Monday, April 23, 2012

The Duchess and the Chamber-Pot

A Very Intimate Discussion

by Nessie the Monster, Duchess of Hagg

{to be read in a Royal British Accent}

As a Royal Duchess, I always knew that one day, the time would come for me to have need of a Royal Chamber-pot inspector.  It comes with age, you know.  The older one gets, it seems, the more likely one has need of regular poop inspections.  I do understand that this subject may be a wee bit on the 'intimate' side of regular conversation, but as one ages, one tends not to mind these types of subjects.  Perhaps it is  because we have lived through so much in our lives all ready that a discussion such as this just doesn't warrant the 'taboo' list of topics that it once did when we were much stronger and younger.

On the other hand, I really never imagined in my wildest dreams that the Royal Chamber-pot inspector that I would hire would not be for me-self.  I have had to hire a professional Chamber-pot inspector for me silly and unruly Chamberlain, the Lady McKenzie.  As I'm sure you've heard by now, she was into much mischief last week.  Indeed, it has only been a week since you heard of the story of someone eating a 4 1/2 foot long braided soft leather leash.  Everyone of course, assumed it was Lord Malcolm since he eats everything.  ( see posts dated.....9.30.11, 12.5.11, 1.10.12, and 2.11.12)  But, as we began to discover on Thursday, when the first symptom occurred, it was the Lady McKenzie who had apparently succumbed to the temptation of swallowing foreign and inedible objects. 

Nessie the (proper) Monster, Duchess of Hagg

Her first symptom was almost imperceptible.  Our housekeeper and cook observed that McKenzie ate her breakfast that Thursday with the same general vigor as usual but had slowed just slightly.  Of the 3 Royal Pooches, she usually finished second.  I, having the responsibility of being Duchess always finish last, for, as you are well aware, if the Duchess stops eating, no one else is allowed to continue.  Therefore, I always make a point to take my time and allow Malcolm and McKenzie to complete their meals before I complete mine.  However, on this particular day, McKenzie did continue eating after me and I knew something to be terribly wrong.  So I hired a poop inspector right away.

McKenzie finds comfort in the bosom of her brother.

I was fortunate to find one on that very day and it was just in time.  Lady McKenzie had what some commoners call 'Montezuma's Revenge'.  (That does seem a silly name to me.....)  She ate her dinner much the same way as she had eaten her breakfast and we all went to bed.  On Friday morning, though, Lady McKenzie had obvious problems.  As soon as she awoke she ran as fast as she could to the Chamber-pot and her wee rear end seemed more like a fire hose than anything else.  This caused such concern that a trip to the Royal Vet was organized, and in due time, she had another 'fire hose' incident.  We were all very happy that it had happened at the clinic and not at the Palace.  We were told that the paint on the Palace walls might have peeled off with the amount of flatulence poor wee McKenzie suffered.  (I do hesitate to call her by her title 'Lady' at this point).  She was X-rayed, probed, watched and tested and was found to have no obstructions.  So she was given some pills to help stop this 'Montezuma's Revenge' and sent home.  The cook was told to feed a bland diet of scrambled eggs and rice and to keep her quiet over the weekend.  

The diet was easy, the keeping her quiet was not.  For she was all ready scheduled to perform as a 'demo' dog for the Bike Tow Leash at Tulsa Boxer Rescue Bark Walk the very next day.  Since it was such a sunny and cool day, and because we all thought it necessary to continue to observe Lady McKenzie, it was decided that she would go to the Bark Walk anyway.  Our people would just have to use Lord Malcolm as the demo dog......even though he lunges and pulls at every small dog he sees.  This would not be easy, but it would give our people the opportunity to demonstrate how well the Tow Leash works with a misbehaved strong bonny dog.  It's really amazing that he can't pull the bike over and knock the person down as long as they keep pedaling.......but I digress.  And, by the way, Lord Malcolm no longer exhibits that behavior with dogs he is accustomed to.  It is something about small dogs he has never met before.  We think his brain sees them as actual toys and not toy dogs.  We continue with his corrections* on this and he is slowly learning.......but I digress again.

Lord Malcolm as he lunges and pulls and still is having a great time running.  He can't pull the bike and rider down, nor can he damage himself in the spokes. He really wanted that squirrel.

As it eventually played out, Malcolm was very over-stimulated and had to be removed from the Bark Walk.  He was much happier at home with me.  Lady McKenzie never had any issues or complaints the whole day and was allowed to go on short demonstration circles around the area, where she absolutely glowed from all the fame and attention she received.  She had a perfectly lovely time and the Chamber-pot inspector was not required all day.  It wasn't till the next day, Sunday, fully a week after the incident, that some of the leash was found in a routine inspection.  She has no lack of energy and I soon, will be able to let the inspector go.  The cook is weaning her off the bland diet and back to her regular fare and she seems no worse for wear.  We were glad to have the insurance just the same for the whole examination and clean up at the Royal Clinic did cost around $400.  All in all, I believe the Royal House of Hagg got off quite lucky on this one.  It was only a week, but it seemed like a month.

* I put him on a pinch collar with the smallest links to give more 'bites' per inch.  It is not cruel.  It is the only device he listens to.  It takes 3 quick snaps of the collar using both hands and all of my body weight.  I do not use this type of correction on every dog.  Malcolm is this bull headed and this strong.  He does not notice anything less than this.  I would never use this correction on a gentler dog like Nessie or McKenzie, they don't need it.  Malcolm does need it.  After the 3rd snap, he actually sits calmly, but not until then.  I did not start out with this type of correction, either.  I taught him with positive reinforcement, how to behave properly.  It wasn't until I was sure he understood how he was supposed to behave, that I started to give him corrections.  And then, the corrections were not nearly as severe.  They have gradually gotten more severe, until I found the place where he can settle down and listen.  Positive training is good, but a dog still needs to have consequences when he KNOWS the expected behavior and still chooses to do something else.

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