Over the summer the dogs have slowly gone through a transition that has turned the pecking order upside-down in our house. The old dog Chester is no longer the top dog.

It’s not as if Val suddenly seized power that made her boss with a knockdown drag out. No, I’ve noticed the old dog has been giving up the role little by little — maybe because he likes her so much, perhaps because she’s bigger and stronger than he is, maybe even because he’s old and tired of being the tough dog.