I grant you, two elderly small dogs do not much of a circus make. There's no trapeze, no elephants, no big top. But we have spangles, clowning, a variety of death-defying feats, and they do present a startling spectacle when leashed and walking.*
Have we acquired another diminutive retread for the household menagerie?
Not in this decade. This well-groomed poodle is another eccentric old tenant at Uncle Markie's Home for Wayward Pups. A bit of a howler when left alone, she kept Lilly company while Markie was away recently.
The old lady-dogs maintain cool diplomatic relations, despite sharing a distaste for the vacuum-cleaner and a fondness for the dog-bed. Whether they like to admit it or not, they both huff down their kibble with more gusto for having a bit of encouragement and competition.
But they are not close. The poodle seems as insubstantial as a puff of goosedown next to the solid brick of cheddar that is the resident small dog. Though she is younger, the poodle seems older, drifting around on tiptoe and staying out from underfoot.
Still, it would be only a tiny stretch to have the poodle sport a tutu and jump through hoops in the center ring. Lilly is more of a roustabout by nature, hauling on ropes and shouting at the rubes. She does not have the figure for prancing around in a leotard.
The poodle regularly gets bowled over and shouldered aside by our Lilly. In return, the poodle occasionally startles awake as Lilly passes, snarling and snapping with her full set of pointed teeth as if fending off wolves.
Both seem quick to forgive and forget -- either Etch-a-Sketch memory or perhaps because they are good little circus troupers and they've been around the circuit a few times. They know that after all, the show must go on.