The Lindsay Lohan of dogs
This is a girl who knows how to get what she wants.
Peering through wires of a crate in the lobby of a vet’s office, the little yellow puppy enchanted my friend Charles so much that he agreed to let her move in. He’s been her adoring personal assistant ever since.
Like Chris, David and Nadia, other writers who talked about their dogs on this blog in recent weeks, I met Charles at the Kansas City newsroom where we all used to work. Neither Josie nor his schnauzer dog Jake ever reported for journalistic duty, but Charles did often amuse me with tales of their mischief, while offering his lap to my little Scooby.
Here’s what Charles has to say about life with his dogs.
How many dogs have you loved in your lifetime?
My parents were sort of pet-phobic, so I can only remember one pet dog in my childhood: a mixed breed named Alfie. Alfie was my youngest brother’s first word. I can’t remember what happened what happened to Alfie – he probably ran away. After all, I ran away from home many times myself.
Tell us about your current dogs. What are their stories?
Jake, the not-so-miniature schnauzer, was an unexpected arrival. A roommate adopted him and then didn’t take responsibility, so I took custody – legal and otherwise. He’s very stubborn and ridiculously spoiled. Josephine, my yellow lab mix, had been abandoned with her siblings shortly after birth and taken in by a vet. I adopted her at five weeks. She thinks that I’m her mother and I’ve encouraged that since we look so much alike anyway. She’s even more spoiled and once pulled off an orange dog collar and hid it until I replaced it with a prettier pink one. If I had understood more of her personality early in the game, I would have named her Lindsay Lohan.
Did you know she was “yours” when you met her?
What are you dogs’ favorite foods? Do they get to eat any leftovers from all the dining out you do as a restaurant critic?
They love leftovers if it’s a steak or beef tips, but they don’t get the leftovers very often, mostly because I rarely take leftovers home. My dogs love baked chicken, inexpensive breakfast steaks, and occasionally we’ll split a cheeseburger – which is probably unhealthy for all of us, so it’s a very rare treat. Jake will eat almost anything, Josie is very, very fussy. She detests canned food. They like Greek yogurt, too. In fact, they like anything Greek – except stuffed grape leaves, pita bread and Melina Mercouri films.
Do your dogs help you accomplish writerly things?
Not particularly, although Josie likes to lie down next to me when I’m reading and she senses, immediately, if I’m bored with a book because we start yawning at the same time.
You have other animals in the house, too. How does everyone get along?
I have a few cats. They mostly hate the dogs, but Tony – my beautiful long-haired tangerine-colored cat – fights for his place in bed with me if the dogs are on it and has been known to swat both of the dogs in the head with one of his clawless paws.
What sage advice do you have for persons considering making theirs a multi-species household?
Buy an expensive vacuum sweeper.
Would you like to adopt a dog named
Charles Charlie Machete? That’s my foster dog, and he’s available through Midwest Adopt-a-Bull!