Yes, you read that right, Yippie goes to the bar. The bar in our kitchen. He stands there until we guess what he wants. Literally, just stands there and looks at me as I guess what is on his mind. I should perhaps teach him the PECS system that is used for non verbal children, and perhaps when we are done with the Karen Pryor Academy behavior chain I will.
When he goes to the bar, it is typically one of three things (lucky for him, because I would lose patience after the third):
- To go out.
- He wants a treat.
First, I point at the water bowl and ask if he wants water… at least 60% of the time this is it.
Second, I walk around the counter and towards the back door where the doggie door is located. If he goes out, that was it. (20% of the time)
Finally, we walk back to the counter and I put my hand on something… If he goes nuts… he was just working me for a treat. So we do a little mini-training session and call it for the next few hours while he naps in his stroller. Yes, I said it… he has a stroller. He loves that thing, but that is a story for another time.
Some tell me it is early stages of CCD, but I’m happy to report that there is nothing else in his life that suggests this to be the case. After all, you did read he is participating in the Karen Pryor Academy, right? For those that don’t know what that is you can find out more information here. Further, Yippie has always been a bit of a goof. Someday I’ll have to write up a fun post about the day Yippie decided to play hide and seek without telling us. (Boy I really do digress sometimes.)
My point is this, as our dogs age, we let them get away with certain things. For me, it is allowing him to treat me like a human PEZ dispenser. If he hadn’t spent the last 14 years of his life as a perfect angel, I might not be so inclined to let him treat me this way. We often called him Stealth Dog, because you could forget he was there he was so quiet all the time. We took him to outdoor restaurants and many times, the waiter would come up the third time, and say oh wow, “I didn’t even know he was here.”
So, when Yippie goes to the bar, I stop and pay attention. I don’t know if its a request to pay attention to him, or if he truly is forgetting why he walked there in the first place. I don’t really care. He counts on this from me. If I’m not there in a flash, he will prance in place… it’s funny… tippity, tippity, tip of toenails on the floor. For in that moment, it’s our time at the bar!