Darcy and me have a Marley and Me relationship – but unlike the movie version Darcy really is the world’s worst dog!
Darcy is our English Pointer, he is white with red patches of hair on his head and ears, and is a complete scoundrel, misbehaving and destroying everything in his path.
Nothing is safe from Darcy – he has destroyed his bedding, his food bowls, our shoes and clothes, he has destroyed an entire lounge suite, tearing holes in the cushions and the upholstery and chewing the timber arms. Our other dog, and Darcy’s companion, Polly doesn’t wear a collar because Darcy pulls them off and chews them too. She has had 5 collars in 12 months.
All the while he has wormed his way into our hearts with his big eyes, his floppy ears and desire to always be with us.
I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve threatened him with “going to the farm” only to have him win me over again with his head placed on my knee and his big eyes begging for a pat.
Just this morning I picked up the contents of the rubbish bin Darcy had spread all over my studio, somehow managing to take a few pieces of cardboard and paper towel and multiplying the pieces ten-fold by shredding them into small chewed and soggy pieces of flotsam cast from one corner of the room to the other. He is like some kind of four-legged destroying machine, I’m often amazed at the speed of his work.
We had a builder here for a week doing some work on our house. One day Darcy got into the builders lunch pale and ate his sandwich, another day he stole his drink bottle and chewed off the lid.
His greatest feat was to make off with an open box of screws, with the builder chasing him Darcy managed to spill 500 screws from one end of the yard to the other, and months later we are still picking up screws from the grass and the driveway.
All the while the builder would shake his head and say, “I can’t help but like him!”
Darcy has that effect on people, everyone who meets him is won over by his roguish charm and of course those big eyes and ears.
But they don’t live with him.
If left alone in the house for too long Darcy will destroy something, if left alone in the yard for too long Darcy will escape.
Our fences are a patchwork quilt of wire and mesh, bricks and post and pickets attached here and there over holes and gaps trying to keep Darcy in.
Darcy made friends with a family up the road and we occasionally get a phone call from them at the end of his visit telling us “Darcy is here again”. I went to retrieve him one day and this family told me how much they love Darcy, to which I replied in exasperation, “I know, everybody says that”, before I walked him home again and searched out the hole in the fence… again.
I’ve always had dogs and couldn’t imagine life without them. There is nothing quite like the unconditional love or companionship or your dog.
As I sit here at my desk typing I can see Darcy through the window tangled up in the bird netting around the tomato plants designed to keep him out. He’s like a rat caught in a trap, unwilling to let go of his prize (the tomato) but baffled as to how he will extricate himself from the netting.
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