I’m not going to lie. I’m jealous of Kafka the bulldog sleeping away about 75% of the day. But I also know that the last four and a half months have been rough on him. With baby girl in our lives, he’s no longer “top dog.” Even so, within the last couple months, he’s adjusted extremely well (and LO is absolutely intrigued by him already). He’s at once protective and gentle. It seems, to me, that he gets that she’s here to stay.
Even so, Kafka deserved a vacation. A chance to run free and play, if you will. So when we headed up to Northern Michigan earlier this month, my uncle and aunt — along with two of their teenage boys — graciously took him in. And, put simply, Kafka was in heaven.
I’m sure it helped that Kafka has visited them before, albeit for only a few hours at a time. But he took right to hanging out in the suburbs. (An enormous fenced-in backyard helped). And sadly, after I dropped him off, he trotted away from me while I got into the car, as if he could care less! So much for Kafka the bulldog having separation anxiety… either that, or he was just thrilled to have a “break” and get some attention.
He spent his long weekend away running around the backyard, hanging out around a bonfire on Saturday night, and generally being his gregarious self. That’s not to say that he didn’t have some issues though.
Kafka has become really reactive to other dogs, especially since baby girl was born. He tenses up (the first sign), and then starts barking like crazy. Occasionally he’ll lunge too, but he has — thank God — never once bitten. I thought it might be better with her not around — or us around for that matter — but I was wrong. At one point during his vacay, he saw the front door open a crack and he plowed through, intent on “greeting” a dog out on a walk. Unfortunately his barking and greeting isn’t seen as all that friendly, and the dog owner, understandably, freaked out a bit, so I’m told. This happened two other times as well. Kafka, clearly, doesn’t get along with dogs that are strangers.
But I’m trying not to focus on that. Kafka the bulldog is a social dog — but not with other dogs. He loves humans, including baby girl, but if that’s the way it is with other pooches, that’s just the way it is.
Enough of the Debbie Downer stuff though. In general, Kafka had a fabulous weekend away. And how do I know? As soon as he got home, he promptly passed out and, I kid not, slept for about 24 hours straight with only a couple breaks to eat and go to the bathroom. Something tells me that his vacation was just what he needed to recharge his batteries.
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