Charlie is playing host to Max, our grandson’s dog. I guess that makes him our Great-Granddog. Max is a gentle white French Bulldog of impeccable manners. Some people worry about how resident and visiting dogs will get along. I assume the dogs will figure it out for themselves. This I learned early from my father, a great animal lover and superior trainer. We often had both dogs and cats which he brought home, and after a period of time during which the animal’s name was change from something cute and sensible to whatever funny name my father chose, they all got along; even the cats and dogs.
These two spend a lot of time lifting legs on each tree in the yard. They follow each other and as one leg drops back to the ground the other dog’s leg makes his own mark. Pretty soon they will decide who owns which tree.
A few weeks ago we celebrated our 70th anniversary, and as is our custom, we treated Charlie to a visit at the local canine hotel during the festivities. A Jack Russell Terrier can sometimes be overwhelming in his appreciation for the company of guests. On one such occasion while entertaining a couple of ladies at lunch, Charlie was closed into another room and protested loud and long. Dr. Advice felt sorry for him and let him join the party. It was a disastrous mistake because Charlie, in his mad race to join in, leaped over the coffee table and snacks and into the laps of non-dog-owning friends. I use the term advisedly because in spite of his ill manners, they still invite me on occasion.
Our grandson brought Max to the anniversary party, where he made a great hit with everyone. Max made himself right at home rummaging through Charlie’s toy box and cadging bites from enchanted guests. He spent a great deal of time sitting at the side of the buffet table gazing longingly at the food. Like some people, some dogs are more food oriented than others. Charlie will do anything for a treat, and we once had a dog who would sell his soul for a bit of cheese.
Lately I have been reading about the dangers of various foods for our pets. With Halloween coming, people need to be especially careful of the candy which is such a big part of Halloween festivity. A former neighbor had a large yellow Lab who would eat anything and hopefully in large quantities. He upended a big bowl of chocolate candy which is toxic to dogs, and ate the entire contents. A trip to the local vet left him none the worse for wear, so you never know about the mysteries of a Labrador’s stomach.
Max is a San Francisco dog, and as such, he has more elite qualities than a suburban dog. He was trained by Cesar Millan, the celebrity dog trainer, and even has had his own blog. We hope he can transfer some of his good qualities to Charlie. It’s rather like having your children play with a nicer class of children in hopes of some of their good qualities rubbing off on your own offspring.