Something is amiss at home.
We have a shelf in the study cupboard with a new purpose. On it are dog squeaky toys, little teddy bears, empty water and food bowls, an empty sleek food container and a velvety blanket. Being delivered soon, is a basket lined with cream and white stripped fabric. More excitingly, a cream teepee (for somewhere indoors yet to be decided) is also on the way with a base footprint of 1.2m2 and a height of 1.7m. I must not forget the 2 pairs of black and blue stripped socks with traction pads at the bottom.
This is all in preparation for a puppy. Yes, a puppy who will have to tolerate the cats, rabbits, tortoises, garden birds and fish in the pond (one of whom is starting to look like a plump Nemo). The startling thing is that this puppy is not yet born. No, the puppy may not even have been conceived. This is a technicality.
I have a list of potential puppy names, all starting with the letter “i” which is a self-imposed tradition. Things may be getting a bit desperate when I start adding made-up names to the list, such as “iquorice” or include a Latin phrase, like “ipso facto”. This time, I will not use “isis” as I did for my first cat in 1995 as world circumstances are slightly different now.
I looked for a suitable rescue puppy or a dog. That is the correct thing to do. Due to our demanding and very proper lilac Burmese, we have had to make sure that the puppy has a certain temperament and could not take a chance. In all this though, I am probably the biggest problem.
I promised Husband that the puppy would not be an “idea” (also a possible puppy name) until the lilac Burmese had passed on to cat heaven. But before he knew it, Husband was with me at a breeder’s home, looking at the human’s dirty fleece top, his grubby nails and him feeding liver treats to the dogs. There were lots of dogs. The house and the dogs were clean; just the human was dodgy and so was his wife who stood at the top of the stairs in the house in a pink and yellow print outfit, saying nothing. If I did not know better, I would say that was a ghost off to a Halloween fancy dress.
It is the humans in all of this that it make it such a crazy process. I typed an email to another breeder and realised that my request seemed very South African corporate: “please may I have a black female, or if none, a black male will do”. At one stage I was not sure whose BBBEE transaction I was involved in or if this was still a puppy hunt. Either way, the diversity index at home is going to go up with the puppy.
The vexed question is: how do we introduce the puppy to the lilac Burmese? Already part of the puppy’s stash is rescue remedy. This is for me and both cats. All I can say is that I had better fit-out the teepee with extended-stay comfort in mind, as I may find myself banished to the garden once the puppy arrives. And no. The puppy will be indoors, sleeping happily next to Husband, while I have to battle the South-Easter and share my vegan greens with the birds, rabbits and tortoises….