Birthday Boy

Greetings dear readers.

Recently our star celebrated his fifth birthday!  My how the time has flown.  Seems like only yesterday he was celebrating his second birthday and sneaking off to destroy a rope toy…

I must admit that I was a little worried about this birthday. Commando is in excellent health and general condition, and I’m often told that he still looks very young for his age.  But my concern was related to a quandary I’m sure everyone runs into at some point for birthdays or other special occasions. The question of what on earth to get that special someone as a gift.

Commando has no shortage of toys, in various forms.  So the question this time was more or less one of ‘what do you get the dog who has everything?’

This question remained up until the day before Commando’s birthday, when it was finally time to head for the large pet shop about 10 minutes’ drive away.  This store has proven most helpful in the past, so I was hopeful that if inspiration was to strike then it would likely strike there.

Fortunately, strike it did, and after some looking around the ideas started to come together.  In the end I left the shop with a new nylobone, always a must for Commando, as even though he still has a few of them, all be it in varying stages of destruction, he seems to enjoy being able to choose which bone will receive his attention, often varying his attack from bone to bone over the course of a day. 

A new squeaking Kong toy. These have always fared rather well against the sheer chewing power of Commando’s mighty jaws.  The only issue there was that I thought we had exhausted all of the variations.  Fortunately we found a new arrival in that section, a rather sturdy squeaking stick shaped toy. 

Another indestructible fish was also purchased.  Although I will admit here that I initially thought that it was different to the one he already has, but it turned out to be identical.  I did take a look at the full sized indestructible snake, but they really are some size and I wasn’t sure if Commando would like it.

But I think the purchase of the day, dear readers, was a very nice new bed.  Commando has a number of cushions around the house, some of varying designs, and one or two that are better suited to certain seasons.  He has only gone through a few main beds and the idea of getting him a new one was one of the few ideas I did have for his birthday.  But I must say that I wasn’t expecting to find one quite as impressive as the one we found.  It is kind of a traditional basket design, made of soft yet sturdy material, with heightened sides and a low front for easy entry.  Within this it also has a very soft cushion, which combined with the soft base makes for a very nice lying experience.

Photo 3Upon our return home Commando immediately spotted the items from the pet shop, and naturally guessing that they were for him, started jumping around enthusiastically.  He always seems to spot pet shop purchases, even if we try to conceal them, and I always feel a little bit guilty for taking them away from him.  But it wasn’t his birthday yet, so that was that…  But fortunately he didn’t have long to wait.

So, the following day rolled around.  On realizing that I was awake, Commando came over for his customary morning fuss and of course was given extra attention as well as a rendition of happy birthday from yours truly.  The day then started as it usually does, with spending, breakfast and then grooming.  Now, you might think that since it was his birthday Commando would like the day off.  But dear readers, as I’m sure you all recall, Commando loves his job, and so probably wouldn’t have been all that happy if his birthday had passed by without him getting the chance to do some guiding.  Plus it was our usual day for block walk, so I felt I should allow him to do what he loves.  So we suited up and embarked on our nice early morning block walk.  With me promising Commando, before we left, that he would get his presents when we returned home.

Despite having to execute an off curb obstacle manoeuvre in a very inopportune place, the walk went well.  We arrived at our gate, but then I heard my Mum calling over, asking if I would like a Bacon sandwich.  Now, dear readers, one of the effects of an early morning walk, aside from the wonderfully fresh air and lack of people and traffic, is the smell of people preparing breakfast, and it would seem that a number of people have bacon for breakfast, at least that’s the impression I get as Commando and I walk along streets with the smell of cooking bacon sometimes everywhere we turn.  Now as I’m sure we all know, food often smells at its best when we can’t have any, but on this day it seems that I had gotten lucky and spotting me entering our street at just the right time, my Mum had extended the offer  of a sandwich, and I wasn’t about to decline.  So I turned Commando around and we headed over to my parents.

Now, even though it was his birthday, unfortunately there was no sandwich for my boy.  But I did feel rather guilty for turning him around and delaying his opportunity to see his presents, so I promptly devoured the sandwich and returned home with Commando, and true to my word, went to retrieve his birthday presents.

Those of you who have read our Christmas posts will recall just how excitable Commando gets when I come back down the stairs with his gifts, and today was no exception.  His tail was wagging furiously and his nose was aimed towards the bag scanning for any identifying scents.  His excitement grew as I took the first item out of the bag…  His new nylobone.  Then came the squeaking stick toy, which had to have its packaging cut away before it could be fully enjoyed.  Then came the new fish, with Commando not appearing to mind one bit that he had an identical toy nearby.  But of course we weren’t done yet.  After a minute or two of playing with his new toys, I gathered them up to ensure he’d follow me, and then proceeded upstairs to show Commando his new bed.  I put the toys inside it and Commando promptly went in to investigate.  He seemed quite pleased, settling down into it and playing with his toys for a few minutes, before deciding that it most certainly wasn’t bed time yet and heading back down stairs, leaving me to recover the toys.  Only fair I suppose since I was the one who had put them there after all.

Since Commando had worked on his birthday it seemed only fair that he get to play too.  So a little later he and Lester embarked on their usual free run route.  Naturally, as always, Commando relished his play time, once again putting the run into free run.  He then spent the rest of the day relaxing, occasionally playing with one of his new toys to pass the time.

Eventually it was time for bed.  I expected that Commando would find his new bed rather comfortable, and this certainly proved to be the case.  He was obviously very relaxed and in a very deep sleep, especially in the middle of the night, when I heard some very loud snoring coming from Commandos direction.  Since there is no evidence of any roads being dug up overnight it clearly wasn’t a powerful drill at work in the small hours, although to be honest that’s what it sounded like!!!

Commando gives me so much every single day that I’m always eager when birthdays and Christmas role around to ensure that I try to get him really nice gifts.  I know that he’d love me and help me just as much if I didn’t, but there’s just no way I’ll ever do less than my best to find him gifts that he’ll enjoy, just to say thank you to him for all he does.

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