Did you hear the one about the dog who thought she needed hearing aids?
No joke. Continuing this month's theme of animal-induced melodrama, the scene was thus: Mo is downstairs; Hope is dozing contentedly, dreaming of ceiling fans; I am reading with the dog at my feet. It's an achingly stereotypical portrait of suburban idyll.
And then: Crunch, goes the dog. Huh? goes the oblivious owner. Crunch goes the dog again.
By the time I look down, the damage is done. Lulu is nibbling on one of the Oticon Vigo BTEs, the sleek, pretty-in-pink hearing aid that we spent the summer battling bureaucrats to acquire. We had them precisely one month.
We were mortified. The aids go in a hard plastic carrying case. They were left somewhere Lulu could find them, which as a friend says, is planet Earth. We were especially embarrassed because we felt like irresponsible ninnies who need to learn everything the hard way.
It went down something like this.
Fortunately, insurance is picking up the cost, and no animals were hurt in the reenactment.
We adopted Lulu as a puppy two years ago this week after listening to "Marley and Me," a tale of another bad dog who's hard not to love. Since that time, Lulu has destroyed our yard, eaten roughly 130 pairs of socks and underwear and ruined our carpet.
But she's tough to stay mad at for very long. Everyone has their thing. Lulu's is eating stuff.
On another level, we think Lulu has prepared us for raising a special-needs daughter, imbuing us with forgiveness, understanding and patience that we were sorely lacking a few years ago. Or maybe that's just a hifalutin way to say we're too lazy for more dog training.