June 1st, 2018

Emma Nose-Kiss

So here's what happened at my house yesterday

First, some background:

You know my two lovely American Eskimo Dogs, Kodi and Dakota. Dakota is taller and slenderer and needy, very sincere and loving. Kodi is full of deviltry and mischief, shorter and stouter, and often mock-aggressive and territorial. He'll bark and growl and snarl -- although he will ultimately ask for lovin's at the end of that process.

Kodi's the main character in this little tale, and as we begin he's lying at my feet, but we still have more Background to cover.

We must also consider Jet, AKA Mr. Ugly, our Alpha Male cat, larger, heavier and stronger than the other cats, and a definite bully. He is neither as innocent nor as attractive as he appears here.

Not only does he savagely bully the other cats, he also bullies the dogs! It's very common that I'll be calling one or both of them, and they'll be staring at me from a doorway, refusing to come forward, and I'll realize that Jet is waiting in the narrow space to smack them as they go by. Other times, I'll hear a doggie YIPE! when I'm in another room, and I'll know Mr Ugly has struck. This has actually been a concern to me, because I know full well that if either dog actually fought back, they could easily kill him, and he's actually a very sweet and affectionate cat most of the time, so that would be terrible.

The last character in our little drama is Da personality-enhanced and very adorable Floof, who is always ready to let us know when she's displeased with the management.

Now, it turns out, Kodi is quite obsessed with Da Floof. Whenever she approaches him, he's hyper aware, making a growling sound that I've always been _pretty_ sure is the "Play Growl," leaping to his feet, and coming close to stare at her with bright eyes and perky ears. She will often promenade back and forth in front of him as he does it. Still, I haven't been 100% CERTAIN it's a play-growl, so I'm always cautioning him to be nice.

This brings us to yesterday, when, as previously noted, Kodi was lying at my feet. Dakota, sleeping nearby, didn't really play a part in this story.

Down the hall, I hear Da Floof whining and complaining and making her displeasure eminently clear. I look down the hall, and see that Mr Ugly -- easily thrice her size and weight -- is standing over her, grabbing the scruff of her neck in his teeth, driving her head downward, in a display of dominance and purest bullying--

And Kodi is suddenly on his feet RACING across the room and down the hall, barking and growling, BARK! BARK! GROWL! BARK!

This dog who has yelped and run when swatted by this very cat, who has been so intimidated by him that he's refused to walk by within a foot of him when I call, gets RIGHT IN JET'S FACE, barking loudly at him!

Jet stares up at him in absolute amazement! WHAT THE HELL IS EVEN HAPPENING RIGHT NOW????

Da Floof, released, flounces calmly on about her business. Kodi continues to stare long and hard at the now-quiescent and startled Jet, then trots back to resume his spot under my feet.

And I sit back and laugh, and laugh and laugh, with a subtextual sigh of relief, now secure in the knowledge that {A} Kodi does indeed utterly dote on Da Floof and is thoroughly protective of her, and {B} even under pretty intense provocation, Kodi will, while still generally intimidated by Jet, NOT hurt him, simply put him in his place!