neighbor's dogs, plus our other dog Bridget, join in the chorus.

Babies used to be nothing of interest for Chewie. One time (not at band camp) we were in Annapolis on a hot summer day eating ice cream by the dock. A lady walking by plopped her infant right in front of him without so much as a glance at myself and Drew to see if this would be okay. We held our breath, we didn't know what our dog would do. This had never happened before. Would he paw at the baby? Growl at it? They were barely eye to eye and the little one was reaching for the big guy's fuzziness. Thankfully Chewie took a sniff and looked the other way. We let out our held breaths and thankfully the lady saw our look of concern and picked the baby up again.

Now the only babies Chewie is interested in are the ones keeping him up at night. Especially Cameron who's either more dominant than Chewie or Chewie is more attuned to his medical situation and is worried about him because of his health. Either way, Chewie always comes running to check Cameron out when he cries.

Right now Chewie is at the bottom of our stairs, with his head cranked back at what looks to be a very unpleasant 45% angle pressed into the bottom step, and his legs flopped up on the bottom step dangling in the air. He's in doggie nap time heaven. That is until the mailman stops by, Cameron lets out a whail, or Dozer gets his walk.


Anonymous said...

not much baby news huh?