The Sledgehammer – Version 2.0

November 6, 2009

A Battle of Wits with an Eight-Legged Opponent

Filed under: Dogs — Tags: — Brian Lutz @ 10:38 pm

Sometime tomorrow, my parents will be returning home from their latest sunny tropical adventure (and from the looks of the forecast, they should have some LOVELY weather waiting for them when they get home) which means that my recent dogsitting stint will soon be coming to an end.  I will say that although there have been a couple of issues here and there, for the most part Imola and Minardi have been pretty well behaved this time around, in spite of my occasional lack of diligence on the evening walks.  They do have one particular habit that they have no apparent intention of ever breaking though:  They still love to dig at the dog park.

This isn’t to say that they’ll just go dig holes at random.  Usually there’s a couple of particular spots that get their attention, and one spot that you just can’t seem to drag them away from.  Out toward the back corner of the Marymoor Dog Park, there’s one particular hole (hereafter referred to as “The Hole”) next to the trail that these two will sprint to from 50 yards away, and I suspect if you let them they’d dig halfway to China in this spot.  I have no idea what’s supposed to be so appealing about this particular patch of dirt (Maybe there’s some sort of dead animal in there or something,) but Imola and Minardi just can’t seem to get enough of it.  You can try to chase them away, they’ll run right back to this little pit.  You can try to bribe them away with treats, but at first they’ll just ignore them (which considering the usual response to offering treats for these two, is quite odd) and then they might eventually follow you, grab the treat, and as soon as they can get away with it, sprint right back over to The Hole.  About the only thing I’ve found that’ll get them away from The Hole is to just slowly walk away, not look back, and eventually they’ll figure out that I’m not there anymore and maybe move along before I decide to just leave them there (although if I did, I’m pretty sure I know where to find them when I come back.)  Even then, most of the time I have to get their attention with a treat (not a big deal, since this is the part of the walk when I usually give them a treat anyway,) make sure we’re all quite a distance from the hole, and then give it to them, so they don’t just grab it and run back (it’s happened a time or two,)  Usually if I can get them past this part, the rest of the walk is pretty routine. 

With ss much of a time commitment  as it takes to keep these two happy and healthy (and that’s just the daily dogsitting tasks like feeding and walking, not the other stuff like vet visits, baths and whatnot,) I still have serious doubts at times if I’d be ready to keep a dog of my own at this point.  On the other hand, it’s always nice having a couple of dogs around.  They’re always happy to see me (then again, that may be because I’ve never tried to give them a bath,) they put up with my occasionally scatterbrained substitute pack leader impersonation and my somewhat off-the-wall schedule, and they only occasionally bark half the night these days.  Another nice side effect of the whole dogsitting bit is that even with the morning walk,  I’ve gotten into work at least 45 minutes early every day this week.  I’ve been wondering what the whole “go home at 5” thing was like…  I’m sure I’ll be back to my usual “up at the crack of Ten” schedule soon enough, but at least it will be my own bed that I’ll be groggily rising from…

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