Pages

Monday, November 10, 2014

Why sharing your life with dogs makes you smarter.

(Or, the alternate heading:  Why sharing your life with dogs can drive you to distraction and adult beverages.)

All of my dogs in my adult life have also been adults - or downright oldsters.  I LOVE me my oldster dogs.  Now I have a youngster - Lovey - and it is such a joy.  Until she shreds things.  And then.  Then there is Pepperoni.  NOT a youngster by any stretch of the imagination at age 13.  Minus 22 teeth.  But those remaining five teeth in his tiny noggin can do more damage than any puppy I've been up against.

Case in point - the Mouse Obsession Period.  That period when he ripped off (or gummed off, it was plenty soggy) a portion of the back of the couch skirting and chewed a lamp cord to bits.  He was a very lucky dog, in that it was plugged into the timer, so there was no juice with which to toast those five teeth.  Bugger.


I am sure it will come as no surprise to most of you that I was not inclined to replace my lamp, but to fix it.  I mean, how hard could it be?  I have numerous reference books on home repairs.  There is YouTube.  There is How-to-whatever.  I trotted off to Home Depot and bought a replacement cord.  It was over six bucks!  Really?

I then sat down to deconstruct the lamp.  I do have to admit that deconstructing stuff is way more fun than constructing it.  I have taken things apart gleefully since I was a kid.  Even the exploding golf ball didn't dampen my obsession.

A half hour later, I had managed to work my way through the lamp, using every screwdriver and wrench in my tool box.  I was following the cord, hoping to find the end where I could easily (cough) detach the chewed cord and attach the new one.  It was not easy.  This was because the lamp had been made in China for the new THROWITAWAY generation of Americans.  Pfft.  I had to cut the cord at the screw-on-thingy part (more tech-talk) and then go searching around for a replacement - I was determined not to spend another cent on this project.  I did finally find a replacement (of sorts) at my neighbor's.  He never throws anything away, thank goodness. 


I spent another hour, threading the new cord through the disassembled lamp, reassembling it as I went.  Paging carefully through my Readers Digest Home Repair Manual (thanks Mom and Dad), I was happy that the attachment looked easy.  Except for the fact that my replacement cord had no definition between silver and bronze (ground and live).  Sigh.  I looked at the package.  Made in China.  I took a technical leap (eeny, meeny, miney, moe....) and connected them.  Then I screwed in the bulb and plugged it in.  It lit!  So I finished my Jerry-rigged job and put the shade on and plugged it in.  It did NOT turn on.  I put it in the guest room to haul out for another day when I was feeling smarter.....

16 comments:

  1. Oy! Pets and cords...a very scary combination! I have a cat that chews on cords too. So, I've gone through the house and unplugged everything we don't use regularly and even some things we do in an attempt to reduce the chance of her frying herself. We even unplug some lamps when we're done with them each day...the ones that have very easy access cords. I do hope she outgrows this! Sounds like your 13 year old might not. :-/ Good luck with that lamp!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ATO - I tell you, it really threw me off. Apparently, he is going through his second puppyhood.

      Delete
  2. We had a puppy staying with us for a week-did we ever have to up our game. She, on the other hand, couldn't believe her luck in landing with these fools who put delicious foodstuffs at just the right height and left fun toys like freshly washed jeans lying around. As for that made in China/make everything irrepairable thing-I hate it!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Susan - It really keeps you on your toes, doesn't it? My 'puppy' has figured out that there are good things on the kitchen counter - we are working on that.

      Delete
  3. Ah sometimes I don't miss my dogs They chewed on everything, ate birthday cakes, and boxes of donuts :) But they always love me when I came home!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nancy - That is what makes it worth all the frustration (mostly...) They are so happy to see me when I get home. Even if I've been gone five minutes!

      Delete
  4. Humn I wonder what isn't right? I have a good sized box of salvaged bits from things non-electrician/mechanic me has been unable to repair....but someday....soommmeday!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Fiona - The only thing I can think of is that one of the connections came loose when I pushed it into the socket/holder. I need a day with better light and more patience... :)

      Delete
  5. Och, our cats are famous for chewing wires, cords, anything that resembles a string-like thing. Our dogs not as much, but they get into other "troubles". I feel your frustration!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mrs DM - There is no end of mischief between the dogs and cats. What doesn't kill you, keeps you young, no?

      Delete
  6. Susan,

    Your brave, :-) I leave everything electric as far as fixing cords to my husband.

    Now I will let you in on a screw up by hubby. One day he was fixing his hard wired telephone (years ago). He placed the telephone cord in his mouth to hold it while he was using both hands and working on the hard mount on the wall when the phone rang because someone called.................he got the shock of a life time, lol...
    learned the hard way..........never put a hard wire telephone cord in your mouth to hold it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sandy - Brave or cheap. Probably more of the latter... :) OMGoodness! I bet he will never try that again!

      Delete
  7. I brought home a brand new vacuum and it took the dog 3 days to chew the cord ... I was ready to beat her with it, but would never really do it ... Then the lamp cord a couple of months ago ... I can feel for you. Yvette

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. MC - I can feel your pain - the same thought fleetingly crossed my mind....

      Delete
  8. I had a kitty litter trained lopp eared house rabbit and one day I realized I hadn't had a phone call in three days. That's when I saw all the cords hanging in mid-air and learned how to rewire phones AND lamps.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Here's another one who has had cats and house rabbits destroy cords of all kinds. But I always let poor Dan do the repairs!

    ReplyDelete