I’ve honestly always had dogs in my life….give and take some college years, and newly married years until we had a house with a yard! So that’s 50-some years living with dogs! I’ve always had herders for the most part, and most of them have been pretty independent, but they have all been very affectionate loving dogs.
Growing up in small town America, our Aussie/Border Collie mix hung out with us kids, here and there, and she spent a lot of time napping in the yard, but she was perfectly content being by herself and doing the things she wanted to do. In the 60’s and 70’s no one had a fence for their dog, and so everyone’s dogs pretty much followed their kids all day long, or just hung out around their homes.
After I married, we got our first Corgi in 1983, not too long after we got our very first home. All of our Corgis were happy to be near us, but they were often doing their own thing. As long as they could see what what happening, they were content to stay where they were. The exception, of course, would have been the kitchen, where the Corgis were underfoot to score any crumb that hit the floor!
Rugby takes snoopervising to a whole new level! It’s not enough for him to simply see what’s going on….he has to be right in the middle of it all! He loves to poke his snoot into whatever I’m working on….despite the fact that he can’t really see things any better up close than he can from five feet away! For Rugby, life is better if it’s close up and personal!
Now truth be told, it’s not the worst habit that he has by a long shot! However, virtually any household job is accented with “Rugby! Move!” or “Rugby! Get out from underfoot!”
Laundry duties are performed with a fur covered shadow! Typically, when I carry the laundry bag to the laundry room, I’m herded by that little shadow…grunting a piggie against my calves or ankles every step of the way! It doesn’t stop once I’m in the laundry room! He holds me against the washer as I load the clothes, again with a piggie grunting against the back of my legs the entire time I’m loading the washer….every. single. time. I. do. laundry! He is content to watch me put clothes in the dryer without herding, but often is right in the way….just in case he misses something!
The kitchen is a favorite room of the house for my little Biscuit. He likes to position himself between the counter and me….so that no errant crumb will escape his notice! At the stove, he will often lay down, a bit off to the side, but with a little paw on my foot….just as a reminder that he’s there. He looks up at me with the most hopeful look on his face….those little chocolate drop eyes of his boring holes into me….politely begging like he was getting paid to do it!
When I vacuum rugs, Rugby is right there. He’s made peace with the vacuum, so I don’t have any attacking issues from Ruggles. But, he follows closely with me….and often just stops and stands….right in the middle of where I need to vacuum! He never seems to stand off to the side….in a corner….or out of the way place. He wants to be right in the thick of things….where all of the action is! It can be a little exasperating as it makes normal chores take twice as long. It’s a little bit like having a toddler around, only Rugby doesn’t offer to help….he just gets in the way!
But I look at this as one of the endearing things about him. I alternately laugh and grouse at him! He means well, and this is just his way of staying close to me. He’s naturally curious about things, and it’s also his way of “helping” me. I don’t know how much “help” he offers, but I know that I always giggle while I’m doing my boring chores, because I have a little fur covered shadow who makes those jobs a little more fun!
And as long as Rugby James is living under my roof….he’s a constant reminder that I’m never, ever alone! He’s my little speckled and spotted shadow….covered in the softest fur you could ever imagine!