So, when last we saw Odd Trundles, we really hadn’t seen him at all. I’d just returned from driving the Little Prince to school and been greeted upon my return by Suspicious Silence, then Cacophony.
I burst into my bedroom, and at first was confused, because everything seemed to be fine. Miss B was there, wriggling all over as she greeted me (you’re BACK, oh how I’ve MISSED YOU in these twenty minutes, I thought you were NEVER coming back!) and the bed was still standing, my dresser and altar were in fine form, the pair of trainers I’d left by the bedside were unchewed…
…but the noise was coming from deeper in. To wit, the master bath. And Trundles, hearing reinforcements coming over the hill, set up a hue and cry.
*snortwhistle* *crash* “ooooOOOOOOOoooooh Mum is that yooooooOOOOOOuuuuuu, halp I am OOOOOOH halp mum pleeeeeeeease…” *moar crashing* *snortfartwhistle*
I almost tripped over Miss B, pushed her out of the way, stumbled for the loo door…and as I rounded that corner…well.
Remember that energy bar wrapper I set atop the loo seat? I do. It’s burned into my memory now, because as soon as I saw him, I realised what had happened. Odd Trundles had thought the thing might contain food, and there is nothing Odd loves more than food. Not even me. And of course the best, most AMAZING food…
…is the FORBIDDEN kind. Like a wrapper atop a (closed) toilet seat. I could see it clearly now–Odd snuffling at the seat while Miss B was prancing downstairs begging to be taken along in the car to drop the Little Prince off, and the a-ha! moment when Trundles the Opportunistic decided that since he was topheavy, the only way to get at said wrapper was to leap for it.
Now, Trundles is a good 50-60lbs of bulldog. The bamboo loo seat, even with its marvelous nickel hardware, was not built to withstand the application of sideways force he’s capable of generating. Plus, the actual bolt holding it onto the loo itself wasn’t nickel, it was either alloy or plastic.
No, I can’t remember which at this point. (I was a little busy at the moment.) It doesn’t matter. What matters, really, is that the sideways application of force broke both bolts and the loo seat hit the wall, then got stuck between the wall and the loo. It must have made an almighty noise, too.
How do I know, you ask?
Simple. Because things that change suddenly or make noise evoke one response in Odd, and one response only.
That response is, namely, BARKATTACKEATRINSELATHERREPEAT.
I further know this because Odd had decided the loo seat had probably eaten his prize (the wrapper) which had ended up in the corner behind the damn thing, next to the loo brush. And for Odd, that could not be borne.
Bulldogs have enormous heads. (That’s why most breeding females need C-sections.) I mention this only so you will understand, dear Reader, how Odd Trundles got his head wedged in the loo seat, which was stuck between the loo and the wall.
I stopped dead for a moment, looking at this, and my presence threw Odd into a fresh frenzy. He couldn’t see me, but he could hear me, and of course if I was present whatever beast had him by his head would release him, because Mum is the Fixer of All Ills and the Big Bad Rescuer of Bulldog From Any Fearsome Creature. The noise was incredible, and as usual, any large exciting event makes Odd’s tummy do strange things, so an eyewatering stench began.
It took a little while to extricate him, mostly because my eyes were watering from the smell (he didn’t quite, erm, soil himself, but it was close) and from sheer helpless laughter. Yes, I’m a horrible human being, because the sight of a dog stuck headfirst in a toilet seat is hilarious. I’m sorry, it just is. Plus, Miss B was in an ecstasy of Trying To Help, but her idea of “helping” was to try to get in there and nip at Odd’s haunches to herd him out of the corner he was in. I had to push her outside and shut the door, which meant she was barking and throwing herself at it while I struggled to free the prisoner.
When I finally got him out of the seat and the seat out from where it was wedged (miracle of miracles, it didn’t dent the wall too badly) we had what is generally referred to as a Teaching Moment. Not for me, because I had already learned two or three lessons at this point–chief among them, Lili, throw your damn wrappers away. Oh, no. The Teaching Moment was for Odd.
Because as soon as I got the seat out of the way and checked him for damage–there is a god who looks after drunks, small children, and Odd Trundles, I swear–Odd was able to go for his original goal, which had by now acquired titanic and mythical status inside his doggy brain.
Which meant he almost got his head wedged in THAT corner, like the happy idiot he is, knocked over the loo brush, and had to be dragged out over the ruins of the bamboo loo seat and crated while I figured everything else out. Have you ever tried to drag a motivated bulldog away from something? I was reduced to my Mummy Voice and scolding him quite harshly, plus getting my arms under him and physically hauling his wriggling, topheavy ass out of the damn bathroom, getting the door open and almost dropping him on Miss B’s head in the process.
“WHAT ARE YOU DOOOOING?” Miss B kept barking. “WHAT ARE YOU DOOOOOOING CAN I DO IT TOOOOOOO?” She only calmed down when I got him crated and told her to sit down and mind herself.
Finally, after I’d thrown the stupid wrapper away, gotten the broken loo seat into the rubbish bin outside, and trudged back inside and upstairs to let Odd out and take both dogs into the back yard, Odd had, as per usual, forgotten all about it. So it wasn’t quite a Teachable Moment, I guess.
“MY HEAD HURTS, MUM. *snortwhistle* I SHOULD PEE. *snortwhistlefartpeewhistle* OH LOOK, I PEED. DID I PEE? *snortsnortwhistle* I FEEL LIGHTER. HEY MUM, MY HEAD HURTS. IS THERE FOOD? SOMEWHERE, ANYWHERE, FOOD?” While Miss B bustled about him, self-importantly herding him all over the yard and inspecting him from (miraculously unharmed) top to toe.
Which meant that when I got both of them back inside and returned to the scene of the jailbreak, Odd noticed that something was Different. (No shit, the loo seat was gone.) And, of course, his response was, once again, BARKATTACK?EAT?BARKBARKATTACK. He produced such a sudden and alarming volume of noise I nearly leapt out of my skin, and I had to actually go and touch the loo to show him it wasn’t dangerous. “See, you idiot? It’s fine. Look, I’m right here touching it, it’s not going to hurt you, SHUT UP.”
That was how I ended up buying a new loo seat, how I learned to never leave a wrapper out even on a school morning, and why I will never, ever, but NEVER buy a loo seat with alloy or plastic bolts ever again. And you know what?
Odd crowded into the loo when I put the new seat on, sniffed it with great interest, barked once, then tried to get atop it as if the wrapper might have magically reappeared. To this day he watches the top of that particular loo seat, hopefully.
I just don’t even know.