Living with dogs

I love dogs, in fact I love pretty much everything about them. As a dog trainer I am obsessed with how they learn. I use several different positive methods to teach obedience, agility or just tricks. I like hanging out with dogs, they are mostly honest about what they want and need and I am always intrigued by the interaction between dogs.
Dogs are great fun whether I want to be active or they are great to curl up with on a cold winter day under a blanket on the couch.

But I DO NOT like their cold wet noses or slobbery drool.

I own 4 dog children and they have, I am sure, the coldest, wetest noses on earth. Dogs investigate everything with their noses, so I often have one of those inquisitive frigid snoots planted on me. This is especially true whenever I come home after teaching a dog training class because my dogs have to determine who attended my classes that evening. I don’t mind so much then because I am in my dog trainin’ clothes and already covered in nose prints, hair and slobber. But invariably it happens when I am dressed and ready to go out somewhere. It’s as if they can’t stand for me to be decked out in nicely clean and might I add, dry clothes. I can bank on at least one of my 4 dog children planting a nose on my nice clean clothes before I can escape out the door. Its not bad enough that I have to de-hair my clothes when I step out of my car when I get where I’m going, but if I get nosed before even leaving the house I have to grab my hair dryer and dry that spot. So when dressed nicely I am on guard to preserve my neat appearance until I can escape to my car.

Today I had to go to a meeting with my partners at our dog training school. I don’t teach on Friday but Scott and I always have dinner on Friday night at our favorite Irish Pub. I had a busy day ahead of me so I decided to simply dress for dinner before leaving and I would be all ready to go out this evening.

I swear as I came down the steps after dressing, the dogs were huddled in the corner drawing straws. They all looked at me and I thought uh-oh. I quickly armed myself with homemade peanut butter molasses dog cookies and headed for the dog room and their crates. They were hot on my heels and Tasha must have drawn the short straw because she was moving with purpose. I could hear the music from Jaws, dun, dun, dun, dun, as she gained speed, nose outstretched, straining for my freshly laundered green slacks. I deftly diverted her assault with the dog cookie tossing it into the crate. She took the bait and I slammed the crate door behind her. Tyler must have been the fall back guy because he started toward me, the music got louder, dun, dun, dun, dun, dun, dun I pushed my hand forward letting the peanut butter aroma distract him and he too followed the treat into his crate and I slammed the door home.
Whew! 2 down, 2 to go.
The cattle dogs converged on me tag team style. I had to think fast since their crates are at opposite ends of the room. I dashed to Beta’s crate as she made her play but the call of mommy’s homemade cookies save the day and I am able to get her in the crate and the door closed, my pants still dry and fresh.
Jackaroo starts toward me, our eyes are locked, dun, dun, dun, dun, I smile lovingly and say “want a cookie son?” He turns and runs into his crate I shut the door delivering the cookie with a triumphant cry.

Victorious and still with no nose prints on my clothes I arrive at the training school, my clothes crisp and fresh, ready for our meeting. I am feeling pretty smug about confounding my dogs onslaught and push open the door to the training room, check for dogs. None. Whew! Home free.

Before I realize what’s happening my partner Christie releases her two rambunctious golden retrievers and her mini poodle and its all over before I know it. Nose prints, drool and hair all over me. But dag-nab-it, I can’t resist those golden and poodly hugs.

Oh well, by the time we go to dinner I am sure those nose prints will have dried and be just a memory.