Rug: a question of class, and a dirty protest
It has been a tumultuous 10 days, mes amis, mes cheries, with my consignment to les chenils, or kennels if you prefer, again finally ending and, it is promised, not to be repeated until after the crazed drunken antics known as Christmas, or the Festival Du Chocolat Toxique.
The humans took the diminutive personification of evil with them for their visit to the city, and they claim - but why should I believe them? They are, like all humanity, untrustworthy when it comes to canines - indeed, they insist that I will not be sent to the kennels again, but taken along to adventures among high buildings, abandoned takeaways, and the bizarre but pleasingly humiliating urban practice of humans having to pick up dog excrement and then dispose of it in letter boxes, often not their own. The transportation of Dexter by car and ferry having proved, they say, a success, the movement of Rug - moi - will be attempted. My movements are very personal to me, long drawn out and copious, as I may have mentioned. We shall see what transpires. Personally, I am happy with my normal homelife - the current strenuous regime of sleeping around 23 hours a day on a well-worn in and dribbled upon leather settee, with a short constitutional before the humans go to sleep for an appallingly brief period, and a few short outings to the garden for copious movements. These are a great pleasure.
In truth, I am not among my own class at les chenils. And there is a distinct absence of toast in the morning, too. The scrabble of terriers, Staffordshire and otherwise, Spaniels and glum labradors, do not share my Swiss heritage and proud background of avalanche rescue and brandy portage. Not that I have actually done any of that myself, you understand. I find snow tremendously damaging to the cuticles, and there are only so many hours in the day. Twenty four, in fact, and as I have said I require 23 of them to maintain my exquisite poise and general deliciseuseitude.
But surely, I hear you say, the disgusting Dexter is hardly an aristocrat of my own heritage and for that matter, breeding? True, but he is useful occasionally in sucking up any of my extraneous though doubtless delicious drool and licking out my sometimes rheumy eyes. I see him as a kind of annoying domestic servant, one with occasional psychoses.
There was one Staffordshire at les chenils, known as Kojak for reasons apparently related to his persistent mange. Unlike the mixed-breakfast genetic melange which is Dexter, this was a pure Staffordshire, (and oh, how I detest the diminutive term ‘Staffie’! Would you ever call me a Bernie? I should hope not) built like the proverbial bouquet of bricks, or bucket if you prefer, and fearsome of mien. Alas, he was also timid as a cocaine-dosed rabbit (one of which I met at peculiar drug testing lab I was once bought by; alas, I could not help them in their research, whatever it was, due to to lack of wakefulness, despite the application of substances like caffeine and amphetamine sulphate. Interesting days, though. I believe the company concerned was working for a pet food manufacturer).
Kojak the Staffordshire possessed not a bark, but a squeak like that of a child’s toy. He could, however, apparently levitate from a firmly anchored stance up to two metres into the air. We did not communicate well. He claimed not understand my accent and I pretended to find his brand of high-pitched Cockney jabbering indecipherable. I am a mountain dog, un chien des montagnes. He is a creature of the streets, the pits and grey - harled council estates.
The male human turned up eventually - a day late in fact - and I made my displeasure known by excreting in the back of his newly acquired Volvo XC90. As I said earlier, my movements are copious. I think it is fair to say that I made my point.
Dexter: my adventures on the high seas
Back of the car! Back of the car! Brilliant! Especially as the very expensive Volvo dog guard has easily enough space on both sides for a flexible and supple chien such as myself (listen to pretentious petit moi, that’s the influence of so-called Swissophile Rug, or as I call her, The Smelly Old Bitch) to get through and provide driving advice from the lap of whatever human happens to be there, preferably the one actually driving. For some reason he - in this case, it was a he - doesn’t seem to appreciate this.
Anyway, that’s how the adventure started. Back of the car, with a new basket, blanket, my usual assortment of half destroyed indestructible toys and balls. Perhaps I should have suspected something was up, but I am a veritable fountain of positivity. Things would obviously be brilliant!
I should have remembered about the ferry. My current humans live on an island, an island some 14 hours from the British mainland, and therefore an overnight sailing is required to move from one landmass to the other. I was brought from Ayrshire aboard the ferry, and unlike almost everything else in my life, this was Not Brilliant. My trip south this time was similar. A storm, a dank, smelly kennel in the bowels of the ship. Continual yowling from a selection of strange mutts, large and small. But I, Dexter, reared on the streets, buffeted by the emotional vicissitudes of dog orphanages and adopters, am made of stronger stuff! And I have a memory I know how to use. I knew the journey would not last forever, that my human would be worried and guilty and probably reward me with a McDonalds quarter pounder, almost certainly with fries, if I behaved well. And this would be brilliant!
And so I did behave well. I neither peed nor - and what a quaint childish word this is - pood. There was no micturation, no defaecation. I lay quietly until collected next morning by a plainly discombobulated owner (he was clearly seasick, I was not), and only then did I make the point that this was not treatment I appreciated by slipping my collar and gambolling along the car deck among heavy goods vehicles and cars like a frisky lamb. There was only one small collision as a result, involving a luggage trolley and a Kia Sportage.
I came back to my current owner’s desperate shouting, though, and sure enough, we stopped at the first McDonalds where I consumed a burger, some fries and relieved my bladder and bowels on a patch of astroturf I later realised was an outdoor picnic area for smokers. Serves them right. Of course, this being the mainland, the human had to don a black plastic disposal glove and pick up the ordure in question. I believe he placed it in the wheelarch of a BMW with a private number plate, an act of which I heartily approve. I watched from the Volvo and set off the burglar alarm several times by way of celebration.
I remained quietly behind the guard, as if it really existed, as we drove from Aberdeen to Glasgow, where I was introduced to a completely new family, or at least place of residence! This was my current owner’s son and his partner, and from what I could glean, was only to be temporary. It turned out to be so excitingly and interestingly brilliant that I intend to describe the whole experience in more detail. Clearly, there were a few initial difficulties, notably one involving my consumption of a very expensive woman’s boot. But on the whole it was brilliant! And I only urinated on someone’s leg once! Well, twice. It signifies affection, psychologically speaking. So I'm told.