Sounds. I think in every stage of life there are sounds that we associate with certain things and we just know what they are. This might be determined by who is speaking and or making the sound, the age of the person, or maybe the type of relationship you have with that person. When you’re little and your parent calls your name you know by the sound of their voice if you’re in trouble or not. When you’re in school, it’s the same with your teachers. When you’re in a relationship, you can be in a room with fifty people but when your person calls your name you know the sound of their voice over all others. When your person makes a huff or sigh sound, you know if it’s because they’re frustrated, tired, mad, or just plain grumpy. If you’re female and you’re married you know what’s wrong with them prior to the noise (and sometimes even before they know there’s something wrong). When you have kids you know the sound of a cough versus choking. You know an “I’m hurt scream” versus an “I’m having fun scream.” When someone says, “I have something to tell you,” you know if it’s good or bad by the sound of their voice. With your dogs you know an I’m playing growl versus an I’m not happy growl. And pretty much any guy knows there are different sounds associated with the word “fine.” Ok maybe they don’t know but they should.
The same is true of our dogs and likely most dogs or even all dogs. I think the I’m gonna puke sound is the worst. I’m assuming it’s also the most universal dog sound because there’s no denying what’s going to happen when you hear it. I mean no matter if the dog is in the same room with you or the furthest possible point in the house you absolutely know that sound. You also know you have about three full belly suck-ins and extensions before the vomit hits the floor; literally. Once you hear it, you’re likely also hearing the sound of your breathing as you frantically do the following: 1) locate the dog making that noise and 2) try to get said dog outside. In our house, this scenario is usually accompanied with sounds such as, “Outside. Go outside. Come on let’s go outside. Come on. This way. Outside.” Sometimes that works and whichever dog is about to unload his or her previous few meals makes it outside. That success is then followed by the sound of relief as I say, “Good job.” That of course is best case scenario. Other times, it just doesn’t work. They look at you with the “it’s too late” look and all you can do is watch and listen to that horrible hack sound which occurs just as the vomit is finally out and on the floor. At our house, that is generally followed with an, “Oh man” or “Oh sh*t!” kind of whine because now I have to clean it up. I’m always grateful though when they truly look like they feel much better because I know that, if I could only throw up feeling and how much better it feels when I finally do.
Toe nails. I know, I know, I know, not so bad. Yes, I can own the fact that I’m just being whiny but it drives me crazy(er) when Blaze scratches because he does it a lot; for a long time! For whatever reason he’s louder than all the other dogs when they scratch. It’s like it’s magnified on his fur or something. Like maybe he’s hollow and we don’t know it. It’s not allergies so he must do it just because it feels good and I get that he should feel good but he tickles himself when he does it. Who tickles themselves? Seriously. When he does it, you not only hear the sound of him scratching (and making his tags jingle) but you also hear his other foot smacking the floor. Then his nails are tap tap tap tap tap on the tile. The faster he scratches the more tap tap tap you hear and oh my goodness it’s like nails on a chalkboard to me. Drives me insane; yes I know that’s a short trip. Crispie on the other hand makes this God awful noise with her nails that sounds like she’s scratching glass. When she has an itch she’s more about nibbling it away rather than scratching. Which I so appreciate but that means she’s turning in a contortionist maneuver and needs stability to get in that position. Therefore, she plants her paw as hard as she can on the floor. The tile floor that is. She’s so into getting that itch, that she just keeps repositioning her paw as it SCRAPES away from her. It’s truly a H O R R I B L E noise. No, I don’t make them stop but I so wish they would.
Other sounds that we encounter with our dogs are a wet squishy sound and a sharp sound that comes from their mouth. This isn’t the sound of them eating their food. Nor is it the sound that any toy makes. It’s always a distinctive sound that tells us they’re chewing on something they definitely should not have. When I’m fairly sure what they’re chewing on I’ll get whatever it is out of their mouth. Meaning, when it sounds like a rock or a bottle cap I’m all over it and most often it’s a cap. You see, Ryder is a bottle cap klepto. I swear the dog can sniff them out. The table, the desk, the coffee table, doesn’t matter where they are, he finds them. Another sharp sound happens when they chew on rocks. All of the dogs, except Blaze, are unfortunately rock chewers. Thankfully they don’t swallow them, but they do leave them on the floor. When I step on one I let out a whole new type of sound that can break windows. It’s so not pleasant. Anyway, the rock and cap noises are fairly obvious and I’m willing to reach in their mouth to get them. However, if it’s a wet squishy sound, that’s Marc’s area. I don’t like the unknown. The most common squishy noises are from tennis balls, pieces of a tennis ball, and cloth from one of their toys. I know the tennis ball thing seems odd when I say we don’t know that what it is but you have to realize that Zoey and Jax both have a ginormous mouth. They can have a whole ball in their mouth and you can’t tell there’s anything in there. Moving forward. There’s been two very unfortunate sound incidents for Marc that I’m guessing he’ll never forget and I gotta tell you, I won’t forget them either because to me they were damn funny. Ok, so we hear a squishy sound and Marc goes up to Jax and reaches in his mouth. Remember, it’s a huge mouth and a lot can fit in there. As Marc brings his hand out, he immediately drops what’s in his hand because (wait for it)…it’s a big, wet and soggy tortoise turd. Yea that happened and let me tell you, it was gag worthy. I will admit that I laughed so much harder than I probably should have. Marc, not so much. What you need to know about this next situation is that every spring we have a bird’s nest under the overhang of our house and sadly, babies fall out sometimes. You likely know where this is heading but I’ll tell you anyway. The second squishy incident happened with Ryder. Again, we heard the squishy noise; Marc’s job. This is possibly the only time in 29-years that I’ve heard Marc say, “Gross!” Generally nothing bothers him which is precisely why he’s on squish patrol. Anyway, this time was the exception because when he pulled his hand out of Ryder’s mouth he found himself holding a dead baby bird that had fallen from the nest. I know, it’s not funny that the bird fell. It was however, extremely funny to see Marc “kind of” freak out. Again, I laughed so hard at the sight of my husband standing there staring at the floor in disbelief at what he’d just pulled from Ryder’s mouth. Marc, not so much.
Of course I have to discuss farts. I’m starting to wonder if I have an obsession with them. At any rate, with six dogs in the house I feel like there’s always a fart occurring. Ok maybe that’s an exaggeration but that’s what it seems like around here. I seriously cannot tell you how many times during a two-hour movie I’ve asked Marc, “Was that you?” and then pulled the collar of my shirt over my mouth and nose. Jax and Ryder let out some seriously deadly farts that kind of sneak up on you. Obviously you don’t sit on the sofa waiting for such an occurrence. That means when it happens, you’ve been caught completely off guard and with little warning because the sound and smell seem to hit you simultaneously; which is weird right? You’d think there’d be some lag time between the two but there isn’t. We’ll just be sitting on the sofa, minding our own business, enjoying whatever new Redbox movie we’ve decided to rent and BAM! We hear the fart sound and we’ve just been smacked in the face with a smell that I can only imagine rivals sticking your head in a septic tank. They both play it off with the, “Wasn’t me,” look or they just totally avoid eye contact. It’s so not funny. Blaze on the other hand has vocal farts that are distinctive and rather considerate. At least you get some type of a warning because they always make a swoosh sound. Sometimes he has so many consecutive swooshes it sounds like an A-Capella group practicing a song. And when you hear that sound it is advised that you either run for cover or do the shirt collar over the nose move because you will soon be engulfed in a very dark cloud of the most serious type of stench. And it hovers. For a long time. For too long. It’s really bad.
A sound the dogs make that grosses me out is the sound of them licking. I don’t mean licking as in cleaning a paw or cleaning an arm or leg. No; that doesn’t bother me because it’s usually for a short time. I’m referring to endless, constant, non-stop, incessant, continuous, never-ending licking. The kind where they do it for so long that their fur is soggy which then makes the licking sound soggy. Disgusting. Crispie does this to her feet. It’s not a medical issue, it’s a habitual thing and I can’t handle it. When I say soggy, I mean if you hold her paw it will drip on you. Gross right? She also licks her belly like that and because there’s no fur there, it is nastier than the paw thing. As she does it, it kind of sounds like someone slapping water. Granted, that doesn’t sound totally horrible. But, hearing it non-stop for ten minutes, over and over, just sound nasty. It’s as bad as the boys licking their who-who. That too grosses me out. I get that it’s a cleaning thing but geez, how long does it take to clean that thing? I mean they lick and lick and lick. And it’s that wet, sloppy sound that’s unmistakable. I’d like to know, after how long is licking that thing unacceptable? How long before it becomes inappropriate? I don’t have an answer for either of those questions but I will tell you that it really seems like they’re just taking advantage of the fact that they’re so bendy.