Thursday, April 3, 2008

Big Sister Scout

Anthropomorphizing pets is the Schroeder way. I don't get the sense it happened as much in Shawn's house growing up as it did in mine, but he treats Scout like a human, so he must have seen it done. One of our big topics of conversation right now is "How will Scout adjust to the baby?"

She is a crotchety, 12-year-old dog who has never spent much extended time around children so we have reason to worry. As our family and friends have begun having children and bringing them around, Scout's reaction has been mixed. She follows the little people around our house watching them intently to make sure they don't steal her food. Kids quick movements and loud voices unsettle her. When Shawn's nephew Logan spent the night with us, Scout slept right beside his air mattress, not as a companion, I don't believe, but more as a Guantanamo guard. She posted herself there to make sure that he didn't get up in the middle of the night and try to steal anything belonging to her or her people. When Avery visits, Scout is weary at best and even nipped at her once. Avery finally won Scout over by feeding her Apple Jacks.

In recent weeks, as the nursery nears completion, Scout has gone in there in the middle of the night and crapped 3 times. Scout is house broken and has been for at least 10 years so the crapping seems like a bit of a protest. But even I, firm believer in doggie wisdom as I am, have a hard time believing she actually knows what is about to happen. I suppose if dogs can smell cancer in a human, they can detect pregnancy. But does she really know why we're re-doing the room? The dog has never seen a crib before, there's just no there?

Just in case, I've been having long talks with Scout about what to expect when her new baby comes home. I have played with her in the baby's room and tried to let her sniff around the new clothes and toys. Shawn and I put her in the crib. Ok, so that was more for our pleasure, but it was pretty funny. I let her go for a ride in the baby's new pink wagon. Again, maybe that was more for me than her. Actually, that might be part of the reason why she's been upset...I just love the damn dog so much I want to make sure I'm never put in the position of having to choose between dog and baby. So, they need to get along from the get go. No biting, no growling, and preferably only one of them crapping in the nursery.

1 comment:

Aly said...

I chuckle every time I see that last picture of Scoutie in the wagon! Get ready pup. A loud, parent-stealing little creature is about to arrive who... if you play your cards right... may figure out your love of Apple Jacks!