RSS Feed

The Battle Hymn of the Nap

 

Cricket is prone to fits of crazy digging. She’ll dig outside in the dirt, if she can, but most of the time she digs on the rug, on my bed, or under the couch. And there is a vocal accompaniment to what she’s doing with her paws. I would call it ululating, except that there’s a lack of musicality to Cricket’s version; her rhythms are chaotic, and her pitches unrecognizable. She sounds kind of like a high pitched car alarm on speed.

The crazy digger's butt.

The crazy digger’s butt.

Very often, her crazy attacks of digging are part of her preparation for bedtime. Cricket is like a toddler who is exhausted, but enraged that she has to go to bed. She loses her mind, racing around in circles, picking up toys and growling and crying. She doesn’t want to be overtaken by sleep; it’s an awful fate that she has to fight off like the monster it is.

She does the same things whether it is a daytime nap or a nighttime nap: she will either do a running jump up onto my bed from the doorway, or stand next to my bed and try to jump from a standstill, which usually takes five or six tries; when she’s finally up on the bed, she starts digging at the sheet, and crawling under the blanket to dig in the dark; the digging speeds up and the ululating kicks in, and then she starts to push the blanket around, creating a fort; and then, finally, she falls asleep, in her fort.

Cricket in her fort.

Cricket in her fort.

Butterfly has a different bedtime ritual, which requires me to chase her around the apartment for some period of time, and then pick her up from the floor, and carry her to her blanket on my bed. Sometimes she is very excited and hops around the apartment, sticking her tongue out and smiling at me. Other times she is more of a little princess, waiting to be lifted and carried to her throne.

Butterfly is very sleepy.

Butterfly is very sleepy.

Sometimes, when I pick Butterfly up for nap time, something about the slight squeeze around her middle makes her fart. Cricket’s farts are silent and stinky, but Butterfly’s farts are musical. It’s a bit like the sound of the shofar on Rosh Hashanah, or a kazoo, played staccato. Once, when I picked Butterfly up to carry her to my room, Cricket was walking ahead of us, and Butterfly made one of her musical farts. Cricket turned around and sniffed her own butt, to see if that’s where the fart came from.

"Which one of us farted, Mommy??"

“Which one of us farted, Mommy??”

When Butterfly is really tired, she just topples. She’ll walk down the hall to my room, alone, and plop down on the rug, to let me know that I have kept her up too late. There’s no running or jumping or raging at the dying of the light, there’s just motionlessness.

When Cricket is in a particularly dastardly mood, she sees Butterfly resting comfortably on my bed and starts scheming. She’ll run to the front door and start barking, as if something very important is going on and she needs all hands on deck. Butterfly, being a loyal sister, she shakes herself awake and rushes down the doggy stairs to help Cricket in her time of need. Within seconds, Cricket runs back into my room, jumps up on the bed, and stretches out on Butterfly’s blanket, leaving Butterfly stranded on the floor, because she doesn’t know how to climb back up the doggy steps.

"It's too scary, Mommy."

“It’s too scary, Mommy.”

If this had happened only once or twice, I would give Cricket the benefit of the doubt, but it happens on a regular basis. Butterfly just accepts her fate, and goes to sleep on the rug, one ear up, ready to respond to her sister’s next call to arms, while Cricket snuggles in for a long, comfortable nap, on the bed.

If only.

Butterfly’s dream.

Advertisements

About rachelmankowitz

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

81 responses »

  1. ramblingsofaperforatedmind

    My Boxi does her diggy-ing on my head sometimes. She also tries a stealth lick attack when I’m trying to sleep.

    Reply
  2. LOL ” shofar on rosh hoshannah”

    Reply
  3. My dog does that too .Its funny when we tell him to dig and he does. Or he can be playing a game to get the rabbit ..What we do is he is on a blanket and we put our hand under the blankets and move around he goes after it with funny growls and he will lay on the bunny and dig . Like being lazy or squeeze the rabbit .;)

    Reply
  4. omg, so hilariously funny! (She sniffed her own butt, I’ve got tears running down my face at that image!) Maggie does the same as far as digging the bedding. She’s very enthusiastic about it, so much so that she flipped backwards off the bed the other day! She looked up very bewildered. lol

    Reply
  5. Somewhere on Facebook, I posted pictures of what our bed is supposed to look like when it’s made, and what it actually looks like when our Heeler, Peanut, has rearranged it to her liking. Funny thing is, if she sees me watching, she’ll stop and get off the bed. Spud, on the other hand, has to dig and nose at the covers until it’s just the way he wants it. And that sometimes entails lying down and getting up to try again multiple times. He ‘owns’ the chair in the living room, so I put a blanket up there that he can dig away at to his heart’s content. They are such funny creatures.

    Reply
  6. The beagle digs and digs in his bed before sleeps in it. If it gets on my nerves too badly, I’ll finally yell “THE SNAKES ARE GONE”. He looks at me indignantly, then flops down.

    Unfortunately, we can’t let them upstairs so they don’t sleep with us. The cats used to though and I had much the same kind of behavior with them jostling for who got to sleep next to me and scheming how to get the other one off the bed so they could hog it all.

    I loved reading what your pups were up to!

    Nancy

    Reply
  7. So cute. My doggies are diggers too. But only inside, never at the park or anywhere you’d expect. Just on the sofa, sometimes the pillows and the bed. Why do they do this? It cracks me up.

    Reply
    • I used to try and tell Cricket that the digging wasn’t getting her anywhere, but she refused to believe me, so I stopped trying to tell her. Maybe she’s trying to heat her bed?

      Reply
      • We joke that they are trying to arrange everything perfectly. The joke being that digging a sofa does nothing. But we speak in our dog voices “yes, yes, there, that goes there that’s perfect. Nope, wait there. Okay perfect.”

  8. What a ritua! You all (except Cricket) must be exhausted after.

    Reply
  9. Our Saint Bernard does the digging thing but a little differently. She will lay down on her side and do the digging motion. She can really go! Thank goodness she does it this way as her legs are very powerful! I don’t even want to imagine the destruction she could cause. You have the cutest dogs!!

    Reply
  10. I do that! I get everything “just so” and I call it “landscaping”. The 2 youngsters love to climb on up to the bed. After bed time, farts from them are mandatory, especially near human noses.

    Reply
  11. So funny and so familiar! Bumble loves to dig in the bedsheets too, and on the carpet, and…Loved it!

    Reply
  12. My dog also (more so as a puppy) can get manic at bedtime and “rage against the dying of the light.” She explodes with energy and I call it her “m c squared” mode.

    Reply
    • Cricket is eight years old. I am afraid she is not going to grow out of this.We went to the vet the other day and he said that, of course, Cricket must have calmed down by now. Nope. Not even a little.

      Reply
  13. Love this post. They are so cute. 😀

    Reply
  14. I’ve seen some of my own dogs scratching like mad on the floor, or on bed-clothes. But Chicki doesn’t do it. Maybe she’s worn out by her daily walks”’
    Great post. I’ve tweeted it. 🙂

    Reply
  15. Amazing how many of our dogs dis the furniture. Snowy digs on the sofa and the chair. Not in bed though. He usually sleeps with his head on my feet, which means I have to gently move him if I want to move, or he wakes up with a start and growls at my feet. At some point he’ll decide to get under the sheets, so he walks up the bed and paws at my Partner’s shoulder so we can lift up the sheet for him to crawl underneath and lie on my legs. And then he decides to get out and the whole thing starts all over again… What’s really funny is that it doesn’t disrupt our sleep.

    Reply
    • Cricket’s crazies always wake me up, but I think that’s her intention. If her first attempts don’t wake me up, she adds more vocalizing and gets her paws ready to scratch at me. If she can’t sleep, I shouldn’t be sleeping either, clearly.

      Reply
  16. Love the musical fart description. And the tongue on Butterfly! It’s almost as long as Pearl’s, and she’s about six times the size of your little princess!

    Reply
  17. momwithoutpaws says I am nesting when I do that. woof

    Reply
  18. Our dogs have to rough it outside. They each have a kennel but we’re not sure whether Lady is sleeping in her kennel of whether she has evicted Bilbo from his. I haven’t noticed any pre-sleep digging although when I tried to put Lady to bed last night, she went the other way…cheeky!

    Reply
  19. I sure look forward to your weekly doggie stories! Hugs to Cricket and Butterfly.

    Reply
  20. This was so very funny! I love Butterfly for her adorableness; but you have to love Cricket for her spirit. She is one smart cookie!

    Reply
  21. BabyGirl digs holes outside to lay in, Both dogs go to bed without me when I stay up late, Both dogs stay in bed after I get up. BabyGirl was upset this morning because she couldn’t lay on her back and wiggle because of the snow on the ground. Both dogs love to nest the blankets on the bed! Midnight is the culprit of the stinky toots! I don’t sleep well if there are no dogs in the bed!

    Reply
    • Cricket would love to dig holes in the back yard, but she is not allowed. I am a very very very mean mommy! I thought of getting her a sand box to dig in, but she would have moved all of the sand out of the box within minutes.

      Reply
  22. Maggie is a nester too, making sure her bed (or ours now) is just so before flopping down in a grunting heap.
    As for doggy farts, yes, very amusing (not) and she has the gall to look at us as if we’re the guilty smelly party!
    Wouldn’t have her any different though, bless her.

    Reply
  23. oh gosh! What funny pups!!… I loved reading about their naptime rituals, ok and the farts too… it appealed very much to my sense of humour!
    Hugs, Carrie & Pups x

    Reply
  24. Hello Ms. Rachel, thank you for visiting my little blog. Some of us dogs like to dig a lot, others not as much. I myself like to burrow all the way under the blankets.
    Miss Cricket and Miss Butterfly are very nice-looking dogs, almost as good-looking as I am.

    Reply
  25. Jack and Butterfly could be siblings; Jack sometimes gets all crazed and runs around like a loon before settling down and then there are other times when the little prince neds to be carried to the bed and tucked in, he does like the royal treatment. 😀

    Reply
  26. Help, I’m laughing and I can’t stop. Can you guess which part of your entry sparked this fit?

    Reply
  27. “Once, when I picked Butterfly up to carry her to my room, Cricket was walking ahead of us, and Butterfly made one of her musical farts. Cricket turned around and sniffed her own butt, to see if that’s where the fart came from.” I just read this to my wife at Starbucks, and coffee almost shot through her nose. Fantastic! John

    Reply
  28. I really like the way you write about your dogs. You bring out each of their personalities so well, so distinctively. And anyone who lives in a multi-animal home knows that each dog/cat does have its own personality. Anyway, your two dogs are so sweet.

    Reply
  29. Reblogged this on Bobbi's Blog and commented:
    Hilarious!

    Reply
  30. Our little rescue dog has that crazy, frantic digging right before he goes to bed at night, too! It’s hilarious.

    Reply
  31. So funny! Sounds like our house. Great post!

    Reply
  32. Hi Rachel,

    Would you allow us to use some or all of this in an upcoming issue of THE NEW BARKER?

    Anna Cooke Editor-In-Chief The New Barker 727.214.7453 http://www.thenewbarker.com The New Barker Facebook The New Barker Twitter The New Barker Blog

    Reply
  33. Our lives are so enriched by our dog companions. They are endless entertainment. My dogs love to see us laugh at them and will repeat what they doing to get another laugh. I enjoyed reading your post and the antics of Butterfly and Cricket.

    Reply
  34. Hi Rachel. Would you send me an email, please at anna@thenewbarker.com?

    Reply
  35. Bexley does the same kind of toddler temper tantrum before bed, but instead of the ululating, she does her play growl & might grumble-bark.

    Reply
  36. Wow one of the pictures looks like Bobo on my bed!!

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: