With yesterday’s consideration of a rule change for the animals in our house, it has drawn me into contemplating our nation’s bill of rights and the amendments made over the course of time. Without getting too political here, I find several things interesting. For instance, we still have rules about quartering the soldiers in wartime (3rd Amendment). I tried to imagine making up the guest bed for total strangers. Then as I glanced at the timeline I was struck with how long before we women had voting rights (19th Amendment in 1920). Coincidently (or not), this is the same time when the leaders of our country attempted to sober everyone up. 1919 alcohol prohibition was added; we know how that worked out. It took a little over ten years before it was repealed (18th Amendment). There are other examples I could site of how our country has changed and not changed. I am no historian by any means.
But I happen to be a rule writer these days. So what needs to be taken into consideration is not merely for today but also for the future. The puppies now weigh around 25 pounds. They will likely grow twice this size. That may not sound large if you own a 90 pound solid lab, but these long-legged thick furry aussiedoodles take up a lot of space. Yesterday, the house voted unanimously to ratify the rule that the dogs would be allowed up onto the sofa in the family room. The fine print is still being discussed, as this new liberty has brought forth more questions: Can they wrestle and play jumping all over the sofa? Can they bring wet chew toys up onto the sofa? When we do not want to hear the barking of the dogs when one is up high and the other is down low, what is the protocol? Off? Quiet? Lastly, if company is over, are we permitting the dogs to jump up, crawl across, and sprawl over the lap of our guests? We need to figure those things out, soon!
The big lesson I learned just in the last 24 hours is that once a privilege is granted then it opens up the flood gates of requests for more privileges. Our excited dogs now press forward with: Can we run up the stairs and jump onto the beds? Can we crawl across the top of the sofa and rub against the wall? Are we allowed to chew at the corners of the decorative pillows? No, no, and no. I do not regret our decision for allowing them up onto the sofa; their soft snuggles last night and this morning were simply delicious. I just need to set clear boundaries and consider everything before adding any new amendments to the animal rights in this house. By the way, Kitty was never allowed on our bed for the first 15 years, but has not missed a night curled up on our comforter in the last twelve months.