Major Bites Back! Err, again.
The White House’s First and Second Dog (Champ), weigh in on the “aggressive incident” earlier today.
I know what you heard. I know it sounds bad, especially if it’s made the news cycle. I am sure I will hear my name more in a day than I’ve had in my whole life. Let me assure you, there is more to the story than those people have been telling you.
What had happened was…
“I was invited to the White House. It’s the biggest house I have ever seen. It’s filled with people wandering about looking official. No one every says a kind word or throws a ball while I was there. Not once.
You know, there is a lot going on, from a dog’s perspective there. Let me give you the inside scoop because I know you Humans can’t perceive the Smelloverse the way dogs can.
The White House has a terrible smell profile.
This place smells old. Older than anything I have ever had the pleasure to roll in. A bone-deep age you can smell in any corner. But you have to dig for it. There are so many more recent odors on top of that.
This place smells of fear and loathing. They tried to mask it with their vile and evil scent-destroying soaps, but they can’t touch something this deep down. It’s woven into every fabric of the place. Been there for years.
There is a touch of evil (smells like onions when they go bad and turn into a slimy pile in your vegetable drawer) and maybe even a bit of madness. Must have been the old inhabitants. That guy is still here. He touched everything. I think there is even a section of the Oval Office he pissed on just to say he’d done it.
Everything here has the scent of age. The mix of musty old things in every room; these venerable items are covered in the scent of age, slathered in embedded suffering and the distain of whoever it is keeping up with the items’ tending.
They have desks older than Dad. I didn’t anything could be THAT old. Because everything is so old, I have to work to pull those scents in. Those are the best ones, though. The hard to scavenge odor is the most precious.
Unfortunately those wonderful scents of an era are blasted from above each night by the overwhelming stench of cleaning materials. Someone is constantly walking around cleaning. Everything. They wash everything but the ceiling.
I think once a year, they may even do that.
Anyway in addition to the millions of different scents going on, the cleaning supplies, there is the smell of all of these people. They are everywhere, coming in and out of the White House at all hours of the day and night. This place never sleeps.
I am going to have to confess to something right now. I smell you without your permission. I know how that sounds but, when you walk in the door, I smell you immediately, even if I am across the room. I may have caught a hit of you as you stood in front of the door. Once you come in with the breeze, I know everything about you.
Where you were in the last hour, what you ate, who you talked to, how long you talked and whether you are in need of a breath mint. I mean, I love your stinky mouths, its one of the best things about you, but I have noticed the better your breath smells to me, the less other people seem to like it.
Don’t ever change. I love it.
Anyway, every one of you uses too many cleaning products. You are covered in a miasma of other scents every time I smell you.
Shampoo, conditioner, body soap, lotions, salves, hemorrhoid cream, tiger balm, hair spray, and various degrees of anti-perspirant whose offensiveness ranges from: au natural, to causing my nose to explode in a fit of scent-masking blindness, so overwhelming I actually have to shake my nose clear any time one of you stops to admire me.
We are going to have to set some ground rules: Unless you are Mom or Dad, I don’t know you. Champ and I are not people. We aren’t trying to make friends or influence people. We want to explore and pee freely but since that’s frowned upon, we want to sit with Mom or Dad and keep them safe.
It’s in our contract. Dogs keep people safe. It’s what we do. We protect ourselves, our packmates and lastly our space.
We don’t need security, we are security.
As security partners in our pack, you don’t sneak up on us. I mean, not that you CAN actually sneak up on us, but if you were to say, bend over, blast me with your dark, miasmic breath, (which again, I am saying is delicious) but right after that heavenly breeze, comes the acrid and biting antiperspirants, the smell of your new shirt, tie, and undergarments (assuming you change those; yes, we know if you don’t.)
Don’t ever change. We will love you, forever.
Anyway, when you bend over me when I am not expecting you, you are invading my space. My space, man. Respect the space. You have a window of space around yourself you don’t like people to get into, right? I mean who wants someone’s face hole in their face, especially if you aren’t packmates?
Nobody. That’s who.
So let me say this again, the White House is a smelly place. Good and bad. There is so much going on there we are busy analyzing we are distracted and maybe a bit over-excited. We are not bonded with anyone here but Mom and Dad, thus we are always on alert, just in case something happens. We are security for our parents. If they are not around, this means something could be happening to them and we are anxious about it.
Please, don’t approach us without us knowing you’re coming. We’re on edge in this new place and a sudden intrusion into our space becomes a biting offence. Look, I know you probably don’t mean any harm but I can’t be sure. I barely know you. I mean I know a lot ABOUT you, but I don’t know YOU.
When you violate the space, you get the jaws.
If I roll up on you, jump up, put my mouth hole in your face I should expect there to be an over-reaction, screams, brushing off my paw prints on you new suit and lots and lots of cursing, right? You are liable to be pushing my snout away leaving your hand oils all over my face.
I’m not dangerous. Why you gotta over-react?
Because I am in your face and you don’t know what I might be thinking. I could just love the way your face hole smells and want to get closer, or I could be ripping out your throat as my kind have done to your kind for millennia.
But you don’t know, do you?
This is why you should treat me like I treat you. I might want to smell your mouth hole and analyze everything you have had since the last time you brushed your teeth, but I don’t rush up to you and say, “Lemme smell your face, please?”
Even though I want to.
Please don’t walk up to me, bend over, being far too close and familiar and expect to pet me unless I give you the word. I have to give you the exact signs that say, “You may pet me now. I’ll allow it.”
If I jump to my feet as you start bending over me. I don’t like you.
If you continue your approach and reach out to me. I will deter you.
If you don’t take the hint and tower over me. I will bite you.
Startled, defensive, not wagging my goddamn tail, teeth in the snarl position, growling should be your hint to get you goddamn paw out of my face.
Or get bitten.
I just want it to be known, I am glad I am being sent home. I didn’t want to be in the White House. If I can’t be with Dad, why send me?
Who’s going to keep him safer than I am? Nobody. That’s who. The Secret Service? Everyone knows they exist. Some secret. Me? I am unpredictable. The enemy won’t know what I might do.
Yes, I might bite. Probably not. But I might. Ask that guy.
To that person I bit: I just wanted to say: I meant it. I am not sorry. Learn some dog manners. Understand how I see the world. Don’t make me bite you again. Notice, no faux apology. No angst or suffering on my part.
Keep your paws to yourself and nobody else has to get hurt. You might want to get those hemorrhoids checked. Something ain’t right back there.