White Dog stood behind the pack. That was my first clue I was being set up. It had been a long day of staying close together, sort of numb, and seeking colorless comfort in each other. Now it was treat time.
Every pup lined up in perfect order awaiting their jerky. Everyone, that is, except Sachi. The Little Man sprang from rest across the room, catapulted over Nilla and pushed his way to the front of the line...all the while leaping up and paddling his arms to get my attention.
"No, that is NOT how we ask for treats," I reminded him. His hysterics almost cow-tipped Stormer. "Sachi, STOP!" He did a zoomie around the coffee table and wiggled past Bella and Pearl as he growled a low demand.
"OK, you are coming up here to sit with me while every other pup gets his or her treat...and finishes...BEFORE you get yours," I told him.
He twisted around to face me and tried smothering my face in kisses. I tucked him under my arm and held him against my hip. "I love you, too. But you are last."
I unscrewed the treat jar, now placed against my OTHER hip since I was short-handed. The WDA leaned forward expectantly. Sachi squirmed like crazy in my grasp and pawed for the strip held out for Opal.
"Leave it," I cautioned. "or you will get no treat." I looked sternly at my criminally-minded fluffball.
I turned slightly to reach into the jar but found my access blocked by a toy boy's head thrust in through the open top. "Hey!" Um NO!" Sachi's face popped out of the jar. He had four or five strips clamped into his jaws and was attempting to scoot past me onto the floor in kind of a "Thanks Momma" movement.
"I said NO! Give those back!" and I took hold of his treasure with one hand and wrapped the other around his body. The rest of the WDA watched (mentally placing bets on the outcome).
I managed to extract all except the tiniest tip of one strip, which the Little Man dropped when he opened his mouth to moan about his treatment. I grabbed it back.
I pushed him back into place at my hip without a word and handed out treats to all of the others. He waited while I tore Nilla's strip into pieces and fed them to her one by one.
THEN I withdrew a strip, set it on the arm of the chair and slowly screwed on the lid of the jar before placing it in its usual spot.
"Still interested in a treat," I asked releasing him. He kissed me on the face but then jumped down. I thought he was too mad to take the beloved jerky and that he would show his anger by ignoring his best interests.
But I was wrong. Sachi hopped down. Turned back to hop up and paw the air before sitting in perfect formation, head tilted, to await my offer. I laughed at his antics.
"You are such a clown," I told him as he chewed. "Thank you for lifting my spirits."