Tuesday, February 14, 2012
The Enchantment of My Dog
Singer with that mesmerized look...
Singer continues to be fascinated with our backyard. I amend that: she is absolutely mesmerized by the wildlife and incredible action out there. She will spend several minutes watching shadows on the snow in bright sunlight, her tail in a dizzying whirl. I don’t know what it is—the shadows flitting across the landscape from birds flying overhead, or her mind’s eye imagining a forest full of animals? Does she see little critters scurrying away in golf ball sized holes in the snow? Does she imagine little dark mice running for their lives across the crusty snow ridges made by her galloping paws? Or maybe she’s just mesmerized by the sights and sounds of the outdoors. In any case, she loves to go outside and spend several minutes getting mesmerized…It’s like an addiction for her. I joke that her eyes become whirling orbs in her head, like those old cartoons of hypnotized victims, their hands (paws) out in front of them, ready to do the enchanter’s bidding. She is definitely enchanted. The backyard must have a magical wizard out there who is controlling my dog. Maybe he lives in the old apple tree, eating last fall’s rotten apples that have fallen on the ground. The wizard has captured her attention and whisked her away from her warm home, her couch, her kitty friend, Dakota, and of course, me. The pull of this sorcerer is great—she gets up while snuggled on the couch beside me as I read at night, the irresistible magnet making her pace around the house until we let her out, so she can find this mystical wizard who is invisible yet as powerful as a tornado that sweeps her off into the night.
Last Saturday, our next to last class, we upped the ante with getting our dogs to sit while behind fences, and with our backs turned. Singer, good sport, watched my hand movements, and tried hard to figure out what I wanted from her. It took several tries to learn how to sit with a fence in front of her. We still are working on sit while I stand at an angle to her. Eventually, she will know that sit means sit anywhere I happen to be, and not just while standing directly in front of her. Back home, Jeff and I played the name game with her—he upstairs, me downstairs, calling her back and forth, back and forth. She loved the game, and the treats. I remember Saylor loved it, too.