We’ve established that Jacques is OCD, ADHD, and all sorts of just plain weird. I like to have fun with that knowledge as much as possible. And by “fun” I mean fun for me… not necessarily fun for him.
My house often looks like a kindergarten class room – toys and toy remnants strewn throughout. It’s like a ridiculous obstacle course. And if you have to get up in the middle of the night, well, you’re taking your life into your own hands. “Why don’t you just clean it up?” you may ask. We have and we do, but a certain neurotic dog has certain places for his toys and if you move them it sends him into full on panic mode. (This is where the fun begins.)
When I vacuum (which is often with two furry beasts and a husband in the house), I have the joy of picking up all of Jacques toys. It doesn’t matter where he is in the house; he knows when you’ve picked up a toy. It’s like some weird Westie-sense. He immediately comes tearing into wherever you are and starts watching you with a panicky/ pissed off look on his face. It’s almost as if he’s saying, “What are you doing?? I put that there for a reason!!” He watches as you pick up one toy after another, eyes following your hand as you go from ground to arm with the toy. (It’s really weird. Like borderline creepy.) Then when you move to the next room to continue the cleanup, he’s right on your heels – literally on your heels – grumbling and carrying on the whole time. He’s even thrown himself (in dramatic fashion) in front of me and/or on top of a toy to stop me from picking any more up, but I’m bigger and have opposable thumbs. I win.
He’ll follow me around the house as I pick up toys, grumbling and looking panicked the whole time. It doesn’t take long to get an arm full of toys so I usually have to make several trips to the toy basket in the office. Well, I used to make several trips. When I would go back to drop off another armload of toys, I’d come to the office only to find all the toys I put away strewn about the office (and him sitting amongst the mess looking smugly triumphant). So, now I either get all the toys in one trip or take the toy basket with me, which still results in him emptying the basket and sitting smugly in the mess within a few minutes…
So one day, I upped the game. I put his toys in the washing machine! (Okay, I didn’t realize I upped the game until after the fact. The office smelled like dog and I thought washing the toys would help alleviate the smell.) He was baffled and panic stricken as he watched me put his precious, precious toys into the washing machine. He sat and stared at the machine throughout the entire wash cycle, occasionally whining and grumbling. (It was pretty funny. Although I’m sure he was plotting some sort of doggie revenge the whole time.) He did the same when I put them in the dryer. When the dryer was done, his toys weren’t completely dry, so I put them on a clothes rack. Oh the fun I had with that!! He didn’t know which baby to look at or what to do. He almost had a mental meltdown staring at these toys that he couldn’t get. I, on the other hand, laughed like a crazy person and enjoyed every minute of it.
And for those of you who are feeling sorry for Jacques, don’t. When the toys dried, I put them all in the toy basket… and within minutes they were strewn throughout the house. Jacques was calm, almost peaceful at that point. And smug. He definitely looked smug. Jacques may win this battle, but I get my victories in when and where I can. I have since washed his toys several more times. Partly because they needed it; partly because I needed the laugh.