The chaos that ensued while my parents were looking after our puppies.
|Parental Puppy Sitters
When the puppies were first born I used up some of my annual leave to ensure that there was someone with them in the early days and it was in fact well over a month before we had to start thinking about leaving them home alone while we were both at work.
As it worked out with Gayle working a normal five day week and myself working seven day shifts, week on week off, the puppies would only be alone Monday to Friday every other week. We decided it was still too early to leave them alone with the Giant Loopy One.
My parents lived a ten minute drive away and were enjoying the fruits of their retirement, when I imposed upon their good nature and asked if they would consider sitting with the pups on the days when we were both at work. After a little emotional blackmail, where by I mentioned, that they often looked after my brothers little ones and it would be considered favouritism if they didn’t look after ours.
The system seemed to work I would get up at five, trick the pups outside, clean up, dish up and ship out. Gayle would get up, clean up, cook their dinner, clean up again and hand over to my unsuspecting parents, before heading off to her job. All they had to do was; stop Ellie from sitting on any puppies, periodically clean up any little puddles that mysteriously appeared on the floor, throw dirty puppy pads out and replace with new, oh and put down their dinner that Gayle had prepared before she went to work, simple! Or so they thought.
All went well for the first couple of weeks, cute little squeaky fur balls wrestling and playing with each other. They would all chase after my mum, swarming around her ankles as she tried to put their dinner down. My Dad taking over my role as food monitor, ensuring each and every one got their fair share. Also taking charge of Ellie and reprimanding her when she got boisterous with both the pups and my Mum.
The next time they were needed as puppy sitters they were two weeks older. At first it all seemed the same as before with them just a little larger and fluffier. It wasn’t the same! They were leading them into a false sense of security.
My Dad having had enough of daytime TV and needing to stretch his legs, decided to take advantage of the puppies being in the midst of their after dinner nap and went out for a walk. My Mum unwittingly followed suit….. No not a walk with my Dad but a nap with the pups.
She said she was watching TV and became aware that it was unusually quiet. On investigating she realized all the puppies had disappeared. On opening the back door to check the garden, she heard a sound coming from the bathroom. The bathroom I should mention is where we keep all the things we want to keep out of the reach of our mischievous little mites. My Mum could only open the door a little as they had barricaded themselves in. Squeezing through the tiny gap she removed some of the barricade, a pile of freshly washed towels, allowing the door to open almost half way.
Looking at the carnage in front of her my Mum was horrified. There was a hole torn in their eighteen kilo sack of dried puppy food, the contents of which had spilled out across the floor. One of the pups must have been buried alive in the avalanche of pellets. The other pups had obviously rallied round in a concerted effort to free their sibling. The bath panel had collapsed during some sort of riot over ownership of the giant rubber plant, which now lay stripped of all its leaves. They must have considered the plant to be trapped as the dirt all over the floor was a tell tail sign that they had tried to free it from its earthy bonds.
My Mum took action; she grabbed the nearest pup, turned round and fired it off in the direction of the dining room with an underhand bowling type motion. Turning again and again, grabbing pup after pup and launching them one after the other across the kitchen floor. It must have been about eight pups later that she realized the number of pups in the bathroom was not going down. As fast as she was tossing them out, they were scampering back in between her legs, to get back to this new adventure playground they had discovered.
Ok, not going to be outsmarted by a bunch of eight week old puppies, she started again. This time picking each pup up and placing it carefully outside the back door and closing it again behind her. This process was a lot slower but the volume of pups in bathroom was defiantly going down. Although the fewer pups there were the harder they became to capture. There were two under the bath, the last of which eventually came out to the offer of a chewy treat.
Absolutely exhausted from her ordeal, my mother then decided she had better have a quick count up to check that they were all present and correct. Opening the back door expecting to see the army of gremlins she had so recently evicted from the bathroom, clambering to get back in. The door was opened just a crack and she was ready with her foot to repel any advances. On not receiving any raids on the opening she nervously opened the door a little more. Still nothing, she gingerly poked her head through the gap, as more and more of the yard slowly revealed itself to her, but still no pups. Now with a sudden realization that they had done it again, she pulled the door fully open to reveal an empty yard. Her heart sank as she realized that she had not checked to see that the partitioning gate was closed before evicting the Prozac pups from the house. Peering over the gate confirmed that they were all safe and well and enjoying the second part of their great escape adventure.
Two pups could be seen chewing what was left of the saddle of Gayle’s mountain bike; another pair had managed to pull the deflated tyre from the rim of the back wheel. Another pup was pulling on the inner-tube and it looked as if he were trying to catapult one of his escapee’s counterparts over next doors fence. The less mischievous of the pups were just eating the plants in the flower pots.
My poor Mum tried again to pass the pups back through the gap in the gate but as before every time she turned to get another it was back. Fortunately it was at this point my Dad turned up and brought some order back to the chaos that my Mum had allowed to ensue. He closed the gate with himself on the side with the pups and my mum on the side where the pups should have been and calmly passed each one to my exasperated mother. Once alone in the forbidden end of the garden with all the pups safely locked in with my mum my Dad then let himself out of the back gate and walked back around to the front of the house and let himself back in the front door.
He looked at my Mum as if to say “well what was all that about” had she had the energy she would have tried to explain how they had worked as a team and plotted against her. She looked round at them and they were all laid out around the room having a little kip after their tiring adventure.