Guest Post: Little Kids and Their Big Accomplices

March 22, 2013 by Jennifer Carsen

Today’s guest post is courtesy of Marcela De Vivo, a freelance writer in the Los Angeles area. She has written on everything from health and beauty to travel, marketing, real estate, and technology.

Image By Mary Bloom / AKC, Inc.

We already had two furry kids when I brought my eldest home from the hospital. We had no idea how they would respond to the new baby, but it turns out that Lucas and Lola LOVED him. They loved him a little too much and wanted him to play with them even when he could barely crawl. But they were excellent nannies and by the time I had my next two kids, they were old pros at keeping the kids safe…and getting them into trouble.

These days, especially on rainy days, the house is little more than a blur of black fur and little feet and hands, and invariably, somewhere the sound of crashing, something smashing, and sometimes someone crying.

There are times I swear it’s Lucas who’s instigating the chase. He gets this glint in his eye and I know to move all my breakables (what’s left of them) up into the study and close the door.

One day my husband came home before I had a time to put all the picture frames and vases back to their original locations. He went to his study to drop off his briefcase, as he usually does. Opening the door, he stopped short on the threshold, and drily observed to me that he didn’t realize that we had a “ceramics wing” and asked whether or not I was charging an entrance fee.

At this point, if I don’t hear a smashing, crashing sound somewhere in the vicinity of the house, I get worried. Once, I was washing dishes and suddenly became aware that it was just entirely too quiet. I couldn’t hear the dogs, or the kids, so I knew they had gotten into some kind of trouble.

I went to the living room. Nothing. I looked out in the backyard. Not a hair to be seen. I went upstairs to each of the kids’ rooms. Not a creature was stirring. Now getting alarmed, I went to the master bedroom…and heard the sound of water running.

I rounded the corner to the master bath to find my bathroom floor absolutely flooded with bubbles and water, three sopping wet children in various states of undress, and two miserable looking dogs, one half in the tub with two kids pushing feverishly at his feet, and the other one sitting resignedly with her eyebrow cocked up at me, as if to say, “now would be a good time to stop this game.”

The kids were adamant that the dogs had asked for a bath, and that a bubble bath would make them all “shiny” like the “dog on TV.”

Sometimes I wonder what if our house is maybe a little too full.

But there’s nothing like seeing such big dogs (no matter how soft at heart) being protective of a gaggle of tiny tots. When my oldest got the flu (probably not helped by being soaking wet from his dog washing experience), we had to separate him from his siblings and constant companions because we were worried about exposing his siblings, especially my youngest who was just a toddler at the time, to this virus.

The only company he had was me (of course) and Lucas and Lola. The sight of two giant dogs cuddled up around him, dwarfing the feverish little boy, soothed my fears that he was going to be lonely in isolation.

Or when the kids were playing out front, and some strange car pulled up alongside the curb (it’s a small neighborhood—we know everyone who comes and goes). Lucas and Lola got right in front of the kids, hackles up and growling. I’ve never seen them behave like that before, so I went out to investigate.

Turns out the poor guy was just trying to parallel park and visit a friend down the street, but the sight of two massive, angry dogs was more than enough to warn him off! He ended up parking two streets over, which I found out the next time I ran into the neighbor that he was trying to visit. He was as surprised as I was that L & L would be so protective!

So even with all the crazy shenanigans (and endless cleaning that I end up doing) and broken heirlooms and destroyed carpets, I can’t imagine a better full house than mine.

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