Man’s Best Friend


November 21, 2011 by Chris French

                     When you think of man’s best friend you probably think about a man and his dog, right? Not right in my house! I married the Dog Whisperper (U.S. edition). I can’t tell you how many times my wife has turned a ferocious man-eater into a cute and cuddly puppy. Apparently she’s even bilingual in dog languages because it’s happened in a couple different countries! That being said our dogs obviously have a special connection with her. They’ll follow her around the house…literally. When she closes a door they’ll wait outside the door until she comes out. It’s pretty ridiculous. One dog, however, might have liked me as much as she liked Kelly. I feel it important to put out a disclaimer at this point. The reason our dogs don’t like is me because of the way I play with them. I throw stuff at them and chase them around the house with things that scare them. Kelly says it’s mean. I think it’s funny. Apparently only one of our dogs understood my sense of humor.
                      She even gave it back to me! She loved to be warm. She was always looking for a nice comfy place to hang out. Her favorite place was probably the couch, especially if you’re under a blanket watching a movie. She would hop up against the side of the couch until you picked her up. She’s only 4 pounds and about as tall as your foot. She can jump on the couch though, but what’s the point of jumping when there are people to put you up there? Save your energy. Anyhow once she gained her place on the couch she would tunnel her way under the covers. This is where the fun begins. Once she was under the blanket she would turn into a monster if you touched the blanket. Knowing this I would lightly rest my hand on the part of the blanket she was under. I would sometimes hear a low growl, but most of the time the blanket would jump from the four pound ferocious tiger under it lunging at my hand. It was a great game! We both really enjoyed it.
                  Sometimes I would get really creative and yank the blanket off Kelly and Lady. At this point the tiger has been loosed so she runs after the receding blanket biting at the edges trying desperately to get it back. I think she thought she could scare me into giving it back to her. So you can see why I think we might share the same sense of humor.

Because of our shared humor I treated her differently than our other dogs. I didn’t mean to start playing favorites, it just happened. When we first got her should would sneak by me and run into the living room before I could shut the kitchen door to keep her in there with the other dogs. Eventually I would hold the door for her and keep the other dogs out. This allowed us to play another one of our favorite games: watching movies. She’d do the jumping against the couch thing, I’d pick her up and she’d either lay as close to my leg as possible or jump on the couch pillow and just hang out there. She could stay there for the entire movie. Every now and then I would bring her to the office with me. Her favorite place was on the arm of my couch. It was the perfect fit for her, not to mention how cushiony those padded arms are.

Lady on the Hotel Bed in Natchez, MS

Lady was at the top of her game when we had company over though. When she heard any noise at all in the house she would let out this one quite “ruff”, then another one would escape then the other dogs would start barking. When she actually saw the people though she wasn’t quite as tough. She would run over to their feet and spin in a circle. You could almost hear her thoughts. “Hey, look at me. Aren’t I adorable? Of course I am. Pick me up so I don’t have to walk back to the couch as you pet me.” And they would. It didn’t really matter who it was. The toughest guy would bend down and pick up this tiny little girly down and pet her until she moved on.

One of her favorite pastimes though was probably playing with Pirate, our Pomeranian. He’s about twice her size so he would lay down to fight with her. I’m pretty sure that offended her because she would run circles around him then attack his mouth. It kind of looked like two hippos fighting. To end the fight she would act like she had just seen us sitting on the couch laughing at them and leave Pirate for better company.

Because she was so relaxed we could travel with her. She’s been all the way down the Natchez Trace Parkway, to several state parks and to at least one Lectureship at Freed. Her preferred method of travel? Kelly’s purse. Why walk when you’ve found someone to carry you around? This picture was taken at some state park we were hiking in. She’s hanging from the hook on the door in the bathroom stall. While she looks slightly disgruntled she loved that purse. We actually had problems getting her out. She would just slide deeper inside the purse if she wasn’t done with her ride. She went camping with us one year at Rock Island State Park. Most of her time was spent either in the purse or in our tent. I’ve got more good memories of Lady that I do of any other dog I’ve ever had. I think it’s safe to say that she’s the best dog I’ve ever owned.

Lady died yesterday from a ruptured tumor we didn’t even know she had. I miss her more than I can tell you. It’s pretty incredible how much our dogs work their ways into our lives. When they die they leave a hole in our life that’s hard to fill. I kind of feel like I’ve lost a member of my family…I guess I did. This tiny little dog brought so much joy and richness to our lives. I’m going to miss my movie buddy.

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2 thoughts on “Man’s Best Friend

  1. Karen says:

    Way to make me cry Chris! I guess that makes me feel like I made the right choice in giving you that sweet little dog. I know it’s hard to loose a friend, but I am just glad she got the love and attention she deserved from you two.
    Love ya

  2. Chris French says:

    You couldn’t hold her without her rolling over on her back. She insisted that you hold her like you would a baby. Another one of my favorite memories…

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