Through the years, we’ve referred to Bunny often as The Princess. This is an official title that she has come by honestly. While she is incredibly sweet, she also exudes an aura of royalty that is hard to ignore. Let’s just say that Bunny has certain expectations about how she wants to be treated and she won’t settle for anything less.
I can’t say that I blame her. Actually, I admire her a little and I wish that I were as good at sticking to my guns in relation to how I want to be treated as she is. Once you get used to the royal treatment, it’s also hard to go back to life as a mere commoner, or common dog, as the case might be. If you’ve ever met a sighthound, you know that they have a certain way about them that’s hard to ignore.
Through the years as she’s gotten sweeter, she’s also gotten more determined to have her way. At first, I thought that I was imagining that, but I slowly began to see that it was true. One area where it’s obvious is on the couch. Bunny has strong feelings about the couch. In her mind, the couch is a sacred space created only for her and me. No other humans or dogs should sit there, and we should most definitely be there together.
If my husband sits down on the couch with me, Bunny will persist until she gets him off the couch. It starts with standing beside him and glaring, especially if he is touching me or rubbing my feet. If he doesn’t move, she will jump up beside him, curl up and wait. As soon as he leans forward even the tiniest bit, she will start wedging her head and body between him and the couch and keep it up until she pushes him off the couch. If he’s been rubbing my feet, she will often lick them after he leaves.
The other day, she and I were laying on the couch and Flattery decided she wanted to join us. Being Flattery, she ignored the fact that the only couch real estate open was about the size of a postage stamp. Not to be deterred, Flattery deposited herself on the couch anyway and pretended that she didn’t notice that she’d parked her butt on Bunny’s head. When Bunny finally extracted herself, the look of disgust and disdain on her face was priceless. Flattery was too busy pretending to be asleep to notice.
This past weekend, I found myself upstairs taking pictures with the girls as I often do. I wanted to take pictures with Flattery, but Bunny was having none of it. As possessive as she is of the couch, she is even more possessive of the attic studio space. As soon as I start getting ready to take pictures, she is taking her place in front of the camera whether I want her there or not. Since Bunny came over and took her spot, I started taking pictures of her and once she was satisfied with her turn, I tossed a few treats on the daybed for her and I called Flattery over.
Flattery is usually very excited about having a turn in front of the camera. I think both of them like being the center of attention for a little while and it is fun to see how things develop with each of them when I am trying the same set up. Flattery took up her role like a pro and it didn’t take long for us to finish her pictures.
There’s a little routine that happens after we get done taking pictures. It’s the post photography snuggle. Usually Bunny will come over and lay down beside me when we’re finished so I can rub her belly and tell her about how great she did. Sometimes, she will pin my arm to the floor to keep me there with her until she’s had enough. Flattery is a quick study and it didn’t take her long to decide that she wanted post photography snuggles, too. Since she was last the other day, she came right over and laid down beside me, wiggling her little body around to get the best position.
Apparently, that was the final straw for Bunny. She came over, stuck her head up against my face and then turned her body around, laid down even closer to me and plopped her derriere down right on Flattery’s head. Anybody who says that dogs don’t have their own emotional motivations sometimes has clearly not spent enough time with regal sighthounds. The satisfaction was written all over Bunny’s face as she moved her little body closer to mine, put her head on my arm and let out a contented sigh.
What I learned is that Bunny has decided she’s moving up from being The Princess to being Queen B, and all will bow to her wishes. I attribute part of it to her advancing age and part of it is probably that we’ve indulged her through the years. I freely admit that we’ve created a lot of it ourselves, but I will also admit that I adore what we’ve created. If I have to spoil her more in her senior years, that’s no hardship at all. All hail Queen B, long may she reign!