Today’s edition revolves around the concept of motion. In my ongoing effort to learn how to speak and understand “Doglish” I’ve discovered that “Eas-y” apparently means go as fast as you can up or down stairs (rather than take the stairs slowly and safely). 🙂 I know Sam isn’t wild about stairways; we don’t have them at our house and he’s never quite sure how to maneuver up and down without moving at the speed of sound. As hospital volunteers, we must be able to navigate them as a team in the event of an emergency. Every trip to the hospital, I start out by taking at least one flight of stairs to keep Sam on his game. Practice makes perfect, right? With our last trip, there was some serious doubt we could safely handle any more than one flight. Safely being the operative word here. We started out ok, but then he suddenly seemed to realize “Egad, I’m doing something I know nothing about and must freak out and run as fast as I can to get away from these horrible stacked obstacles.” He went from zero to 60 in a nano-second! It was all I could do not to scream my head off like a school girl and just hang on to the leash for dear life. Oh Sam, I really do love you but I’m convinced you’re secretly trying to kill me every opportunity you get.
This week we needed to be re-evaluated for temperament and checked out by the vet who works with our program. Dr. Sarah is a dream. She loves all the dogs, makes time for butt and ear scratches while going through the drill, checking each dog professionally, and quite measured-read…s-l-o-w-l-y. We do this every 6 months, and we’ve been through it enough that I have never worried about it in the past. Sam adapts well and typically just stands there while the laying of hands and banging of utensils go on around him while I answer questions about him for the records. He never flinches and we’re usually in and out in a jiffy. But when we showed up the other evening, a miniature Schnauzer also in the program was there ahead of us. Sweet little Odie is about as cute as a button and was wagging the little stump of a tail nearly clean off when he saw Sam. Sam took one look at him and started doing his jack rabbit run/bounce/jump maneuver like a canine gazelle to investigate just who was this little wind-up toy. Again, it pays to be dead weight some times, because I was sure he would (a) either rip my shoulder out of the socket or (b) pull me down on my bum side. Heel or stop
please help me! commands didn’t seem to affect Sam. He saw his little buddy and by golly, he was gonna go say hi…no if’s and’s or but’s about it. While it wasn’t nearly as bad as it could have been, at least I didn’t fall or injure my shoulder, but only barely. But Sam saved the best of his evening antics for Dr. Sarah. Yeah, there’s actually more.
Sam burst into the office where the evals were held like a bull in a china shop and ran around the table hither and fro investigating everything and in a blink of an eye even tried to hop up onto the table to check out what was that divine odor he could smell. There were some really high value treats that completely captivated him along with the various props that are used to see if the dogs react that he just had to get his big honking nose in the middle of while the rest of us were totally wigging out at his energy level and quickness
not to mention the audacity of climbing up there on the table. I was mortified, Dr. Sarah was somewhat surprised (ya think?) and the coordinator was laughing her head off and kept saying, “Dr. Sarah, this dog is almost ten years old, can you believe it?” That numskull! In his feeble brain, apparently “come” at a re-certification evaluation means run around like a crazy nut case and freak everyone out while entertaining your newest BFF, Odie. At least Odie remained cool with it all, little stub of a tail never stopping for a second. 😉
[Full disclosure, the above photo is a reenactment since I wasn’t quick enough to snap a photo at the hospital. I was too busy tripping over my jaw from the shock of seeing that doofus nearly tear the entire room apart with his excitement but fortunately Sam was more than willing to help with ‘staging’ it again. Perhaps ‘help’ in Doglish means he’ll do anything if there are treats involved.] ;)
Oh that dog! Have you mastered Doglish yet? Got any tips that I might use on this bonehead?
Live, love, bark! <3