Saturday, July 11, 2009

The Breaking Point

Gregg here again. Last night, after Jean went upstairs to turn in, I popped in my "Band of Brothers" DVD and watched an episode called "The Breaking Point".  If you have seen the show, it is where the men of Easy Company - hobbled by casualties and overstretched with missions, hits the wall. When I woke up this morning and was having breakfast, Jean reminded me that Ray's 30 day trial period was up.  Interesting coincidence.

Earlier on, after Jean walked Ray, she decided to install a toddler door she picked up yesterday to put between the dining and utility rooms. It is one of those waffle-patterned swing gates that keeps kids out of mischief, and hopefully, Ray away from the cat-boxes. Jean wanted to cut out part of the gate to better accommodate the cats' egress, so we spent the next twenty minutes trying to figure out how to saw the odd bits of wood off of a tiny, enclosed space on the gate. For some odd reason, it reminded me of the old Renault I used to drive in college. The car was so small and the engine space was so crammed that it would take me half an hour to remove the oil filter; I could only turn it a quarter inch at a time before I had to adjust the wrench.
But I digress. We fashioned the opening and installed the gate. As of this writing, it seems to work alright. The cats (Hugo at least, Moonie is such a cypher it is difficult to tell) seem to have figured it out;  Ray has not breached it yet. Time will tell.

We put Ray out while we ran some errands, including a stop at the pet store to buy a new rawhide bone and some rawhide strips. When we got home, we tossed a strip to Ray, who appreciatively chewed it.  Little did we know the flavored coating, when combined with Ray's drool, createed a powerful stain that dyed the carpet a reddish, rawhide color. So, after carpet spot cleaning and coaxing the strip onto the newspaper, we realized we learned something new. The rest of the day was pretty uneventful, with walks and tug-of-war and lots of Ray naps.

So... as they say, its "go time" on Ray's fate. Well, almost. He is settling in better and the cats are not as freaked out as before. We are adjusting to the change in routine; I have evolved into a creature of defined habits, so admittedly it is more difficult for me. His medical issues have been checked out, with generally favorable results. So I think we will give it another month. The tipping point seems to be other dogs; he craves their company, and might be better off in a home with another dog (not going to happen in this house). So time will tell.

Oh, and by the way, Easy Company needs some R&R. 


  1. After similar experiences with severl dogs, we learned long ago to use neutral colored rawhide and to give them newtral colored biscuits. The colored biscuits/treats come out staining the carpetl. We have had many experiences with adopting 4 dogs over the past 40 years - each one bringing new challenges and new pleasures. Ray is a special animal and seems to be adopting well. Please have patience. Sam and Virginia Koontz - if you want to communicate our email address is

    Take Care.

  2. Thanks for the tip. We're all learning as we go. Ray is just going to have to eat these rawhide strips outside until they're all gone. We all have to make sacrifices. : )