Fido & Me — Stormy Weather


“I have thunder phobia,” Fido said. “Don’t like-don’t like-don’t like thunder.”


“If it makes you feel any better, at least we don’t live out in the Plains or the East. They get hammered back there by thunder and lightning.”


“That doesn’t make me feel better.”


“I’m not sure exactly what to do about it, Mr. Beeg. If you were a puppy, maybe we could get you around this, but you’re kind of an old dog now, and new tricks don’t come that easily for you.”


“A biscuit might help.”


“Gosh, Fido, what with the frequency of the thunder we’ve had lately, you’d bloat out like the Hindenburg if I gave you a biscuit every time there was thunder.”


“We could try, though.”




“Well what, then? I’m at the end of my leash.”


“Poor boy. We could try some other stuff that dog people suggest. Like, I don’t know—things like offering you a distracting noise of some sort. Howzabout we listen to some loud music?”


“What have you got in mind?”


“Lemme see. I just so happen to have a copy of Beethoven’s Sixth right here. Would that do it for you?”


“The Pastorale?!? I’d rather die.”


“I thought you liked Beethoven.”


“Yeah, but the Fourth Movement? The Allegro? That seriously freaks me out.”


“We could try some white noise. Sometimes that hides the sound of thunder.”


“If I wanted white noise, I’d listen to Fox News.”


“Fair enough, Fido, but I have to say we’re running out of options here. What would you think of wearing an aluminum cape?


“You’re kidding me.”


“Not really, you big red lug. Sometimes a dog can become sensitized to the electromagnetic radiation caused by lightning strikes. If you’d care to take cover in your crate, I could cover it with some aluminum foil, and I know some dogs wear a ‘Storm Defender’ cape.”


“You’re kidding me. I’d be like one of those lunatics who wear aluminum foil helmets to defend themselves against government-sponsored, electromagnetic thought rays from the NSA. No way.”


“Fido, there doesn’t seem to be much more I can think of, to tell you the truth.”


“I think a biscuit would help immeasurably.”


“Tell me if I’m off-base here, Fido, but I get the feeling that you’re playing me like a fish on a line. To tell you the truth, I have seen very little phobic behavior from you when we get thunder and lightning. I know some dogs who dive under the bed or crawl into a closet or who go crazy other ways. But you seem to do fine.”


“I’m mellow like that, but it doesn’t mean thunder doesn’t bother me.”


“Once again, and if this makes you feel better, thunder bothers some people, too. Don’t ask me why. Me, personally, I kind of like it. Reminds me of Beethoven.”


“Speak for yourself,” Fido said. “But I have to ask: What do humans do when they are bothered by lighting and thunder?”


“Hmm. I know some people who head straight for the freezer, grab a big ol’ tub of ice cream and dig in.”


“Exactly,” Fido said.