by Mark Miles
Bella is a notorious humper. When she was given to me by a friend of a friend who had a litter of unexpected puppies in 2007, I never would’ve guessed this. I’d never lived with female dogs prior to 2006–when I rescued the german shepherd of another friend of a friend–and I consequently had no experience with such amorous behavior. In truth, I was an avowed cat-man for the first twenty years of my life due to my experience of growing up with cats. Sadly there were no dogs in my family’s household, which meant I had no way of appreciating the finer qualities of canines until much later.
So when Bella started to exhibit her amorous side, I was unsure what to make of it. Also unsure was my dog Sebastian, a german shepherd who I’d rescued in 2006. He soon became the object of Bella’s amorous advances, and once Bella had made up her mind there was no unmaking it. Try as he might, Sebastian had no recourse. He was Boyfriend #1, and that was that. Despite the comical difference in size between chihuahua and german shepherd, Bella would nonetheless come up to Sebastian, sniff at his ears–which were nearly half the size of her whole body–playfully yank at them, jump on his neck, and start humping. Unfortunately I never recorded any of these episodes when they occurred, but I wish I had. There’s no way to see a tiny chihuahua making furious love to the neck of a german shepherd who’s doing his best to ignore her without losing one’s composure.
All of this changed however when Sebastian died in 2012. He’d been sickly when I got him in 2006, but he recovered and was fine for several years after that, and I figured that he’d be fine for many years to come. And then for no apparent reason he started losing weight. Then he lost more weight and more weight and more weight. Of course he’d always been skinny, but he’d never been this skinny. I could see his ribs, and no amount of eating would change that. I consulted my veterinarian, and the diagnosis was cancer. I knew I didn’t want to put Sebastian through chemotherapy, so I did my best to ease his last days. I carried him outside when he wanted to go out and inside when he wanted to go in, fed him by hand, cleaned the messes on the floor when he became incontinent, and finally said goodbye to him on October 11th, 2012. It was one of the hardest days of my life.
Needless to say, it was hard for Bella too. She didn’t express much in the way of emotional distress at the time, but she knew that Boyfriend #1 was gone, and she knew that he wasn’t coming back. Before long, however, Bella was on the prowl. From using Sebastian’s neck, Bella moved to using a candy-cane-striped stuffed bone that a friend had given as a gift. Of course said friend never would’ve guessed the amorous uses Bella had in mind. Soon Bella had Boyfriend #2, and his name was Boney Bone.
Though Boney Bone was admittedly inanimate and incapable of reciprocating anyone’s affections, this never dissuaded Bella. For all she cared, Boney was as good as any neck she’d ever had, and there was the added advantage that Boney never got up and walked away just when she was on the verge of having a really good time. In short, he was dependable, and that was good enough for Bella. But once again her choice of boyfriend was stymied. When the stuffings finally spilled out of Boney, there was no way I was going to try to salvage him. Trust me, if you’d seen the amorous adventures Bella had had with him, you’d know why. So into the trash Boney went, and from that moment forward Bella was on the prowl for a new boyfriend.
Then Heidi came into her life. I adopted Heidi in 2014, so it’d been some time since Bella had had someone capable of reciprocating her amorous advances. Heidi, however, has a mind of her own, and it didn’t take long for her to make that clear. Still, Bella gave it her best shot. Whenever Heidi would approach Bella in a friendly way, Bella would adopt her old amorous ways. Ears would perk up, tail would go into frantic back and forth motion, a leg would try to cross Heidi’s shoulder, and that was as far as it would go. Heidi never needed encouragement to stick up for herself, but I would intervene at this point to prevent any fur from flying. And so the prowl continued.
Then along came Pillow-Man. As the name indicates, he’s fluffy, soft, quiet, and entirely motionless. But as far as Bella’s considered, he’s solid gold. The fact that he’s made of cotton, polyester, and assorted synthetic fabrics has yet to bother Bella. All that matters is that when she’s ready to go, he’s there for a good time. As far as Bella’s concerned, that makes him Boyfriend #3. It doesn’t hurt that he won’t be getting up and walking away anytime soon, though how long it’ll be before Bella’s lovemaking leads to the spilling of more fluffy entrails is anyone’s guess.