I love these people!

Friday, October 17, 2008

More a lipsyncher than a whisperer

In a few weeks our family will be celebrating one year of dog ownership... in the respect that we have been owned by a dog for almost a year. It's unbelievable that Princess PepperAnn has tolerated us for nearly 366 days. Especially come to find out, I have been dog-parenting ALL WRONG!

Our walks are not at all up to code. Not only do I make my dog go in/out the door before I do (how else am I going to open/close the doors?) but I use one of those retractable leashes that so even though she chooses mostly to trot by my side, she is free to stop and sniff and ramble about in her 12-foot bubble of freedom around me. It is HER walk, after all.
I also let her sleep with me... on my bed... which is the exact same level as me, the supposed pack leader. Hey, her breath is much better than the other animal I sleep with and she has never produced anything silent but deadly. The only time I regret giving her bed rights is when she pulls the covers off me in the morning to roust my lazy butt.
Hmm... oh yeah, I let her jump on me. It's part of an incredible 'welcome home' package which also includes lots of licky! Are you shocked yet?My sweet neighbor keeps trying to give me tips on teaching her to fetch. Psht! Like anyone can't play that game. We like the game where she rockets by me trailing a fleece toy from her mouth and I try to grab it. If I miss, she runs by a bit closer or slower to help me out and keep me from quitting in frustration. When I do manage to grab hold, I'm rewarded with a game of tug o' war. There is a fetch aspect of it, too, but it's pretty much her call. I mean do you tell your kids how to play their games?

As far as working for my affection? Ha! I can't even walk by her without disgusting pda's. She is just that yummy!

When we brought her home from the pound, the manual (yes, they gave us one) was a big proponent of the kenneling thing. That just didn't set well with me so I set up a quiet area for her in the laundry room - a place where she could go and not be bothered, where she would feel safe. Well, she is a border collie. Do not ever adopt a border collie unless every moment of your life can stand up to intense canine scrutiny. She has no desire to be by herself. Her job is to watch EVERYTHING I do... 24/7/52. The only time she will retreat to her laundry room is if I turn on the big, bad vacuum or clip my nails. I didn't say she didn't have some... um... idiosyncrasies.

The whole food-as-a-reward thing? I give her a bowl of kibble twice a day whether she's done my ironing or not but I do let her lick the Friskie's spoon in exchange for herding the cats to the 'table'.

One advantage to being studied so well by a dog is that you really don't have to say much... even in a whisper. I have never yelled at her, I've never really had to punish her. Back when her diet consisted largely of flipflops and panty crotches, one stern look would send her sulking. I'm not even sure why she quit - probably because I blogged about it. For fun I smile at her, which starts her tale wagging then I quickly raise an eyebrow, which stops it... smile...wag...brow up... no wag. This repairs the part of your self-esteem that is worn down by having teenagers that pay you no attention.

The worst thing PA does anymore is shred an occasional boogie-filled tissue or sneak snack bars out of my purse during the night. She doesn't eat them, but when I wake up in the morning and find a FiberOne bar on the floor, I imagine it's her way of saying 'I could have eaten that and given Mr. Nightfarts a run for his money.'
But thankfully, she doesn't, so how can you not totally love this 32 pound, fur-coated package of princess!?



15 comments:

Tracie said...

OMG this SO could have been about my dog! Except he does ocassionally produce the silent & deadly! We are now in the process of kicking him OUT of our bed. After he stole 15 cookies off the island I was SO mad at him part of his punishment was no more bed & mostly because he's a bed hog!! We have that exact same rope thingy

BBB said...

AWWWW!! I could SO love Miss PA as much as I love mine. She IS adorable. There is nothing like the unconditional love given by a dog. I wish I could say my weimie didn't do silent but deadly, but alas, she does. But I love her anyway. And our household revolves around the shihtzu baby who is, even now, laying in my lap.

Have a great weekend, my friend!!

Miss Thystle said...

Everyone knows Kleenex is a major staple of a healthy dog diet.

R U Serious?? said...

We had a Boarder Collie starting in 1980. Belle was a sweetie. (I have a few pics somewhere) But she would fetch, never bark and pretty much always behaved. Well, except as a puppy when we had parties and she would tip over beer cans, drink the beer and then try to eat the cans. Not good but she lived to be 15. Beatrice and Baker were the BEST but I'm afraid we have spoiled these Three Stooges!!

Hope you have a GREAT weekend Jane!

Jeankfl said...

I had a dog that looked exactly like PA! And she was a wonderful dog, too.. You should have seen me trying to teach her (successfully, I might add) to bark at people outside the house! LOL She also NEVER wanted to be away from me for a second.. She was the best! Good for you, winning a border collie's affection makes you ok in my book!! PA is an adorable child..

MizAngie said...

So I told Timber, "Hey, you're not the only useless, spoiled-ass dog in the world after all." Which sent him into a fit of body-waggin'. (You know, when they wag the tail so hard their whole body goes into motion.) Timber and PA have MANY of the same traits. Timber farts, though, especially when his butt is aimed at my face (as he sleeps in my bed). Must be a guy thing...

Shanna said...

Jeez, she's so sweet, she makes me crave a dog. And I can say that because I've actually had the privilege to pet her ;)

Laoch of Chicago said...

Very sweet looking canine

Manager Mom said...

That's one good dog. If I weren't allergic I'd totally ask to steal her.

I also wanted to come say thanks - I'm shutting my blog and just wanted to say how much I've appreciated your support, and I've enjoyed getting to know you through your blog.

All the best,

Jennifer

Nadine Hightower said...

She's part border collie and that why she's so smart. And Sweet!

Anonymous said...

I had a border collie, shelti mix dog - good, good dog! Happy anniversary Pepper Ann and Jane!

And to arrive at 6:45 from 65 miles away, I get up at 4:40 every day. That is 4:40 AM! Yes, it sucks!

Noanie

Anonymous said...

pda's? My brain fog is thick today...

Sounds like the adoption has worked out well and that you are having fun.

No list for the weekend? Good for you! g

Disturbed Stranger said...

That's an adorable dog!

wow, you're a lucky person ;)
lovely blog

keep posting

ann said...

What a precious dog she is! That last bit about the 'giving the fart man a run for his money' gave me a great fit of laughter!! Thanks!! I've had dogs all my life, yet I have "trained" my current dog about as well.... but I just gotta love her. She doesn't do s-b-d's, her farts actually don't smell too bad (yeah, that's a weird statement I know) but hers are loud, which is strange for a dog, and each and every time she will jump up, spin around, and look at her butt like "Hey!! What the heck is goin' on back there??!!" As if she has no clue.....

sleepdeprivedmomma said...

She's so purdy!!! Happy Anniversry Why family!!