Well, no, I'm not walkin'. That's the problem. Ambulation is a bit of an issue at the Shady Rest, and not just for the dogs with some limb issues. One of the delights of pugs is that they always want to be near you. Always. Very near. Preferably attached to your ankles like barnacles to a boat's keel. Cozy, as long as you're not needing or wanting to actually GO anywhere for a while. Perfectly delightful for keeping your toes warm while you read emails on a cold winter's day. Not so much in August, when you're already sweating, with a fan and only a T-shirt and your drawers on. Seven small, hairy bodies generate an amazing amount of heat when they're just laying atop your feet. Heaven forbid you actually want to walk about the house.
Freya, our non-pug pugherd, is part Belgian Malinois. The Malinois is a herding dog and she can't help herself. She has to herd something, which was a hoot when she was still a puppy and hadn't yet learned that they call an impossible task "herding cats" for a reason. Still, at least her DNA makes it make sense when she insists on walking everywhere right behind me, usually nudging me with her nose every few feet, just in case I should forget the route from the office to the kitchen.
The pugs, however, clearly have NO herding DNA whatsoever in their breed makeup. They insist, all of them, on clustering in front of me and milling about. I wouldn't mind them walking in front of me if they'd actually walk. They don't. They mill, in a sort of Brownian motion that would make a physicist proud. This results in me spending much of my day sounding rather like a cow - "Moooooooove!" "C'mon, mooooooooooove." If I can get them all milling around in the same general direction, sometimes we can make progress.
Not that walking is the only activity impeded by puggy inertia. I had this conversation with Orville last night, while trying to change out of my work clothes:
"Hi, Mama! Whatcha doin?"
"Trying to take my jeans off. Could you move please?"
"Hows come you keep hitting me in the head with your pants leg?"
"Because you won't move. Scoot over some, wouldja?"
"OW! Mama, you kicked me!"
"I didn't kick you. I tripped over you. Mama's sorry, now move."
"No. Maybe I wasn't clear. By "move" I meant go over there, not spin in a circle and sit down in the same place."
"I love you, Mama. I want to be close."
"Mama loves you too, my little bug-eyed barnacle. That lumpy thing under your butt? That's my foot. I need it now. Please move."
"Are we gonna eat soon?"
"Not if you don't get out from between Mama and the kitchen, no."
I'm not sure which one's worse; Orville, who sits on my foot; Archie, who gets in front of me and just prances up and down; or Sammie, who takes a perverse delight in trotting obligingly along in front of me, but then grinding to a stop with no warning and for no apparent reason. I sometimes wonder if he's trying to kill me in retaliation for all the fosters.
So, anyway, if you need me for anything, I'll be here. Right here. Trapped here in this chair with about 115 total pounds of pug draped over my numb feet.
Y'all take care, now.