The animals in my house may one day truly be friends. Until then, they remain antgonizer and antagonee.
Of course, the antagonizer has no idea she antagonizes. She thinks she and the cats - well, the one cat who will grace her with his presence - are playmates. The highlight of my dog's day, aside from her daily walk, is in the evening after supper. We have headed upstairs to play computer games, check e-mail or post meaningless ramblings intended for my imaginary friend in Shropshire (whaddup, Niamh!), and she races up behind us and tends to her evening activity, cat-watching. Our cats live in our bathroom closet. They chose that spot when we moved in a few years ago, and last year when we got the puppy, they saw no need to ever leave, save for eating and eliminating. So the canine child perches herself in the middle of the open bathroom door and gazes into the linen closet where the cats stare back, anxiously.
One cat learned a few months ago that if he just stays still, the dog provides an essentially free spit bath. They have a routine, now. The braver of the twin cats sits on the closed toilet lid and stares at the dog. The dog-baby stares back for a while until she can no longer stand it, and moves to the toilet and noses the cat into a bizarre ecstasy. Someday our cowardly kit will try his luck, I'm sure. Until then, however, he just watches on in his envy, living in his own dry fur.