This morning I nearly mopped the kitchen floor and then I remembered that it is doggy play date day. My lovely friend is coming to visit with her two pooches Billy and Woody ( his name still makes me snigger) Billy is the same age and size as Frankie, they have been buddies for a long time now, we have even been on holiday together. They are both as tenacious as one another and so they kind of blank each other out and can get along without any of the posturing and growling that comes with terriers.
Woody is three and gets mobbed by Bandit and Opie. He is is labrador x spaniel and he seems to not mind being charged at repeatedly by the two enormous pups in my house. I love it when doggies come to play. They charge around the garden, all drink messily from the water bowl at the same time in a haze of spit and wagging tails, and come in regularly to share some of the excitement and dribble.
Having other doggy people around makes you life feel a bit more normal. We don’t have cushions or table cloths or anything fancy. If we did they would be hairy/have holes in/not exist anymore. They don’t mind about all of the fluff and spit. They kiss your dogs on purpose, tickle their tummies and throw the tiny bit of stick that they keep on putting under the sofa for them.
When I just had Frankie it didn’t really stop the non dog fans from coming round, I think they viewed him as some sort of overweight, noisy cat. But when you have a husky cross and a rottweiler cross suddenly your visitor numbers decrease at an alarming rate of knots.
Several of my best friends are terrified of dogs. To their credit many of them have tried visiting and putting this fear behind them. They see the cute sleepy pile pictures on facebook and think that they can handle it.
When people come to visit however, it is the most exciting thing that has ever happened. They wait at the door ( not always, Opie has learned how to open every door in our house, sometimes if the excitement gets too much they just rush down the hallway and crush the visitor by the front door) and mob whoever comes in with great joy and abandon. You can often find them staring out of the window, waiting to shout at the postman (or if you are Opie old men in hats, we live a few doors down from a bookies, this time of year is challenging, although less of them block my driveway on the double yellow lines, you win some, you lose some) or get super hyped for any friendly faces.
Even my family are not the hugest fans of the dogs, Frankie has been around for nine years, and apart from his fondness of sneaking drool covered severed hand from his toys into any bags that my sister brings round, they all love him in their own way. Opie is bigger than my sister and I know that his giant slobbery presence is not on the top ten of things that she loves. She sports a scar on on of her sides where my previous rottweiler stood on her while she was sleeping. But she still comes to see me and braves the frenzy.
I have other friends who have never been to my house, one in particular that I have had since I was fourteen. She has NEVER come round for a cup of tea, and I don’t know if she ever will. But that’s ok, not everyone wants a cuddle that looks like this
I don’t understand it myself, it’s one of the best things in the world. So I will not clean this morning, I will put my feet up and play with the fluffy and non fluffy people in my house and wait for the chaos to descend. I think it means that I will never be the one that hosts the children’s parties when my tiny human is older, I can only see that as a huge bonus, they can all draw on someone else’s walls, all practice aiming with their new found pee hoses in someone else’s bathroom, all have tantrums because they don’t eat raisins/carrots/potatoes or whatever other thing makes dinner table meltdowns happen, at someone else’s table. That is unless all of my doggy friends have babies too.