Friday, January 27, 2012

The House That Rosco Ate

Standing in a small area of Operation Kindness, the local no-kill animal shelter, it came down to two dogs. One, an energetic black lab named Peanut. The other, a small black and tan mix with floppy ears, huddled in the corner of his small cage. Beat up from being tossed to the elements and suffering from a slight case of worms he was a little under the weather. He only wacked the very end of his tail when spoken to. Rosco (1), was the choice hands down.
Within a few weeks he was healed and de-wormed, ready to claim his space on the couch. Over the next year we imagined an energetic pup to motivate us to take more walks, play catch in the backyard and rough house with in the living room. Instead, it came to a point where at the end of a long day, home from work, we would put the key in the door and brace ourselves for what might be on the other side. It was always a mystery. Even with crate training. We’ve never had our home destroyed by fire, flood or invaded by robbers. But all the same we learned the valuable lesson in what material possessions really mean. And let me also add that people told us this was just training for children. I call BS. Abigail in five years old hasn’t come close to the dollar cost of destruction of this pooch. Not even close.

People tell me all the time I could write a book about Rosco and his Counter Hound antics. A stomach of iron and a will to match his digestive system . . .he was- and is to this day- unstoppable. The truth is I don’t need to write a Marley and Me version of Rosco. A simple list will do.


•Jennifer’s Shoe’s: I’ll guess and say 15 pairs and know that’s probably under.
•Charlie’s Shoes: Dr. Martin sandals, Dr. Martin boots and $150 dress shoes
•Three corners of the coffee table
•Four or five mini blinds
•Bottom three rows of CD’s and CD cases
•College text books ripped down to the spine
•35 MM Film canisters (from my trip to Europe. Thanks!!)
•Several pillows (even ones I put in the crate so he could be more comfortable . . instead I came home and he was knee deep in pillow stuffing)
•Several photo albums chewed to various degrees
•The arm of my couch
•The large seating pillow of the couch I stacked so he would not sleep on them at night
•Walked in on him standing on the couch (no pillows) where he had ripped open the lining and was in the process of burying his bone
•Chew toys
•Stuffed animals
•Wicker basket that held all the chew toys and stuffed animals
•Metal screen off the back door
•Countless fabric leashes
•Entire loaves of bread without ripping the bag
•Entire sticks of butter without ripping the wrapper and instead licking it flat
•Half a bottle of ImmunoStart (chewed apart the bottle to get to it)
•Stole a canister of chocolate OsoLean, took it in the living room and chewed the lid off on my new cream carpet. His nose and snout were caked with chocolate and his water bowl was chocolate.
•Various seasonal decorative items left too low
•VHS tapes
* Lifted his leg to the real Christmas tree and put an end to that tradition
•Countless magazines and books
•Wireless phone (headset piece)
•Charlie’s work phone which he bit a hole in the battery and Charlie took it in as proof to his VP
•Took a bag of whole coffee beans off the counter and took them in to the living room. Once he got a whiff he stopped caring2. Hmm..

There’s a lot I’m sure I’ve forgotten. One time Charlie left two huge T-bone steaks on the counter to marinate and while we weren’t looking they BOTH disappeared. One we never found so we assume he ate it. I think we found evidence of bones. The other one was MIA for a good eight hours before we discovered it, still whole but cleverly hidden in a tipped over pile of toddler sized Lego’s in Abigail’s room.

We moved our couch once to rearrange the living room and found two corn cobs underneath it. Clearly stolen from the trash. I guess he was saving them for later.

He likes to take used Q-tips from the trash and chew on them like an old man chews a toothpick. No kidding. He walks around chewing with the end hanging out one corner of his mouth.

Maybe my next writing on Rosco will be “Adventures in Shock Collar Land.” It only proved that he, like other mammals in my life are too smart for MY own good and relaxation.

And despite it all, after just passing our nine year anniversary of rescuing Rosco from another poor family, I would have to say without a doubt that he’s the best dog I’ve ever owned and if I didn’t have to relive that first year I would probably clone him.
Although, it would be a great excuse to buy a new couch . . . .

1. Yes, I know some people like to spell it ending with an E. But we don’t. So there.
2. That happened just this week.

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