Today is Frankie’s birthday, at least the one I chose for him. He was five when I adopted him and of mysterious parentage (royalty who fell on hard times, I suspect). I decided on July 4 because he came prenamed Frankie, it was clear he was dandy, and… well, I told the story on this blog last year, and also went into a dog-name riff. You can read it here.
What am I giving Frankie for a present on this occasion, you ask? I’m going to stay home with him all day, so he doesn’t have to endure the noise of firecrackers or fireworks alone.
True, this is not as big a deal as it might be if I were a gadabout or if I didn’t work at home. But it shows I’ve come a long way in learning what’s best for dogs in general and for Frankie in particular.
It’s a testament to my early cluelessness that, on the first July 4 we shared, I decked Frankie out in the outfit you see here — a bandanna made out of a July 4-themed cocktail napkin and adorned with gift-wrap ribbons — and took him to a political party picnic.
Naturally, Frankie was the object of great adoration, not only by the political candidates, who substituted baby kissing for puppy bussing when they saw him, but also by the other attendees. Naturally, this made him unhappy. I did have the sense to take him home before any fireworks began, but it was still all about me wanting to show off my cute dog, not about showing him a good time.
So for this birthday: No car rides to picnics, no forced social interaction. I did replicate the annoying makeshift outfit* but I took the pictures yesterday and I was quick.
So Happy Birthday Frankie and Happy July 4 to all. May the day be as social or as independent of people as you’d like.
*I’m not sure whether it’s a good or bad sign that, five years later, I still have the original streamers and the package of July 4 napkins. Calling Hoarders 911…