We’d shown off our two dogs for visitors before by demonstrating our dogs’ prowess at playing the Go Find It game and their understanding of sign language. We’d even shown our dogs’ love for sliced cheese, which is a joy to behold with their tails wagging furiously as they jostle each other like Laurel and Hardy trying to get through the doorway first. But never before had we put their love of sliced cheese to the ultimate test, let alone in front of witnesses.
The dogs had already gone up to bed, apparently tired of hearing us laugh and carry on over the card game we were playing. There were only four of us but you’d think there was a house full as much noise as we were making.
Once the dogs go to bed, they don’t come back down until morning so for us, this was the ultimate test. My husband wanted to demonstrate how a cheese wrapper could bring the dogs running, even from several rooms away.
The dogs were probably sleeping soundly and I just knew the trick would be a total flop. I figured they were holed up in the office which was the “quiet room” in the house, shielded from many of the downstairs sounds.
I had zero faith that the cheese test would work. No way would the dogs hear the cheese wrapper and even if they did, they were in sleep mode and wouldn’t care enough to come down and investigate. When company comes, they know that food doesn’t involve them.
The moment of truth arrived. He brought out a piece of sliced cheese, removed it from the wrapper, and then crinkled the wrapper. While it’s a distinctive sound, it’s not a very loud sound and I shook my head knowing our guests would go off telling stories of our silliness with this failed dog trick.
Immediately, the sound of two dogs shaking off sleep erupted from upstairs. Every year we add a new rabies tag to the dogs’ collars so when they shake, it’s like Christmastime jingle bells. Both dogs had heard the muffled sound of the cheese wrapper being crinkled and came bounding down the stairs with eyes aglow at the prospect of their favorite treat.
No dog whistle could have been more effective. My husband had successfully demonstrated that our dogs were so in tune to the sound of a cheese wrapper crinkling, that they’d coming running no matter how far away or how sound asleep they were.
The party trick was a hit! Our guests were duly amazed. Undoubtedly they went home laughing at our silliness with the successful dog trick.
|If you know someone with a dog who never quite got the hang of potty training, or who thinks the house is a giant chew toy, give them this book. Dakota was a semi-adult shelter dog who was the Queen of Bad Behavior and the Master of Dirty Tricks. Bad Dog to Best Friend takes you from Dakota’s awful beginnings to her amazing transformation, and includes detailed how-to’s for potty training an adult dog and stopping your dog from chewing your house to pieces.|
Bad Dog to Best Friend: The Book