November 14th, 2017
Someone is in the “dog house” and the cold shoulder treatment by Bailey doesn’t seem to be fading quickly. Something happened at our house that has never occurred since getting Bailey as a 10 week old Newfoundland puppy. At 9:20 pm, Bailey is always let out into our attached garage for a drink of water. Our girl is a creature of habit and looks forward to guzzling about half her water bucket. Afterwards, she is taken on the last business stroll of the night at 9:30 pm. My husband is once again home with us after working at a mine site in Ontario. He resumed this nightly ritual for the past two weeks until Sunday night. I can’t really blame him because he went out later in the evening to shovel snow. Labrador West had been under winter storm conditions since Friday night. It left us with lots of snows drifts due to 96 kph winds. He came in and Bailey was let out for her water. The other members of the family turned in for the night and he bade us goodnight. He returned to working on the newspaper’s Sudoku puzzle before heading downstairs to catch up on computer work. In his mind, he was finished for the night.
I rose up at 5 am on Monday morning as usual. I soon noticed that the outside front door light was still on. Although unusual, it has happened before that we forgot to turn it off. I went about my chores – one involves putting Bailey’s towels and sheets away. As I was placing a sheet to capture Bailey’s fur snowballs on the front door entry rug, I noticed light coming through a tiny crack in the attached garage’s door frame. I thought it was odd. Normally, Bailey sleeps in her garage kennel with a nightlight on and the main lights off. Clearly, my husband had forgotten the lights. Then, my eyes fell to the deadbolt. It was unlocked. The situation began to slowly dawn on me. Bailey had not been taken out since 5:30 pm on Sunday night. I wondered if her iron bladder could hold it for the last 12 ½ hours. From the scent that greeted me as I opened the door, Bailey had failed.
I found her lying outside her kennel and a large puddle seeping into the cement wall and underneath the rubber flooring. It wasn’t her fault but, I could tell that she was upset about peeing in her kennel. Thankfully, my husband was sleeping. I had time to cool off as Bailey was quickly whisked outside much to her relief. We returned and I noticed her water bucket had only an inch of water remaining. She had filled herself up to the max. I sopped up the pee pooled on the rubber flooring in the kennel. I was thankful that I had procrastinated with cleaning her kennel on the weekend. Snowshoeing on the local cross-country trails seemed more inviting to me. Now, I had an incentive to wash the walls and flooring down after a very wet and muddy fall. It was going to be a bigger job than normal because the rubber matting had to be pulled out. The job could wait until I had my second cup of coffee followed by the daily morning hike with friends.
As I sipped my coffee, my husband came out to say good morning. I summarized “my morning” to him. I knew he had not done it intentionally. We agreed to tackle dismantling the kennel when I got back. But, he was feeling guilty. I seized the moment to request crepes for breakfast upon my return after the hike. When I arrived back, the kennel was dismantled, the boys were fed and hot crepes were waiting for me. All was forgiven by me. Our girl was another story. Bailey didn’t go to him like she always does with her tail wagging. She remained lying down and ignored him. Bailey was miffed and the cold shoulder treatment wasn’t stopping anytime soon. Tonight, Bailey showed some signs of warming up to my husband as he scratched under her chin. I don’t think Bailey has to worry about him forgetting about her again. She’s better at working the guilt than I am.