Just when I thought I had a fairly good handle on the various personalities, positions, and alignments of my pack I get blindsided by aberrant female behavior. Now those of you who are long-time readers of my blog, know of my grudging tolerance /respect for Lizzie. You also know that after nearly three years of living with her I have a pretty clear understanding of how she functions, which is with serious limitations! So, it came as a huge shock when the most recent events unfolded.
This weekend on the Cape was unremarkable in that no parties or outings were scheduled, and we were, for the most part, at home relaxing. On one such day, our little hedgehog Lizzie discovered a neglected marrowbone, still filled with much marrow and redolent of its earthy nest in the yard. She, quietly and unobtrusively, proceeded to work on its juicy treasures, seemingly unnoticed by the rest of the pack. Daphne, however, the nine-month old Frenchie and the bane of my existence, caught a glimpse of this activity and moved over swiftly to take control of said bone. Out of nowhere, with the ferocity of a cougar and the roar of a lion, Lizzie sprang for her. I must say that Daphne and I have gone at one another many times since our arrival, with neither of us backing down, but in this instance she retreated, looking confused and bewildered. Not convinced this was a real response from Lizzie, Daphne again approached and received the same warning. Imagine, dear reader, a very small, round, shy and foolish little pug with probably about five teeth in her head, terrifying a fearless French bulldog. I felt certain I was mistaken in what I had witnessed.
But lo, again a very interesting scene unfolded, involving the three females. Each morning the three of them hop up in an overstuffed chair and do a three-way wrestling activity that can go on for fifteen or twenty minutes. It is fascinating to watch…just the three females…in a very intense but loving ballet. This morning, however, Daphne got a little too intense with Cecily, who then took the maternal role of chastising her a bit with stronger bites and some high-pitched howling. Again, surprising this old veteran of dog play/fights, Lizzie jumped on Cecily’s back, wrapping both front paws around her and began to lick her ears and face in an attempt to comfort her. She sensed how upset Cecily was with Daphne’s rough play. I cannot understand, for the life of me, how these three consistently play, fight, comfort, and then repeat it all again! What is it about being a female that allows such an incredible mood change? Females are the final frontier for this old male.
And there you have it… an observation from a venerable vantage point.