It helps that almost from kitty-infancy, they know what a litterbox is for.
On the other hand, dogs need a bit (or a LOT) of coaching because they haven’t a clue when it comes to knowing how to behave … around humans, all of or some of the time.
Especially when they become part of a family.
When dogs come to live with first-time dog owners, someone needs to coach the humans about basic dog behavior so that they can begin to work with their dogs.
When dogs come to live with people who are well-versed in “dog-speak,” the learning curve is less when it comes to understanding dog behavior, but the necessity for going to school is the same.
Especially for little dogs who THINK they’re big dogs.
Like Tessa. She only weighs 18 pounds. Which makes her cute.
She was a street-stray, picked up somewhere in Indiana by a rescue organization. By the time she came to live with my family, she was dragging what she’d learned on the street behind her.
What she had learned was that BIG men who leaned over her threatened her sense of who she was. And, she didn’t like that. So, she’d act aggressive. The hairs on her back from the back of her scull to the tip of her tail would stand at attention, she’d lock her legs into position and she’d BARK. Loudly with a frenzied tone in her voice. All while she was backing away from that Big man.
We’d dealt with this before so it wasn’t that big a deal when Tessa was sounding off at my husband. It was a big deal when we were out in public. It was a big deal period because we had a scared dog on our hands, and scared dogs stress themselves to the max.
For this and many other reasons, Tessa and I went to school three months after she came to live with us. And, when that first class was over, she RETURNED to school again. This time with my husband. And, she got better about being around some BIG men. Like my husband.
I cut her some slack because she’s small. And cute. And, all the time I’m doing this, I know it’s not a good thing to do. Because despite her small size, she’s VERY territorial in the yard and charges the fence when people and their dogs walk by. And, because I know better. I wouldn’t (and haven’t) allowed this kind of aggressive behavior with my larger dogs. Size shouldn’t matter.
Well-behaved is well-behaved.
And so, once again, Tessa and I will RETURN to school. It’s September after all and lots of humans are RETURNING to school. It’s good incentive for Tessa and me. [gplus count=”true” size=”Medium” ]
The inspiration for this post comes from the September challenge that Blog Her is promoting to encourage bloggers to post every day for 30 days. We’d love to have you join us.