Wednesday, December 28, 2011
My inspiration for this topic today would happen to be a loving nuisance in my life. That nuisance would be the dog I rescued as a puppy, Khaynin.
Khaynin was about four months old when I found him, he was in quite the sorry state too. This small almost completely black puppy was probably about seven lbs or so, he looked frail, his body was thin, his ribs were showing vividly through his fur, he was matted in dirt, and over his entire body he was covered in ticks and fleas. I remember rubbing my fingers over his ears, not a single centimeter of his skin was smooth.
The small pup was hiding under one of my sisters' van. It took over an hour to coax him out, but once he was out, we took him inside, laid him down on a pillow. I laid next to him, he was trembling, and I rubbed his head. I cooed softly to him until he finally calmed down enough to sleep.
My life was devoted to him, every two hours exactly I would take him outside to use the bathroom. The first two nights, I did not leave him. I didn't want him to sleep in the kitchen alone (it was the only place without carpeting), so I stayed awake the entire night, watching him to make sure he didn't have an accident on the carpet. He slept soundly through the night. I repeated that until finally I needed sleep, I had my father watch him during the day for a few hours and I crashed. After about a week of this, I knew I couldn't keep it up. I was reluctant, but I finally tied him up in the kitchen for the night and went to bed, sure to take him out before I slept. His wails for me tore my heart, but I ignored them while my dad hushed him, and I slept.
Khaynin was house broken very easily, which surprised me a great deal. When I was a child my birth mother always complained that we could never have a dog because they were impossible to house break. This little puppy only had two accidents in my father's house, and it was only pee. After several months, we had a routine of times, he steadily grew to hold it longer, and he knew to go outside. He would only whine when he needed to go out. Other than that, he was clearly attached to me. It took awhile for him to play with my siblings or father. I remember that my one sister got disgruntled at the fact that if I even walked into the room or in the sight of Khaynin that he would ignore everyone else and whine for me.
The bond he and I had grew extremely, it was summer time, he had a large yard in Mississippi to roam, almost no neighbors, and I was not working or in school. Almost every moment of my time was devoted to him. Perhaps I spoiled him too much, but I just felt that he had been through so much that I didn't want things to be hard for him.
I was the one who fed him every day, only I took him outside, only I gave him treats, only I bathed him, and only I disciplined him.
Some dogs love water, others hate it and fight terribly during baths. Within the first week I found him, I bathed him twice. He was covered in so many fleas and ticks that he must have been in agony, itching terribly. I did not have gloves, so I did so bare handed. I have quite the squeamishness with bugs, so it was difficult for both he and I. But I knew in my heart that his welfare was more important than my fears of the little critters. I was also the one who rubbed in the flea and tick medicine through every inch of his fur. That was done several times because his need was so severely. He honestly hated that more than the bath, the smell was extremely strong, it must have been near unbearable for him. But he learnt something valuable from those experiences. Even though he detested them, he found that no matter how unpleasant the task he would have to go through, I would never harm him. This shows in our present encounters, such as trimming his nails or filing them down. He hates the noise, but he never bites, he never growls, he may squirm a little and whine, but he always is well behaved. After any baths, he is sure to run to me and lick my hand in gratitude.
This little puppy has a great deal of personality, from his features, he appears to be half whippet and half pit bull. His intelligence is very high, a trait of pit bulls, along with his eyes. Since he is intelligent though, he tends to push his limits. Instead of just accepting 'No!' he decides to wait until he thinks we don't notice him, and then he pushes his luck.
Khaynin is now about 7 months old and doing fine. But he is the spark of my topic for today, pet peeves.
Everyone has them, whether it's that person sitting next to you jiggling their leg next to you, someone biting their nails, people who slur their speech, talk too loud, someone scrapes their nails down a chalk board, it's just something that gets under your skin.
Some of them aren't able to be explained, most people when questioned about why it annoys them in return reply, "it just does!" Most of these irritations are acceptable by others, it is just one act of behavior usually of another that seems to spark a trickle of annoyance.
How do you solve a pet peeve?
That is the tricky part, you can't. Now you can take the incentive to speak to the person who is causing the irritation. Say a friend or mate has cold hands, to be touched with them borderlines pain almost to you. The friend or mate can't really help if they have cold hands, but you could speak to them to see if they will try to remember to warm their hands up before touching you. Problem solved right?
To most people, these little quirks are just embedded so deeply in them it takes a conscious effort to change the behavior and truly, some aren't willing to bother with it.
As humorous as it is, my pet peeve is being caused by my adorable little rescue puppy.
I noticed about a week or two ago he seemed to be constantly itching. He's already been treated with his monthly flea and tick medicine for this month, treated for worms, and since his itching could not be caused by that, I figured it was just dandruff. As a puppy, he has a horrible case of it, but it's manageable. So my mate and I went through the difficult adventure of bathing our now 25-30 lbs puppy. After his bath, he was brushed and sent on his way.
It seemed that for a week or so, that cured his itching, his dandruff was no longer visible, I figured the problem was solved.
He has started itching again. Now most people would say, 'well, everyone itches, dogs too. It can't be that bothersome.' It actually is. I've started following him around with his brush. Every time he itches, I make sure to brush very thoroughly the spots that he has been so focused on itching. His itching has gotten so bad, that we have taken to leaving his collar off when he is in the house.
Now I am sure some of you think I may be over reacting, but my father used to show dogs in competitions and cure 'troubled dogs' he said he actually had a dog that had a genetic disease that was chronic itching. Now that itching got so bad, that the dog would actually itch to the point that he would rip out fur and bleed. Eventually the dog had to be put down or else he would die from infection from the cuts he had inflicted from itching.
That puts a slightly more serious spin on things. Not only does the fact that he literally is itching about every two minutes or so, or that he itches so loud and hits the side of the bed at night and wakes us, it is also out of concern. I am worried this may develop into something worse if not carefully watched.
It is not as if I can take the civil route and ask him to stop itching to relieve my irritation, but I'll have to discover for myself how to cure his itching and relieve his own troubles. I imagine itching like that would drive me insane if I was on the receiving end.
An interesting spin on pet peeves, so perhaps before you allow one little thing to make you angry, why not put yourself in the other person's shoes? Perhaps they are unaware they are doing something that drives you up the wall. Take the time and try to communicate. Because in some cases...you really can't.
To the left is a picture of Khaynin now.
I hope you enjoy reading as always.
(For humors sake, here is a list of Pet Peeves)