I knew it wasn’t going to be a pleasant evening in Zichville when there was a note on the front door from Tommy telling me not to give Glory a Milk-Bone.

She gets a Milk-Bone whenever I come home from work and find that she has successfully "held it in" all day.

In my opinion, the ability to "hold it in" is the single most important trait needed in a housedog. And since I returned to the work force full-time last fall, my beloved pet has exceeded my expectations in that regard.

Ronnie and I leave for school every morning by 8:15 a.m. Depending on whether it is football, basketball or track season (sometime’s it’s all three!), no one is home to let the dog out for a potty break for six or seven hours.

And until yesterday, Glory had not had an accident in months. Usually, she’s so proud of herself and eager for a treat that she’s waiting at the door for me, wagging her tail so hard her whole body shakes.

But yesterday, she was nowhere to be found.

I did what I normally do when Glory has made a stinky mess and Ron is somewhere in the continental United States; I left it for him to clean up and spent the rest of the day as far away from the accident scene as possible.

I know how that sounds. What kind of wife hides from a pile of doggie poo and leaves it for her husband to deal with?

Am I wimpy, lazy or just plain cold-hearted?

The remainder of this column is devoted to my many excuses for yesterday’s lack of action on my part.

First, I must point out the fact that Ron insists on a daily basis that Glory is his dog and that she likes him a lot better than me. He even goes as far as suggesting the only reason she hangs out with me so much is because she knows I’m the person most likely to give her food.

In recent months, Ron has gotten into the habit of letting Glory sit on his lap at night while he watches TV. Once he is settled back in his recliner with 70 pounds of Border collie sprawled across him, he gloats about how she won’t sit like that with any other family members.

The boys and I think this behavior is a bit weird, but we’ve gotten used to it.

If my husband feels the need to pretend our dog is in love with him, it’s OK with me … as long as he is willing to clean up after her.

Now, I’m going to provide a little bit of information that may seem unrelated at first: Ron never changed the boys’ dirty diapers and in fact was a bit prissy about the whole issue.

I spent eight years wiping dirty little tushies while he looked the other way. To make matters worse, he thinks this is something to be proud of and even brags about it all these years later.

Does cleaning doggie poo off the carpet a few times a year even compare to all the time I spent on Pamper duty? I don’t think so.

I hope it’s now very clear to everyone that I have some very good reasons for turning my back on Glory’s infrequent failures to "hold it in."

I gave her a Milk-Bone this morning as motivation to make it through the day and because I felt bad for her having to suffer through the long Milk-Boneless afternoon of yesterday.

She is a good dog, after all. And while I know she really prefers me over Ron, if he wants to insist she belongs to him, that’s fine by me … especially when she’s just made a mess.

A mother of three boys, Pam Zich has been married to a Marine for 18 years and currently lives in Springfield, Va. You may e-mail her at or visit her Web site at

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