Harvey, my JRT pup, recently invented a new game. He’s been playing it since last week and I’ve always indulged because I just would find him so cute, so smart and very endearing. Aside from his usual fetch game, wherein he finds his own ball and leans towards me as a signal, now he also likes to play TAG.
I find it very natural for dogs to like playing tag, but Harvey is quite different. Harvey PROVOKES the person to play tag with theatrics and attitude. He either gets something that he’s not supposed to, which usually pisses you off. He doesn’t settle for a ball or a rock or something of no value to you. His intelligence allows him to think which specific objects he'll snatch that would make the person run after him. It could be your slipper, your shoe, your sweater, your bag or even the maid’s cleaning aids. CLUE: Anything of value.
Last week he made me run after him because he cut off a particular stem of a plant my mother loves. I really didn’t care about the stem. I just didn’t want Harvey to be caught or else it's prison time for him. Containing the object of “desire” in his mouth, he lies down and projects he is at peace and is quite enjoying his new found treat, but he always keeps full attention to the chaser. I would stand at the corner, pretend not to care, and when I knew I had the perfect chance, he’ll dash away like a greased piglet only to repeat the cycle again. If I leave him alone, he follows me, but never allows to be caught. Recently that’s his favorite sport and I indulge him.
This morning though it backfired.
I was already ready to go to work, all clean and prepared. There was still some free time so I went to see Harvey and engaged in minor play with him. He was excited as ever and I followed him to the garden. I took off my black pumps and wore slippers. We were happily playing when I was called by the driver. I called him back and shouted “Bye, Harvey!” I was on my way to get my pair of shoes when I saw him looking at me and just like a conniving pooch, grabbed my shoe and ran off.
Naturally I chased him. Every nudge and turn, I fear for my shoe and I can’t wait to throw that little bugger in the canal. I tried every possible means of distracting him. I even threw my brother’s Havaiianas since Harvey is known to chew at expensive slippers. JD was infuriated, but I can deal with JD’s pissed attitude. But what I couldn’t deal with are my black shoe destroyed and looming tardiness. Throw in the fact that I sweated on my professional clothes and screamed profanities in the start of a glorious morning.
I eventually asked help from our two maids to corner him. I eventually got my shoe back full of his saliva and bite marks. My left shoe now is semi-battered. As I tried to wipe the visible damage, I wanted to curse him and put him in a fryer. I even told Mitch at the office how bad I feel. But Harvey's last face kept clogging my memory, softening me like a butter on a toaster. As usual he was sitting still looking oddly cute before I disappeared from his sight. He was sort of apologizing as he saw me off. At that time I couldn’t care less, but Harvey made me sort of a softie now. After what he did, I still miss the rascal.