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Dec 19, 2013 by pippalou
Posted in category: Dogs

Dear Pup Joe,

I got your recent email, and I'm writing to explain some things that you, as a young dog just starting out in the world, evidently do not understand.

First of all, always remember that you're dealing with a human. You mentioned that your human seems to have difficulty doing things at their appropriate times.

This is not unusual among this species. They are not intelligent beings like we are, and they need constant reminders to keep them on schedule.

Oh, they think they know when to do things, but they don't. You see, they have no sense of time at all, unless they have a clock.

And what, you ask, is a clock? It's a flat thing with numbers around the edge and two or three long pointy sticks on it. (No, not sticks for playing fetch!) Humans generally have one on a wall or on their wrist or on a table.

You may have seen your human looking up every once in a while at the wall (or wrist, or table). He's consulting one of these devices. Supposedly, by glancing at them, humans can tell what time it is, but I have my doubts.

Now, humans can't help this problem. It's some sort of innate defect in the species. So, as responsible dogs, we must work hard to keep our humans on schedule.

Your first move, just before any scheduled event, is to sit or stand next to your human and stare at him. Just stare stare stare... Did he look over at you?

Yes? Great, you're on the way to success!

No? Try Plan B: Nudge or scrape at him with your paw (often accompanied by soft whines).

If Plan B fails, we turn up the audio with Plan C: Bark! Not just once – continuously! Woof Woof Woof Woof Woof – you get the point.

Got his attention? Good. Raise your eyebrows expectantly, open the eyes wide, paw at the floor, back away a bit and shift your weight anxiously from side to side. Don't lose eye contact!

Is he up and moving now, knows what he has to do, ready to gratify your every wish? No? Must be a very tough case. Those kind often try to put you off: “Shut up! What do you want? I'm busy right now!”

This sort of behavior cannot be tolerated. I mean, we're willing to meet these people more than halfway, but they must understand that obedience is obligatory!

For these tough cases, you'll have to advance to Plan D. Grab hold of a sleeve or pants' leg and tug. Tow him along! Don't let go until you get to your destination! A little growling during all this, just for effect, never hurts.

A few helpful Don'ts:

      1. Don't give up hope

      2. Don't go back to lie down on the sofa at the first sign of resistance

      3. Don't leave it to your human to decide when you're going to do something. You are in charge, and they need to know it!

Good luck to you in your job.  I hope to hear soon that you've got your human under control in regard to time and that you're running a tighter schedule.

Your pal,

Ol' Redder, ODE (Old Dog of Experience)

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