Sunday Afternoon’s Entertainment

Posted on 12/28/09 21 Comments

For Buzz’s entire life he has had the habit of sucking on stuffed animals and kneading like a kitten, while holding the toy in his front paws. I wrote about this peculiarity in my book  “Shaping Success.” When Feature was a wee baby she used to suck & knead as well but it was always only on one particular dog bed. Unlike Buzz, who indiscriminately will lay down and suck on any stuffed toy he can find, Feature would only suck on that singular bed. When we packed up our old

Any stuffed toy will do when Buzzy is jones for a suckie.
Any stuffed toy will do when Buzzy is in need of a suckie.

house her dog bed was accidentally put into storage. So the then, ten month old, Feature was without a suckie. I just assumed (wrongly) her fetish would transfer to other items the way Buzzy’s sucking did. It did not.

So for the past 19 months Feature’s sucking behaviour was gone, again mistakenly on my part, I thought for good.  Last month as I unpacked boxes in the lower level of the new house I absentmindedly threw a couple of dog beds on the floor. Within seconds Feature spied her old fetish friend and immediately laid down to get reacquainted.

Yesterday, on a rare lazy Sunday around the Blenkey-Garrett household John and I were both entertained by the escapades surrounding the highly sought after oral pacifier/dog bed.

Buzzy settled in for his Sunday morning snooze.
Buzzy snuggled in for his Sunday morning snooze.

I need to preface this story with the fact that we have many dog beds in our living room, but as I left for church I saw Buzzy euphorically basking in a sun ray, enjoying Feature’s thinly padded excuse for a dog bed. Feature, obviously perturbed by the situation paced anxiously hoping to rouse her sleeping brother from her prized possession.  Buzz, oblivious to Feature’s anxiety, continued to snore loudly, content with his choice of slumber accessories.

So as the afternoon rolled around, I returned home and while John settled down for his Sunday afternoon NFL football watching ritual, I decided to do some vegan baking. Just imagine John’s excitement . . .  not!  The moment the words “vegan” or “organic” preface anything edible the man immediately assumes I am trying to poison him and refuses to even nibble on a sample.

By the time I settled next to him on the couch, Feature had reclaimed her precious bed and was happily kneading it with her front paws as she gave the fleecy fibre the once over with her mouth. Yes it is rather disgusting, yes she absolutely soaks the bed. Yuck!

Estacy at last for Feature as she reclaims her bed.
Ecstasy at last for Feature as she reclaims her bed.

Like a junkie pasted out with the syringe in his arm, you can almost see the dopamine release in her brain.
Like an addict past out with the syringe still in her arm, you can almost see the dopamine release in Feature's brain.

But that was not the end of our amusement because DeCaff, like any self righteous terrier who doesn’t just think she owns the world but actually knows she does (and everything in it), decides that she should take up residency on the bed.

DeCaff getting cosy.
DeCaff getting cosy.

Rather than entering a lopsided battle with a dog three times her weight, DeCaff turns her back on Feature and just plunks herself down on the bed Feature is sucking on and falls asleep.

Feature appealing for help as she tries to reclaim her suckie-bed.
Feature appealing for help as she tries to reclaim her suckie-bed.

Feature was beside herself and immediately stood, detaching herself from the pacifier. Eventually, when she could take it no longer, she gingerly lays back down next to DeCaff and the precious bed. However she just layed there staring daggers at me. Earnestly she tried in vain to solicit my help.

Just look at the expression on her face in this photo. She reminds me of Dustin Hoffman in “Rain Man” but rather than rocking back and forth autistically declaring “hot water burn baby . . .  hot water burn baby” she was appealing to me with protesting eyes that seem to be screaming “White terrier – not belong!  White terrier – not belong!”

So with no sign of back up from me, like a junkie jones for a fix, Feature decided to brave it all on her own and delicately put her mouth back on the bed. At first she did just a little sucking. She seemed hesitant to add the complementing paw-kneading until she had evaluated the effects of her actions on the dozing saber-toothed terrier at the other end of her bed. Once she was assured of her own safety, she happily added the front paw maneuver to complete her blissful routine.

All is right with the world as far as Feature is concerned.
All is right with the world, Feature has her suckie-bed.

How lucky for everyone that Buzz’s leisure reclining first thing in the morning inspired me to pull out the camera and leave it out so I could capture all of the afternoon’s shenanigans.

John and I laughed out loud more than once. At one point Feature actually tried to dump DeCaff off the bed by dragging it around the room. DeCaff contined to lay on the bed while spitting out blood-curdling growls of protest as if to let Feature know she had not put in any move-orders” with her minions. It was all just a crack up.

Encore had to declare her independence from such frivolousness by generating her own fun throughout the afternoon.

She has the great ability to create her own games on her own terms. Kind of like MacGyver with a shoe lace and some bubble gum, Encore can create fun anytime, anywhere with or without a person or a toy in sight.

Self reliant Encore creating her own fun.
Self reliant Encore creating her own fun.

The vegan cookies where awesome by the way.

My conclusions by the end of the afternoon was that  it was time we bought some new dog beds (of course I will let Feature keep her current one:)).

I can’t tell you how difficult it was for me to write an entire blog about sucking without a single porn-like reference.

Today I am grateful for the entertainment value of owning dogs.


  1. Ginny says:
    Monday, March 5, 2012 at 11:51am

    My lab sucks on his stuffed toys. he’s 7 now and has been doing this his entire life. he’s a well adjusted pet who was not deprived of anything as a pup. it’s good to hear that other dogs have the same habit. he seems to be so happy when he’s got his favorite toy to suck on. thanks!


  2. Bethany says:
    Friday, January 8, 2010 at 5:01pm

    Awesome! You have made my day. 🙂


  3. studio lolo says:
    Wednesday, December 30, 2009 at 9:46am

    What a delightful post! I love that every dog and every bed matters to you as much as it does to them.

    My little rescue rat terrier/chihuahua is a suckler of toys. I used to see it as a precurser to her seizures but she does it randomly now.

    Thanks for sharing the love!

    (I came her thru Debra Kay.)


  4. Lisa at Greenbow says:
    Tuesday, December 29, 2009 at 10:11pm

    A house full of dogs must be a continual clown act. My friend has a dog that does the sucking business. I had never seen it before I saw her past dog that also does it. Strange behavior to me. I guess it doesn’t hurt anything, except the passie object. Fun post.


  5. Carol Smorch says:
    Tuesday, December 29, 2009 at 9:31pm

    who needs movies or books or football when you have multiple dogs – especially BCs and JRTs in the household….live entertainment!

    the picture of Feature draggin DeCaff around..what a hoot!
    great stills…need video, play by play and color commentary….next time

    thanks for sharing


  6. Tracey says:
    Tuesday, December 29, 2009 at 8:09am

    Hi Susan,

    I have had such fun reading and learning from your blogs. My one dog has a sucking and kneading fettish particually of a plush ball…..he finds his ball at night and puts himself to sleep sucking on it and of course drenching it in the process…..I always wonder if he was deprived of something in his “puppyhood” but knowing his history this does not seem to be the case….he just likes to such his ball! hee hee

    Thank you for allowing me to laugh out loud as I share your stories.


  7. Theresa says:
    Tuesday, December 29, 2009 at 12:57am

    Sounds like a wonderful day. My last pup sucked on soft toys till she died at 13. She would look so blissful kneading away…
    living room floor , and fireplace look beautiful !!


  8. Kathryn says:
    Monday, December 28, 2009 at 11:46pm

    ‘Fess up Susan — you trained this whole little circus act just so you’d have something to blog about. I mean, it’s not like dogs have personalities or anything…. 🙂


  9. Helen KIng says:
    Monday, December 28, 2009 at 10:09pm

    WIsh I had been there to see VR being dragged aorund the floor by Feature :). Thanks for the laughs. I can see it all going down.
    Me want vegan cookies.


  10. Julie Stokes says:
    Monday, December 28, 2009 at 6:42pm

    My little BC does the exact same thing. He likes the the ball that “clucks” from the Clean Run website. I call it his puppy pacifier.


  11. Andrea says:
    Monday, December 28, 2009 at 4:34pm

    Too funny! I can’t believe Feature only does it with that one bed and that she started again after so much time – crazy girl 🙂 Way to go Encore for avoiding the bed “drama”, the pic of her reminds me totally of Phoenix, except she’s usually trying to get the toy under her back for some odd reason (also does not seem to matter how big the toy is, she must roll on it, jolly balls are a special challenge)

    I actually watched the second half of an NFL game yesterday and I must say I was actually very entertained, although not impressed with the fans booing the replacement QB who seems like he was just thrown into the lion cage.


  12. Linda G. says:
    Monday, December 28, 2009 at 3:40pm

    My Lab used to do the same thing between the time we got him at 8 weeks up until about 5 months (?) old. He was the first and only dog I’ve ever had with this habit. 🙂
    Thanks for sharing – I particularly love the part of Feature dragging the bed around with Decaff on it!! LOL!!


  13. Jodi Altman says:
    Monday, December 28, 2009 at 3:09pm

    That’s a great lazy Sunday story which makes you feel like you are right there watching it unfold, even with the sound effects (Decaff snarling) and the smell of fresh baked cookies. Save some for me.


  14. Beth says:
    Monday, December 28, 2009 at 1:39pm

    Entertainment is right! Our life would be so boring with out dogs.


  15. Mary says:
    Monday, December 28, 2009 at 12:21pm

    Susan, That was sooo cute. You are just about my favorite writer. Ever think about writing fiction? I’m serious….you are really good!!

    Regarding your not making any porn references in this piece, I first read that Feature tried to “hump” DeCaff off the bed. Upon rereading it, I saw that it clearly said DUMP. You came close…..


  16. Andrea says:
    Monday, December 28, 2009 at 11:49am

    BRILLIANT! Thanks for the several belly laughs this morning – it IS Monday you know…



  17. Mickey says:
    Monday, December 28, 2009 at 10:51am

    Rocket, my r/w Border Collie (is this is a red dog thing??) does the same kneeding & suckling! We bought a kitty with a heart beat in it when he came home at 8wks old. He slept with that stuffed kitty until he was about 1 1/2 yrs old- we decided he needed a new one after it turned into a rag! He now has had the other kitty for another 1 1/2 & it is about time for another. But EVERY night we tell him it is time for bed, he finds his “pup pup” & gets into our bed with it. I LOVE that dog!!


  18. Judith says:
    Monday, December 28, 2009 at 9:47am

    Your blog made me smile- Thanks.


  19. Mary Lou says:
    Monday, December 28, 2009 at 9:46am

    How funneee! Knowing each of these dogs I had very vivid videos running thru my brain of these antics helped greatly by your lovely pictures and description. Really tickled my funny bone!


  20. Anne Stocum says:
    Monday, December 28, 2009 at 8:23am

    Thanks Susan – a nice start to my day!


  21. Gemma Osmond says:
    Monday, December 28, 2009 at 7:29am

    Thank you – that made me smile so much :-))


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