Tuesday, October 6, 2009

A different kind of foodie

My experience with Labrador retrievers was nearly non-existent until I started living with one.

My parents have a dog, Lucy, a 12-year-old Bichon who has been mistaken for a baby sheep by small children and Australian Shepherds in her lifetime. She's small and cotton ball-looking and not Lab-like at all.

I've mentioned before my roommate MG's black lab named Ruby who lives with us. Ruby is a two-year-old trained guide dog and she's great to have around. She is extremely active and likes to give subtle hints like "hey let's play fetch" by dropping a tennis ball into the refrigerator drawer when you're unloading groceries. She will carry newspapers, tennis shoes and even logs for firewood for you.

She also loves people food.

We have come home various times to find loaves of bread demolished, empty bags of tortilla chips and torn-open bags of powdered, white, brown and raw sugar. Anything left on the counter is fair game, but she can also get into some of the cabinets. One day she feasted on a pound of chocolate toffee, which was wrapped with a bow in a brown box, and there was also a bag of grape tomatoes squished and scattered throughout the downstairs area of our house. She likes rifling through the contents of the trash can from time to time too. She learned everything from her predecessor Belle, RIP, who was known to hide food throughout MG's family's house and once ate a squirrel whole while on a walk.

You heard me right- we're talking tail and all.

Last Friday morning I came downstairs to make coffee and found a new box of raw sugar sitting on the counter, unopened. I looked for the box I had already been using all week but it was nowhere to be found. Not up for mind games at 8 AM, I opened the new sugar and went about my day.

We spent the weekend at MG's family's lake house, and she realized she hadn't told me about the most recent sugar incident. Turns out, Ruby ate my raw sugar, a box of yellow packets of Splenda with fiber (yeah I know, fiber) and also managed to get some caramel rice cakes by opening the cabinet under our kitchen sink and pulling them out of a drawer with a small opening into the cabinet. I started calling her MacGyver after that.

Did I forget to mention that she ate a whole bag of Goldfish, a PBJ sandwich and a carton of yogurt while MG left her in her car while running an errand one morning? She also ate an entire bulk-sized bag of Frosted Mini Wheats cereal yesterday.

I learned at the lake that she's also a huge fan of swimming, seeing as she would drop a stick into the lake and launch into a full-speed belly-flop after it to get it. Her parents have another black lab puppy named Murray, who enjoyed waiting for Ruby to fetch the stick so that she could wrestle it away once she got back to the dock.

We also had a chocolate lab puppy, Sawyer, come to stay with us a few weekends ago while her owners were away for a weekend. Ruby was annoyed for a solid 48 hours and Sawyer gave my little basil plant a run for its money:

It now looks more like something in league with Charlie Brown's Christmas tree.

(This is actually Sawyer's sister Kenna, who belongs to a couple we know, but they look like twins so you get the idea.)

MG has taken some preventative measures and Ruby now has a shock-collar which works remotely, so we may or may not set her up for failure in the form of Halloween candy to deter her sneaky tendencies.

Can you really blame this little face for anything though?

"A dog has no use for fancy cars, big homes, or designer clothes. A water log stick will do just fine. A dog doesn't care if your rich or poor, clever or dull, smart or dumb. Give him your heart and he'll give you his. How many people can you say that about? How many people can make you feel rare and pure and special? How many people can make you feel extraordinary?"
- Josh Grogan, Marley & Me


Andhari said...

Ruby sounds like me...

I'm KIDDING. But well that kind of pigging out on sweet items sounds tempting sometimes. However she looks too cute to even be mad at.

Bluebelle said...

I quite like dogs but not nearly enough to have one myself - and especially not after hearing about these ones! Labs are sweet though. :)

erin - heart in ireland said...

wow, she is like macgyver!

i can never complain about the cats or the dog liking table food or going through the garbage again after hearing about that!

Tiffany said...

I don't know how she's still standing after all that! BUT, mom was marinating THREE steaks on the counter and the doorbell rang. She went to the door, talked for about 2 minutes, came back in the kitchen and there was ZERO evidence the steaks, seasoning, marinade ever existed. Not.one.drop. was left behind. Miss Maggie took down about 22 ounces of raw steaks in under 120 seconds.

You absolutely cannot help but love them.

Windy City Kelley's said...

What a cute dog! My dog ate my breakfast this morning, I was so pissed...