Maggie the Menace

Well, I've calmed down enough to be able to talk about it, now. The sad fact is, my dog, my sweet, loving dog, who loves everybody, is, in fact, a menace to society. A little background - Maggie is an indoor dog. She is very much an indoor dog. She is inside 23 and 1/2 hours a day - minimum. She won't go outside unless we go with her, and then she just goes outside, does her thing, and runs back inside, for fear that she might have to be outside for longer than a nanosecond. Unless there's a cat around, in which case she turns into psycho-dog-from-hell, but to me, hey, that's just the sign of a good dog. So, the other day, I'm in the shower. Let me just say that it was 9:00 a.m., which, while not particularly early, is not particularly LATE, either. There are many days where I have not showered by 9 a.m.,(and many when I have, but this is not a post about my hygienic habits) especially in the summer. My little 4yo daughter comes into the bathroom, and tells me there's a man here, and he's allergic to grass, and has to get shots, and he wants to talk to me. It took me a second to process. "Somebody's here?" "Yes." "Right now?" "Yes." "A man?" "Yes." "And you opened the door for him?" "Yes." I quickly turn off the shower, grab a towel for my hair, wrap myself in a bathrobe, and run downstairs to see what on earth is going on. It is not an evil kidnapper, pedophile, or burglar, it is something far more surprising - animal control. Animal Control Guy: You sure have friendly children. We've had a complaint about your dog. Me: My dog? What, did she get someone's cat or something? (And those "friendly children are in some serious trouble right now) ACG: Well, I don't know about that, we just got a call that she's out all the time. You could have knocked me over with a feather. Maggie? Out all the time? This has got to be a mistake. But fine, do whatever, just let me go get dressed. ACG: We have to discuss the licensing issue. Maggie's license is expired. It had expired the week before. I hadn't gotten around to taking her to the vet to get her rabies shot. Three kids and a vet trip is an adventure I rarely choose to take on. But it was on my list! Me (in my head): We have to discuss the fact that I'm naked and dripping wet and you are clearly not polite enough to notice that this is not a good time for me to discuss licensing issues or any other issue. It's not like she attacked anyone. GO AWAY!!! Me: (actually speaking) Yeah, I know her license is expired. But it's not like it's even 30 days overdue or anything. He goes on to tell me about the fine involved, and to explain random stuff about good dog ownership, and to tell me again what friendly children I have. Those same friendly children are also now getting to be seriously late to gymnastics, since this time was to be used for breakfast and getting ready, not talking to $%?*!!Animal Control!! Plus, Maggie seems to be in love with him, she's just licking his shoes and wagging her tail all over the place. ACG: (filling out form) How old is Maggie? Me: Eight. ACG: Wow. She doesn't look that old. Me: Thanks. (Is it polite to mention that your dog is aging gracefully? Yeah, we smear Oil of Olay Anti-Aging cream on her every night, plus she's had several Botox injections.) 6YO: She's old enough to get baptized! We both just turned and looked at her. ACG burst out laughing. ACG: That's one I've never heard before. Me (in my head): Yes, just add that to the story of the crazy lady in the bathrobe and wet hair that I know you will be telling to all your fellow animal control cronies later today. And why are you still talking? Can't you tell THIS IS NOT A GOOD TIME? Can you not hear the baby crying in his crib upstairs? Are you just trying to see if you can see something through the bathrobe? Me (actually speaking): Ha Ha ACG: Blah blah blah blah blah blah blah Me: Mm-hmm.....(WHY ARE YOU STILL HERE?) Finally he leaves, and I turn to face my children. They have been happily playing the whole time, blissfully ignorant of Mommy's Mortification. I am shaking, I am so angry and embarrassed. "NEVER, and I mean, NEVER open the door for someone while Mommy's in the shower." They are astute enough to notice that I am livid. It resulted in a talk about stranger danger, and safety rules regarding the house. But that's another post. Right now I have a menace to society to deal with who is currently licking my toddler's foot.


Anonymous Mary said...

Oh goodness! That sounds like a wonderful start to your day. I hope your kids learn to not open doors for strange men! I remember when we were little, our mom had to tell us over and over not to tell people who called the house that she was "on the potty," or in the shower.

7/06/2005 09:06:00 AM  
Blogger annegb said...

I had a little dog named Maggie, who I loved very much. I cried for three days when she died.

Sounds like you have a problem neighbor. Good luck.

7/06/2005 09:59:00 AM  
Blogger The Wiz said...

Yes, I have a problem neighbor, whose dog I have pulled off of a major intersection. But did I call animal control? No! Maybe I should have. I'm not sure what to do, fortunately I don't run into them that often.

7/06/2005 01:31:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Wiz,
Growing up we had a similar problem with our dogs, problem neighbor, and animal control. Maybe check with your problem neighbor and see if someone has called Animal control on their dog, they may have thought it was you and in turn returned the "favor". That is what happened in our case. I dont know since you stated that you dont see them often how you could tactfully have this kind of conversation. But it really helped to just have a one on one with our neighbors. We also asked them that if they have any future complaints to please call us first before you call Animal control. Sad to see nice people and their dogs treated so unkindly. Hope today has gone better.


7/06/2005 01:54:00 PM  
Blogger Heather O. said...

Some neighbors just suck.

7/07/2005 01:37:00 PM  
Blogger Heather O. said...

Oh, and getting one of those child proof thingies for your door may help deter your children from opening the door when you are not supervising. I impressed a dad when he came over to get his little girl I was babysitting, and I had jumped in the shower (we had gone to the pool) and didn't hear him knock. I had locked the door, so he couldn't get in, and his daughter couldn't open the door, so she couldn't get out. I was saved some embarrassment by him saying, "Yeah, I was knocking for a while, and couldn't figure out where you were. At least my daughter was safe, though." Still, nobody likes to be seen dripping wet in a bathrobe.

7/07/2005 01:40:00 PM  
Blogger Mrs. M said...

We have now put a chain on the front door to prevent our 2yo from unlocking it and running out. We thought we could get by without it until one day he slipped out. I had just noticed he was gone when our neighbor brought him in, saying, "He was out on the street." Talk about shame as a mother. It also keeps him from opening the door to people when I am feeding baby, in the shower, or otherwise indisposed.

7/10/2005 07:29:00 PM  

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