The house is cool, the sun has hardly crept over the mountain, the comforter has never been so comfortable, and you hear the stomping of a seven-month Bouvier puppy playing. Oh, please, let me sleep until the alarm clock sounds, you beg silently. You freeze and act asleep as if somehow she will sense you are awake and that will interrupt her silent playtime. Just as you drift back off to sleep, 55 pounds of dog jumps on your bed. (If you are lucky, it will be the other side of the bed, empty of a husband, headed to work already. Often, it will be directly on top of you that the puppy lands.) She licks your face, once and jumps off. Then, she begins to jump onto and off the bed.
What is this cruel morning ritual?
It is how Elsie indicates the need to go outside. It will stop only when she is convinced you are out of bed and headed outside or when she can no longer hold it. It is a chance you do not want to take, so you get up and take her out. Maggie follows, still in a stupor and not quite ready to take on the day. You nod at Maggie, she is your lifeline in this moment of insanity.
You make it down the stairs, bleary-eyed, tired, and with a puppy bouncing around. Suddenly, a black blur runs to the couch. You squint. Otto is prepped and ready to take off outside. You now have to block the cat, get the dogs out, and wake up.
Somehow you manage. Elsie even potties outside. You’re an awesome adult, rocking this puppy parenting thing.
Your alarm hasn’t even gone off.