Wednesday, December 10, 2003

BBD, The Destroyer

I had to go to PetsMart at lunch yesterday to pick up a new bark-collar battery for the Little Black Dog (yes, in addition to all his other charms, he also barks incessantly). While I was there, I thought I'd pick up a new inside toy for the Big Brown Dog, who has a fondness for sneaking his nice indoor toys out into the yard and turning them in to mudcakes.

The only toys that don't eventually end up outside are those that suffer an early death. The BBD is a frustrated predator, so anything he can "kill", he does. We spend a lot of time picking up shards of tennis balls, little bits of toy stuffing and the remnants of various other toys that couldn't stand up to the torture of the BBD.

So as I'm shopping toys at PetsMart, I'm evaluating things for durability as much as for the potential enjoyment of the BBD. Yesterday I settled on a canvas-covered stuffed toy shaped more or less like a plump star. No arms or legs to pull off; no obvious and easy way to gut the thing, and priced right at $3.99.

The perfect BBD inside toy, I thought.

After dinner last night, I bust out the new toy and present it to the BBD. He settles in on the family room rug to "play".

Within three minutes, he's ripped the toy apart, pulled out all the stuffing and made his way to the little plastic squeaker inside. The squeaker, you see, is what he wants to play with.

Goal one with the squeaker is, of course, to make it stop squeaking. After that's done, he brings it over for me to throw for him. Seventy-pound dog, 1/2-ounce smashed piece of plastic.

In between playing fetch with the silver-dollar-sized squeaker, the BBD revisits the corpse of his former toy; making sure to rip the hem completely off the rest of the canvas. At one point he's standing on top of the toy, hem in teeth, pulling up as hard as he can. I guess it's the modern dog's version of picking apart a beaver.

Tonight, with the canvas corpse officially dead, the BBD went back to offering up the squeaker for fetch. That is until the wife decided it was smashed up enough to be a choking hazard.

Now that was $3.99 well spent.

The squeaker's in the trash, and the wife just tossed the BBD a new tennis ball to play with. It'll be wet shards within 5 minutes.


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