Monday, June 13, 2011

a bit about my dog

This is Kippy. He's an 11-year-old Tibetan terrier. He runs my parents' house with one paw tucked demurely beneath his torso. This photo doesn't do justice to his cuteness.

I've spent a bit of time there in scattered spurts lately, and it's made me want to share a few tidbits about the little jerk:

He's a neighborhood celebrity

Every time I've walked Kip recently—and I mean that: every single time—strangers approach us, grinning, greet Kippy by name, fawn over him and then depart without introducing themselves to me, the lowly human at the other end of the leash. He has a couple neighborhood friends that I do know. They keep treats in their houses for him, so he'll pull toward those locations during strolls. He only stops straining if you tell him that they aren't home. 

He only has accidents when he's sick, but then those accidents are only ever on my parents' sole Oriental carpet

The pooch has standards.

He knows that candles mean presents

Kip always gets birthday presents, but combining wrapping paper and candle lighting once a year is probably not enough to convince him that the strike of a match means he will be getting a package.

Hanukkah, on the other hand, has eight consecutive present nights. Kip gets presents on all of them. Over the years, this has led to a routine that a neighbor thought my parents were lying about until she came over one evening this past winter.

Mom strikes a match to light the Hanukkah candles and, as match hits matchbox, Kips comes flying from whatever corner of the house was currently serving as his chaise. He sits at Mom's feet, looks up at her, and starts a sustained whine that sounds somewhat like high-pitched singing. This is fortuitous, because prayers precede presents, so my parents consider that Kip joining them in reciting the blessings. Then, they say, "Happy Hanukkah!" and Mom brings in gifts for everybody. Somebody opens Kippy's first, as best they can as he noses the wrapping. He delicately accepts the toy or the treat, prances into the next room, and lies down with it between his paws, content.

He has us trained

Everyone is used to being uncomfortably contorted on their own beds so as not to disturb Kippy when he's sharing them. A couple who recently stayed overnight let him sleep between them on the full-sized futon in the basement, even though he snores.

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