Oh, wait, that sentence is the title was incomplete. It should read, “My dogs will kill you, if you are a rodent or small bird or a mix of the two.” On Wednesday night, I was out late at practice for the Centerpoint band. As I was washing my face, brushing my teeth and preparing my bladder for sleep mode by emptying it, I heard the clacking of jaws slamming shut as if Iceman from Top Gun had invaded my living room and was just outside the door of the bathroom. Knowing it must actually be the dogs because my parents were asleep, Becky was too far away, and Ariella simply doesn’t have jaw strength Val Kilmer does, I quickly exited the bathroom and sternly asked los perros to zip it. They zipped it for all of 2 seconds, which was plenty of time for me to reach the threshold to the kitchen.
Let me digress. I have always thought of myself as having a rather large cranium. Flex fit hats are tight on me. My hat size is at least seven and five eighths, but like jeans, inch dimensions somehow vary from brand to brand, so occasionally, I have to go bigger. It’s all good though because if you ask the ladies, they will tell you that bigger is better…uh…bigger brains, you sicko. Girls like guys with brains, especially girls who have seen every episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, like my sexy wife. She loves my giant skull, despite it’s gravitational pull.
Back to the story. Despite having what I always thought of as a planetary pate, I guess it also resembles the anatomy of a fly or other small bug because as I crossed into the kitchen, a bat (remember when I said a cross between a small bird and a rodent) crashed into the back of my head. As is so often the case in my own eating, the bat found that his eyes were bigger than his stomach and abandoned my head. The dogs were off in pursuit. Now, bats freak me out a little. I’m not exactly scared of them, but I don’t want them to fly into my mouth (my head is gigantic and I’m concerned they may mistake my mouth for a batcave), so I woke up my dad to help get the bat out of the house.
My dad approached from the south armed with a blanket as I approached from the north with one of Becky’s sweaters. Dizzy watched from the couch, long streams of drool streaming onto the floor, and Buddy chased the bat, leaping occasionally in an attempt to catch the self-guided toy. The bat came at me, and I’ll admit, I freaked, so holding my head back (mouth clamped shut) and flailing my arms wildly as far from my face as I could manage, I hit the bat with the sweater, and stunned, it hit the floor near the front door milliseconds before Buddy pounced. A skull-splittingly high pitched squeal was emitted with the human harmony vocals provided by my wife and my dad singing, “No, Buddy, No.”
Alas, it was too late. My dad picked up the maimed bat and threw it outside, where it landed with a thunk on the compressed dirt of our front yard. By morning, it was gone, probably victim to one of the nearby owls or raccoons or something.
This past summer, Dizzy maimed a squirrel that surprised us at the front door. Chomping before I even knew what was going on, I heard a snap that informed me she broke its back, so when I yelled for her to stop, the squirrel ran off dragging its rear legs. Shortly after we got Dizzy, a small bird became trapped beneath the cabinets in our kitchen. When Becky returned from work, rather than having one intact small bird, we had many small pieces of bird scattered about the kitchen…and an overjoyed Dizzy.
This wasn’t Buddy’s first murder, either. He’s an experienced killer. Once I thought he was playing with a stuffed mouse in the backyard, but when I reached to take it from him, I found myself gripping the warm, wet, throbbing fur of a partially disemboweled young possum. Another time, Buddy maimed, but did not kill, a possum that had tried unsuccessfully to hide under our recycling bin, and I had to finish the job using a shovel as lacrosse stick to eject the victim from our yard.
So, if you are a rodent, a bird, or a mix of the two, stay the heck away from my house. My dogs will kill you.