With the addition of a new puppy in the house, things have been a little chaotic. A new schedule, new responsibilities, the whole getting-to-know-you thing.
And it was going pretty well, except for the constant sideways glances and eye-rolling from FurGirl, and her continued reluctance to go anywhere near the new addition. At least she was tolerant.
For a while there, I really thought we were going to be okay. For a blissful moment, I even began to think the exorbitant (at least by my ragged little budget’s standards) price I paid for my little Polly Pure-bred, was starting to seem like a wise choice. An excellent investment in my little family’s future, if you will.
Well, there’s no nice way to put it, then came the diarrhea.
What one day was a bit of innocuous non-solid poo, rapidly turned into days and days of nothing but fetid chocolate soft-serve out the patoot.
In short order, Tallulah was diagnosed by the vet with some sort of intestinal bacteria and duly place on antibiotics.
Still, the situation quickly descended into a Tsunami of semi-solid stank that included in-house accidents on my area rug and a dried crap encrusted puppy butt so revolting that I had to actually at times resort to wiping it myself (I should probably post about that experience individually).
This all went on to culminate with—big finish--pooty in the crate.
That’s right pooty in the crate.
Ya’ll that aren’t dog people won’t understand the significance of this, but let me assure you, well-tended dogs just don’t pooty in their crates.
It isn’t done.
Dogs are biologically programmed against soiling their den and, properly toileted, even puppies generally do not violate this particular canine paradigm.
FurGirl, for instance, has soiled her crate exactly never in her whole entire life. A fact the look on her face silently screamed at me that fateful, chaotic morning when we awoke to a stench so powerful it brought tears to my eyes and rapidly led to the discovery of the horror that awaited me in Tallulah’s capsule.
Thereafter ensued a frantic crate washing and scrubbing in the driveway with the hose and the Dreft, more manual butt-wiping (the puppy’s), a whole entire puppy bath, and the hosing and subsequent Shouting out of a favorite tee-shirt I’d been letting Tallulah sleep with. And FurGirl watching this fiasco from a safe distance, a distinct “Lady, you are so screwed” look on her face.
And all this pre-8:00 a.m. on a Saturday.
I would go on to develop olfactory hallucinations. Irrationally smelling phantom poo’s at work or in the car. Compulsively checking the bottoms of my (often really cute) shoes for sh!t that wasn’t actually there.
I was becoming sleep deprived and twitchy.
The worst of it was the poo on the rug. Everything else could be cleaned, but poo on the rug? Is forever, I don’t care how many carpet cleaning machines are rented or how diligently stains are scrubbed. And I had become a hell of a scrubber by this time, my super economy-sized “Hot Shot” spot spray always at the ready.
I will spare you more details, but Monday morning was a sad replay of some of the previously described situations.
Visions of high-powered rifles began to dance at the edges of my consciousness. Once while palming a particularly horrific paper towel full of poo, I contemplated a trip to (and I wouldn't admit this to anyone but you) (whisper) Gander Mountain.
Eventually, I got a hold of myself. Tallulah is, after all, a mere baby of 10 weeks. Potty training doesn’t happen over night and one cannot exaggerate the significance of throwing a bad case of diarrhea into the mix for one so young.
What Tallulah needed, I reasoned, was an alternative between crating (too restrictive for waking/day time for the most part) and the run of the house while I’m home (too much freedom for a mere infant, especially one with intestinal issues).
Which is how Tallulah got her playpen. Big enough for her and all her toys and a bit of romping around room. Soft enough to comfortably nap in. Secure enough to prevent her escape to the irresistible pooping field of the grass-like area rug. See-through enough to make Tallulah feel a part of the action.
And, most importantly, covered in plastic for easy clean-up.
It’s working so far.
And maybe it’s just my imagination, but the last few poo’s have not only taken place outside, but have looked almost…strangely…well, solid.
Could it be—dare I hope—that it is all downhill from here?