Axholme Tails with Lyn Dobson: A handbook for dogs

Am I allowed to chew this slipper?

Am I allowed to chew this slipper?

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I have wondered if I should write a “Handbook for Dogs. The canine rules for living in a human home.”

The first obstacle was that I don’t actually speak “dog”, the second was Burt nudging me for attention. When I sat on the sofa with my keyboard I couldn’t type anything until he had been fussed and settled. After eventually escaping Burts clutches I thought about the potential for such a handbook. After all when we bring a dog into our home we appear to have expectations of their behaviour. When they don’t comply with them we throw the book at them, well we would if I

had written it. We give them a roof over their heads, we feed them, lavish them with love and attention. What do we get in return? Not their undying affection that’s for sure. They pee and poop around our house, chew anything and everything including us. They pinch things off the kitchen counter, jump up at us and visitors, pull us when we try to take them for a walk and don’t come back when called. Where’s the gratitude? Why do they get it so wrong? I just may have mentioned this before but “they are dogs, not humans and do what dogs will do.” Why do we think they will arrive knowing how we want them to behave. Do you sit down in the hairdressers chair, expect her to know how you want your hair cutting then scream abusives at her when its done and she got it wrong? Or go to a restaurant and wait for the waiter to arrive with your food without making a choice off the menu and shout “no no no” when its not what you wanted? Dogs don’t arrive with a handbook for living in a human home. So why do we wait for the dog to get it wrong and tell them off? Or we try saying what we want louder and clearer over and over as if it makes it more understandable.

Why don’t we set the record right in the first place and teach them how we would like them to behave,

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