Wednesday, May 8, 2013

An Innie or an Outie?

Growing up in a family of Innie’s, I couldn’t imagine that the Outie’s were anything but savages. Then I married one and my perspective began to change. At least enough to know that there is room in this world for both kinds of people: Those who let their dogs live inside and wear clothes and Halloween costumes, and those who keep their dogs outside in kennels. What did you think I meant?

This Great Divide came to mind when I recently finished writing a book. It’s about an ancient immortal warrior and the clan he protects from the outside world. There’s murder, mayhem, and culture clashes, not to mention that immortal bachelor’s first almost girlfriend EVER. Right? But what feedback did I get? “Hey, why can’t the dog go inside the immortal warrior’s cabin?” We’re talking about a guy who won’t even have a toilet inside. He’s been around since the beginning, he’s kind of stuck in his ways, you know? And the dog is gross. Think of a cross between a pack of hyenas, wolves, and Beagles.

Dear Hubby once gave me a Golden Retriever puppy about 36 hours before we moved cross country. That was an adventurous trip. Max soon had his place of honor in our brand new little house on the prairie. I wasn’t having any of that Outie blasphemy. My world was Max’s world. Yeah, I was one of those kinds of pet people. Thing was, Max’s inside domain became smaller and smaller as Max got bigger and bigger. Why? He ate everything. I’m talking windowsills, leashes, collars, and anything he could get his teeth on. Max could chew a hole through a wall, the ground, bring it. He could not be trusted. It didn’t much matter whether he was inside or out anyway, because he’d jump through the window if he got in a hurry to be in the other place. A closed window, you know the kind, full of glass. 

Turned out that the Golden Retriever was just a gateway dog, you know the drill, the little woman’s pet so that Dear Hubby could bring on the hunting dogs. Bird dogs are a force of nature, a wonder of perpetual motion. They’re a joy to behold when they’re going about their reason for existing. Namely hunting something. Ours usually hunted grasshoppers or tennis balls. Try to pet one? Good luck with that. It would confuse our dogs. They’d jump back and stare at your hand. “Whataya got? Ooooooh, throw it! I’m bouncing in place waiting, throw it?” When it turned out to be just your hand they’d get confused and enthusiastically check your hair for grasshoppers.  I’d managed to keep Max – despite his predilection for destruction – an indoor dog. The bird dogs were like inviting tiny, hairy, tornadoes into your abode.
Out they went, into a lovely little kennel, except when it was inclement or hot. Then I couldn’t bear it and would let them into the air-conditioned laundry room, shut the door, and just listen to them jump and knock into things. Drove Dear Hubby nuts, but hey, I’m an Innie, you know?

Then the beagle showed up. Beagle puppies have these eyes, you know the kind? The kind that Mother Nature puts on the faces of those most likely to be assassinated, if you knew what they’d do to you once they grew up. Oh, I’m just kidding. Don’t assassinate cute stuff. It’s bad karma. Cute little beagle was too tiny and helpless for the kennel. He didn’t know any better than to wet on the drapes/wall/couch/purse/power outlets/insert any noun here. He bit everyone too, just that kind of dog that stares at you and doesn’t like the look in your eye – or maybe he just didn’t like eyes because he bit everyone. He got big enough to go live in kennel land the night he was big enough to climb on a bed, and make his business on a pillowcase next to a sleeping head.

Does this mean I became an Outie? No, just an indoor/outdoor hunting dog person. (It’s a thing, you live with a herd of hunting dogs and we’ll talk.) And I will say this for any working dogs, be it hunting dogs, or herding dogs, dogs with an occupation are the happiest dogs on earth. They radiate joy in every step, whether they’re hunting grasshoppers, rooting through your purse, or doing their business on your bed. So don’t judge my ancient immortal warrior for keeping his dogs outside, okay?

Are you an Innie, or an Outie? Do you think that the other kind are savages?


  1. Since marriage, our dogs have all been innies, and rather well behaved at that, but who cares what I think about the dogs? This blog is hilarious. And I'm quite infatuated with your first picture that threw me off the scent completely.

  2. ROFL!! I'm an innie, but I have this bad habit of adopting Outie cats. I'm waiting for Tiger to come back home and get love-bombed by Serena and me. As to the other question, if I had the body fat of the person in the first pic, I'd be a nudist.

    PS: Tiger just sauntered in.

  3. Jeff - Do they get to dress up for Halloween? I suppose there are varying degrees of Innies. I could go there, that is why it is a good thing I married an Outie. He is the voice of reason.

  4. Hi There, Aquablogger - I'm in desperate need of an Outie Cat. Mine went on Walkabout. As a matter of fact, please look at Tiger and say "Hey, Norm" and see if he responds? If he does, tell him to go home please?
    Luved the body-fat comment.

  5. Your post made me laugh and that's a very good way to start the morning! I'm a sucker for a cute face, wagging tail and great big eyes, so I'm an innie... not that I haven't had my furniture destroyed and the wallpaper chewed off the walls. Oh and the accident on the bed? Yeah...been there done that...

  6. AH! I"m an innie!

    My dog, without any planning on my part, also became my world. My child. The hairy little child that barked. He sleeps on my bed, but I"m not the only innie. My husband is obsessed with our dog. He's our first child.

    Great twist. Loved the article. I'm glad to see other people are innies as well!