grace in small dogs

These days Maude seems to have forgotten how to go up and down the stairs.  I taught her (or coaxed her) way back when I got her five years ago, but now we’re back to square one. Every time I take her outside I have to talk her into going down the stairs, and sometimes even that doesn’t work. She stands on the top step and paces back and forth, staring down at me.

I’m not overly concerned about this, since her behavior is normal otherwise, but I am a little worried. Things have been tough for me lately, especially work-wise, and some days Maude is one of the only things I can think of that makes me happy.  What would life be like without her?

My friend Helen Jane has been doing a series of posts on her site called Grace in Small Things. Every day she lists a few of the small things she really loves. Maude’s a pretty small thing, but she’s not the only good thing, so I’m going to make a list of my own.

1. The way Maude’s upper lip catches on her left canine tooth, making her look sort of snarly in an adorable quiet Chihuahua way.

2. Hummus with snap peas for dipping.

3. The swimming pool at the apartment building next door. My landlord owns those apartments, too, and told the people in my building that we could use the pool.
3a. A new swimsuit that fits.
3b. Drinking Lone Star while swimming.

4. Sushi from Whole Foods–spicy tuna and a rainbow roll–eaten at home while watching old episodes of South Park. Lots of wasabi.

5. Old episodes of South Park, all available online for free. I know they’ve been there for awhile, but I’ve just started to take advantage of that, and boy do I love it.

6. Mending vintage clothes to make them look better and fit just right. Finding vintage sandals that are lovely and comfortable.

7. The view of the Pennybacker Bridge while sitting right in the lake.

8. Watching B. watch Breaking Bad for the first time. That show is wonderful, and I love that he likes it almost as much as I do. Yes, almost, but I don’t know if anyone likes that show as much as I do.

9. Sitting outside with friends after the sun goes down.

10. Walking into my apartment when I get home from work. Looking around my beautiful living room with a big sigh of relief. Getting a happy greeting from Maude before trying to coax her down the stairs.

7 thoughts on “grace in small dogs

  1. It may not be that she’s forgotten how to go down stairs, it may be that it is now painful for her. Sophie hasn’t been going down stairs for several years now, I just carry her. It’s due to arthritis. You might ask the vet about giving her glucosamine. Of course, Sophie is quite old – I’ve had her 13 years & she was probably 2 when I got her from the pound. How old is Maude?

  2. I’ve got two mini-dachshunds. One can go up but not down stairs. The other won’t even try. Vet says it’s hard on their long little backs, so I should carry them anyway.

    They’re 13 and 11 years old now. And we’ve had them both since they were pups. Every time I start getting used to the idea that they’re not always going to be around, they go and have a stroke or something, and remind me that I’ve been taking them for granted. Bitches.

  3. My folks’ mini poodle is 13 now and she started refusing to go up the stairs when she got glaucoma at 8 or 9. Now she refuses to go down, too because of her arthritis.

    I went back and looked at when you got her and my folks’ poodle has the same joint issue so that could it, too. It could just be that she’s scared because she fell once.

    Good luck with her! I’m sure she’ll be fine.

  4. I became very excited when you mentioned that Southpark eps were free online. Unfortunately it seems that they can’t be viewed in Australia. Bummer.

    As for the steps thing, maybe she wants to be carried. Our very healthy cat (burmese) demands to be carried down when the steps are too hot or too cold. Ahh pets!

  5. My dog was so afraid of our front porch stairs and in tip top shape. We thought she was either crazy our our stairs were haunted. But one day, I got an electric shock when I touched her on the steps. Turns out through some additional detective work, there was an electric current through our top step that was shocking her every time she walked up the stairs. Still not good, but better than a scared puppy!

  6. Yes, sometimes theie little backs can get sensitive. Or maybe Maude saw a ghost up there? :) Hopefully not getting shocked everytime she goes to the top like that other poor poochie, ouch.

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