balivatn: (pic#587585)
( Sep. 5th, 2011 09:55 pm)
There are two dogs at my boss' house. One is a 14 year old mastiff named Winston, and the other is a 12 year old mini shepherd mix named Aimee. Winston used to go to classes for dog day, but he got too wound up and nearly bit a student. So he stays home now. He lives in the back yard with Aimee and the two wolves.

14 years is very very old for a mastiff. He can see, but he can't think very well. He gets very touchy if you try to grab his collar and will lunge at you with a mouthful of not very sharp teeth if you do so (which is still scary, even though his teeth are a lot duller than they used to be). He's big and strong, but mostly just wants attention. Which he gets by leaning into you hard enough to knock you off balance. Winston has a big sore on his leg that no one can seem to fix. It's been bandaged, he's been medicated, it still hasn't gone away. It hasn't gotten infected or spread, either. But the sore and his size and his unpredictable temper - and his appearance, especially when compared with the younger wolf and Aimee - mean that people don't really like him that much. He tends to get shoved to the side so people can pay attention to the wolves and to Aimee. He's frequently found laying in the little area between the paddock with the barn animals and the main yard - my boss is doing some construction around her place, and he needs to be confined while strangers are there. There have been some people that say it would just be better if he would give up and die already, but he shows every intention of lasting for at least another year or so.

Winston isn't the easiest dog to deal with, but I feel bad for him - maybe because I'm empathizing with him a bit much. I'm also big and ungainly. I'm friends with people who are much more outgoing and prettier than I am (Aimee is a FANTASTIC dog - she's very happy and friendly and playful and obedient. I love her to pieces). I sometimes have unpredictable reactions to things, and I react when I'm uncomfortable, which has tended to scare people. I don't have any open sores on my body, but I have lots of scars on my skin, and - as melodramatic as it sounds - I still have a big bleeding wound in my heart and on my soul which isn't healing, but at least isn't infected. People tolerate me because I know other people they want to know. Dan is much more like Aimee - he's popular with a lot more people, and people will generally be over to visit him. The people I interact with the most outside my coworkers are his girlfriends/partners/friends with benefits. It's not that I think they only talk to me because they want him, but it's just... hard.

At least I don't get locked up when people are around. Although there are some people who wouldn't exactly be sad if I keeled over. Unfortunately, I seem more inclined to stick around for another few years.
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