Friday, November 23, 2012

The Perils of Dogs and Laptops

By Linda Rodriguez

For nearly a week, I have been deprived of my laptop due to the jealousy of a young male dog.

We have a Plott hound that we rescued right before Thanksgiving two years ago when he was still less than a year old and very docile--because he was almost starved to death and suffering from heartworms. I had sworn I didn't want a young, strong male dog. I wanted an older, calm female like the lovely Sharpei-Husky we'd just lost to liver cancer at 14+ years of age. But Dyson was going to be put down on the next day, and we couldn't let that happen to a dog with such soulful eyes.

In no time at all, he rebounded in health now that he had a loving home. He more than doubled in weight and regained all his strength and energy, which is far from negligible. If you want to know about Plott hounds, imagine a cross between a Great Dane and a greyhound, for he's related to both. He's the state dog of North Carolina and was bred to hunt bear and other large ferocious predators. Alas, at our house, all he gets to hunt are possums, which he darts into the hedges and pulls out in his mouth but never harms.

Dyson is also very fond of me--to the point that he will try to force his way in between my husband and me if we give each other a hug. Lately, I've been traveling a lot and doing author events in locales within day-trip distance of my home. Then when I am home, I've been meeting deadlines, so I've been monopolized by my laptop. He's conceived a real jealousy for that black plastic box.

Friday morning, I was up early, sitting in the living room working while my husband finished getting packed up for work. He leaned down from the left to kiss me goodbye. This was simply too much for Dyson, the black thing and Daddy both monopolizing Mommy, so he tried to get in between both of them and me from my right side--this dog who stands on his hind legs at the door and is taller than my tall husband--and my laptop went crashing to the floor.

It was a right catastrophe. My laptop worked wonkily for a few hours and then gave up the ghost--just as I was trying to email an important document to my agent. After many tears, I called my son who is an IT specialist, and he is attempting to repair it. Because I had many programs customized to my needs, I hope he can, and I don't have to start over with another again.

My time is up on this slow library computer, so I will post and ask you to forgive all typos.


  1. I understand - at times our dogs believe we become their property. And anyone or anything which interferes with their property cannot be any good at all. Hope your computer gets a new life.

  2. I feel badly for you. This does not sound like your ordinary little puppy. Hope your computer works out for you.

  3. I just looked up your Plott. They are beautiful, soulful and powerful :)

  4. Oh, Linda! I'm so sorry. I'll offer up some prayers (although I don't know if there is a Catholic saint for technology) that your son can work his magic on your computer. I'm going to look up Plott hounds now so I know one when I see one. Maggie

  5. Wishing you good luck with computer recovery. My iBook went to Apple intensive care, completely dead, and came back as Lazarus. In the interim, I had fallen for a sleek new MacBookAir. Lazarus is still here, though, on light duty . . . anything involving CDs and Garage Band . . .

  6. I'm so glad you rescued Dyson. I've had some jealous animals myself. Also problems with laptops. I've only had one, years ago. It was old and slow...then my dog at the time, Barrett, peed on it. (At least I'm pretty sure it was him.) It was totally dead after that!

  7. My miniature schnauzer is the same way with my ipad.....its amazing what he can click on with his little paws!! good luck with your laptop, and give Dyson lots of love!!!!

  8. Everyone, thank you for your comments.

    I'm so excited. I have a computer again! Fortunately for me, my oldest son, Niles, is a computer consultant. After determining that my laptop hard drive was fried, he rigged it up as a slave to his computer and drew all my stuff off that hard drive and slapped it on a practically new laptop he happened to have lying around. I am once again connected to the world.

    Yes, Lil and Maggie, Plotts are fabulous dogs, handsome, very smart, uber courageous, acrobatic, you name it. Actually, I love Dyson as much as he loves me--I'm just not as jealous. To be fair, he's smart as a whip and a really good boy 99% of the time. There are times, though, when I cry out, "This is why I didn't want a young, strong male dog." (Of course, I'm the one who made the decision to rescue him, so it's all my own fault.) And at least, unlike Katreader's dog, he's never peed on anything. He'd never really been in a house when we got him. Things like telephones, radios, etc. were shocks to him, but he learned fast and was housebroken in days with no accidents, and he has the run of the house without doing any damage to furniture, the trash, etc.

    Thanks, all of you for your commiseration and good wishes. I hope you all survived black Friday.