I woke up this morning (Post written March 4) at 4:00am. I was laying on my side and facing my almost closed bedroom door, when it slowly started opening!
The more it opened, the more I saw the shape of Ray quietly pushing the door further open. Then he stood there and looked at me.
“What’s up buddy?” – No response. He just stood and looked at me.
I closed my eyes thinking that I could get back to sleep, but Ray had other plans and a large wet nose was pushed into my face.
“What do you want buddy?” – No response. He just stood and looked at me.
Whatever was going on clearly bothered him, so I invited him up onto my bed. He declined the offer and just stood right next me. If I closed my eyes, he butted me with his nose! He was obviously not going to let me sleep, but I really did not feel like getting out of bed to look for… what?
Then it happened! A smoke detector gave a single beep (low battery warning) and Ray went very tense. So I now knew what the problem was but, at this time in the morning, I was not too inclined to identify which one had the problem and then get a chair so that I could reach it, open it up, and change its battery.
“C’mon Ray… on the bed… jump!” He again declined my offer, but did walk around the end of my bed and based on a heavy “clumphing” sound, I think he curled up on the bedroom floor. Sometime later the smoke detector beeped again, and Ray jumped up onto my bed and curled up next to me. I rested my arm across him and may have gone to sleep until the next beep. Many of you will know that, when a dead weight of just under 80lbs (a sleeping Ray) laying next to you on the bed is startled, the whole bed moves!
Sleep was probably not going to be an option this morning! The smoke detector was going to keep beeping, just as Ray was going to continue being startled by it. I had to get up! Fortunately, I could now tell with a fair degree of certainty which detector was the problem so I took it down from the ceiling and removed the battery. We have numerous smoke detectors around the house and so I was not concerned about having one out of action for a short while, and I generally get up at 5:00am anyway!
While I was up, I thought that I could take advantage of the circumstances for a brief washroom visit with the intent of going straight back to bed and perhaps catch up on my sleep. Walking back into my bedroom, I suddenly realized that there was no Ray. He was not on my bed, nor anywhere in my bedroom. He was not on the sofa or matching chair where he sometimes spends the night, and he was not on his circular bed.
He really is too big to hide anywhere so I went looking for him… and found him! He was standing at the back door clearly wanting to go outside. It should be understood that Ray has established an unfortunate level of expertise with catching squirrels; he loves to chase rabbits; we have numerous racoon families in our immediate area, and we have a skunk which we think lives underneath our neighbor’s shed! At around 4:30am, it was very tempting to open the door and just let him out to do whatever he needed to do, but that “resident” skunk was a major concern.
I went back to my bedroom and threw on some shoes and suitable clothes.
“Ray! Come here buddy. Let’s put your collar on” He wandered over, put his head through the collar, and then turned back to face the door.
“Hang on buddy. I need to attach your leash.” He waited.
At some time before 5:00am, on a cold and snowy March morning, we were both outside. Ray started following scents until he found a suitable place to pee, after which he headed back towards the house. He immediately curled up on one of his beds and appeared to go straight to sleep, while I… well I decided to have some breakfast and get the day started. I now had a Post to write!