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His Christmas gift was real dog

Husband-head looked out the front window when he heard the car pull up in the driveway.

“The cops are here,” he announced. “What did you do NOW?”

I joined him at the window and looked at the flashing red and blue lights. Sure enough, the local police were indeed at our house.



Husband-head pulled on his boots and put on his coat.

“I’ll go see what they want,” he said resignedly. “But if they’re here for you, I’m going to let them haul your happy butt away. .”



I smiled to myself, knowing exactly why the cops were there.

Husband-head met the officer at the car, just as he was opening the rear door of his patrol vehicle.

Out of the back seat jumped our newly adopted dog – Wyatt.

“Merry Christmas,” the nice officer said to husband-head. “We’re glad to see him go to a good home.”

I had made arrangements to adopt the yellow Labrador Retriever from a local animal shelter as a surprise for husband-head.

At first I was going to have the police come to the door and tell husband-head he was wanted for questioning, just to scare him a little . but then I decided that might give him a heart attack and we’d be spending the holidays at the hospital. .

The officer left and we brought our new ward into the house.

Now was the tricky part – introducing Wyatt to our big yellow Lab, Weber.

The two looked like twins, except that Weber was a little larger.

“How are we going to tell them apart?” I asked husband-head, as the pair immediately began romping around together.

“I don’t know – how do people tell their twin babies apart?” husband-head shrugged. “I guess you just get to know them well enough. Besides, they’ve got different collars on.”

Indeed, Weber was wearing a brown leather collar while Wyatt was sporting a black nylon number. .

I called my mother to tell her about Wyatt.

“We’ve expanded the family,” I said proudly.

I could hear her gasp as she anticipated hearing the words she had waited to hear for so long. .

“We got a new dog,” I said quickly, to put her out of her misery.

I could hear her exhale in disappointment.

“Oh . well . that’s . nice, honey,” she said finally.

My mother doesn’t drink, but I was pretty sure she was going to do a shot of something when we hung up the phone. .

Weber and Wyatt were getting along famously – a little too well at times.

“Are they supposed to be doing that to each other?” I asked husband-head as we watched them play in the backyard. “They’re both males. .”

“I think they’re trying to establish dominance,” husband-head said, knowingly. “Either that, or they’re gay. .”

We’ve never had two dogs before, but we would soon find out that it takes some juggling to accommodate both of our canine companions. .

The seating arrangements on the couch, for example, do not fit all four of us. It now very much resembles a good ol’ fashioned game of “Musical Chairs” in that if anyone gets up, their place is quickly taken by whoever was previously left out.

I looked at husband-head sitting in the middle of the sofa flanked by Weber and Wyatt on either side – with not an inch of space available.

“I suppose I’ll lie on the floor,” I said, dejectedly. “But maybe you could come over and pet me now and then.”

Husband-head knew it was a ploy to lure him off the couch. .

The bed situation also presented a challenge. Whereas the king-sized mattress had been fine before, it wasn’t as roomy with two people AND two large dogs.

“Who’s lying on my LEGS?” husband-head demanded to know.

“Not me,” I defended myself. “I’ve got a nose in my armpit and a paw pinning my pelvis. .”

Nevertheless, we are looking forward to years of fun with our waggly-tailed friends.

But I’ll bet the neighbors are wondering why the cops were here at Christmas. .

New Castle resident Heidi Rice’s column appears every Friday in the Post Independent. Visit http://www.heidirice.com.


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