September 22, 2016
Throughout his youth and middle age, Mofli was a thief. And I don't mean your average, run-of-the-mill thief that occasionally succumbs to the temptation of stealing a juicy leftover from the bin, or an item of his owner's underwear... No; Mofli was sophisticated, a real pro - a master in the art of theft. Oh, and he didn't discriminate much either; the only requisite was for the chosen object to be be within his reach. His tactic with any item which met this single requirement was always the same:
- Grab it when no-one's looking.
- Take it to privacy of bed.
- Chew cautiously to determine if it is: a) edible, b) pleasantly chewable, or c) neither of the previous. In this last case, the discarded pieces would be left where they lay, while he searched the horizon for yet another 'victim'.
Mofli began his apprenticeship in the aforementioned profession immediately after coming to live with us as a four-month-old pup, newly adopted from a local rescue centre. His early attempts involved the objects closest to him - more specifically, his own bed. The first one was wicker... Well, after five days of 'hoping he'd get over it' and sweeping sticks of wicker from the floor, it bacame obvious that the bed was no longer fit for purpose - or anything else for that matter - so I collected the remaining pieces, threw them in the bin and debated on what kind of bed would be more suitable.
I'll not bore the reader with a list of the types of dog bed we went through henceforth. Suffice to say I tried every type available in pet shops, plus a few 'models' of my own invention (old sofa cushions, etc). The result was always the same - no matter what it was made of, it was treated as a giant chew-toy... Until I finally decided that the only suitable 'bed' for Mofli would be old towels; I always had plenty of these, as people give them to me for the rescue centres, and if he chewed them to pieces, I thought, so be it... Well, the fact is, he didn't. In fact, as beds go, he seemed to like them.
In the meantime, his apprenticeship had also turned toward more distant objects... In fact, every conceivable item was considered 'useful' until proven otherwise (using the above-mentioned method). It got to the point where, whenever an item went missing, my first port of call would be Mofli's bed. It rarely failed; there I would find the chewed remains of bills that needed to be paid, post that had come under the door, ball pens, dog leads, items of clothing, slippers, vital documents; the list was endless. Needless to say, Mofli was hardly ever reprimanded for these misdemeanors, as I usually discovered them too late (even a couple of minutes is too late) for any form of chastisement to be effective; except, that is, on the rare occasions when I was able to acutally catch him in fraganti. Due to his increasing dexterity, these were very rare occasions indeed, but I had a secret ally - mirrors. Bi-dimentional images are meaningless to most dogs, so they do not understand how mirrors work for us humans...
To be continued...