Freckles Led a “Prime Life”…Thanks to Alpo!

There was one particular summer that I suffered from severe sleep deprivation. Alpo canned dog food is to blame for my exhaustion! To be more specific, it’s the Prime Cuts in Gravy. (oh yeah, with lamb and rice to top off the delicacy) Since I would imagine your curiosity is piqued, I’ll try to explain the logic. (or the illogic?) I used to feed my dog, Freckles, dry dog food which seemed to suffice her needs. (or so I thought) On an ordinary grocery store jaunt, I was lured by the yummy picture on the can of Alpo. It was  marketing genius because I decided to buy it with Freckles in mind. I did not have a clue that I was laying the ground work for sleepless nights.

My typical feeding routine for Freckles was first thing in the morning and late in the afternoon. She “freaked out” when I served up the first helping of the Prime Cuts in Gravy. She was licking the divine feast so ferociously around the kitchen that her dog bowl ended up in the next room. There was nothing left in the bowl, but she was still wildly licking in hopes of finding just a little more of the savory gravy. The bowl remained her target long after the “Prime Cuts” were digested. I have never seen her tail wag as excitedly. Afterwards, she let out some hearty yelps. I was glad that the Alpo was a hit until…

Next scene: 5:00 A.M. the following morning- Freckles enthusiastically jumped up on my bed in hopes of waking me up in anticipation of another banquet. I could have sworn I heard her yelp out, “PRIME CUTS IN GRAVY!” I ever so slowly dragged myself out of bed and stumbled into the kitchen to prepare the heavenly Alpo feast. She was going berserk with such eagerness, as if to say,”I JUST LOVE IT!! I LOVE YOU FOR FEEDING ME THIS!! MY LIFE IS WORTH LIVING!! THANK YOU!!”

Next scene: It’s 4:30 A.M. on day two of the new topsy-turvy routine. Freckles races to my bed to wake me up yet again for the anticipated prime cuts in gravy banquet yet again. When I came home late in the afternoon, she was anxiously waiting for her afternoon feeding. I could see her through the glass door flipping around like an acrobatic gymnast in her new utopian world of prime cuts in gravy. (oh yeah…and lamb and rice!)
Next scene…one day later: 3:00 A.M…..with its great regularity, the whole charade began once again. The justification is that pet lovers are simply conditioned to thinking about their animals’ needs. They are important assets to our overall family life and they are regarded with the same kind of unconditional, self-sacrificial love…and you want to please them…even if it means being a “walking zombie” because of it.

I know someone who owns quite a frisky, playful dog during the day. However, at bedtime, she becomes totally paralyzed. It is all a ploy to have his owner pick him up and carry him to bed. She then is required to place her head carefully on the pillow next to hers and to pull the covers over her.
I have another dog loving friend who owns seven dogs—two were purchased with forethought and five were strays. Macie, Stella, Missy, Molly, Page, Spot, Maddie are all mixed breed dogs—the best kind. She pampers each of them and invests time in their daily care and comfort. The dogs are all-consuming in their needs. They run the household and can either choose to sleep in the house or in the air conditioned shed her husband set up by running a drop cord to the main house to ensure their creature comforts.

Another friend has a beloved dog, Maggie, who has cancer. She goes to great lengths to provide comfort for her that includes yummy deli chicken chunks in the morning and in the evening she gets Tyson steak fingers cut up on top and microwaved. She and her husband also take her on a walk every day because she has come to expect it…to the point of demanding it, if she gets a hint it will not happen. She will make the evenings miserable by walking around, as she paces and barks until she gets her necessary walk.

As far as my sleep deprivation Alpo dilemma, I weighed the options. Since Freckles was in her latter years of life, I hated to deprive her of the pleasure it gave her. So… the only solution I could think of was that I would  have to go to bed earlier in anticipation of the early morning Alpo feasts.

I am comforted in knowing that Freckles was one happy canine leading a “PRIME LIFE.” And that makes it all okay. I’m now going to take a nap. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…

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About Hunter

Hunter has been living her dream of being an author after falling in love with the Nancy Drew Mysteries in the fourth grade. She has incorporated her love for words along with her psychology degree from Meredith College to create books that can be aids in healthy nourishment for the mind. She is the author of five children's books, a photography book and a novel. She has been a human interest columnist for The Charlotte Observer (2001-2005) as well. She was the recipient of the "50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading" by The Author's Show, the Meredith College Career Achievement Alumnae Award and the Excellence in Creative Writing Award by the General Federation of Women’s Clubs. She is a public speaker and teaches a writing camp for kids called Writer's Cramp Camp. (The animated art on this blog is provided by http://www.appleanimation.com)
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