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It is Impossible to Look Cool While Pleading with a Dachshund

June 14, 2006

Usually, when the wife or I tell people that we own four dogs, we are greeted with an expression one might reasonably expect to see upon informing someone that they like to dress up like Nazis while they make Pop-Tarts and watch documentaries about predatory cats.  Then follows the inevitable questions which revolve around how we manage, etc.

The answer I give (I don’t claim to speak for the wife – I know better) is that it is not that difficult.  The dogs have a certain pack momentum that makes feeding them or getting them outside or whatnot a relatively simple task.  So long as the routine is maintained, they are mostly simple to manage. 

Or so I thought.

Ever since moving into the house, our (or rather my) method for getting the dogs into their kennels has remained the same.  It begins with me saying "come one, everyone, let’s get in our kennels!".  With that, I secure treats.  Sam, our obsessive-compulsive creature of habit, heads for his kennel.  Smith and the two girls follow.  After some tail wagging, prancing, and drooling, the dogs get their treats, the kennel doors get closed, and the mission is accomplished.

This has been the way of things for the past year.  It has become as predictable as the rising and setting of the sun, or the string of expletives that pass my lips when I go to leave for work in the morning only to find that some construction worker has parked his pickup truck (or poorly modified import car) so that it is blocking our driveway.

Well, not anymore.  For some inexplicable reason, the dachshunds have decided sometime in the past forty-eight hours to stop recognizing the kenneling procedure.  Now, instead of running into their kennels like two crazed squirrels, they stand in the living room and stare.  If I stare at them, they cower and slink toward corners.  If I approach them, they call upon their special dachshund powers and pee on the floor.

For me, this is grounds for picking them up and personally depositing them in their kennel.  This is also grounds for doing so without bestowing treats upon them.  I think having to clean up urine is fair grounds for witholding the treat bribe.

The wife, on the other hand, disagrees, and last night proceeded to sit on the stairs and watch as I tried in vain to get the dachshunds into their kennels.  What followed was about twenty minutes of humiliation as I stood in the dog room and called to the girls in a high-pitched, pleading voice, trying my best to sound like I had no desire to drop kick them like footballs (well, they are about the right size…).  In the end, they peed on the floor anyway, I declared the game over, and put them away.

It goes without saying that they behave like little angels for the wife.  No mind games or staredowns or floor waterings with her.  Only with me.

So…no…owning four dogs is not particularly difficult.  Owning two dachshunds, on the other hand…

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. June 15, 2006 2:00 pm

    Method 1) Try eliminating treats

    Method 2) If this proves futile, proceed to cut their tails off.

  2. Tim permalink
    June 15, 2006 10:12 pm

    3) Cut their legs off and go kennel full time?

    Damn, Jamie is probably reading this. She’s going to kick my butt.

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