There Was Blood

I’m not a dog-lover. I tolerate the black, four-legged creature (BL) who lives under our roof because he is a devoted friend and companion for my husband.

BL is the offspring of my son’s chocolate Lab (CL) and my daughter-in-law’s yellow Lab (YL). So, we have a mutual understanding:  when they (or we) go out of town, we (or they) watch over the critters. (It gets more complicated when there’s a family outing where we’re all leaving town.)

Out-of-town happened this week. They left town to help a relative suffering from cancer. The dogs came to our house, and with the temperature blazing and little shade in our yard, there was no choice but to shelter the animals inside. (I may dislike animals, but I’m not totally heartless.)

When keeping the dogs inside, they usually remain in or close to the laundry room (tiled floor, air-conditioned and out of the way). The laundry room is down a long hallway that leads to the kitchen and the rest of the house. YL is the gregarious sort, always eager for attention and often annoyingly underfoot. She also has developed a neurosis while in our care … biting her tail to the point of injury! Imagine, if you will, a hallway with its walls and painted white wood trim being the unwitting canvas for this animal’s bloody tail-turned-paintbrush, every wag adding another stroke.

I waited until after YL left the premises to clean things up, and to her credit, my guilt-ridden daughter-in-law worked side by side in the clean-up. Even with our best efforts (using only water and a cloth so as to avoid the necessity of repainting), the textured walls aren’t easily cleansed of these stains.

And after all the crime shows I’ve watched through the years, I can’t help but wonder what a spray of luminol with a colored lense might reveal that the human eye has missed.

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