To Crate or Gate

Confession time, guys: Last week I was a pretty naughty dog.

As a whole, I’m really a very good girl.  But sometimes, especially when I’m home alone, I get into trouble.  Last week I managed most of my mischief in the time between Mama leaves for work and Daddy comes home from work, so I guess you could say I was pretty busy.  I don’t mean to be bad – I just let my curiosity get the better part of me.

Here’s an example: When I first came to live with Mama and Daddy, they kept the kitchen’s garbage can by the wall.  Well, I didn’t mind that because it was in a perfect spot to sniff!  I am not very tall, even on my hind-legs, but I solved that by knocking the can over to smell all the interesting scents in the garbage.  Daddy and Mama didn’t like that and insisted on cleaning everything up, so they moved the garbage can into a cabinet under the sink.  For a while, that thwarted me, but at times I can be pretty patient, and after a while I figured a way to open up that cabinet to get to the delicious garbage inside.  After a few instances of this, Daddy got fed up and put the garbage can on the counter until they could get something called “baby locks” to keep me out.

It’s not that I want to cause trouble.  I just end up doing it.

Last week I kinda had a similar predicament.  Mama had left for work and Daddy wasn’t back home yet, so I started sniffing around to see if I could find any bits of food they might have dropped.  Oh, I had eaten my own food, but human food just seems to taste a lot better – I think because I’m not supposed to have it.  Well, I didn’t find anything on the floor, but I found a really good smell coming from a place I’d heard my people call a “lazy susan.”  After some pushing and prodding I figured out that if I nudged one side, it revealed some shelves inside – with a bunch of food!  I helped myself to a few chocolate chips.

Now, I should mention to any impressionable doggies reading this that chocolate chips are not what a doggie should be eating, no matter how good it smells.  Really anything made out of chocolate can be dangerous to our little bellies, and we can get really sick – sometimes even die.  I was actually pretty lucky that I didn’t suffer any ill-effects- but you shouldn’t count on having my kind of luck!

Daddy came home and was pretty mad when he saw the mess I made.  You see, I had to knock over some boxes of things to get to the chocolate chips.

But he was even madder the next day when I did the same thing and got into something called Crisco.  Even Mama, who is a lot more patient than Daddy – even she got mad at me when she came home the next day and I had found more Crisco.

I guess I am pretty incorrigible sometimes.

Daddy was talking about crating me, and he even did when he went out before Mama got home.  Interesting thing about dogs – a lot of us really like getting crated.  For some dogs, it makes a nice den of safety to go to when they feel anxious or insecure – sort of like a bedroom for human teenagers.  I, however, am not one of those dogs.  I hate getting crated.  Daddy and Mama don’t crate me often, but whenever they have I cry and bark the whole time.  Luckily for me, Mama stuck up for me since she knows I hate crating so much.  She got Daddy to agree to another option.

It’s called a “baby gate.”

They don’t leave it up when they are home, but if they are both out of the house, they put it up so I can’t get into the kitchen.  Mama just had her schedule change at work, so for a few weeks she is going to be working at the same time as Daddy – meaning I won’t get to see either of them for a few hours, which means the gate is up during that time.

At first I didn’t mind it – the gate, I mean; I can’t wait for Mama’s schedule to go back to normal so I can keep her all day while Daddy’s gone.  But this morning, for some reason it got to me.  Daddy was over on the other side getting his coffee and his lunch, kissing Mama goodbye and then leaving.  Mama grabbed her things and climbed over the gate and finished getting ready over on the other side.  I could see her – filling her water bottle, packing her lunch, putting some recyclables out (those are fun to rummage in too, but not anymore with a gate in the way) – but I couldn’t get to her.  And that made me sad.

(Observe the sadness)

I’m not sure I like this baby gate thing.  But at least it’s better than crating.


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