Vive la Différence
It is an inescapable truth that The Princess and I are different.
I don’t mean in looks because in fact we have been told that we are quite similar to look at which to be honest I do not see. I am a little bigger, with my second coat I am more silver and she is blacker (which I take exception to), and sometimes even Beloved has had to look twice to see which one is walking towards her, something else I take exception to.
It is under the skin that we are different, our personalities are not at all the same. The Princess is ditzy. She never remembers anything from one moment to the next, works herself up to a panic within moments, is more inclined to be fearful and hates with a passion to be alone.
Me. I am not fearful. I am not trying to blow my own horn here it is the honest truth. The only times I feel uncomfortable are when Beloved or her beloved are cross with me for some reason, and that doesn’t happen very often because I am a very good Tibbie with no desire to be naughty. Otherwise I am not afraid.
When the big dogs run to me at the park I stand and watch them. The Princess will rush out with a quick bark and then run behind me! She is unsure about their intentions and can get afraid.
I am not expecting them to do anything more than gush ‘Hello’ before rushing away and they never do. If one is an awkward puppy and in danger of knocking me over a quick disciplinary grumble from me usually sets them on the right path of behaviour.
I love thunder. Really. Not being out in it you understand because thunder is usually accompanied by rain. But when it thunders I bark back. Beloved can get a little annoyed with me but I think it’s great fun and I always win because Thunder goes away.
I like being alone. I am hardly ever alone. The only time I have really been alone since we have had The Princess is when she was in the hospital for a couple of nights. That was amazing. I had Beloved to myself, the pick of all the beds and I wasn’t pestered all the time to play or answer this question or that question or having to deal with The Princess’s panic when Beloved went out.
These are all very obvious differences and the sorts of differences you find all around you. But we are different in ways that are more subtle and hard for me to understand and I am a very understanding, wise Tibbie so it must be very complicated.
One thing that drives me crazy is that The Princess is always going on about how she feels. Whenever we go to the dog park I sniff around, say hi to a couple of the gang, enjoy watching their games and don’t get too involved. I come home again and I’m ready for a drink and my nap.
The Princess however is always looking out for her particular friends. She likes to play with them, find out how they are doing and could spend ages just swapping ‘feelings’. Then all the way back she’s telling me all about them and what’s been happening and to be honest, I don’t always know them and I don’t really care too much if they had lamb or beef for dinner and how they felt when the dog next door barked at them.
Then there is our response to Beloved. We both love Beloved and her beloved. I know Beloved loves us, That is a fact that I am secure in. The Princess however is always agonizing about whether Beloved really loves us and having to seek her approval all the time.
Every time Beloved sits down The Princess needs to be on her lap. If Beloved doesn’t want her on her lap for some reason The Princess takes it as a personal slight and begins agonizing over what she might have done to have offended her. She goes back over the last few hours wondering what she did. She comes to me and anxiously asks my opinion.
Sometimes I reassure her and point out that I am not on her lap but am okay with it, sometimes I psych her up more and point out that she came in the house with muddy paws or I’ll think of something else that she’s done. On the whole thought that kind of teasing rebounds on me because then she does nothing more than lie near me fretting until I am driven crazy.
She is also energized by company. I enjoy going to the dog park and seeing the other dogs though none are close friends. As I’ve mentioned a lot, I enjoy watching the other dogs and occasionally hearing a story but when I leave the dog park I am looking forward to getting back to my soft bed and patch of sun and being by myself again.
The Princess however bounces back from the park full of energy and as soon as we get into the house she pounces. For her, it is playtime. She is so excited and energized by meeting her friends that as well as talking about it she wants to tear around the home and is not satisfied unless she includes me in her games. I indulge her for a few moments and then I retreat into my Zac-cave, underneath the coffee table in the lounge. This makes it plain to her that I have had it with playtime.
The most irritating thing about her is when she insists on taking the lead in everything. She wants to be ahead of me on the leash. She wants to get to the park first. She wants to get to the dogs first and yet, at the first sight of anything going wrong she’s straight back to me and expecting me to solve her problem.
Once she enticed another dog to play but he was much bigger than her and rather rough, so immediately she runs to me and expects me to ‘sort it out’. I wouldn’t care if she learnt from her mistakes, but she doesn’t. She does it all the time. The only no go area is my food. She once tried to get to my food first but I wasn’t having that. A dog has to draw the line somewhere, she hasn’t tried that one again.
She made me cross the other day. I can’t remember now what it was about, probably food. So I went into the lounge and lay down with my back to her. Would she leave me alone? Huh! She went on and on trying to find out what was wrong with me. Why wouldn’t I talk to her? What could she do to make it right? What was I feeling? Feeling? I was feeling annoyed that she wouldn’t leave me alone! The result was thatI became even more irritated. In the end her pushy behaviour caused more annoyance than the original disagreement. If only she’d left it alone I would have slept off the annoyance in a few minutes.
Just sometimes I like quiet. I like to think. I may be wondering what to write in my next blog or I might just be daydreaming, but The Princess always wants to know what is going on. If I wander into the garden she has to come to and wants to know where I’m going. Perhaps I’m just wandering. I may not have a destination I’m just enjoying the outdoors (it doesn’t happen very often because I am very much an indoor dog).
The Princess however doesn’t seem to like silence. She needs to know everything. She likes to know where I am going, what I am seeing and what I am thinking! I have to admit sometimes I am not really thinking. I might be contemplating a blade of grass with no particular aim in mind but The Princess seems to think that everything should have a ‘feeling’ attached. I usually tell her I’m feeling pretty annoyed that she’s butting in on my quiet time.
I wish I could say that it shut her up or that she has learnt to allow me my quiet moments, but The Princess has a short memory and is doomed to repeat these actions over and over again. And I am doomed to suffer them!
I don’t want you to think that we fight or fall out. We don’t. Our disagreements are more along the lines of one of us getting to the cushion near the sofa rather than the one near the desk or getting onto Beloved’s lap first. Sometimes I feel The Princess gets a bigger treat but as my tummy is a never-able-to-be-filled hole, that could just be my imagination.
I don’t want to give you the impression that I don’t like Zena either. She is my niece and she was gorgeous as a puppy.
It is good to have company – sometimes.
It is good to be able to play – sometimes.
But I am a self contained Tibbie who likes his moments of peace and quiet.
I am a Tibbie who enjoys sitting at the window watching the grass grow and the birds feed.
I am a Tibbie who enjoys contemplation.
And The Princess is different. She likes to chatter. She is uncomfortable with too much quiet and she likes to fill those moments with noise. She will chatter about things that I am not interested in and about dogs I don’t know. She will chatter about things she chattered about yesterday and the day before until I know it by heart. Sometimes that is a little difficult for me.
Perhaps that is good. Perhaps if I lived with another Tibetan who was like myself we would be too quiet. The Princess might irritate me at times but she does get me playing and that can be fun and it might be healthy for me.
Another good thing about her is that she is always in a happy mood. Always ready to wag her tail and do things and she never sulks or is depressed. That is nice to live with. She is very good natured.
If The Princess lived with a Tibbie who was as bouncy as she was and not brave and calm like me it could make her even more nervous and silly.
So on the whole we are good for each other. We are a good balance and we are united in many things.
We both love Beloved.
We both like to please Beloved.
We both enjoy our comforts and although The Princess has a tummy which can be filled, we both love chicken.
Even better, The Princess does not like sausage so whenever we are given a little piece she leaves her bit for me, she does that with her carrots and apples as well. So she is definitely not all bad.
Well we are home from our walk now. The Princess is quiet so I will take up my position under the coffee table and have my morning nap before she wakes up and wants something.