Mom and Dad always tell me where we’re going when we get in the car. I know from talking with my buds that some folks bypass this courtesy, either thinking that dogs don’t understand or lacking the sensitivity to care whether the dog knows the destination. But we do understand and we do appreciate knowing. How would you like to get in the car and have no idea where you’re going? (Actually, I think my dad knows all too well how that feels..sometimes he doesn’t remember until he drives a block or two).
Yesterday, Dad opened the car door and said, “OK, up we go Flap..off to the vet.” If you know Aussies, you know that little rattles us, including nice harmless people in white coats. But there is one small procedure that insults the dignity of even the most undignified among us, and I knew I would be facing it on this visit. And yet, I didn’t balk or run the other way as many in other less civilized breeds would have. I calmly jumped in the car and steeled my resolve for the battle which would soon begin.
The doc was, as usual, all smiles. He scratched my ears, he rightly complimented my extraordinary good looks, he gave me a small dog biscuit, but then I saw it in his hand. He was trying unsuccessfully to conceal it, but I knew instinctively that it was there all the time. I think they call it a rectal thermometer, but I call it “the humiliator”. I can take just about anything, but there’s something about that hard, cold rod that makes my butt snear like Clint Eastwood, “You feelin’ lucky today, punk?” So, with two burly technicians holding me motionless, the vet was confident he could slide the greased instrument right up there where the sun don’t shine. Game on. I knew he was no match for the incredible butt-clinching talents of which I pride myself. He tried everything in his arsenal of tricks: distraction, treats, pleading, threats, even standing back and trying to chuck it like a dart as if my anus was a bull’s eye. But there are some doors that never open. The doc threw down the humiliator and defeatedly said, “He looks just fine; no need to get his temp.”
So, when Dad said, “Up we go Flap, let’s go home,” I settled comfortably on the rear seat, with my butt only then beginning to relax. I fell into my sixth nap of the day. I dreamed about my next visit to the vet. Doc was holding the dreaded humiliator, and behind him a firefighter was preparing the jaws of life. Game on.