Our dog apparently is a secret Wookiee

FATHER’S DAZE
Emmitt B. Feldner  for The Review

There are times when I think our new dog may have the wrong name.

She answers to Gracie, though not always promptly or on the first call, such as when it’s time for her to go in her kennel at night.

And there are times when her grace and agility – more accurately, her lack thereof – make Grace or Gracie an appropriately ironic name for this dog.

But given her penchant for chewing on things – especially things she’s not supposed to gnaw or masticate – it seems a more appropriate name might be Chewbacca, or Chewie for short.

She seems to have a preference for chewing on things made of plastic for some reason – but as far as I know, she’s never watched “The Graduate.”

It certainly can’t be for the taste – I know dogs will eat just about anything, and that’s true of this dog as well, but even garbage has to have more taste than a plastic storage container lid.

She’d just better hope that she doesn’t prove that old adage, that you are what you eat – although a plastic dog might have some advantages.

It might have something to do with teething – after all, a lot of baby’s teething rings are made out of plastic – but she’s had her teeth for as long as we’ve had her and she should be past that stage.

We have learned to be careful about leaving anything made of plastic within Gracie’s reach, since we really don’t want to encourage this particular habit.

I’ve lost count of how many half-gnawed plastic utensils, storage containers, toys and other sundry items we’ve pulled out of her bed – it’s a wonder at times that Gracie has enough room to fit in there with all her chew things.

Then again, there might be a few plastic things we would encourage Gracie to chew up, such as credit cards and all those plastic bags that we get from all the stores.

Of course, it would be one thing if she confined herself to plastic, but she has taken to chewing on other things as well, although not with as much intensity or consistency.

She started in on one of the seat cushions on our leather couch one day, but we soon put a stop to that – replacing a food storage container is a lot easier and cheaper than replacing an entire couch.

She also had a habit of chewing on toes, fingers and earlobes that came within too close a proximity of her mouth, but that’s another habit that, fortunately, we’ve broken her of.

Gracie’s just a little over half a year old, so she still has a lot of energy – too much, it seems, at times for old folks like me.

It makes for some spirited fun on those occasions when Alex, Julia and Aiden visit and bring their dogs – Gizzy and their beagle puppy, Stormageddon.

Stormy is a few months younger than Gracie, and a lot smaller, but he apparently doesn’t have any problem wrestling out of his age or weight class – and Gracie is happy to oblige him.

Gracie also hasn’t gotten the message yet that she’s not a lap puppy anymore.

When Gracie climbs up on Terry’s lap in the easy chair at night, she just about takes over the entire chair.

The trick is for Terry to get Gracie to sit down so she can see over her to see the television.

I have managed to keep Gracie on the other side of the couch from me when she decides on sitting there, but it’s taken a few battles to win that war.

We have taken Gracie to one session of dog obedience classes thus far.

She didn’t flunk out or get expelled, but then again, we don’t have a bumper sticker on our car that reads “Our dog is on the honor roll at obedience school.”


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