My Dog, the Boy

When a dog doesn’t know he’s a dog.

As a coworker of mine once said, my pug Oscar is “a marvelous pet, but not a very good dog.”

In fact, I’m fairly certain that he doesn’t even know that he is a dog, because he consistently opts instead for distinctly human pursuits.

When he gives us kisses, he frequently startles me by giving my cheek a big smooch with his lips rather than going for the typical tongue-slobbery method beloved by normal dogs. Instead of sitting on his haunches, he plops down on his bottom with his back legs kicked out in front of him, looking for all the world like a guy in a recliner chair while he watches “Gilmore Girls” with me.

Most dogs are afraid of vacuum cleaners. Oscar adores them, even getting along swimmingly now with his old nemesis the Roomba. Whenever I tidy up the house, he’s my constant companion, trotting along after me and watching all the minutia of the cleaning process. He also really enjoys being washed and brushed and cleaned, so he gets two baths a month to keep him satisfied. As a result, the vet is always impressed by how fluffy and healthy his coat and skin are. Oh, yes — and he loves to go to the vet, viewing it entirely as a social engagement and schmoozing it up with anyone who will give him the time of day.

I knew he was unusual the day that Hubby and I had to teach him how to bark. Now he finally speaks on command, typically sounding like a person doing an impression of a dog with the funny “ruff” that comes out of him.

He thinks he’s people, and that’s just fine with us.

Note from the eds: Here are the earlier installments of Molly’s Chronicles of Oscar: Pug Love, All About Oscar, Oscar vs. Buster, and Dog Days of Summer.

Article © 2009 by Molly E. Weeks