Yesterday was our dogs’ birthdays. They are brothers from the same litter of their young doxie mother’s only litter. My husband bought the pups by trading Hebrew lessons, preparing our friend’s kids for their bar mitzvahs. A grand mitzvah, all around.
Now years past those landmarks, our dogs sit with us not in Pompano Beach, where they squirmed and wriggled as mini hot dogs, but here, in Japan. They are family when I like them or not (so many posts I could address their peeing, abhorrent habits of getting into dirty diapers, or their incessant barking). As a nice reprieve, yesterday was their shared birthday. It is interesting/strange/sad to note that I haven’t payed any homage to my husband on his birthday. January is cute in our home, as the dogs’ day is just two days after my dear hub’s. (More on human bdays later).
“What should we do?”, my kids and I last-minute brainstormed. “Party hats! Oh, we’ll want to snuggle so dear, G-d, they need a bath! Okay, we’ll scrub”, we said, growing louder! And then squeals—“We can dress them up”, my daughter shouted. “Yes, and we should give them something tasty!” Here’s where she got culinary like some sensational vet at Le Cordon Bleu. She dreamed of how we might construct a real cake, but for doggies, round and chock full of carrots, veggies, dripping with a kind of succulent beef glaze. I reined her in a bit. This was, afterall, last minute, the night before their big 10 year party.
There would be party hats, the cute stored supplies I hide in cubes in the dining room, from J’s 1st party. Paper festive napkins, my favorite from Oh Joy’s first Target line.
The dogs got special treatment following their de-stinkathon and deep conditioning. By special treatment, and mean crackers and me not wanting to kill them when they peed in my floor buckets as if they had never ever been outside. As if I’d let them drink a keg of shower water. They really are getting older. Less control & poor Sammy is dealing with a bout of kidney stones. Whooooosh and peeeeeee.
I didn’t even yell. A birthday is a birthday.
They wagged with our leftovers, new slices of vivid orange pepper, and even… their own tangerine-flavored fortune cookies. Sammy, the black one, got a particularly fitting fortune. Something about fun and weekends which prompted us to plan a trip to the park. (Maybe I should plant a fortune about jewels sparkling).
It was a good time and a nice push to be more loving, more forgiving, and take a break from screaming.
A dog is a dog and they, the birthday boys, are sure family.