Tuesday, January 18, 2011

gus vs. stuff.

This is my boy Gus.

Cute, eh?

You know what's not cute? When Gus eats things that are outside this list:

• dog food
• dog treats
• bones
• sticks he finds outside
• snow
• grass (on occasion)

It's a short list, and one that I'm pretty strict about. But despite my best efforts, Gus has managed to create his own list of things he's eaten or maimed beyond all recognition:

Gus' List O' Destruction

• 2 pairs of underwear
• 1 pair of flip flops (not mine - ha!)
• 2 pairs of shoes (also not mine - ha!)
• 2 books: The Joy of Cooking (meh) and the Larousse French/English Dictionary (being a wurd nerd, I'm a bit offended by this sacrilege, but seeing as how he's not touched any books since, I'm chalking it up to an isolated incident)
• corners of things (curtains, throw pillows, the wall trim in the bathroom)
• 2 leashes
• 1 Curious George stuffed toy (poor George's demise was long and drawn out: first, one ear, then the other, then an eye and then came the disembowelment... I rescued George from further torture at that point and sent him to the big toy box in the sky.)

Then there's a sub-list that details the "people food" he's successfully obtained and snarfed:

Illegal Food Stuffs

• 1 lb. of butter
• a half-dozen taco shells
• a half-dozen cheesy bread sticks (same night as the taco shells)
• miscellaneous candy

Apart from the people food - which bothers me only to the extent that he could have gotten really sick - the only items on the list that really stick in my craw are the underwear (they're expensive!) and the leashes (also expensive, but why would a dog destroy the very tool that his owner uses to do his favourite activity?)

At the end of the day, I can't really blame Gus for destroying any of these things. Keeping him sufficiently distracted and constant vigilance are key. I'd like to think that I've been very vigilant with him- in fact, many of the items listed above were not eaten/destroyed on my watch. The problem is that despite his size and complete lack of grace, Gus is a stealth bomber when it comes to doing things he's not supposed to. Half the time I don't discover that he's even done anything wrong until well after he's committed the act, simply because he's sneaky and really neat about it. I swear he knows how to put things back to seeming order after he's pilfered whatever it is that's captured his interest.

I'm sure this is not the end of the list by any means. I suspect that Gus will doggedly (har!) continue to expand his list with new and obscure items at every opportunity. I only hope that he outgrows his underwear fetish!