White Dog walked gingerly around CA Stormer; in fact every pup was tiptoeing when they had to be near or avoiding him altogether. It was apparent that our sometimes cranky old man had awakened on the wrong side of the bed.
It was too cold outside. His siblings were in the way. He could not get comfortable. He wanted breakfast...now!
Mostly he wanted to be closer to Steve than was possible. Even lying across Steve's feet in the office, pressed against his legs, Stormer complained when Steve shifted. OR dog forbid, when one of the others came up along Steve's side asking for attention.
When Steve got up to make breakfasts for the White Dog Army, CA, instead of being overjoyed, stood in the doorway and cried because his dad had "abandoned" him. From the bedroom it was like doppler tracking of Steve's movements. Dad would walk across the kitchen and the crying would get softer as Stormer moved along moaning; when Steve went to the bathroom the separation song was loud and nearby.
After breakfast, CA followed Steve into the bedroom and plopped down in the doorway and cried as we dressed and greeted the day. "What is with our boy?" I asked. "Just angst," Steve replied. "He ate all of his breakfast and I checked him out; he has no pains. His arthritis even seems pretty limber."
"He is going to be impossible when you leave for work."
On the way out, Steve took extra time to reassure his boy that he would be home and that it would be a good day. Stormer followed him to the front door and stood dejectedly as the door shut in his face and the car drove down the driveway. "It is all right, Buddy." I told him. "Come sit with me."
He did, plopped across one foot, grasping the other in his paws as he licked. Then he rested his head and fell asleep. I tried not to move and the others gave him plenty of space. He woke with the Army's Ode to the Mailman and huffed his way into the office.
I found him later stretched out soundly sleeping on his bed. Treat time made all well.