“Obedience School”

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Grace, our Australian Shepherd, is now approaching 14. She is the third in a line of Aussies that we have raised since puppies. The breed is affectionate, loyal, alert, active, protective of  children, a hater of mailmen and an all around great family dog. Grace came from upstate New York, one of two puppies of an excellent sheep dog. We had to promise not to breed her, and sent proof of her spaying once it was done. Reputable sheep dog owners don’t want puppy mills to spring up from their offspring.

Both of our earlier dogs had flunked obedience school, preferring to do their own training. Grace has followed suit. Their own training is owner focused, that is, I, as the owner, needed to be trained. Grace has outperformed her predecessors in this endeavor. In case you are an owner in need of training, Grace suggests the following tasks to be mastered.

  1. Open the back door when your dog stands near it to go out.
  2. Open the back door when your dog who just went out wants to come in.
  3. Repeat as frequently as necessary.
  4. Leave the toilet lid up for cold drinking water. (Grace says her owners constantly fail at this.)
  5.  Step over or around your dog and never ask her to move.
  6. Feed regularly. Don’t listen to the vet’s recommended amount.
  7. Toss frequent table scraps. Ignore the vet’s directives.
  8. Keep the yard full of squirrels for endless enjoyment of your dog.
  9. Disregard the vet’s recommended immunization demands.
  10. Let the dog’s nail and hair grow to please the dog, not the owner.
  11. Never call anything a “doggy hotel.”
  12. Never leave town, especially not with the dog in a “doggy hotel.”

Grace reports that despite her constant training, we continue to fail at some key tasks she considers important. She asks why we expect her to go to obedience school. Clearly the problems lie with her owners.

30 thoughts on ““Obedience School”

  1. I was lucky. Ollie was born ‘trained’. He has never done a single ‘naughty’ thing, in over seven years. And he never drinks from the toilet, probably because I put bleach down it every time I use it. 🙂
    But he is loved and cared for, just like Grace. 🙂
    Best wishes, Pete.

  2. Our Staffie, Pickle, was sixteen in August. She is deaf (which means she’s no longer frightened by fireworks or thunderstorms, so not all bad) and extremely arthritic. She’s on supplements for her joints, tablets for liver support and old-dog vitamins, but she still plays with the puppy (although playing consists of rolling around rather than running around) and she still insists on her walks. She only has to gaze into my husband’s eyes to have him reaching for the treats.
    Now that she is senior dog it is she who guards the doorways by lying across them or in front of them. Puppy Smidgeon is going to miss her as much as we will when she leaves us.

  3. Doggie training. Our little Oreo has his own bowls of food and water. Jovy bought a water dispenser just for him. It automatically stops once the bowl is full. He loves ice and cold water.

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