Charley, our 200-pound oldest mastiff, doesn’t like thunderstorms or fireworks. In fact, the older he gets, the less he likes those things.
So on July fourth, my husband and I took the dogs into the bedroom, closed the blinds, and turned up the TV loud. We tried to act as though nothing were out of the ordinary (and missed a lot of fireworks) so our dogs would stay calm. This approach worked pretty well until it was time to turn off the TV and go to sleep.
I had hoped most of the noise would be finished by eleven, but a few stubborn merry-makers kept the firecrackers going–some right behind our house. Charley did what he always does when he’s frightened–he threw himself on the bed, but he’s only able to throw the top HALF of himself onto the bed. When this happens, I always wrap him in a blanket to make him feel secure (see photo).
At about 11:30, though, my hubby pulled Charley off the bed and we went to sleep. Charley stuck his head under the bed and everything seemed okay.
Now you have to understand something for the rest of this story to make sense. Our bed is one of those very heavy (I’m talking more than 500 pounds, certainly) foam mattress sets, the kind that last forever and weigh a ton. Plus, it’s very tall, even though there are only about ten inches of empty space between the floor and the edge of the bed frame.
So all is well, but I wake up around 2:30 a.m. I hear odd scratching sounds, and it sounds like one of the dogs are under the bed. I can’t see a thing, but I don’t want the poor dog to panic, so I turn on a light and wake up my hubby.
Uh oh. We see that Charley is under the bed, but only his front half is really beneath the bed frame. His back legs and rear end are sticking out. So I try to grab him around his middle and slide him out–no way. He’s too heavy, too wedged, and I can’t budge him.
So hubby gets up and tries to help me. We can’t move the dog. We try to lift the bed, but it’s amazingly heavy. With one of us lifting and one of us pulling the dog, we seem to only wedge him in further, and now I can see that the bed frame is actually pushing into the dog. I begin to worry about internal injuries and wonder if dogs can get bruises.
Finally the adrenaline kicks in. Hubster lifts the bed in a superhuman effort, I pull on the dog, and Charley is free! He’s stunned and still frightened, so I grab his security blanket (yes, he has one), and call him over to it. Within minutes, he’s shaking the blankey and getting into his regular bed.
Hubby is moaning and groaning about his back, and my own back feels a little worse for wear. But we’ve saved the dog.
And next year, I’m stuffing all my quilts and blankets under the bed to fill that empty space. I don’t want to go through this again.