Saturday, June 24, 2006

I Need The Dog Whisperer!

Dot has developed the really annoying habit of taking lots of breaks during our walks. We've always gone on really long walks, ever since she was a little Dotopotamus, but for some reason these last few weeks have become a battle of the wills.

She just doesn't want to go very far, anymore. I know Dot is healthy and in good shape -- the vet told me so in May. I got her hair cut short so she wouldn't be as hot. I just think that for some reason she's got it stuck in her mind to be stubborn and lay down because she's discovered she likes the feel of the grass.

As we're in mid stride Dot will just plop down on someone's lawn. She especially loves the nicely manacured lawns with the greenest grass. She'll just lay there and ignore me. I've tried waiting her out (we sat there for 20 minutes one time), tugging at her, using a stern voice, using an excited voice, poking her...nothing works. If time is really of the essence in the mornings, I have to go stand right behind her and start nudge her with my feet until she begrudgingly gets up. She'll go about 20 feet and do it all again.

I need that amazing Dog Whisperer guy from the National Geographic channel to come 1) tell me what's changed and why we suddenly can't make it around the block, moreless around our 3.5 mile loop, without a dozen breaks, and 2) what can I do to break her of this habit? I read in a book one time that dogs can pick up on your mental images -- like they're reading your mind. So I'm constantly conjuring up the image of a sweet little energetic, well-behaved dog walking sprightly right beside me with her tail wagging, head held high and eyes forward. Then I'll look down at Dot as she's rolling in squirrel poop on someone's lawn, getting tangled up in her own leash, and I realize that my puppy's telepathic skills need a little bit of work.


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