My dog has slept on the floor the past two nights, and I’m feeling oddly rejected. I didn’t kick him off the bed. He chose the floor over his previously protected spot next to me.

“Is he mad at you?” a friend asks.

“I don’t know. He saw the suitcases so he knows I’m going away.”

My dog usually holds a grudge over my departures but not preemptively. He’s never been one to anticipate. But after two nights of sleeping alone, I can’t help but think he’s trying to tell me something. Like, maybe, ‘Get a boyfriend!’

Ah, if only it were that easy, I want to tell him. But maybe my dog already knows and is trying to help the process along by getting out of the way. I’d never imagined his being that selfless and considerate.

In the lonely periods, I admit I turn to my dog to lap up his admiration. And maybe it’s pathetic and maybe it’s a healthy sign of the survival instinct. But now that he’s decided I must look elsewhere for love, I’m a bit at a loss.

He and I have gone on field trips together, a kill-two-birds-with-one-stone tactic. My Chihuahua gets a walk and I get to sightsee. We’ve made small talk along the Venice boardwalk. We’ve run on the grassy bluff in nearby Santa Monica. We’ve visited the dog park, but the small dog pen is usually the equivalent of a women’s tea party, and I find myself longingly looking through the fence to the wide-open pasture where the shepherds, huskies, large mutts, and men romp. In a loving act of self-sacrifice, I remain in the safe zone as my eleven-pounder paces the perimeter watching the other small dogs play. (I do wish he’d at least try for a little action since if I’m not going to get any.)

In first bringing home my puppy, I thought he might assume the role of man magnet until I realized that women are expected to play that part all by themselves. Unsuspecting women might fall for the lure of a puppy, but men fall for – I need not finish the sentence.

Mostly, my dog has gotten between me and my dates. Speck – eager for all the lovin’ – flirts and jumps on laps and only will retire to his spot across the room when he realizes he’s come in second. And on the occasions when I have an overnight guest, he lobbies hard to remain on the bed through the night. Only with real determination do I succeed in banishing him to the floor, so he must be pretty desperate to see a smile on my face if he’s now moved himself there voluntarily.

I want to believe that my dog is onto something. Not wanting to disappoint him, I figure I must come up with a new game plan in my love search, however at this point I’m stumped. But if Speck’s willing to relocate to the floor to make room for my mate, I figure I better at least do my part and keep trying. And maybe as a reward for my attempts, Speck will take me back. At least for a little while.

1 comment:

Willie Baronet said...

DZ, the only change to your game plan should be to just be you and relax. :-) Them's my advice.