White Dog moved aside so Benson could lay his head in my lap and grunt his dissatisfaction. "What is it Big Boy," I asked as I cupped his ears and massaged his shoulders. He looked pointedly at the treat bag.
"Sweet Ben, you had treats just an hour ago. Dinner is not for a while yet."
He turned to thoroughly scan my side cart. I knew what he was looking for. "We finished my coffee at breakfast, Bud." Benson is the newest member of the White Dog Army Coffee Club, started by YoYoMa and which now includes Yo, Sachi, Zsofia, Nilla, and Benson. Our morning habit is to share my half cream half coffee morning elixir. Each of the four-legged members gets two sips (or gulps if they thrust their snooter in far enough) and this two-legger gets the rest. Nilla and Benson constantly rally to change the rules to all day access but to no avail.
He got up and made a circuit of the living room floor, snoofling in hopes of finding an escaped treat crumb. When he turned up nothing, he came back to sit before me, grunted again, then gave me his belly for a tummy rub.
"Better than a steak, right?" I teased as I scratched and rubbed and he closed his eyes in bliss. The work "steak" prompted him to raise his head and check that I wasn't making an incredible offer.
Zsofia came in and plopped down on the floor next to him, she began gnawing on a stick she had brought in with her. Benson rolled back over to see if it was worth asking to share. He did not get the chance; Zsofia picked up her stick and trotted back outside.
He excitedly got up and pushed his face against me as I lifted my water glass and took a huge swallow. "What some?" I offered. He sniffed and sighed again.
"Poor baby," I said and he stood front legs on my lap to reach my face. "It IS that time of year when it seems like all you can think about is food." He wagged and moved his face against my cheek. I furtively looked around the room...every other pup was napping.
Stealthily I moved my hand to the treat jar and without moving it unscrewed the lid. I shifted my hips ever so slightly so I could reach one of the training nuggets with my fingers. Slowly I brought my hand out and moved toward my boy. I formed my lips into a silent, "Just for you!"
There was a movement to my left. Bella was sitting and doing her begging dance. As I shifted my perspective I realized the entire White Dog Army was now lined up for an extra treat...including Benson who was still swallowing his "secret surprise."