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Ty finds unusual ways to cope when there's a disturbance in the force of his universe.

PMG PHOTO: ANNE ENDICOTT - Ty, our nearly 9-year-old golden retriever, finds some semblance of peace in the driveway, while a flooring project inside the house threatens the sanctity of his universe.

DH and I waded into uncharted territory recently.

Well, make that uncharted waters.

The aftermath of a spewing malfunction from the icemaker in the refrigerator left the hardwoods in my kitchen looking like a well-lubricated Slip 'n Slide.

Repairing the damage morphed into more of a project than we anticipated. The original flooring was no longer being manufactured, and no other color came close, so the entire downstairs had to be redone as well. We're talking more than 700 square feet of flooring, people.

DH and I have managed to weather the confusion and chaos as the old flooring came out and the new stuff went in. But along with the hassle of our first-ever homeowner's claim, we discovered another wrinkle in this mess — a psychotic dog.

Ty is our nearly 9-year-old golden retriever. He's willful, quite social, ridiculously energetic given his age and favors DH, even though I am the keeper of the food bowl. He's also sensitive to loud noises, which have been known to cause seizures.

Ty is accustomed to routine: nesting on the couch when he's home alone; chasing the ball down the hall; and having a clear path through the living room for a drive-by to check out the candy bowl.

This disruption to his universe has turned him into Nervous Ned.

First, there were the jet engine blowers used to dry the floor. They had to be approached with caution. He discovered it's hard to mooch off the poor schmuck attempting to make something to eat in the kitchen, navigating around a dehumidifier larger than the washing machine. Usually the cleaner-upper of anything that falls on the floor, even Ty's standards for a freebie were tested if it meant sucking something off dusty subflooring.

His favorite spot on the couch was missing because … well … the couch was AWOL. And his normal route to the food and water bowls was cluttered with furniture. He'd stare at the coffee table in the hall, look at me and almost say, "Really?"

He struggled when the refrigerator ended up in the kitchen nook at the top of the stairs.

Is that a stranger?

Hard to know if his barking was a signal of welcome or alarm that something wasn't where it belonged.

We won't even discuss the dishwasher in the dining room.

After one particularly rough day — the afternoon all the family room furniture was moved to the garage — it was obvious Ty had reached his breaking point. He paced around the cavernous family room, each paw fall echoing off the walls, frantically trying to find something normal in the world.

Later, he settled in his favorite spot on the bed. A heavy sigh of relief — finally, something was where and what it should be.

Then some yahoo outside in the distance set off a large firecracker.

Ty jumped off the bed, beelining for his favorite hiding place under the bed, with a look that can only be read as, "Oh dear God. What fresh hell is this?"

UPLOADED BY: ENDICOTT, ANNE - Anne Endicott is the managing editor for The Outlook, Sandy Post and Estacada News.


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