So it turns out I’m not just humiliating my dogs (as you can see, yep, I made the costumes), now I’m actively trying to kill them.
I thought I was doing pretty well for the furry little bastards, what with 2 hours at the park every day, lots of toys and only the finest semi-premium dog food.
I mean, I check labels to make sure the main ingredient isn’t something like “sawdust and glass chips,” but I don’t buy it from the special dog bakery (That shit’s just for their birthdays, am I right? Christ, I hate me). I love ‘em, but my eyes go buggy when I hear someone at the park talking about how “Dakota is SO picky! He hated Deluxe Lamb Fricassee, so I switched to Venison Party Platter, but it’s still a bargain at $200 dollars a week!” The one time Jay “Soft-touch for Big Puppy Eyes” Pinkerton bought the high-end stuff, the $6 bucks a can Cowboy Cookout and Turducken Supreme, Orwell had the worst, most eye-watering beef farts known to man or beast. Foul, lingering, MOIST, “when did a gut-shot raccoon defecate in my sinuses?” farts. And sure, Orwell loved the stuff, but I put my foot down and the little stink-machines get dry kibble now. The way I see it, dogs don’t get to be picky. I’ve seen Orwell and Edison happily munch down on enormous piles of sticks at the park, I’ve found yarn and entire metal screws in their poop, so I’ll be damned if they’re turning up their noses at grocery store puppy chow. That’s what I’m serving, that’s what they’re getting, if they don’t want to eat it, that’s their own damn problem. As you can tell, Jay and I will make awesome parents.
And yet, surprisingly, this was not what makes me the worst dog owner in the history of canine domestication.
I bought some TULIPS.
For the first time in our adult lives, Jay and I have a home that we can finally be proud of. Or rather, we have an apartment we could be proud of, if our furniture wasn’t still the craiglist and “oh look, someone left a perfectly good chair/bookshelf/prosthetic leg on the curb” findings of a 19 year old’s dorm room. We have a grown up apartment with arrested development furnishings. So we finally hit IKEA, just like any other 30-somethings that are still living like we’re 20-somethings. “Who cares if the furniture only lasts five years? We live in the NOW!”
We didn’t actually end up buying any furniture – between the two of us, you’ve never met a more indecisive, passive-aggressive pair of design-retarded nerds in your life. “That’s a nice couch.” “Sure, but I’m not convinced on those end tables. Are we allowed to buy it without the end tables?” “What the fuck is a “Grundung Schlormstang” anyway?” “I think it’s something they did to people during the Holocaust.” “Well…that makes sense, I guess.”
However, they ended up having some nice plants, so, taking baby steps, Jay and I snagged a pink wiggly thing, a purple froofy thing, and a couple of greenish leafy things. And finally, a cool vase thing that had tulips growing in it.
While I thought I was just “livening up the place,” little did I know I was actually DEADENING up my dogs. Deadening them up…to DEATH.
Inspired by our new, ultra-green lifestyle, I decided to tackle our patio. Living in Seattle, people have plants EVERYWHERE. I’ve been envying our neighbors’ lush evergreens and terracotta pots for the past 6 months, so I started looking up dwarf lemon trees and mongoloid firs to adorn our own balcony. But before I hit the “order” button (like I could be bothered to go to a damn garden store, I don’t buy tampons unless they’re online), I had a passing thought – “I should probably check and make sure none of these things are, you know, poisonous to the 20 pound idiots that eat everything in sight.”
According to the ASPCA, every plant you even THINK about putting in your house will kill the fuck out of your dogs.
Day Lily? Deadly.
English Ivy? Exterminating.
Fiddle-Leaf Philodendron? Phatal.
Deadly Nightshade? Well, I probably could have figured that one out on my own.
But tulips? For real? I mean, the things are fucking everywhere. But no, according to the site, canine consumption leads to “Intense vomiting, depression, diarrhea, hypersalivation, inappetence.”
I freaked out at first. Holy crap! I’m killing my dogs by even bringing a tulip within fifty feet of them. I’m worse than HITLER. At least the Jews sorta had to walk into the showers by themselves! [note: Should probably not say something as horrible as this, try to substitute less abhorrent thoughts before publishing.]
But then I thought about it some more. “Intense vomiting, depression, diarrhea, hypersalivation, inappetence.”
Depression? Really? REEEALLY? My dogs are gonna get DEPRESSED if they eat a goddamn tulip? Is it like the good Sylvia Plath depression where you’re really creative, or the bad depression, where you write a lot of meandering poetry that makes you want to kill yourself?
Plus, they might drool a lot (you know, like dogs) and they might not want to eat their boring-ass kibble (because I don’t buy them Turducken Supreme), and they might get the shits (which may or may not be related to the cubic ton of sticks and metal objects they eat on a daily basis). Also, Orwell pukes if he gets too hot, which he does at least once a week because he insists on running around the house non-stop and then burrowing under our down comforter with no air access for hours at a time (unlike Edison, who also likes burrowing under the covers, but always makes sure to poke his nose out at the edge of the bed, so he can, you know, breathe).
So basically, if I’m understanding this right…Dogs, if they eat tulips…might act like…dogs.
Anyway, I DO want to, you know, not kill my dogs. And I try to make sure they don’t die on a daily basis. But as Jay put it so succinctly, “If the only thing stopping my dog from gobbling broken glass or lapping up a puddle of bleach is me reefing like a crazy guy on his leash, I’m curious how dogs have lasted as a species all these millennia when I wasn’t around to yank rat poison, car keys or pinless grenades out of their mouths.”
And to that list of puppy-killers, we apparently add tulips.
Ultimately, I did a lot of soul searching, and finally decided…Fuck ‘em. I want me a damn little lemon tree in a terracotta pot. I figure dogs were genetically engineered by humans to do and look like what we want, tiny little lemon trees were engineered to make me tiny little lemons on my balcony. I’m gonna let the dogs and the plants duke it out and see who Darwins who.
Either way, in the end, I should have some tasty eats!
P.S. Yeah, I got rid of the tulips.