Hachi

BunnyChow Card #4:
30 Nov 2018:

My dog is stress peeing.

That’s my quasi-veterinary diagnosis at least. Those of you who know her, will remember her as quite a diva. For two reasons. Firstly because she’s a Shiba Inu, genetically one step removed from wolves so she thinks she’s the bomb. And secondly because she acted in a movie with Richard Gere.

It’s called Hachi: A Dog’s Story and is set in America. I think my doggie stole the show even though she was but one of ten playing the part of the dog. To be honest the whole movie and book it was based on was an exercise in appropriation. The true story is about a real-life dog called Hachikō from a suburb of Tokyo called Shibuya. PS: you can find the original Japanese B&W movie on YouTube if you search for HACHIKO Monogatari 1987 Film. It’s about the love between a Japanese professor and the stray dog he adopts. I won’t spoil it for you but keep lots of tissues handy.

Anywoo, when her role in the movie was over, she was an out of work actress waiting on tables when I found her at the tender age of 4/ 12 (that’s 4 months in doctor shorthand). She turned 11 years this Nov. How time flies.

But the poor thing has now taken to stress peeing on the upstairs carpet when left alone at home in the evenings. Daytime is okay. It’s not every time mind you, maybe once or twice a month.

I called the vet’s office and they’re quite sure she’s trying to get her own back on me. Revenge? Seems like a very complicated emotion for a dog. I mean she has to say to herself, “You’re leaving me alone, therefore I hate you, therefore I’m going to pee on your carpet which I know will make you mad. Serve you right!”

I prefer to think she’s afraid of being left alone. This summer we heard a bobcat in the woods behind our house, or it could have been coyotes. I mean, wolf genes or not, she’s way too used to having dinner served in a dish rather than fight for it.

Some years back she took to stress farting for an entire afternoon when we moved to a new apartment. She followed the Comcast guy around and farted all around him. I kept apologizing that it was the doggie just in case he thought it was me. He was sweet and kept saying, “It’s okay.” But he made a hasty exit.

The stress peeing is stressing me out though. So here’s my solution. 1) put up a baby gate to stop her climbing upstairs 2) leave the radio on hoping she’ll think the soothing voices of Steve Inskeep or Terry Gross on NPR is me 3) have the carpet washed and 4) keep my fingers crossed.

XOXO

Manju