Most dogs love to play with their owner, they guard them, they even lick their owner’s hands to say thank you. My dog, Nittany, a Lhasa-Apsa and Bichon Frise mix, hates me.
I’ve written about Nittany plenty of times over the past twelve years, and I’m convinced that she’s really trying to get me killed. If not killed, then certainly maimed or injured. She’s really got it out for me and I’m not even talking about the little surprises that she leaves for me in the yard for when I mow the grass. She’s out to get me.
–I sweat each weekend mowing and working in my yard to keep it looking green and presentable. Of course, after one long weekend of work recently, I looked up to see that she was going to the bathroom in the same three spots near our front walk way that she always goes and and has turned whatever grass is still alive a nasty shade of brown.
Speaking of dog’s doing their thing, I walk downstairs after a long day of work and the minute I sit down, Nittany decides to head to the door, scratching it to let me know that she has to go. It’s like she’s got radar sending out electromagnetic waves searching for the right moment to disturb me. I imagine her brain works like this. “Beep, beep beep, all good, beep, beep. He’s moved to the couch. I repeat, he’s moved to the couch, beep, beep, time to head to the door, time to head to the door. Beep, beep, beep, beep, scratch louder. He’s on his feet now coming to the door. We have a direct hit.”
–Against my better judgement, I took Nittany for a walk the other day and I swear to God she tried to finish me off. She tried to get into a fight with a gigantic pitbull. The other dog was further up the road, minding its own business, but Nittany decided she was going to talk “smack.” She yapped and yapped at the other dog. The dog looked up and started to come toward us. I didn’t see a leash, I didn’t see an owner, all I could see, even from a distance, was rippling muscle and fangs. I started to worry, but then the dog stopped. I let out a sigh, but as soon as I did, Nittany started barking again. I pulled tightly on her leash and threw her a “what are you doing” look. Of course, the pitbull started walking towards us again and Nittany decided that the moment was right to get behind me, still yapping the whole time. In that moment, it hit me that I was going to die because of my stupid dog. As the dog trotted to maybe 15 yards of us, its owner turned the corner, three houses away, and yelled loudly for his dog and on command it turned and ran back to him. (Yes, I know most pitfalls are all bark – no bite, but I wouldn’t have blamed it for taking a few bites out of us, to get back at Nittany for all of her barking. Ugh.) When Nittany saw that the pitbull had turned and ran in the other direction, Nittany stepped out from behind me, like she had just saved the day. “Look here you little shit,” I yelled at her, “you almost got us killed.” Nittany didn’t notice, instead she pranced, head held high, the rest of the way home.
–Parents always say that they don’t play favorites, that they love each child the same. What’s the saying about dogs? It should be the same, right? I guess that exists in my dreams. In my house, Nittany loves my wife and my daughter, when she’s home, and everyone else is second fiddle. Now when Nittany does lower her standards and decide to lay next to me at night, for instance, she inevitably falls asleep, full weight, on my back. I wake up stiff as a board with a pain running up and down my back and legs and Nittany has long since moved onto to greener pastures.
–Finally, my wife was trying to get out the door to work one day recently when she found that Nittany had peed on her work bag. An easy morning quickly became a disaster. I’m convinced that Nittany peed on the bag on purpose to get back, not at my wife, but at me. We’ve had Nittany for 12 years, but that doesn’t matter, my wife reminded me that it was my idea to get a dog. Nittany knew what she was doing. Yea, she’d get my wife’s wrath, but I would be the one in the “dog house.”
Yes, I’m convinced that Nittany has it out for me. She hates me, really, really hates me, but I’m a sucker. As I write this, Nittany has laid down next to me and I’m all gooey, I can’t help but think of all the great memories she’s shared with the entire family. Of course, I reach down and rub the back of her ears. She may hate me, but she still has me wrapped around her little paw.
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