Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Dog Blogging

Such a divine day today! Crocuses turning their round little mugs up hopefully, only to be smashed to smithereens by the very fat feet of Hank the Lab. Both my dogs have the spring fever. Hank carries her George Bush doll everywhere with her and even smuggled it into the dog park where she instantly became a celebrity as all the dogs wanted to chew Georgie! Luckily the owners were largely Kerry-voters, too.

Henrietta walks around with her hackles raised, like some sort of a Maffia boss, while Hank follows half a foot behind but glued to Henrietta's right shoulder. They barrel out of the car like a cyclone and every other dog in the park cowers. I feel dreadful. Owning a pair of ill-behaved Maffia-type dogs is not fun, even if they have never bitten anything more than dog butt. And it makes me look bad.

So I have renewed dog training. It goes like this: I cut a meatball into small pieces and give the dogs various commands like "Sit!", "Down!", "Stay!", and if they get it right they get a sliver from a meatball. They'd do anything for a meatball, and this should work really well. In theory it does, in practice the dogs keep guessing various possible commands, sneaking looks at the other dog for hints, and in general getting less and less trained every second.

It's true that Hank is not the smartest of dogs, but she learns the commands almost immediately. She just doesn't see the point of doing them again after that, ever. Henrietta knows exactly what I try to achieve and she's not going to play into my hands. She has no intention of becoming a well-trained dog. She likes being the bully of the park.