I haven't talked to much about Toby around these parts since he became a family member. And I'm really not sure why because the little rascal delights me on a daily basis. I was the one who, before Sweetpea died said, "When Sweetpea goes, that's it for us! No more pets!"
But I was also the same one trolling Craigslist for dogs within a week of Sweetpea's death. I felt kind of disloyal, but I missed having an animal around the house. I would love to have a cat, but Bubba's allergies rule that out, so I got the next best thing -- a lap dog.
And Toby is a total lovehound. That dog loves people more than any other dog I've ever seen. If you're sitting down, he will be in your lap in a second, shoving his nose under your hand to make sure you're petting him. The other night I joked that his motto is "If you have time to set, you have time to pet." And even Mr. Daddy, who likes to groan that this dog was my idea, loves him. He's got such a sweet face that you just can't resist him.
But when we came back from vacation, something weird happened. Toby became obsessed with me! I think his new found devotion stems from the fact that I alone picked him up from the dog-sitter's house when we got back from vacation. Although he got along famously with her two dogs (and very famously with the large, female Rottweiler who was also a guest there, if you know what I'm sayin' and I think you do) (wink, wink, nudge nudge), I think when I showed up he thought "Aha! She's come back for me! She does love me after all!"
Because since then, this dog will not leave me alone. If I go to the bathroom, he's sitting right outside with his nose wedged under the door, whining for me. Same goes for when I'm putting the kids to bed. If I step outside for more than a minute he greets me I return as though I've been gone for years. If I'm lying down, he's all up in my grill. After petting him for what I deem a sufficient amount of time I literally have to hide my arms so that he won't keep pushing his cold, wet nose under my hand or arm.
Since we've been married, Mr. Daddy has always done voices for our pets. Sweetpea had the cutest voice ever, but unfortunately I'll never hear it again. It just didn't feel right to assign her voice to anybody else. Our cats both had voices. Occasionally, Mr. Daddy will bust out with Pigger's voice and I'll be like "What's Pigger doing here?" It took him a while to find Toby's voice, but lately he's taken to having Toby call me M'Lady, which cracks me up completely. It very much reminds me of my Medieval Lit classes and the whole notion of Courtly Love. I'm quire sure Toby would write me a poem if he could.
Yes, it is exhausting sometimes to be the object of this much affection, but it's also pretty nice to have one creature on this earth that loves you unconditionally.