This last weekend was the weekend before Halloween, aka “Pumpkin carving weekend.” Wes and I were all set to carve our pumpkins like we do every year but stopped just short of actually purchasing the pumpkins because we had a choice to make: we could either buy the pumpkins (at roughly $7 apiece) or we could buy Doc more things to destroy with his mouth.
As I’m sure you’ll recall, our poor puppy is afflicted with a torn ACL and a migratory kneecap
so his life is pretty slothful right now. The most exercise he gets is when we walk him on a leash to the backyard to do his business or when he runs up or down the stairs to do…whatever he feels like.
The direct result of this drastically immobile lifestyle (hey! that almost rhymes!) is that he has a renewed need to destroy. All his pent-up energy is now being routed directly out of his mouth and this means that his toys are taking a beating. For example, his Nylabone. These are built for aggressive chewers out of nylon-plastic-stuff and we get the biggest one they make (it’s about 14 inches long and weighs at least three pounds.)
He chews it down to a two inch nubbin in about a month.
From what I’ve gathered from other dog owners, this is a virtually unheard-of rate for Nylabone destruction. I suppose, though, that when you deprive a year old Labrador puppy of his right to run around like a maniac he’s going to act out in other ways:
This week he managed to finish off his second gigantic Nylabone and we had to throw the nubbin away because he was starting to attempt to swallow it whole (I don’t even want to know what a three inch piece of nylon-plastic chewed to sharp little edges would do to his soft insides.) This left him with a measly three indoor toys (a spiky ball, a plastic dumbell, and a rubber chicken) and it hurt our hearts to see him without anything really satisfying to chew.
So, we weighed our options: we could buy two pumpkins that would last for a week and then rot or we could buy a new bone and toy for our dog that would keep him busy and happy for at least a month. We picked Doc, who is now the proud owner of a not-so-shiny-anymore gigantic Nylabone and a plastic doughnut that is made to look like the doughnuts that Homer Simpson eats.
He has taken to carrying them around with him throughout the house and is absolutely in love with his new prizes. So in love, in fact, that he wants to indelibly mark his joy into our hardwood floors by repeatedly dropping his three pound bone just to hear it crash.
His favorite thing to do with new bones is stand at the top of the stairs and drop them down the stairs so they make a huge clatter and then crash at the bottom when they meet the wood floor. He’s fascinated by gravity like that. All this to say, we didn’t buy pumpkins, ergo we didn’t carve pumpkins.
I do think we made the choice though. I’m inclined to think that Doc agrees.