Thursday, June 21, 2012

The Dog Ate my Cake

From the cat who literally swallowed the canary (and then threw it up on your aunt's antique Persian rug) to the dog who ran away, we at the Stiletto Gang put our collective heads together and thought: what could be better than walking down memory lane with thoughts of some of our favorite--and not-so-favorite--pets? Join us for the next two weeks as we reminisce about the animals we loved and those who loved us. 

by Maria Geraci

I admit it. All my dogs have been doggie school dropouts.

This trend started early on in my pet owning career. My first dog was an Irish Terrier named Chico. Not very Gaelic sounding, but hey, when you grow up in a Cuban American household, your pets have names like Pepe and Paco (yes, that's the name of my parent's current Schnauzer).

Chico was a sweet dog, but totally unmanageable. I think this is because my sister and I (who were 9 and 10 at the time) were in charge of his early training. We begged and begged and begged our mom for a dog who refused until she finally got tired of our begging.

"Okay, but you two are in charge of training him, feeding him, and cleaning up after him."

"Yay!" we squealed.

In our defense, we tried to train the dog. We really did. My mom even enrolled Chico in a 6 week obedience course. But hey, it was summer and there was swim team and sleep overs and day trips to the beach, so Chico's training took a shabby back seat to our summer fun.

End result? We didn't reinforce the stuff Chico was supposed to be learning in the obedience course (stuff like: Sit, Chico, Sit! and Stop, Chico, stop!). At the graduation day ceremony when all the other dogs, were sitting and stopping, Chico was sniffing the orange cones and yep... you guessed it, even baptized one.

This was just the beginning of our family humiliation at Chico's hands. Or rather, paws.

Later in life, Chico even became famous at my high school for his bad dog ways. He was a notorious leg humper, which, trust me, is only funny in the movies. He ran away every chance he got (not sure why, when he practically ruled the roost at our home). We would comb the neighborhood, calling his name loudly, and the neighbors would shake their heads. "That Chico! Has he run away again?"

 He would always come back, hours later, his fur matted and his eyes shining brightly.

"What does he do when he runs away?" My mother asked, "roll in the woods?"

But without doubt, his worst bad dog moment came my senior year in high school. When our basketball team won a big district game, I was in charge of making a cake for the team and presenting it to them at a pep rally. It took me all afternoon to make that cake. I iced it carefully, then sat it in the middle of the dining room table so that a certain someone (who had already become famous for tipping over pies) wouldn't stretch his snout to take a lick. Ha! I guess the moral here was if you want something bad enough, you'll find a way to get it, because somehow Chico managed to jump onto that dining room table and devour half the cake before I even knew what was happening. By that time, it was too late to make another cake.

The next day at the pep rally, my humiliated seventeen-year-old self went up to the mike to present the basketball team their "cake." Instead I had to admit, "the dog ate my cake."

It was settled. Chico was now officially a legend.

Maria Geraci writes contemporary romance and women’s fiction with a happy ending. The Portland Book Review called her novel, The Boyfriend of the Month Club, “immensely sexy, immensely satisfying and humorous.” Her fourth novel, A Girl Like You, will be released August, 2012 by Berkley, Penguin USA. For more information, please visit her website at


  1. Great post Maria!

    Your Irish Terrier Chico sounded much like Snickers, our I.T., who was also a Doggie School failure. As the instructor told us, "that dog knows what to do, she just doesn't want to do it." :-)


    1. LOL, oh yes. The instructor even gave us a free repeat of the classes, but we knew we were doomed to failure so we didn't bother!

  2. Where would be without these disobedient pet stories? Chico sounds like he was a real character. Maggie

    1. Yes, Maggie, he was:) He's been gone for 30 years now, but we still talk about his antics as if it were yesterday.

  3. Chico! Okay, that trip down memory lane made me laugh!

  4. This great tale about your dog brought back an old memory of mine. A friend made a beautiful wedding cake for one of my kids, it was shaped like a heart. I put it in the middle of the ping pong table in the family room to keep it safe until the reception the next day. In the night, one of the cats ate the point off the end of the heart--not a lot, but it certainly was noticeable.

    I called my cake making friend. She came over and cut the end off, past where the cat had nibbled and formed another point with frosting.

    We all kept our mouths shut when the cake was cut and passed around.


  5. I loved reading about Chico, Maria! I think we all remember the naughty pets the most. With us, it was a very big male Siamese cat. We'd have to put food on top of the refrigerator to keep him away from it.

  6. Love all these pet stories! When I was first living with my fiance we lived in a house in the apartment above our best friends, who had a german shepherd named George. I was home all day, and, every morning when our friends left for work,they's let George out in the yard, where he'd come up the outside stairs, scratch on the door and spend the day with me. A pet without all the cost and responsibility. LOL When we got married, we had a small wedding, and I baked my own (simple) cake. Yep, George ate it.