Monday, January 09, 2012

The Evolution of Sally

It seems that in addition to learning how to bark, Sally the Dog has learned how to jump.
While she still jumps straight up in the air and spins around when she is excited, now she has begun to jump up on things – like the coffee table, the couch, my leg, when sitting.
Mind you, I do not mean that she puts all four large paws on these things, just her front two paws.

Suddenly, this weekend, she has discovered that if she puts her front paws up on me, she can better smell my food – and see it. (!)
Thus, a new command has entered our vocabulary, “down”.
We are working on this new dimension to our education.
Of course, I know the day will come when Sally the Dog will not need to put her paws up on anything but the floor to see/smell my food on table or TV tray.

During the rainy drizzly weather of the last three days, STD has spent some time under the utility building in the back yard – much to my distress.
It is dirty under there – if dry.
But it is increasingly clear to me that her days under there are numbered.
She is getting so big that she barely can scrunch herself under there.
In another month, she may not fit under there at all.
So, she is spending more time in her palatial dog house when the weather is not ideal.
(my preference since I built it for her – and it is clean and dry)

I find myself getting weary of this relationship at times.
The more there is for her to learn means the more there is for me to teach.
And she, in all fairness, does not speak or understand English.
So I must choose my phrases carefully and repeat them endlessly and firmly and consistently apply my desired behavior on her time after time after time.

The only good news is all of this is that Sally is not human.
She is not rebellious or knowingly disobedient.
She does not hold a grudge and seek revenge – even if it seems like it sometimes.
And she is smart.
Sometimes too smart.
And while some of her behavior can be attributed to her puppyness, I am not sure what she will “grow out of” and what will remain a part of her personality that will require yet further training and discipline.

It is time to feed the bouncing, spinning, excited, not-so-little puppy.

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