Pettigrew has an unnerving habit of surprising me in the kitchen, every fiber in his body alert, tense, and ready to go for a walk. Like Kramer skidding into Seinfeld’s apartment or the arrival of the three, red-garbed clerics in Mounty Python’s No one Expects the Spanish Inquisition, Pettigrew’s untimely arrival fills me with dread.
I wasn’t planning to take him out. A trip to the market, to pick up a child from an activity, or to attend a meeting was my objective.
However, in his eager body lies a veiled threat: If you don’t take me now…I can’t be responsible for my actions.
It’s hard to ignore. So, if at all possible, I swap my purse for his leash, and out we go.
Perhaps it’s because of his usual less than enthusiastic response to an invitation to walk that I find it so hard to proceed with my original idea.
More typical Pettigrew responses to my collecting the leash and calling his name:
- Wary watching, through half-opened eyes, as I approach his curled body snuggled on the sofa.
- Languorous stretching as he grudgingly rouses himself.
- Playful “catch me if you can” feints as he scoots just out of reach.
- Urgent eating and/or drinking.
- Focused play with a long-neglected toy.
- Seemingly anything but showing eagerness for a walk.
So maybe it’s not surprising that I discard or delay my plans when he skids into the kitchen, eyes focused, willing me to obey his unspoken command.
Not that he rushes once we’re on the walk. Why should he? We’re on Pettigrew Time now.