Monday, February 07, 2005

Doggy Doo

This morning was a great morning for my family. Well, it was great for everyone except my nine–year-old daughter, that is. Her morning turned out to be really stinky. Headed for school, she was on her way out to the car this morning when her foot encountered a big pile of poo. Of course she didn’t see the poo until she stepped in it. Great. Not only was she wearing her brand new white tennis shoes, but she didn’t have anything handy to get said poo out of the nooks and crannies of her shoe. My helpful husband suggested, “You can just wipe it off with a piece of paper when you get to school.” Apparently, not wanting to be late for school, she heeded his advice. Problem solved.

But my stink isn’t really with my husband for not making her change her shoes or with the dog who is getting old and whose aim is a little off – the poo landed on the driveway instead of in the dirt. My stink isn’t even with the dog’s true owner, my neighbor’s mother. My stink is with my neighbor who keeps insisting on taking the dog with him everywhere he goes.

The dog, an elderly Rottweiler named T-Bone, is supposedly a very gentle dog. Not that I would know that from experience because every time I see “T,” she is either pooping in my yard or growling at my children from the doorstep of my neighbor’s house. But the dog’s owner, my neighbor’s mother, says so, so I guess I should take her at her word. After all, “T” hasn’t bitten any of her grandchildren or her grandchildren’s playmates (that would be my children) – well “T” hasn’t eaten them yet anyway.

What gets my goat is that I asked the owner of the dog to keep “T” at home. Frankly, I was getting tired of cleaning up doggy diarrhea from my front lawn – and from my house since all the neighborhood children play in my front yard, step in the poo, and then track the stuff into my house. Also, the growling was beginning to make me nervous. Very apologetic, the owner graciously agreed to keep “T” home. Of course her son, my neighbor, kept bringing the dog to his house. So the pooping in my yard never stopped.

Finally, out of frustration, I began calling the owner whenever nature called for “T” in my front lawn. A few times she came and scooped the stuff up, but with her dog visiting my lawn every day, naturally there were a few missed deposits. And some deposits weren’t discovered until it was too late – as was the case this morning.

So why am I fed up with my neighbor instead of with the dog’s rightful owner? Because, frankly, I think it’s time for the guy to grow up and take some responsibility. I guess I should feel some level of compassion for the out-of-work-because-he-keeps-getting-fired, middle-aged-divorcee, ready-to-loose-his-kids-in-a-nasty-custody-battle, gambling-addict guy suffering from depression. And I do. I’ve watched his kids on several occasions even though he says he will be back in an hour and he returns in five hours. I’ve given a listening ear regarding the custody mess. I’ve even offered advice when it was requested. I’ve picked his children up from school, and I’ve welcomed his children into my home. Then recently his mother told me that she tried to keep the dog at home, but her son insists on picking “T” up and taking the dog to his house because “T” will keep away any would be burglars – and that makes him feel safe.

Now if we lived in a crime-ridden neighborhood, I would be able to understand that logic. The fact is, my neighbor doesn’t do anything to discourage would be thieves in the first place. For example, he never puts his kids’s expensive bikes and scooters away. Not one of those items has ever been stolen in the last year though any stupid crook could simply drive by once a week and see that the gear was ripe for the taking. That combined with the fact that the garage door to his house is left wide open – even at night whether he is home or away – five out of seven days a week, you would think that a burglar would get a clue that this home is an easy target. Fortunately for my neighbor, we just don’t live in that kind of neighborhood. Which leads me to believe that my neighbor has some ulterior motive for wanting the dog around.

Nevertheless, his need for companionship does not override my need for a doggy doo free lawn. The question is, will I do anything about it? Of course not. I’ll just keep enabling him like every other sorry sap surrounding him does. But at least I’ve got my gripe out in the open. Now I’ll be going out to my lawn and shoveling poo, thank you, and this afternoon I'll be cleaning the bottom of someone's shoes.

1 comment:

Ch@ndy said...

How about you just get passive aggressive and start tossing that doo over onto that schmuck's driveway.

Or tell his kids that they will have to clean up T-bone's poo before they come over.

OR, even better....collect it in a big brown paper bag for each week. Then every Saturday, put it on his front porch, light it on fire, ring the doorbell and run like helk.

The most reasonable option is tell him again that you are sick of cleaning up after the dog and that if he doesn't start taking care of it that you will file a complaint with the authorities. Then you follow through.

But no one asked me. So I will shut it.