The non-stop barks of our beloved pet, Corby, pierce my ears no end.
A young male shih-tzu, the puppy has been adopted by the family since two months after birth. Quarters have been the living room, dining and kitchen, the bedrooms and balconies for this mocha-hued bossy thing. Until that day when I put him in a steel cage in the front yard to teach him who’s the real boss in the house!
The air gets filled with his shrills, barks and cries until his voice box almost conks out from all the expended energy. Barks become desperate hoarse appeals to be freed. But I don’t want to be cowed too soon by his pitiful cries.
Corby is special, not only because he is a pricey puppy, given as a birthday gift by my daughter’s boyfriend for her debut in 2010, but also for the reason that giving up a Samsung Corby is not an easy sacrifice to make in favor of a shih-tzu. Hence the name. Besides, taking care of him is a demanding and costly routine, too, especially during the first year.
The hard part of having a pampered, spoiled puppy in the house is the morning hopscotch game of poo-picking and wee-mopping if you’re the first person out of bed. This is a task that everybody in the house avoids doing by shutting an eye for poop, but only for a while – or you find yourself ending up as the first victim of those ‘landmines.’
Then there are the regular baths, too. It takes at least an hour to finish bathing, shampooing and blow-drying him by two people. On cold days, water needs to be heated first for his bathing needs. A specially-scented pet shampoo is the required toiletry for his hygiene. Mind you, he’s got a toothbrush, too, but no one is skilled enough to use it on him.
Top that with the occasional full grooming service in a pet spa that costs from P450 to P600, which is actually on schedule this month as a birthday treat for him. On May 23 he turns three. After the spa trip, Corby’s fur is almost all gone, except in the ears and the tail to let him recognize himself as a shih-tzu and not a crossbreed.
Freshly-groomed, he looks cute again even as he rolls his bald body on the living room sofa, dropping the pillows here and there. No one minds so much. He cannot seem to have moved on yet with his new appearance, not used to having his bulging eyes in the open. Maybe he is distracted with the wide vision he is getting these days, the peripheral views upsetting him noticeably.
Aside from all the rolling that he is constantly doing, he is behaving relatively well with less poops and wee-spills for us to pick and mop, so no one’s complaining.
Days are looking bright for our favorite pet at home. With a large male liver-spotted dalmatian trooping the yard and three other new native-bred puppies already outside guarding as well, for now Corby the shih-tzu is enjoying his place inside the house where he is boss-some.