Wednesday, October 12, 2016

RIP Harvey

It always surprises me a little that when a pet dies, the house seems so empty afterwards.

Last week Harvey died. And even though he wasn't a big personality like Juno or Ray, the house seems quieter now and the light inside seems a bit dimmer.

Harvey liked to spend most of his time outdoors. He didn't kill things like Juno does and he wasn't noisy like Juno and Ray. He was our good boy, the serious one who demanded nothing except treats when he came inside for the evening, and who was so OCD you could set your clock by him.

He had four different places that he liked to sleep: in his bed in the bay window overlooking the backyard; on his monkeyfur cloud in the family room; on the wooden bench in the backyard; and in the flowerbed. According to his adoption sheet, Harvey was found in a field when he was a kitten, so sleeping in dirt was in his blood.

He and Gregg had a special bond and a nightly ritual. After Harvey would go to bed in his bay-window bed - always that one at night - Gregg would go to pet him and Harvey would bite him. Gregg would say "Owwww" and "No biting," and Harvey would close his eyes and smile. Every night. The same thing. I could tell they both looked forward to it.

But our Harvey is gone. And the house seems quieter now and the light inside seems just a bit dimmer.

Monday, October 3, 2016

The Horns of a Dilemma

It was Ray's morning walk. We set off down the block, Ray leading the way and choosing the route as I let him do. We have twenty or so loops of varying lengths that we can use to walk around the neighborhood; the shortest being around the cul-de-sac (used in snow emergencies) followed by the one that goes only around-the-block, used during the summer months when it is too hot, even at six in the morning, to go any further.

Ray took me in the around-the-block direction, not unusual in that he can access at least four other longer routes this way. But when he got to the last corner where he needed to decide to turn left for a two-miler or right for home, Ray stopped. He looked up the street towards the long walk. He looked down the street towards the homeward route. He looked up the street. He looked down the street. I waited patiently while Ray pondered, looking up and down the street several more times before setting off at a brisk trot for home.

A bit puzzled, I followed, wondering why Ray would cut short his morning walk on such a beautiful morning. And it was only then that I realized that I had forgotten to give the poor, hungry dog his breakfast.