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The Afternoon Nap

Most days, I need an afternoon nap. It’s a necessity without which I would be incoherent for the rest of the day. My dogs have decided, though, that what they need most, at exactly the same time, is to play. This is when they need to bark at each other, and climb on me, and compete for my attention. They have spent the morning pleasantly napping while I was getting work done, and now they are restless.

Party time!

Party time!

Nap time generally starts out well. We make our own puppy pile on the bed, and if they are actually tired, we all curl up and go to sleep. But at some point, long before I am ready to get up, they will start the drama.

puppy pile on the bed

puppy pile on the bed

            Cricket will climb on me and demand scratchies. Butterfly will pace back and forth on her side of the bed in search of good chewing material, and then notice that Cricket is getting scratchies, and she will want her share. And then the barking begins, because Cricket has heard a noise, or had a premonition of a noise to come. Did the mail come? Were packages dropped at the door? Does one of the girls need to pee (this is contagious by the way, if one is desperate to pee, the other becomes so agitated that she believes her bladder is bursting as well).

Cricket in my face

Cricket in my face

Butterfly chewing in my ear

Butterfly chewing in my ear

Scratchies!

Scratchies!

"What was that noise?"

“What was that noise?”

            Clearly, they’ve read all of those articles about power naps and how you shouldn’t nap for more than half an hour at a time or you’ll be even groggier. I try to tell them not to read pop psych magazines, but they don’t listen to me.

            Once Cricket jumps off the bed to check for the evil mailman, Butterfly starts to bark, or whine, or stand at the end of the bed and contemplate the certain death that will come from jumping off the bed. I force myself up to put Butterfly on the floor, so she can be with her sister, and that’s when Cricket decides to jump back up on the bed, to be away from her sister. So Butterfly barks from the floor, to try to get me to pick her up again.

            This can go on all afternoon.

"Why am I on the floor?"

“Why am I on the floor?”

            After they are done barking and chasing each other around the apartment, the dogs think we have reached the point in the afternoon where I devote all of my attention to them, and not to sleep, or, God forbid work. Butterfly tries to chew my notebooks, and Cricket butts my book with her head, or knocks it down with her paw.

Studying, with help.

Studying, with help.

            And that’s when I realize, it’s been hours since they were out to pee; two hours at least. And if I take them outside, and wear them out a little bit, maybe I can come back in and get some work done, or take another nap, until the whole drama starts over again.

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About rachelmankowitz

I am a fiction writer, a writing coach, and an obsessive chronicler of my dogs' lives.

93 responses »

  1. This is hilarious! Thanks for sharing 🙂

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  2. Now, you know I’m going to take the dog’s POV on this one. What about the dogs’ work you interrupted? Do you pee on command? Cricket and Butterfly are trying to train you-are you listening???? I thought not.

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  3. They are just too adorable…I love that they chew your notebook and try to knock everything over…They are so jealous of your time!!!! You’ve definitely got two little heartbeats at your feet…or lap 🙂 We say opt for the nap!!!! Zzzzz!!!!

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    • Cricket can put real power behind her paw when she wants to, and she truly believes that notebooks are wrong and should not be aloud to live. Computers are okay, but only because they are too high up for her to reach.

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  4. It’s exactly the same in our house! Newman, Barnaby and I (particularly me!) get increasingly excited when they’re trying to rest – we’re thinking about either walkies or dinner!

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  5. I have an alarm clock in my tummy that tells me EXACTLY when I should be fed… 7.30am, 12noon and 5pm (and then carrot treats all evening). So it doesn’t matter what my friend’n’feeder is doing, I am relentless about letting her know that the alarm has gone off and it’s time for food 🙂

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  6. LOL! That’s how it is with my doggies when I try to nap. Ruby or Penny wake me up first, followed by Bear and Jeffrey! Love the pics of your doggies. They are just too sweet!

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  7. Akane, my oldest dog, is a big fan of getting me up in the morning when she’s ready. I haven’t been able to sleep in past about 6:30 for years. Fortunately, she settles in the afternoons, so I can nap on weekends.

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  8. Really good one, Rachel!! Yes, the Afternoon Nap is an endurance test for me, too…high drama always punctuated by the appearance of the Evil Mailman or God forbid, the UPS Man who now gets to the bottom of our front steps, stops, looks at Spike and literally throws the package up to the front door from the bottom of the steps (which is fine as long as it is clothes and not cocktail glasses). 🙂

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    • Thank you! I think mailmen and mailwomen the world over breathed a sigh of relief when we moved into our new apartment, with the mailbox downstairs and no view of the crazy Cricket throwing herself against the door upstairs.

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  9. Hahaha this was too funny to read!

    Usually if I want a nap, both dogs will come and snuggle and fall asleep with me – I didn’t realise how lucky I was!! 😉

    Both butt or paw at books, notebooks, and all other things that take up my attention though! 😛

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  10. Too funny! They obviously don’t have enough to do — or have figured out that YOU need to be entertaining THEM. LOL.

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  11. Playing with my “daughter”, Gracie, your post happen to come to mind. Truly funny.
    No matter what their age.. they always seem to remain young at heart.

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  12. Ha ha, another way that dogs and kids are alike! Have you tried a hard half-hour ball session or jog outside before your power nap? Wear those puppies out!

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  13. They really are such cute, cute puppies! It (almost) makes me want to get a sibling for Sadie….almost. 🙂

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  14. Love your story……my little one is “Ellie” …little white maltese….and I can so identify with the paws! Are your babies maltese?

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  15. You had me laughing out loud. Your girls are too funny!

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  16. Run A Muck Ranch

    What a great face!

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  17. They are so cute and funny! It is very entertaining to read about their antics – but I’m sorry you didn’t get to nap much. I manage to nap when my grandson does and fortunately Max obliges by napping, too. (Perhaps if he had a playmate he would not be so cooperative.)

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    • I’m trying to remember if Cricket used to be a nap breaker when she was an only dog, and I don’t think she was. It IS all about having a playmate to spur her on to worse and worse behavior. Hmm.

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  18. Omg your Butterfly and Cricket are so precious! You are so lucky! I love your stories about them! I miss my dogs so much and reading about yours fills the holes in my heart from missing mine. Thank you for sharing!

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  19. Rachel – You do these stories of Cricket and Butterfly so beautifully. The photography is always right on target. Those of us that love dogs (and cats) have to smile as we read. Your stories are so relatable. Keep the stories coming.

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  20. Wow!
    A dog lover.
    I already know how to do that , but the writing coach thing would be really handle.
    Keep up the good work.
    I’ll be watching and learning.
    Thanks for noticing.

    Lucky old man

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  21. I love the smile on cricket in the scratchies picture. Today I had to work out in my yard before everything gets frozen. It was a beautiful day out and BabyGirl and Midnight were pleased of the all day event of being outside.ohh they ran and played and even helped me with the digging lol. We got in towards evening and were so wore out. We cleaned up and decided to to take a nap late. BabyGirl was sound asleep with her paws going a mile a minute and her tail wagging like crazy. She must have had a great time because she was dreaming about it. This has been a new thing of wagging her tail in her sleep . I am taking it as she is one happy old girl.

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    • Cricket’s favorite thing in the world is getting scratchies. She generously moves around to make each itchy spot more available for scratching so I don’t mistakenly waste my effort. I’ve never seen her wag her tail in her sleep, but she does the crazy squirrel-catching dance often. Butterfly barely moves. She looks likes she’s been running a marathon and she’s completely wiped out.

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  22. Great story-I know as soon as my foot hits the ground, my girls go crazy….

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  23. Congratulations. I have nominated you for The Versatile Blogger Award! http://joynpain2.wordpress.com/2013/10/22/my-awards-ceremony-continues/

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  24. It’s a good dog’s life

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  25. Those little guy’s can’t be away from you for long, and oh yes the pee maybe that to. I agree about taking more than half and hour nap, it does make you feel worse. 🙂
    Lovely post xx

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  26. Oh my goodness, they are so CUTE!! 😀 Although I’m partial to big dogs I love dogs in general. 😀 This is a nice post indeed.

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  27. I love nap time and so does Jack. 🙂 I think that Cricket and Butterfly wouldn’t know what to do with me because when I sleep, it is the sleep of the dead. I have no idea how Jack makes out during sleepy time, I guess he doesn’t mind because he loves sleeping with me. I hope that you still get some sleep despite your two. 🙂

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  28. Oh dear – hiding to nowhere there 😉 On the rare chances we get to take an afternoon nap the poor hounds are banished downstairs… The cats come and go but they aren’t so interested until supper time comes…

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  29. Hi Rachel! Thanks for the like. I checked out your blog, and WOW your fur babies are too adorable (and I love the way you write about them)..! You are one lucky mommy. ❤️

    Followed you, BTW. Hope you can follow me back too!
    http://erikadjesus.wordpress.com

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  30. Oh my, when I read this entry I could totally envision the bed scene because that is almost exactly what happens when Diego, Luz Maria and I have our nap time. I’m so happy that I am not the only one who has mischievous little imps sharing the bed. 🙂

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  31. That top picture is the cutest I’ve seen of them yet!

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  32. After reading your post about napping and two dogs, I realize we have SO MUCH IN COMMON! I probably should have stuck with smaller dogs! You should see us…

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    • I figure, as long as the bed is big enough, there’s no problem. I used to have a forty five pound dog who would drape herself diagonally across the bed, making sure to immobilize my legs in the process. Cozy.

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  33. I love an afternoon nap with all four of my dogs. It makes me laugh seeing them jockeying for position. Their snoring is so peaceful.

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    • I love Butterfly’s snore, but it only comes out every once in a while. If I wake up before she does, I have to watch carefully for the rise and fall of her breath, just to make sure she’s okay.

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  34. I put all the Wieners in their bedroom( my art studio/ dining room/ whatever I decide it will be this year) and tell them to shut up. Then we go upstairs to nap. Then a Franny whine. Get Franny, haul her ass up, she demands to sleep with my husband. Settle in. Then a soulful groan. Fritz needs to pee. Down we go. Back up. Nap blown, decide to read. Then a sharp yap. Another. Another. Another. Throw book down, go downstairs, let Mokie in living room to sleep in her privileged place on couch. Walk past others looking resentful, glare fiercely, order them to just live with it. Throw in treats to soften blow. Back up the stairs. Hubby and Franny snoring different tandem. Hate on them both. Bright side: don’t need to exercise today!

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  35. Our “cricket” is Rudy. He’s a schnoodle who is absolutely convinced that we are the help in the castle in which he lives. And we love it!

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  36. I love napping in a puppy pile! But they do tend to become….less than restful. You’ve described it well!

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    • Thank you. Right now the girls are in full sleep mode in their own beds, but if I dared to move from the computer they would be convinced my only goal in life could be to take them outside. Which, of course, it should be.

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  37. This post makes me want a dog more than ever. My husband is in “waiting to be convinced” mode. Thanks for visiting my blog and for the like.

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  38. Thank you so much for visiting my blog, we to are a dog family, and a cat family – oh, and a chicken family, with all these animals we just have 1 motto -” we don’t eat family”, thankfully they listen and all get on well together.

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  39. Haha! I know the feeling.

    Reply

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