Living with Don Luigi over this past year has taught me a lot. Patience, humility, patience, unending love, patience, the joy a pet brings to your life, patience, companionship. Did I mention patience??
But the biggest thing I have learned from living with the Don is the ability to smile in the face of embarrassment-especially during inappropriate potty times.
Taking the Don out to pee is easy. He pees on everything and anything. But pooping? Oh, now pooping is a well orchestrated event that has certain conditions that cannot be poo-pooed away.
For example, the Don will NOT poop in front of another dog. I don’t know if this is a politeness thing or if he was attacked by a dog at one time when he was in the process of pooping, or what the deal is, but if he knows there is a dog within any radius of us, it’s an abort mission situation.
Also, the Don has certain spots that are only acceptable for pooping. I know each and every spot, but what I don’t know is which one he wants to lay it down at before hand. So we walk and walk and walk and walk, until he comes to one of his poop spots that is acceptable for this particular bowel movement. It can be a long and painful process sometimes-especially during the frigid winters of Colorado.
While the Don has these conditions, there have been nearly a dozen times that he has had an inappropriate potty instance.
Inappropriate Potty Instance #1-The Double Duty
The day I brought Don Luigi home was filled with excitement, trepidation, joy, and potty mishaps. Not only did he poop in my car on the way home, causing me to almost pass out from the smell, he lifted his leg on a tote bag that I had on the floor the second he walked through the door to the condo.
He quickly realized that was a no-no when I shrieked at him. I spent two hours furiously scrubbing and sanitizing my car that night as well as washing and rewashing my tote bag until I was absolutely certain I could not smell anything. ANYTHING!
Inappropriate Potty Instance #2-DIS-Obedience Class
So, after realizing that the Don hadn’t been socialized, trained, or taught anything, I decided to sign us up for obedience classes. I was excited to work with the Don on new tricks (at this point I was happy with any trick he was willing to do) and I thought it would be a great way to bond with him.
However, the Don was NOT excited about tricks, training, or bonding, and decided to pee on a classmate.
The puppy- a brown, fluffy fur ball of cuteness-didn’t mind, nor did his dad who laughed about it, but the puppy’s mother was ready to roll us in the parking lot.
I didn’t know what to do or say, I’ve never been faced with this kind of thing before. I mean, my son never peed on a classmate. This was all new territory for me.
So, I looked at the fuming puppy mom and said “whoopsie”, apologized, and explained that my dog was a heathen and we were working on our manners.
Needless to say, the Don and I had a loooooong discussion on the way home about how peeing on classmates is not acceptable.
Inappropriate Potty Instance #3, 4, 5, 6, and 7- Cute Neighbor Conundrum
As I said before, I don’t know about Don Luigi’s past, so I didn’t realize that he is a man-hater.
This fun lesson came about when I was stalking a cute neighbor.
I would see this gentleman in the parking lot where we both parked our cars, but I wasn’t exactly sure which unit he lived in. After trying unsuccessfully to determine where he lived, I got the bright idea to take the Don on a “walk” around the complex. I reasoned with myself that taking the Don on a walk really is more acceptable than admitting I was going out to stalk another human being. Hey, I bought it.
Having a dog is really great for striking up conversations with strangers, “Oh, excuse us, let me just move my dog out of your way, so sorry”, “How’s your day going?”, “It’s lovely out isn’t it?”, you get the picture.
I had my plan in place…and the Don had his own.
Every time, and I mean EVERY TIME we would “run” into this man, the Don would poop.
I would be talking and laughing and flirting all the while the Don was doing his circles before dropping it like it’s hot right there at our feet. The smell combined with the Don’s intense staring at us while pooping combined with my embarrassment lead me to ditch my pursuit of cute neighbor after the seventh time (I don’t give up easily apparently).
I still see cute neighbor every now and then and just wave as a watchful Don Luigi determines if he needs to crap on the spot or not.
Inappropriate Potty Instance #8-Contaminating Cherry Creek State Park
I live near a state park with tons of walking, biking, and hiking trails- a perfect place for dog owners to take their four-legged friends out to enjoy nature….unless you are Don Luigi.
This particular event took place on a gloriously beautiful Colorado day. It wasn’t too hot or too cold, and after a few weeks of continuous rain and snow, the Don and I needed to get outside.
While the Don loves to be outside in the warm weather, he is a creature of habit and not open to visiting new places. The fifteen poop filled potty bags that I carried throughout the state park are proof of that. And that’s just the poop that I could collect…diarrhea is not poop bag friendly.
We creeped along about a 1/4 of a mile, the Don crapping the entire way and me adding to my poop bag collection, before I decided that maybe this wasn’t the best idea and we headed back to the car (poop bags in tow) and went home.
The Don did a bang-up job of contaminating that park. I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a decrease in the native plant and animal population after our visit. I wouldn’t drink out of the water fountains there…just saying.
Inappropriate Potty Instance #9 and 10-Daycare Dilemma
These two instances are probably the Don’s favorite and my least favorite of the bunch.
When I worked for a large healthcare company, I would drop the Don off at doggie daycare by my office and then head over to work.
Our morning routine was like clockwork- I would get the Don strapped into his seat in the car, he would whine and cry the entire drive over, we would get out of the car, walk, walk, poop, go inside, drop Don off, go to work.
Every day the same thing, no variations. Walk, poop, go inside for drop off.
That is until this one particular day.
We got out of the car and walked like usual, but no poop.
We walked some more. Still no poop.
“Poop. What is wrong with you? Just poop,” I kept telling him.
Still nothing, so we went inside.
All dogs at this daycare had to be current on their vaccinations in order to stay at daycare. The Don had just gotten his boosters, so I had to give the front desk his updated records.
They were pretty busy this particular morning and the front desk guy was running back and forth, checking dogs in and taking them back to the kennels.
So I am standing there, waiting patiently with the Don when I smell something terrible.
I was very familiar with that smell, but I refused to look. I thought if I didn’t look, it couldn’t be true. It couldn’t.
But, sadly it was.
The Don crapped right in the lobby of the daycare. Right on the rug in front of the counter. It was like a Great Dane dropped a load, and the smell permeated the entire lobby.
“What are you doing?” I said in panic as the Don stood there looking at me like it was normal to crap in the lobby. I was waiting for him to say “What? Everyone does it.”
Because I am used to the Don’s inappropriate potty instances, I had poop bags on hand and I scooped up the pile and handed it to the surprised front desk guy when he came back.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to flee the scene right away. I still had to give them a copy of the Don’s vaccinations. So there I stood in the smelly lobby while front desk guy whisked Don Luigi back and notified the rest of the staff that they’d have to burn the rug in the lobby.
People came in and the were immediately hit with the smell, recoiling at the door.
I just stood there and tried to act as shocked and appalled as they were.
“Oh, I know. Someone’s dog did a stinky in here,” I said, waving my hand like a fan. “How embarrassing.” (Laugh and smile, knowing it was my dog that has killed all of the oxygen in the room).
This next instance doesn’t involve poop or pee, but is still potty related.
The same daycare facility has cameras where you can click in and watch your dog throughout the day. It’s nice because you get to see if your dog is having a good time, if the daycare attendants are being nice, who your dog has a crush on, is he humping anyone, etc.
During the day, I would take a break and check in on the Don.
Normally when I clicked in to spy on him, the Don would be either outside laying in the sun or standing on top of this plastic step thing lording over the group of canines in the room, but usually nothing super heinous or exciting, just normal Don at daycare stuff.
However, this one particular time I decided to check on the Don, I got a great camera view of him dragging his butt across the floor. It was right in shot, clear as day for all the viewers to see-Don gliding across the floor leaving a trail of God knows what behind him.
Lovely. Just lovely.
“Ok, enough of that,” I sighed and turned back to work.
That was when the daycare tech explained all the glories of anal glands and how they need to be cleaned out, which in turn would stop the Don’s butt dragging. Well, hopefully it would stop his butt dragging. Nothing’s a guarantee with the Don.
Yay, anal glands. So fun.
I am proud to say that the Don and I have not had any inappropriate potty instances to date. Not that I rule out any instances. I am sure he’s saving up an instance for something really grand. I just know it.
Thanks for reading,