Ollie and The Painter

For the last three days, poor Ollie has been discombobulated. When the painter arrived early on Monday morning, as far as my dog was concerned, he was just a guest, and a potential playmate. He wagged his tail enthusiastically, and brought his most treasured toy, a tattered and smelly stuffed lion. But there was no time for play, as much work needed to be done.

Living in a one-level bungalow, there is no escape from having to go in and out of the two small hallways. We did our best, by leaving one of them free, which meant I was exiled from the small office room. But the other hallway is essential for access to both bathroom and kitchen, so disturbance of the tradesman was inevitable.

But worst of all, Ollie’s habit of following me around had to be curtailed. He could not understand why he wasn’t allowed to accompany me into the kitchen or bedroom, and why he was not allowed to lay down against the freshly-painted skirting boards. Much of the day was spent telling him to ‘Lie down’, ‘Stay’, or ‘Move’. He just didn’t understand what he was doing wrong, and took it as if he was being scolded for something. The sorrowful expression on his wrinkled face was painful to behold.

By yesterday afternoon, as all seven doors were in the process of being painted, the area available to the distressed dog had been reduced to not much more than twice his own size. Refusing to rest, he just stood staring at me, wondering why I wouldn’t throw his toys, or play tug-of-war with them. Even extra strokes and fuss couldn’t shake his gloomy mood. Once the painter had finished, and left for the day, Ollie naturally presumed that he would be granted his usual freedom to roam. But no. We had seven wet doors and some skirting boards to contend with, and he could not be allowed to brush past them, or lean against them.

I took him out to the kitchen for his dinner, shepherding him carefully past the wet paint. When he had eaten, he expected his evening play as usual. But once again, I had to disappoint him, as I could not risk him swiping one of his large stuffed toys across the fresh paint. His gloomy visage returned, and he slumped down on his rug with an audible sigh. I felt so guilty, and wished he could understand it was only temporary. But he couldn’t of course, and spent the evening stressed, and unable to relax, constantly seeking reassurance.

Today, we have no work going on. Ollie has crashed out, fast asleep on his rug. He is catching up on all the rest he has lost over the last three days, and dreaming his canine dreams.

I dare not mention the carpet layers, who are arriving next week. I will let him rest for now.

62 thoughts on “Ollie and The Painter

  1. Poor Ollie! This is of course an unavoidable situation. And the carpet people are next? Mum’s the word. Wait, it just occurred to me that mum in England means mom. In America is means silent or mute. So I mean to be mum to Ollie. And give him a big pat for me. Best to you, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I am completely impressed that you kept him away from wet paint. No dog of ours has ever made it through without patches of wet paint on her fur. As for the carpet, at least he can lie down on it without getting it on him.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. My dogs, Chaka and Moxie, and my cats, too, hate change. They are suspicious of new table, chair or rug. They don’t like us to pack our luggage and are hostile when we have company. They are perfectly content with the status quo and wouldn’t mind if our house crumples as long as their corner and bedding stays intact. That’s all well and good and amusing–they are animals. What’s not so funny? I’m becoming more like them as I grow older.
    Delightful post, Pete.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks, Pam. I agree that I am also becoming resistant to disruption and change as I get older. Perhaps Ollie senses that from me. Like your dogs and cats, he also hates me to pack a bag, or clear out a cupboard. But he loves to have callers and guests at the house. 🙂
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Poor Ollie.
    They do so hate change to routine.
    Campbell always brings his toys out when maintenance guys come to the house.
    I remember once someone came to do some plumbing work, and he went dashing down the hall after them with his most favorite toy clamped firmly in his jaws.
    They guy was so moved when I told him Campbell had brought out a toy which he normally only played with me with that he took a moment to play fetch with him before he began.
    When he did begin work, Campbell lay watching as he worke. After all he had to watch out for that large water bowl.
    I so do love Ollie stories, and since for whatever reason the reblog button is not working for me these days I am going to post this onto my Campbell’s Rambles FB page.
    Oh, Shhhh Campbell do not tell Ollie about the carpet guys coming. He musten’t know. It will surely have him upset.
    Do let us know how that goes.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. The dour expressions pull at your heartstrings. With the carpet laying next week, that will be a new set of expressions for you to contend with. Soon it will be all over and the facelift will cheer all your moods.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. He does so hate any changes to his routine, Maddy. First we had the painter, then the new windows, then the painter again, and the carpets are on the horizon, followed by more painting in June. I think he is going to need Prozac! 🙂
      Best wishes, Pete.


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