Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Halloween

Dog Blog Post #148: Sunday night I reaffirmed my belief that most people are simply not afraid of a pale, fluffy, floppy-eared dog - even if he is barking like he's going to eviscerate you.

Big kids, little kids, adults... as soon as we opened the door and they saw who was making the racket, they all said "Awwww... what a cute dog!"

I guess that's why Dobermans and Rottweilers are usually short-haired and black.

(In everyone's defense, Zachary does put on his Friendly Face and turns his waggedy tail to full once the door opens.)

Anyway, the night was mostly uneventful. Kids came, knocked on the door, Zachary let fly a barrage of barking, we opened the door, Zachary wagged his tail, candy was distributed, and the door closed.

Repeat, repeat, repeat...

Mostly?

Well, let's see. I guess I have to back up a few steps.

First, the layout. We have a front door (no, really, what a concept!) and a modest but open entry area with the Living Room on one side and the hallway leading to the back part of the house on the other. A dozen feet or so into the house, directly in line with the front door, is a broad opening leading to the large Kitchen/Family room.

We decided to have Henry the Brave cordoned off in the Kitchen/Family Room behind a wide baby gate. That part of the house has the hardwood floors, and while Henry does ask to go out, the time between asking and peeing is measured in tens of seconds, and so we like to keep him close to the backyard without any extra barriers in between.

We also decided to separate Henry and Zachary to avoid having to supervise playtime as well as man the front door for Trick-or-Treaters. This meant an ex-pen zig-zagging between the entry and the baby-gate, allowing Zachary to see the front door, Henry (in the Family room), and still have access to the back part of the house.

To keep Zachary's barking to a manageable level, I took a bunch of small cookies, broke them into even smaller bits, and set them beside the bucket of Halloween candy, which was sitting on an end table by the front door.

A knock at the door would set off Gatling Gun Zachary, I would slip between the leather chair and the end table to get to the door (since the ex-pen was blocking the usual path) toss a cookie to Zachary to shut him up, then open the door and hand out candy.

This was working great until Son (who had been in the kitchen with Henry up until this point) decided to vamoose to the back part of the house.

Now my son is nearly 6' tall. I am barely 5' 5" (on a really good day.) I had stepped over ex-pen and baby-gate numerous times. Son had stepped over ex-pen and baby-gate numerous times.

But Halloween night, as Bull-in-a-China-Shop Son swung his long(?) leg over the baby-gate, he managed to catch his heel and send the whole thing crashing to the ground. This scared the bejeebers out of Zachary, who leaped backwards and promptly flatted the ex-pen, scaring the bejeebers out of himself (yet again), but not so much that he couldn't take advange of the situtation to bolt to the front door and begin hoovering up all those pre-broken cookies I had sitting on the table.

What's that quote we keep hearing?


"Never let a serious crisis go to waste?"

Right.

And there's my Son, standing in the middle of it all say, "What do I do? What do I do?"

As I was mentally crossing Rocket Science off my list of potential careers for him, Son started grabbing at Zachary (who wasn't wearing a collar, of course - our dogs run "naked" in the house) trying to get him away from the cookies.

Like that was going to happen.

The only thing heavier than a 10lb cat who doesn't want to be picked up is a 70lb dog-on-a-diet with unrestricted access to a pile of cookies.

Meanwhile, as Hubby yelling to Son to get the ex-pen back up again since Treat-or-Treaters were coming fast and furious at that point (in packs... in waves!) and Henry was going on a frolic through the rest of house, I was frantically trying to get the baby-gate back up.

Whew!

All's well, that ends well, I suppose. Other than Zachary blowing his diet in 20 seconds flat, we were able to get everything back together again before anyone else knocked on the door, and the rest of the evening was (thankfully) uneventful.

Just think, only 363 days left until the next Halloween.

I can hardly wait.

3 comments:

houndstooth said...

Ha ha ha! I have felt your pain so many times! It's all fun and games until an ex-pen falls over!

Robin Sallie said...

Did Henry get to see any of the little begging monsters?

BZ Training said...

Only from his side of the baby-gate, amd he was completely uninterested. He watched the first few batches, then went off and played. He's seen kids in costumes before, and sees kids dressed up for sports (helmets, pads, gear, etc.) all the time.