I hate the first hour of the morning with the puppies. I am a person who likes to spend my first hour of the day sipping coffee, reflecting quietly on my plans for the day, being totally alone. My own dogs respect this. My guests usually respect this. I don't talk, I don't move around, I just sit.
But with ten pups screaming for attention, and wall-to-wall poop and pee in the pen (in which they pounce and roll), and three adult dogs and a cat getting all excited at the commotion, morning solitude is not an option.
I gingerly step into the pen, trying to avoid the forty paws and ten tails that mob me at the entrance. A pup squeals as my avoidance technique fails - I yell at them to "MOVE OUT THE WAY THEN!!" Patience and positive training are not gonna happen during the first hour of my day.
I hate this. I hate this I hate this I hate this.
I plonk down their food dishes and while they madly gobble up the softened kibble, I try to whip out the soiled newspapers without stepping in the muck myself. To my early morning disgust, one or more of the pups has also soiled liberally in the bed - the bedding is so covered in poop I am going to throw it out rather than wash it. The little bit of early-morning-tolerance I have is fast fading. It vanishes totally when the pups decide they would rather mob me again than finish breakfast, and all of a sudden I have ten little vermin....er puppies...crawling all over me as I try to clean the pen. I shudder.....I can't deal with this.....I want OUT....Pups and mama are going back TODAY......
I give up and race out of the pen. One of the adult dogs has reacted to my stress by pooping all the way down the hallway (they DID all go out and do their business as soon as I crawled out of bed, so I know it was reaction to the environment that caused the accident). My cat is hiding - she is pissed off because usually the first thing I do in the morning is feed her and I forgot. Charley has her head in a corner. I feel terrible.
And then I see Lucy. Lying on the couch Lucy. The cause of all this woe Lucy. And she does this:
And all the stress of the past hour magically evaporates. I head to the computer with my cup of coffee, the pups settle down for another snooze, the cat comes out of hiding and the dogs go back to their customary beds, and all is right with the world. All because of a goofy dog who knew when I needed a silly face to make me smile.