Monday, December 12, 2011

Calling All the Mamas and the Papas

I’m so glad I have so many moms, and maybe even a few dads, who read my blog, because I need your advice.

I do not have kids, well not human ones anyway.  I have dogs.  If you’re one of those people who hate when people compare human kids to dog kids, then you might want to skip today’s post.  But you may also want to read it because I’ll probably give lots of examples of why I’d be a really terrible parent and then you can all ban together to form a coalition and create flyers and mail them to all the storks that say “Don’t ever bring this woman a baby.”  And the storks will listen to you and you’ll feel like you just saved the world from the zombie apocalypse or a rabies outbreak or the very viral and deadly goat flu.

And then the rest of the world will think you’re a hero and tell you you’re pretty and buy you presents and it will be the best day of your whole life.

I hope you appreciate the things I’m willing to do for you.

The husband and I are planning a trip.  It could be in the next week or sometime in the next year, or possibly the next ten years.  My extreme paranoia prevents me from telling you when, or where, we will be going, but we’ll most likely be staying at the Ho-tel Mo-tel Holiday Inn.

We are thinking of boarding Evil Cody.  He’s not really evil.  He’s just high energy.  If he were a person, he’d be on Ritalin, or maybe forced into a drug induced coma so the rest of the world can have five seconds of peace.

I found the Canine Country Club online, which is a place that lets the dogs run free all day long.  They even get to sleep in a giant living room on blankets and beds or couches or anywhere they want.  That’s right, NO CRATES.  I love this idea because no woman will ever be good enough for my baby boy!  Wait…I think I mean that crates aren’t good enough for my dog.  That previous sentence is what I’d say if High Energy Cody were a human child and grew up and got married.  Yeah, I’d be a terrible MIL and criticize my DIL’s cooking and cleaning, and the way she got her hair did. (Which by the way, MY MIL has never done.  Ever.  It’s like she never got the memo on how to be a terrible MIL.  Or maybe she did, threw it away and decided to an awesome MIL.  She’s a rebel like that.)

I called the Canine Country Club and spoke with the owner.

Me: So they just get to run around all day?

Owner: Yep.

Me: And what happens if there’s a fight or two dogs don’t get along?

Owner: Oh in nine years I’ve never had a problem.

That’s cuz she’s never met High Energy Cody.

Owner: But I don’t take just any dog.  They have to pass an interview test.  We’ll let Cody play with a few of the other dogs and see how they get along.

Awesome. I hope those other dogs like non-stop jumping in their face, and nearly getting knocked over and having their rest on the couch disturbed by another dog coming up and talking, “nnmm, ohmnb, onmenm.” That’s Cody talk for, “get up; I want to sit there. well actually, I don’t want to sit there, I just don’t want you to sit there.”

Mah baybee’s such an angel.

Or maybe he’s a brat.  (But really, he’s an angel.)

This is where I need your advice, moms and dads.  What should I do to prepare Cody for his interview?  Should I sit down and have a talk with him?  Bribe him with bacon to be good?  Implement a rigorous don’t-annoy-the-other-kids obedience training in the next twenty-four hours?  Or should I just let him be himself?

And what about during the interview?  What should I do if he’s really high-energy, aka annoying, and all the other dogs are like, “dude, get this psycho outta here”?  Should I make excuses for him?  Scold him? If he starts peeing on everything should I laugh and say, “boys will be boys”?  If he starts humping all the pretty girls, should I smile proudly and say, “he takes after his father”?

And what if he fails the interview?  I don’t think I can handle failure.  Not because we won’t have a place to send Cody and therefore won’t be able to go on our trip (I’m sure there’s some place that will accept him, like Canine Boot Camp).  But because I was a perfect child.  I never failed at anything.  Ever. 

If he fails, does that mean that I failed?  Does it make me a bad mother?  And what about Cody?  Does that mean he’s a terrible child because he “does not play well with others”?  Should I use this as a teachable moment and explain to him what he could have done better? 

Will his self-esteem be shattered?  Will he start using drugs and listening to angry music?

Should I tell him he did nothing wrong and all the other dogs were just jerks?  Chances are, that’s what I’ll do.

Sometimes we take High-Energy Cody and his brother Sweet Riley to the dog park.  Sometimes skirmishes break out.  After we separate the dogs, I’m all, “those other dogs were terrible.”  And the husband’s all, “it wasn’t the other dogs’ fault, Cody was trying to jump all over them and Riley was barking in their faces for twenty minutes.”

And then I’m all, “don’t say that about mah baybees! they’re perfect angels!”  And then I tell them they are THE BEST DOGS EVAH! and to just keep on being them.

Which is probably exactly what I’d do if I had human kids.

Teacher: Your son Johnny punched Tommy in the face today.  He’s a terrible kid.

Me: What?! No he’s not.  I’m sure Tommy did something to deserve it.  I mean seriously, just look at him sitting there quietly, minding his own business, drafting a memo to the President on how to accomplish world peace.  That’s a troublemaker if I ever saw one.  Come on Johnny, let’s go see who else you can punch in the face.

I’m trying to determine how many anxiety meds I can take and still be coherent enough to drive to the interview.  I’m guess twelve.

Should I give Cody some of my anxiety meds?  Should I dress Sweet Riley up as High-Energy Cody and try to trick the interview-er?  Should I borrow another dog that looks just like Cody for the interview and then the day we drop the actual Cody off, hand the owner the leash and run away real fast before, in his excitement, Cody rips a six inch gash in her leg or causes her to punch a co-worker in the nuts?

I’m freaking out!  Please!  Tell me what to do!!!


  1. I don't have kids... or dogs.... but IMO .. you should just let Cody be Cody... if they don't accept him, whatever. It wasn't meant to be. I'm sure he'll do great!

  2. Let Cody be Cody. He is who he is. If he fails the interview then he is just too much awesome for her. He is not a failure and neither are you. Also, I dunno what you are talking about...that last bit sounded JUST like half the parents I know.

  3. You're gonna hate me b/c I have no advice. My dog is a butt. I'd be really nervous letting him get near other dogs. But for some reason, whenever we board him, it's like he morphs into the sweetest thing ever and all the employees love him. I don't get it.

  4. Maybe what Rach said about her dog being good while boarded will happen with Cody too!

    My cat is fat. And by fat, I mean huge. He's a huge, fat cat. Everyone who comes to my hous cannot get over this fact. They comment on it so much that I end up getting a little defensive and yell at them all to get the hell over it! Poor kitty.

  5. This could go one of two ways...but they both should include bacon for sure!

  6. When my kids started pre school I asked the teacher how she handled it when one of them did (insert annoying thing they did here). She had no idea what I was talking about, they were really well behaved.

    Maybe it will be the same for Cody. Or maybe not - geniuses don't always play well with others.

  7. Let Cody be Cody. The oldest 'daughter' of our pack is a bruiser, so much so that she fails interviews.. but that is another tale. Anyway if your 'kid(s)' are rowdy or a bruiser (like mine) then for Cody's safety and his happiness he needs to be himself so that the doggie day care knows what he'll be like. They need to be a good fit for him just as much he needs to fit with them. Don't be nervous, look at it like you're going to interview them to see if they are good enough for Cody, not the other way around. =)

  8. We use a dog camp though there isn't an interview. She has segmented parts of her yard so she can separate by size, temperament, etc if needed.

  9. No wonder you don't have human kids, no one told you the real truth about the stork;)
    There are a few options I had in mind for Cody.
    1. Get him a nice bow tie or a sweater, they'll think he's so cute and irresistible
    2. Have Cody take a pledge of silence. Give Jim a muzzle and explain it to the Country Clib interviewee
    3. Bring treats;)

  10. You should give the boarder woman your anti-anxiety meds. (-:

  11. We have several high-energy dogs. We always hire a house sitter when we go away, for this exact reason.

  12. I am just going through the same thing trying to find a place to board my dog. I found a doggie daycare close by that sounds a lot like your range-free cages, run free, maul each other at will. Just the same, they require an interview only at my spot they were pretty cool. My dog still flunked, but he didn't care. He walked out of that place like F-em if they don't want my awesomeness. We have to have someone move into our place...which is another stress factor. Good luck!!!

  13. My son and daughter are like a couple other people have mentioned here...perfect in school (no bossiness, or whining, etc etc etc). It would be funny is Cody was the same. "Funny" as in, you'll be super annoyed that he doesn't behave like that at home but happy that he behaves like that there.

    Or, he'll be too high energy and you'll find someplace else for him to go.

    No biggie. Have fun on your trip!!

  14. Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.
    Once I called a karate place (for my human children) and they were all "we'll do a test and see if we'll take them" and I was all OH NO YOU DIDN'T.
    I'd go for the interview since it seems like an awesome place, but, like I said, prepare for the worst.

  15. what? Having children and dogs are EXACTLY the same. People that say it's not just don't know what they're talking about.

    That said, children often behave differently away from home than they do with their parents. They expect to get away with more at home, knowing their parents love them, and are uncertain of boundaries when away. For the short time you're gone, your little angel will most likely behave far BETTER at the Daisy Hill Puppy Farm. . . or whatever the hell they called that place. . . than he would at home.

  16. Have you read anything by Cesar Milan (the dog whisperer)? I am betting that he will probably do just fine and might even seem abnormally well-behaved. When dogs, even ones who are prone to misbehavior, are around a group of calm, well-balanced dogs, they usually take those cues very quickly. I am betting that you have very little to worry about if it is just a high-energy issue, and not an issue of aggression or any serious neurotic issue. :) Good luck!

  17. You send Cody on a trip and you two go to the kennel. Sounds easier. :-)

  18. Don't sweat it: people who run places like that are usually dog whisperers, and Cody will probably come home having been morphed into an angel pup. Seriously.

    Also, there IS clomicalm, a doggy prozac, you know, if you think Cody might act especially nutty bc you're not around. My lab took it for awhile for her anxiety and it was pretty fab.

  19. *laughing histarically*

    I loved this! My Parker is just like your describing Cody. He is pure boxer by all boxer standards. Hyper as hell. He is often referred to as a crackhead because well, I swear that our neighbors slip him crack everytime he goes outside.

    Let Cody be Cody. Just hang in there and enjoy the ride. If nothing else, his interview should give you something great to write about! :)

  20. *laughing histarically*

    I loved this! My Parker is just like your describing Cody. He is pure boxer by all boxer standards. Hyper as hell. He is often referred to as a crackhead because well, I swear that our neighbors slip him crack everytime he goes outside.

    Let Cody be Cody. Just hang in there and enjoy the ride. If nothing else, his interview should give you something great to write about! :)

  21. I have kids. Kids are nothing like dogs. I will say this, though: once you do have kids your pets become less important. You neglect them. And they still love you. Hence, my advice to you is to skip the whole kennel thing and lock him in the basement for the duration. You can pay someone to stop by every few days and change his water and diaper.

    You asked for advice. Would have kept my mouth shut otherwise.

  22. Are you trying to say that I am not perfect and that my kid is not perfect?


    O.k. then.

    I'd just let it happen - and I think 12 might be the max of meds. Maybe.

  23. Don't ask me. I have the most dippy Maltese that was ever born. She's high school bully, flirt and Ho with all the male dogs and beeach with all the females (and she's spayed, and still acts like a slut), and Betty Boop all rolled into one. I don't dare take her anywhere; she's an embarassment. Why do we still have her? Because she's also an unapologetic flirt with humans too, and we love her to distraction.
    I have kids, but they are unimportant...I raised them with loving neglect, they were lucky to get fed. The dog gets our cheese doodles.
    By the way, following you. We can compare notes on brat dogs. LOL

  24. This is awesome! I agree with everyone that said to let Cody be Cody.

    We have to board our dogs too and I wish I could find a place as awesome as this one sounds! (only if they take Cody - if they don't then they suck!)

    found you via lovelinks, I'm so glad I found you!

  25. This was hilarious...I mean I've given a lot of thought to this very serious matter, ahem. (But really all I kept picturing was high energy Codyknocking the interview lady over like Beethoven in the movies.)
    Seriuosly though I do not have a dog but before we have to go out to eat or somewhere the kiddoos have to behave, I take them to a park first and have them run themselves into as near a catatonic state as I can without actually making them fall asleep in the car. It helps.

  26. Take a double dose of xanax for yourself, take cody to the interview as is - and they'll either take him or they won't. If not, don't take it personally, and move on to plan b. Easier said than done, I know. That's why you can't forget your double xanax.

  27. My dog's an asshole around other dogs, so I can't bring him anywhere. Napoleon complex. And does that Canine Country Club accept human applicants. Cuz I wanna run around and lay wherever I want all day.

  28. Okay... there's an easy 3 step process to this.

    #1 You threaten him. Try this line... "I will END you! I brought you into this world... I can take you out!" Make sure you have you finger in his face while you say this.

    #2 Go find his favorite toy and grab a pair of scissors. Act like you're going to start cutting it up and say... "You see this?! You like this toy?! I will destroy it if you don't pull this interview off! You got that!?" Then set it out of reach so he can't hide it on you.

    #3 On the drive to the interview you nag him to death on the "do's" and "don'ts" of his behavior during this interview. And then follow it up with "Unless you want to spend the rest of your life in your crate!"

    Good Luck!

  29. Cody will be Cody no matter what you attempt to do to him ahead of time. If he fails then that lady is a loser. Plain and simple. Sounds like she'd be a boring fool not to want some Cody love in her world for a few days.

  30. I think Cody has to be himself and see how it goes. Otherwise, you might get a call while your gone telling you to come back and get him. I think I'd get a housesitter and/or petsitter.

  31. Love it!! And I myself have had my share of crazy dogs!
    With all the love you give him, he can't be that bad!
    Just like human children, we know they are wonderful but afraid of getting that call from school. Lol

  32. Hahhaha. This is eerily similar to a crazy mom trying to get her crappy kid into a fancy private nursery.

    I recommend getting your doggy drunk and/or high before the interview, so hes niiiice and calm. Once they agree to board him, he's they're problem.

    Yeah, I shouldn't have kids either.


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