I've been deserted by (wo)man's best friend

May 11, 2012 Carolyn B. Tyler, Starr Writer

I've been deserted. Deserted by (wo)man's best friend -- my dogs.

With three Boston Terriers, they operate as a pack, and apparently I am not the leader of the pack. Lately, on occasion, they choose each other's company over mine.

The regular routine for several years has been for the senior dog to sleep at the foot of my bed while the other two are kenneled for the night.

Since Scout died last summer, Rita has held senior-status and seemed happy with the arrangement.

When friend and neighbor Dometrio comes over around 8 p.m. nightly to put Samson and BonnieBlue in their separate cages, Rita has ignored the proceedings and snuggled into my covers.

Until recently.

Over the past few weeks, shortly before eight o'clock, she has left my side and retreated to Samson's kennel where she buries herself under the blankets and falls soundly asleep.

She settles in so quietly that Dometrio has overlooked her when he shut Sammy in.

The first time it happened, I panicked most of the night, not knowing why Rita wasn't in bed with me. I worried she had slipped out the front door and was locked out for the night or suffered some other mishap. I called for her, on and off, throughout the night.

Not until the wee hours of the morning, when I heard scratching on the kennel floor from the living room, did I figure out what happened.

Sure enough, when my caregiver arrived a few hours later and unlocked the two kennels, Rita emerged happily and stretched after a night snuggling with Sam.

That has happened several more times.

But she got her comeuppance Tuesday night when I locked them all in cages while I went to the school board meeting.

Normally, I would have put Rita and Sam in the big kennel for the evening while I was gone and Bonnie in the smaller kennel, alone.

But no, Sammy insisted on holing up with BonnieBlue, leaving Rita alone in the big kennel for the four hours.

Rita was all too happy to sleep at my feet that night.

And, somehow, I suspect Samson is a bit of a cad.

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