Adding another dog to the mix changes a Scottie. Just ask Mr. K. In the matter of one afternoon – the day we brought Heather home – he went from being the alpha dog, the king of the roost and the sole proprieter of Scottie Mom’s love and affection to the master of bowing out of the way to make room for the queen bee so she can get the loving that she wants, even if it means letting her beat your face with her tail. The drastic change was astounding.
Mr. K only attempted to regain his alpha status twice – both times on the very day we brought Heather home. He was shut down by an intervening Scottie Mom and he soon learned there was enough love to go around for the two of them. With that, he adjusted to life as a little brother and said goodbye to life as an only child. Sometimes I wonder what’s going on in that head of his and what exactly changed to make those ears go down and for him back away when Heather passes by. Scottie Dad, in his own way of showing concern for his little man, now hosts pep talks and “guy chats” when he comes home with Mr. K to boost his sense of self and to attempt balance between the masculine and the feminine reign. (Ironically, Heather leaves me the minute Scottie Dad starts talking and pushes Mr. K out of the way so she can have his attention instead.)
There are some days, however, we see glimpses of the “old Mr. K.” Take last night for example: he was sitting at the foot of the couch and I was stretched out on the other end. Heather decided it was time to join and hopped up next to Mr. K. Half in a slumber, Mr. K let out a soft growl and Heather stood there looking at me and wagging her tail. I called her over and hushed Mr. K. For a brief moment, Heather climbed onto my lap (a rarity – my girl likes her space). When she turned around to make herself comfortable, there was Mr. K, now sitting up, looking concerned and watching Heather take his favorite spot in Scottie Mom’s lap. This was obviously not okay with Mr. K but that’s never stopped Heather before!
Alas, Heather didn’t sit down and opted to go to her favorite spot at the foot of the couch instead. It was as if the two traded silent signals and agreed to switch places right away. You could almost see the relief in Mr. K’s eyes that Scottie Mom’s lap had not been defiled by another dog, even if that other dog was Heather. He marched over and nestled close. Within minutes, Mr. K was snoring and Heather was drifting off to sleep, too, but I had to laugh: what was that about? Did I just witness some super secret Scottie code? Did Heather just threaten Mr. K that she’d sit in my lap if he didn’t leave her spot? Was Mr. K really that jealous of the thought of another dog sitting in Scottie Mom’s lap? I suppose there are some thing about my Scotties I’ll never know…