a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: House of Hair

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

House of Hair

SUMMARY: Furniture and dogs: Defensive maneuvers.
When we were kids, the family dog slept downstairs in the laundry room. That's just the way it was. The dog also wasn't allowed on the furniture, even in the car (dogs on floor, you know). Being as how we were kids and the dog was a dog, we occasionally sneakily let her onto our beds at bedtime, and repeatedly tried the plaintive, "But she's LONEly down there!" and "Just ONE night? PLEEEEEZZZZZZE?" But, no, dog did not sleep with people and did not get onto the furniture.

My mom was also a good housekeeper. She'd probably beg to differ, but I always thought her house was (and still is) pretty darned clean. We never had to worry about there being huge clumps of dog hair in the corner that would scuttle across the room every time the furnace came on, or trying to find a clean seat when visitors dropped by in their black wool skirts.

When I was in Junior High School, I got this crazy idea to go offer my services at a local dog breeder's house so that I could play with other dogs. They had thousands of dogs! Well--compared to our one--I don't think I even knew anyone who had more than one dog the whole time I was growing up--it seemed like thousands. Probably half a dozen borzois, a couple Salukis, some beagles, and a couple litters of puppies.

I went into their house, and it was a nice, comfortable, welcoming place to be, except that there was dog. hair. EVERY. where. There were throws on the furniture in the living room, and THOSE were covered with dog hair. I didn't say anything, but I made a vow right then that my house would not look like that when I grew up and had thousands of dogs of my own.

So now I have a mere two dogs (at times seems like thousands) and there is dog. hair. every. where. EXCEPT not on the furniture. Well, except for the bed, where I sleep among dogs and their associated hairs every night despite rollers and sponges and sticky sheets and vacuums. My living room has a baby gate across the entrance to keep the dogs out [except when I'm in there with them and can monitor furniture encroachments] because, damnit, when visitors drop by in their black wool skirts, they WILL have a place to sit that is free from dog hair.

(That is, if they can get past the frenzy of dogs in the front hallway unscathed, and assuming that no wafting dog hairs have settled on the furniture since the last time I vacuumed the cushions, in, oh, I'm sure it's been since 2005.)

Which brings us to an agiliter's* facebook status this morning: "My papasan chair has become a dog bed."

Now, I happen to have a papasan chair, and I know that it is perfectly shaped like a dog bed with a better, elevated view of the surrounding neighborhood, and it happens to be right in the middle of my office where dogs have free access and have been known to eye it lasciviously and even to place tentative paws upon it. BUT.

I refuse to let my papasan chair become a dog bed. To protect it, it now is permanent home to two computers, an old green recycling bin, a couple of useful magazine issues, two space heaters, a pink-flowered crocheted afghan, some shopping bags from disneyland, and a large dragon in a box that I got as a gift many months ago and haven't made a space for yet. Let's see them get any dog hairs past THAT.

* I made this up on the spot. "Person who does agility." Tired of saying the whole thing.


  1. I assure you dog hair will be much easier on your chair than all the weight of that stuff. Even if there is a dog attached.

  2. But all that stuff doesn't shed onto or put muddy footprints onto the chair.

  3. Plus it might be easier on the chair but not on anyone sitting in it afterward. Hmmm...sitting in it...

  4. Loved the punchline! Made me laugh. :)