Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Dog. (A Rant)

I typically don’t enjoy unfolding my dirty laundry on a blog … but considering this morning started out with a bit of an emotional bang, I need a place to put my thoughts, and I’m still peeved with husband and don't think I can talk to him right now without exploding into frustrated tears.

When I started my second job at the radio, I started taking my showers the night before so I could get up at 5:30 the next morning to walk the dog, wash off her muddy paws, feed her breakfast, feed myself breakfast, start my car, finish getting ready for the office … and go to work. Come home at 5pm, walk the dog, wash her muddy paws, feed her dinner, feed myself dinner, play with the dog, take the dog out, go to the gym …etc etc etc. At some point, I started noticing that I was walking the dog twice in one day. Husband however, rolls out of bed at 6:45 and goes to work at 7. Comes home at 9pm. Wait a second … he might not be home in time to walk her for the evening, but he definitely has time in the morning! It doesn’t take him nearly as long to get ready for work as it takes me … so we agreed, it made more sense for him to walk the dog in the morning. But of course … his definition of walk the dog is a 10 minute power walk around the parking lot. Taryn’s definition of a walk = 30 min minimum … because she’s got endless energy and I’d hate for her to turn any extra energy to destructive behaviors while both of us are away at either job. But I’m also not going to complain if at the very least … he makes an effort to walk the dog.

We made the official arrangement of husband walking the dog in the morning before he goes to work … oh, I want to say 36 hours ago?

When my alarm goes off at 6:45 this morning, I notice Bristol still in her crate … and the shower is still running. At 6:53, she’s still in her crate. So I push open the bathroom door and ask husband if he was planning on being a little late to work since the dog still hasn’t been walked? Or even taken out to go to the bathroom?
Husband: “What are you talking about?”
Me: “We agreed that you were going to walk the dog in the morning? So are you telling me that I should have gotten up 90 minutes ago to walk the dog?”
Husband: “Well .. yeah … because I don’t have time.”

And that last statement pissed me off.
He’s going to tell the girl that went to college full time, balanced 25-30 hours as waitress, was riding and training a horse 4 days a week, getting up for swim practice at 5AM Mon-Fri, was an editor for the school newspaper and the principal flute and piccolo for both the wind ensemble and orchestra …. That he just doesn’t have time to walk the dog in the morning? Somehow, I made at least 80 hours of activities happen. Maybe it meant I had to stay a little later after classes to study, or get up a little earlier on weekends to squeeze in a training session so I still had time to do the other things I had to do … but “I don’t’ have time” was absolutely not a phrase in my repertoire.

And then I started realizing that I’ve never seen him have any sense of urgency to do anything if it didn’t involve 1) The Boston Red Sox … or 2) The New England Patriots.

I’m the one that scoured the Eastern seaboard for a breeder.
I picked her out based on some of the research I’d done.
Figured out an itinerary with which we could pick her up.
I take her to all of her vet appointments.
I’m the one that cleans her ears out weekly and trims her nails on a regular basis.
I scheduled her puppy training.
I take her for twice daily 2 mile walks.
I make the appointments for her grooming.
I took one of my evenings off and scheduled her for an Intro to Agility course because she enjoyed the tire jump, tunnel and weave poles so much.
And I’m also the one that takes her out and feeds her on a regular basis.

Why is it that I’m the only one making Bristol a priority?  Matter of fact, when we were thinking about getting a Boxer? I was the one looking at rescue groups and researching the breed.

 I feel like Drew wants the dog … but none of the work or the responsibility. I have yet to see him take an actual interest in the dog. If he wanted to be part of her training, all it takes is him making an appointment for her to go to a Saturday evening or Sunday morning/afternoon training session. Or even telling me he wants to continue working with her on say, not jumping on people, are there any tips I learned in obedience? He rarely takes her out “on time” … she’ll start wandering aimlessly, which is generally a sign that she needs to go out … but he’s still glued to the TV. Or he decides that he needs to pee first.
And yesterday?
Bristol peed on the rug in the bathroom.
And I crossed my arms, stared at husband on the couch watching ESPN … and I took her out. And then cleaned the rug.

I’m pissed off that this dog is 100% mine under the delusion that Drew was on board and was going to help me out.

Which is why this morning upset me so much.
I get up early for Bristol because I make her a priority. Now that I've absolutely realized that she's my responsibility for the most part, I won't make it such a big deal. But don't tell me you're going to help out and then forget about it. Walking the dog in the morning when she's going to be alone for 8 hours is pretty important.
And unfortunately, because I thought he was taking the dog for a walk like we agreed ... I didn't get up early enough to walk her, either.

Drew whines that we don’t ever have food in the house … but he’s not usually home in time to eat dinner, and then he refuses my leftovers and nine times out of 10, will eat a bag of chips instead of say, the pot roast. Or Chicken Dijon. Or the kielbasa. Or even the shirt steak that I made the night before.
Which is why tonight? I’m making a pesto veggie pizza with wheat crust. Because it’s what I like, and he won’t eat what I make anyway.
Tomorrow? I’m doing a vanilla bean/coconut crusted swordfish. He’s allergic to seafood: but again, I enjoy sword … and he doesn’t eat my leftovers anyway.

I feel like I need a good cry.
And I can’t believe I actually have to repeat all of this to him later tonight … so he understands exactly why I’m getting up at 5:30 in the morning to walk the dog. I don’t want him to walk the dog because I was so pissed at him today; I want him to walk the dog because he knows it has to be done, and not half-ass.

It would be really nice if he could light a fire under his own ass, realize he's being a jerk ... and just do the things that need to be done.


  1. Oh, I feel your pain. Truly. Husband not pitching in around here was a big conflict for a while. I don't know what to suggest because it sounds like your husband can be a pretty passive guy. So if you spoke of (hypothetically) getting rid of the dog (which I know you wouldn't do), he might not give you the reaction you want and then things are worse.
    I've had hours of emotional talk with my husband. I told him how I felt that he was forcing me to do everything and be someone I'm not. Maybe it feels as if he doesn't think your job is as valuable as his, so you have to be the one to cut time out to take care of things? I've definitely had that talk, too.
    But, upon review, I see that you did not ask for advice so I won't continue. I will say that I have to constantly remind my husband of the things he'd say he'd do. Con-stant-ly. I also try to leave as much emotion out of our talks as I can manage, so he doesn't think that I'm just being an "emotional woman". This is all very common with men, and especially so with military men.
    And thanks for sharing. You did it in the right way, too. You weren't too hard on him, but you gave the facts. Chin up when you're done with your cry. The first year is always the hardest, right? (I'll let you know when I'm done with mine, right after a deployment starts, too).

  2. I totally feel you on this one. DH is exactly the same. I have to beg him to abide by the rules so that Brownie doesn't mess up. Its not her fault she can't reach the door handle and yet he lets her go pee in the house. I had enough and told him that this is our dog. Not mine when she needs to be feed, washed, taken to the vet, etc. and not his when he wants to play with her (which I will say I'm grateful for). But at times, I can't be there all the time to be for him and the dog, he needs to put an effort.
    Like you, I make the dinner, I clean, i food shop, I do laundry and when I come home late at night I get, "hey babe, what are you making for dinner?". I just want to yell. Now I think he does it just to piss me off.
    Sorry this is how your morning started. Hopefully it'll get better and he'll listen to you and understand you.

  3. I really feel your pain. Jake is the exact same way (about the dog at least). He never takes them out unless I say "babe they need to go out." We come home from being out, he bypasses the crates and ignores them. I go get them and walk them. I make sure they have food and water. It's always like that and probably will always be like that. I have managed to get Jake to pick up poop outside. But seriously it it our job, I swear.