Checkers Checks In

Hello, my MARtians!

I love dogs, all kinds of dogs – so when friends called me in need of doggie sitting help I pitched right in and welcomed Checkers, their 7-year-old female Brussels Griffon.

I must say, I said, ‘yes, of course’ without even thinking about the lady of the house. That said, Checkers checked in last Wednesday night and from the start Violet was not sure what to make of it. No snarling or unladylike behavior, mind you, just a few looks at us which clearly said “Why are you petting her?” And although Rosebrook Gardens has a two night minimum, Violet’s jealousy would have made her willing to break the rules and invite Checkers to go after day one. I’m sure it was our guest’s yummy kibble that kept Violet willing to explore an extended stay – based on how happy Violet was to sneak some.

Like many dogs, Violet needed a little convincing and coaching to accept another one into her home. Sure, she has had my neighbor’s dog Elizabeth Taylor over many times over the years, but this was the first in bed overnight sleepover ever, and who was to get the middle? Of course, it had to be me; it was as if I was dividing church and state that first night and it did not help that Checkers has a little respiratory problem (common to the breed): she snores like a sailor.

Truth be told, being that the two pups are the same size and shape gave me a glimpse of what LIFE ON MAR’S would be like should I ever consider another dog (mini schnauzer) in my life. Although Checkers and Violet are both very different dogs with different needs, one thing’s the same: boy, can they eat. Violet prefers only her big dinner with lots of treats throughout the day, whereas Checkers prefers three full meals a day.

But where there are differences there are many wonderful similarities. That loving look that only a dog can exude when they look at you as if to say “thank you and I love you.” That ‘night-night’ time in bed when they lay on their back for one last belly rub and kiss for the night. And let me not forget to mention when the doorbell rings they somehow simultaneously become one, beginning their bark fest while both charging to the door.

Violet is now on day six of what she likes to call “the Belgian invasion.” But I know she is only teasing, as she has come to appreciate the new four-legged addition to her stomping grounds. Although they are very different in personalities and looks they undoubtedly have both become fabulous friends this week, and she will miss her when her mom and dad come to collect her in a few days. (So, after Checkers checks out, do you think Violet should get a sister?)

Meanwhile, all who visit my home have asked, “Did you get another dog?” I simply respond by saying; “This is Checkers, she has checked-in to Rosebrook Gardens and she’s Violet’s checkmate this week.”