Toaster has one big attitude! He was definitely born with it, and was taught how to use it “properly.”
Our childhood dachshund, Alex, was quite the charismatic guy. He kept everyone wrapped around his little paws. I’m pretty sure he had us trained. He owned the entire household and had to keep to an extremely tight schedule. Keeping a standard poodle in line was also a huge job among many, many more jobs, but it was the most important task of the day. I have to tell you, as he got older, things got more strict.
Fast forward a few years, my husband and I got this cute little red hair dachshund, Toaster! We thought he might loosen up Alex a bit and success! Alex became more playful and wanted to teach this new guy all the ropes. Whether Toaster liked it or not, he was in “school” for the next six months!
Alex was ten years old at the time. Six short months later he died. Young for a dachshund, but he had medical problem after medical problem. Heart problems consumed most of his life. I’d have to say he was the best little guy ever, even though when I was younger he totally used me for my bed location and services I could provide at night. I was basically his servant.
That was our relationship. Alex had me trained. I took him out in the middle of the night, several times if he so pleased, pet him, and made sure he was nothing but comfortable. You know how dachshunds sleep…extra close leaving no room for anyone else. It was a serious battle every night for room. Most nights I was pushed so far on the edge of the bed I was basically sleeping on my nightstand. The worst part is you wake up and don’t even know when or how it happened! I have found most dachshunds can never have enough room.
During the day, though, Alex was a totally different story. We weren’t friends. If I just walked too close, he’d snap at me. If I looked at him wrong, he had a little attitude. If I tried to pet him, he’d growl. I couldn’t win. His truest love was my twin sister Courtney. He would have probably slept in her bed if she didn’t sleep in the basement so far away from society. How can a dachshund keep an eye on things with so much seclusion? Such an inconvenience. So needless to say, I was just used and abused by this little 20-pound dachshund!
Alex was one of a kind dachshund! He’d wake and the day began. Go outside and sniff the perimeter of the fence to make sure nothing weird happened during the night, go inside and beg for a snack, make sure the poodle is in line, and always keep one eye open keeping track of all the exits. Nap lightly all day, keep track of the poodle, beg for dinner and get ready for bed. Wake and repeat! Definitely not a go with the flow kind of guy.
Now that you know Alex was extremely regimented, Toaster was his little pupil. So much to learn with so little time. I think with Alex having heart problems; he instinctively knew he’d be passing sooner than later. Cramming lesson after lesson in with Toaster was his goal. He took him under his wings and taught him everything he knew, slowly turning Toaster’s innocent personality into a little boss doggy. He was next in line for the throne, and he needed to know how to run this little kingdom. I certainly couldn’t get Toaster to even learn to sit while he hung onto every word Alex told him.
Some things he learned: They’d steal from each other. The moves kept getting more intricate and well thought out. You want something in this dog eat dog world; you figure out a way to get it being a bone or squeaky toy. It was funny to see their new moves. Quite creative. And that standard poodle. Keep it in line and beat it up if you have too. Just make sure he knows who is boss. He may be a big dog, but he was not to make decisions.
The things Alex taught Toaster…some were questionable. Like if you’re out and about and a large dog comes over to say hi, immediately snap at his face, fall onto your back and start yelping. Do it so fast that the other dog’s owner thinks their dog hurt the poor little dachshund when he, in fact, was the instigator in the first place! Alex was not fond of other dogs, and Toaster has followed in his footsteps. It’s rough having visitors. It took me a bit to figure out what was happening, but once I figured out his sneaky moves, I just had to laugh. The horror on the other dog owner’s face. All the unnecessary apologies. I should have been the one apologizing.
Another big daily must, ask for dinner every night. We make chicken for them every night, and if we were to miss a meal, or make it late for that matter, he’d go ballistic. It’s not like he’d starve. The dog food was always out, but who wants to eat that? Might as well starve. So get your owner and bring them to the refrigerator and bark, bark, bark. Toaster’s personality is almost just like Alex’s. He definitely got an A+ on his report card!
Toaster had about six months with Alex before he passed. It wasn’t all work and no play in the slightest. They had the best play times together. They always took turns “beating” each other up. Hours would go by playing. They were the best of friends!
Toaster is the epitome of Alex. They’re definitely not the same dachshund, but their mannerisms and attitudes are hard to tell apart. Toaster took on the role as the boss of the house, and I just know Alex would be proud. Now that Toaster is getting older, I can tell the rules are getting stricter too. After Alex’s passing, my parents got a new baby dachshund, Owen.
Owen is definitely not an Alpha dog and is a follower. He could really care less about the hierarchy in the household or rules for that matter. Toaster tried hard to teach him all the ropes, but Owen just didn’t care. He likes to snooze and wait for authority to tell him what to do. I see it as a blessing though. Two little boss doggies would have created chaos and fights galore. This way there is peace within the house. The one rule he picked up on…keep that standard poodle in line. That poodle just can’t catch a break, but he knows who’s boss. Even though he is probably ten times bigger than the little guys, he will submit to them every time.
I have so many more funny stories about the little red dachshund, Toaster, so stay tuned.
I’m sure many of you have great memories of your doggies too! They’re definitely my little loves, and couldn’t imagine my life without any of them!
Love is a four-legged word!
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