Friday, July 17, 2009

This just in: Turns out, you ARE the boss of me.

This is Bubs:

This, it seems, is Bubs' bitch:

So, here we were over at Casa dePartypants, thinking that we had a "perfect" new dog whose cuteness was rivaled only by fluffy baby kitties wearing fluffy bunny costumes, and whose obvious adoration and complete and total devotion to his owners was rivaled only by that S&M dude that lived in that box in the gun shop in "Pulp Fiction".

Well, we were WRONG. Wrong, wrong, wrong. Not about the cuteness thing- that's so obviously true- but we were pretty much wrong about everything else.

I was feeling so smug- I thought that I was totally the "Alpha dog" in mine & Bubs' relationship. He follows me around the house, he snuggles with me constantly, he freaked out when I left the house with out him, he completely lost his shit (and it was sooo cute when he did- he would run around wiggling his but, smiling and emitting a cute little howl) whenever I came home after being gone a while, and he was very protective and territorial of me where the Mr. and the cats were concerned. He didn't seem to want to warm up to the Mr, but we figured that would change over time. The fact that he peed on the Mr's stuff and peed on lots of other things when we left him home alone seemed just like normal "new dog" separation issues.

Um, yeah...not so much. I'm not so much the "Alpha" as I am the "Asshole".

(And, on a side note: I am neither an idiot nor a novice when it comes to dogs. I grew up with them- big ones, small ones- I get it. I think we were just hoping that we had stumbled upon the one dog in the universe that was pretty much "wash and wear" no training needed. It's funny what you'll start to believe if you tell yourself it enough. Like that time I kept telling myself that cake for breakfast is a healthy lifestyle choice and that all of my pants "must have shrunk in the dryer". )

It seems we have been doing every single thing wrong with the little dude: how we walk him, how we snuggleandloveandkissandspoon him, how we look at him, how we feed him, how we walk up and down stairs with him, how we try and not let him chase the poor kitties, how we breathe the same air...

...well, maybe not the last one, but you get the point. Us = WRONG.

So now we're embarking on a massive training plan, one I've dubbed Bubs' Intensive Training Camp Hellyeah! or BITCH, for short.

It's actually going well, so far. He has taken to walking properly on our walks with little or no struggle anymore (behind me or to the side of me, no pulling on the lead), he chases after the cats less, he won't walk up or down stairs until I tell him it's OK, he's learning "stay" and "come" and "fetch Mommy a cocktail". (Well, in all honesty the "fetch" thing isn't going so well- he always forgets the olives in my martini, and between you and me, the guy can't make a margarita for shit.) His freakouts when I'm out of the house for a while have lessened considerably, I don't think he's peed anywhere in the house in a few days, and he's starting to figure out that his reign as King of the Casa is coming to an end.

He's still perfect in my eyes (almost never, ever barks, sleeps through the night without so much as a wimper, snuggles like a champ, and when he looks up at me with those googly-woogly eyes I still melt into a big, sloppy puddle), but it will be some work before he's perfect in my HOUSE.

I've got all the "basic training of my dog" bases covered, but none of the literature seems to address the whole "stopping your dog from shedding" thing, or the "how can I make my dog's farts of death smell like cupcakes?" thing.
Any suggestions?

Happy Friday, my incorrigible little alpha bitches. Happy Friday.



Jon said...

I'm a big proponent of the "Get Drunk and Ignore It" method of dog training.

Actually, the method works for pretty much all of life's problems. Maybe I should write a book, or host a late-night infomercial or something.

Luisa Perkins said...

AWESOME acronym.

FoDs: Peppermint tea in his water bowl? Other than that, I got nuthin.

Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

You need a visit from the Dog Whisperer. Or from me if you're up to it.

Gwen said...

Poor Bubs, dethroned so soon. I bet he feels like some pre-teen, scrawny, inbred medieval English king whose Gallic uncle overthrows him without even leaving France.

Kim said...

Since our baby is part Chow and we used to have more time on our hands, when he was a baby we were able to take him to a couple of sessions of puppy school. He did really well on the general command thing, but he never quite over the I HATE EVERY PERSON ON EARTH EXCEPT MOMMY AND DADDY. It's been somewhat of a strain on our social life, but I still prefer his company over most humans' so it all worked out.
And the shedding thing? Yeah, you can't see me right now because I'm buried under a mountain of hair.

diatribes and dish said...

It sounds like you're already light years ahead of me & Screwball. You suck. (Just kidding, jealousy talking.)

wafelenbak said...

Time to call the Dog Whisperer! ;)
(ssst...ssst...calm and assertive, calm and assertive)

SkylersDad said...

I think if you made that face at me, I would go run and sit in my kennel.

Boxer rebel said...

We had sort of the same issues when we got our new puppy. He didn't listen so well, and he would wake us up at 4:30 or 5 to go out. After we started ignoring him till at least 7, the going out got a lot better. We also just finished doggie training classes which helps with the commands and such, but he still needs work. Finally, we got the whole pulling when he walked thing figured out by getting a gentle lead and that works perfectly, no pulling anymore.

kirby said...

Tie his leash to your bike Dirk and make Bubs keep up with you for a change.

Sassmaster said...

I taught him all of that. It was part of my whole Munchausen by Proxy thing with him. Um....sorry?

Fancy Schmancy said...

The only thing to cure the farts of death is bunching them up for a dutch kettle for the hubs. Then let him deal with them.

Doc said...

I have no suggestions about the dog but I saved the finger-wagging picture of you to the wife's computer. I want to set it as her screen saver and see what she says.


Imnotbenny said...

I can't help you with the shedding thing, but my advice on how to stop the rancid smell of the damned from shooting out of your dog's nether regions is to not let your dog be Fat Pogo, who apparently has no regard for any living thing when it comes to flatulence courtesy.

Other than that, I suggest that you buy a lot of mini muffins and shove one of those babies up Bubs a-hole daily.

I'm pretty sure that works- saw it on the Dog Whisperer or something.

T.J. said...

I hate to be a sticker, but it was a pawn shop, not a gun shop.

As for the shedding/gas problem, I suggest a small amount of Elmer's glue mixed in with his water (should keep the hair glued in) and I believe that judiciously inserted fruit-flavored Lifesavers will turn the trick for the flatulance.

They have that convenient hole in the middle, so do dangerous back pressure.

Son of a Thomas said...

Congrats on the training. My wife runs a rescue and we can have god knows how many dogs at one time. Currently we have 20. Only 6 of them are ours.

Can't help with the shedding problem beyond shaving the little guy.

On the farts, check with your vet but I used to give my dog charcol pills. They absorb the methane.

domboy said...

I have a similar problem with my wife. It takes years to train a woman … just be patient and be firm.

Suze said...

I wish you had started this "BITCH" thing earlier and posted it. I had my dog for almost 17 years and the closest I could get to becoming Alpha Dog was for me to pee on my own carpet.

easytravel said...

thanks for share. Nice blog. I like it. See you on my blog also.

gorillabuns said...

i can't seem to train my kids so training or even attempting to train an animal that will never learn to get their own food would be a major issue with me.

i am playing outside said...

you should treat the dog more like a panda. or get a panda. maybe dress the dog as a panda?


black and white animals are adorable.

Stacey said...

I don't know but when you find out please let me know...because I figure a ticket for Casey (the dog of my life) to St. Paul wouldn't be too expensive.

Evil Genius * 10^5 said...

Dear Ms. Von Partypants,

MSN has indicated to me that today (7/21) is Monkey Day. a quick Google search indicates that it is 12/14.

Can you please clarify this for me so that I may celebrate appropriately?

Best regards,
Evil genius x 10^5