Tuesday, July 26, 2005

the connoisseur vs. the glutton

This morning I was preparing some breakfast-to-go of yogurt with blueberries mixed in. As is my usual custom, I let the dogs lick yogurt off of my finger before I washed my hands.

I was going to say that I let them lick a spoon, but then none of you will want to come over to my house, so never mind. I definitely did NOT let them lick a spoon.

Anyway, I was struck by the way their personalities come through in the way they licked the yogurt off of my hand. Tango, my little connoisseur, licks methodically. He looks at the yogurt, sniffs it, decides it is worthy, and then proceeds to lick from left to right, down to up. Murray, on the other hand, sees my hand approaching and starts licking. He licks the air, he licks his nose, he doesn't even stop to sniff what I might be offering, he just licks and licks and licks, hoping to catch a little bit of whatever it is in his mouth before its gone.

Their differences show up in many things. Tango is selective about where he sits, what he eats and what toy he plays with. If you try to swap the red ball for the green ball, he will plant his butt in front of you and glare and snuff at you until you throw the original red ball. Murray just wants to be near us. He is happy to go anywhere, as long as we are there. Our only battles come when he wants to lie on top of me and I'd prefer if he lay next to me. It is a nightly battle.

I even convinced my mother once that Tango was the spirit of my sweet departed grandmother. Tango can respond to some simple sentences, so when I told him to remove his toy from his pee-pee pad (indoor puppy litter box), he trotted over, picked up his toy, deposited it off the pad, and trotted off. He knows what upstairs, downstairs, couch and bed are, so if you throw those words into sentences he will likely follow along. By luck, he responded when my mom spoke Italian to him (as she did to my grandmother). My mother ran from the room with her hands over her ears because the whole thing was scaring her.

In contrast, my father-in-law calls Murray "the simple son", in reference to the Passover Seder character. He is soooo sweet, but not necessarily the sharpest tool in the shed.

I love them both, and at least now I know that I'll love any kids that come my way, cute or not cute, smart or not smart. I can see the good in each of my pups.

And in the meantime, I can get lots of pictures of Murray doing this.

16 comments:

Jill said...

What a cute dog!!!

Phantom Scribbler said...

I love that Murray is the simple son. He's so cute!

And, please, my kids eat off my dirty floor. You think I care if the dog licked off a spoon?

Running2Ks said...

I grew up with cats licking ice-cream remains.

How cute!

purple_kangaroo said...

This reminds me of a story my grandfather used to tell about he and a friend visiting a guy in the mountains of Mexico when they lived there.

The man invited them to dinner, and the house and dishes just seemed rather . . . unsanitary. Trying to be casual, one of the men asked how he managed to wash his dishes up there in the mountains. The man replied, "Oh, three waters gets them clean."

Well, soap would have been nice, but they were relieved to know that at least he rinsed them three times with water. They enjoyed their meal.

After dinner, the man set the dishes on the floor and called, "Here, Three Waters! Come here, boy!"

RussianViolets said...

What an adorable puppy! And yes, Schnauzer gets to lick spoons and forks all the time. Non-animal people don't get this, but then again, I never invite non-animal lovers over to my zoo here. Hey, how did you get Murray to use an indoor litter box? I would love to do that for Schnauzer, particularly when I'm gone as much as I am during school.

Ninotchka said...

ha ha ha What a cutie pie he is!

You're so right to compare them to children. I've always said the similarities are uncanny. But it's not always well received. ha ha ha

Yankee T said...

cute, cute, cute!

Friday Mom said...

Cute dog! Hope you have a great birthday tomorrow!

Cheeky Prof said...

Ooh, I certainly never thought of not mentioning that the dogs eat off the spoons for fear of people turning down invites to our place. Does this mean I shouldn't post the pics of them eating Italian ice out of the cereal bowls?

Adorable dog, by the way!

Honey Bunny said...

a dog's mouth is cleaner than ours. at least that's what every dog lover tells me. besides, if you have a dishwasher, germs would get blasted away. so i wouldn't care if you said they licked the spoons! :)

Angry Pregnant Lawyer said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Piece of Work said...

Came over via Phantom to wish you a Happy Birthday! And congrats on the honorable mention whine! What a cute dog, too.

purple_kangaroo said...

BTW, as long as you actually wash the dishes after letting the dog lick them rather than letting the dog wash the dishes, I don't see why anyone would have an issue with it. :)

halloweenlover said...

Ha ha! I do wash the dishes, first rinsed in the sink and then in the dishwasher, but I said that because I have friends that have said its totally disgusting and can't believe I would let the dogs touch our plates.

They do have their own bowls, but occasionally those are in the wash, so I use regular cereal bowls. I have since learned that some view that as a cardinal sin. Who knows. Now I just tell people I don't do it, even though I do : )

Seriously, though, these dogs have HEALTH INSURANCE. They are very clean and healthy.

purple_kangaroo said...

Really, though, what's the difference between putting the dogs' bowls in the washer with the regular dishes and letting them eat off a normal dish occasionally? Either way, the germs are getting mixed--and then killed.

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