The Misadventures of Mildred
December 17, 2015 | My Jottings
It seems to me like the older one gets, the less resilient. Our nine year-old Miniature German Schnauzer Mildred Virginia Sizzlelorum (Millie) is one example.
When Millie came into our household, we already had Edith Elaine Bubbleloo, another Schnauzer four years Millie’s senior. But Millie wanted Alpha dog position and just took over, and Edith assumed a deferential demeanor and let her have her way to keep the poochie peace.
Millie still likes to be first and displays very jealous behavior when anyone is paying attention to Edith, but as she has gotten older, she seems to be more emotionally fragile. Millie is afraid of sounds. She hates the vacuum, while Edith watches languidly when I’m doing the carpets. Sharon came over to take the dogs’ pictures for us yesterday and we learned another sound Millie hates: the soft click of a camera’s shutter when a photograph is taken. Millie could barely bring herself to look Sharon’s direction because of the clicks. She had to be restrained from running out of the room.
If anyone ever makes a raspberry sound with their mouth against a baby’s belly, Millie slinks from the room in fear. When the microwave beeps its signal that a cup of water has heated, Millie looks up nervously from her own personal wingback chair in the living room, clearly considering whether or not she should run to the back of the house or brave it and stay put.
So you can imagine what might happen if one of the smoke/carbon monoxide detectors in the house has a battery that’s fading and begins to chirp loudly every minute. This happened recently and it took me a couple of minutes to find which one it was. We have one in each bedroom. By the time I had gotten the step stool and unscrewed the unit from the bedroom ceiling, my ears were ringing, and Millie was nowhere to be found. At least nowhere usual.
I finally found her in the corner of my office, vibrating pathetically. I felt so sorry for her.
Later, she was clearly done in and needed a lot of rest. She spent most of the day recuperating on my unmade bed.
Poor Mildred. She has such a hard life.