Being a dog, I have limited ways to communicate. I can bang on my bowl when I am hungry, wag my tail to indicate happiness, or stand at the back door when I want to go out, but when it comes to more complex thoughts sometimes I have to lead by example. One example I try to set is taking frequent naps.
I am pretty likely sleeping more than I am awake, and this is one thing the cat, Lucille Bell, and I have in common. We sometimes get criticized for this and told we are lazy. I like to sleep on the couch during the day. The cat never naps in the same spot. Not sticking to a routine is part of her strategy I think. Her finding strange spots to nap, causes the humans to panic sometimes. “Has anyone seen Lucy today? Do you think she got out of the house?”. they say, and I think “oh, please, oh please”. But then they find her in a box of old tax returns in the basement or in someone’s dresser drawer. I like that they always know where I am. Again, I try and set an example.
The humans it seems sleep only at night. I am not allowed to sleep with them, though I notice Lucille Bell is. She not only sleeps in bed with them, she sleeps on top of them. She acts like a feline gyroscope shifting easily with them. They turn over on their backs and she is on top. They turn on their side and she is again on top, perched on a hip. Sometimes I sleep with the boy, but I am not allowed in the girl’s room because I eat her belongings, which is wrong, but if she will insist on leaving her things on the floor, I’m going to eat them.
I don’t nap because I am tired. What do I need to rest up for? Another day of napping? I nap because it is something to do. If there is nothing going on, then I am going to sleep. I don’t see that there is anything wrong with this. Napping is also an activity.
I notice the humans running around all day. Up and down the stairs. In and out of the house. Running out to the car often with balls. In my experience a car ride only ends trouble. It ends in a visit to the vet, which always involves being stuck with a needle or worse to a long visit to the Pet Hotel, which makes me anxious. So, I worry about them when they all run out to the car, and because they usually come home cranky, I can tell something bad happened.
Lately though they are coming around to my point of view. I am happy to see that more times than not someone is asleep on the couch. Sometimes when I sit on the couch with them and sense that someone is going to get up and run around, I lay on their lap. I make myself a dead weight and imagine my sleepiness working its way out of my body and into the lap below and then down into the cushions. Then the person will say “I can’t get up now. I’ll disturb the dog” and soon I will see their eyes close and feel their body relax.
They run around too much. I am happy to teach them to quiet down. Napping is one more activity and there’s nothing wrong with that. If there is nothing else going on, then close your eyes.Stop trying to invent open-eye activities. Maybe they’d sleep better at night if they didn’t have a cat on top of them.