Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Pooches: Being Trained by Your Dog

There is a dog on our block who has trained his person well; whenever this dog barks obnoxiously, its owner will open the door to let the dog out. This has been frustrating because the dog will bark when it sees us walking by, so now the woman opens the door to let him out to snarl and lunge at us as we pass.
 This is even more frustrating because in Chicago the gates are right next to the sidewalk:
I've tried to speak to this woman on several occasions, between her snarling dog and my excitable pooches, and last time I just got frustrated and yelled something about how her dog wasn't going to stop barking as long as she gave him what he wanted and reinforced this behavior. At least this is how it sounded in my head, but I think I just really yelled something more like "your dog is training you", which may not have gotten my point across.
When I was telling this story to E, he told me that Miss M also has me trained, I just don't realize it. When I started paying attention, I realize that Miss M has conditioned me. When I walk by and she looks at me like this:
I feel inclined to give her a 'high five'. When she looks at me like this:
I'm suddenly having her come out so I can brush her. And when she looks at me like this:
I'm being trained to run and grab the camera. I wasn't aware of her influence over me; in what ways does your dog train you?

33 comments:

Muchadoaboutnothing said...

Well, let's see: Roxy has trained me to let her out when she barks (just like the woman in your story); she has me trained to get up out of bed at 5:00am to let her in if her upstairs family doesn't respond to her fast enough; Petey uses his hypnotic poor-me stare to make me give him a cookie; Jordie has me trained to play with him when he attacks me with one of his snake tug toys. Yep, I am well trained.

Two Crazy Coaches said...

How do your two handle the dog that charges his gate? I know Ollie would not handle that well at all.

My two know that if they wake me up in the middle of the night, I'll take them out, even if they don't have to go. I don't really enjoy that in the dead of winter.

Ollie also knows that when we pet him and he growls, he actually gets more pets because the growls turn to moaning and it's cute. Probaly should stop encouraging the growls!

Levi Mac said...

That is too funny! I can't post how I got mommy trained cuz then she'll know my secrets. Dad was easy to train but mom is a little harder. But I am still working on it :)

Mr. Pip said...

I have my mom trained to lift me up every time I give her the look - up stairs, onto the bed, the couch, into the stroller, etc.

Your pal, Pip

HoundDogMom said...

The hounds have trained me to make sure that I pick up every remote control and place it at least 25 feet in the air if I want to continue to have it. HoundDogMom

Mack said...

Miss M has such a sweet face, who wouldn't want to give in????

H Ski said...

I feel your pain about other dogs barking and lunging when on walks. I work very hard with Lola so she doesn't do this.

However, I do think every dog has trained their humans in some ways. I know Lola has.

Two Pitbulls said...

When Ender turns over on his back, he's definitely trained me to give him belly rubs everytime.

jen said...

I love how you say she has conditioned you:)
Sherman has trained me that when he brings me his toy and drops it on my lap that it is time to play:)

brooke said...

hahahahahaha. Miss M has you trained well!
I hate barking lunging neighborhood dogs. Thank goodness its fall. There's a house I tend to avoid in the summer because they leave their front door open so the dog can come in and out as it pleases, but its a snarly barky unhappy dog that scares the bejeezus out of me and Dar when we walk by. Now that the temps are cooler they leave their door closed which means the dog is inside (thank goodness) so we can pass by that house without having to brace ourselves for a bark attack.

rescuedinsanity.com said...

Hah. It's too true. I probably don't even know all of the tricks Shiva has taught me.

When she puts her chin on the couch, I know she wants up so I usually invite her. When she whines at the cat I know she's looking for attention so I usually give it to her. When she whines in the car, we usually open the window for her to sniff the air. When she looks at me while we walk I normally give her a treat.

That's just for starters!

Boots (and his mom) said...

The monsters have me more trained than I like to admit. They also have eachother trained. Darla knows if she bugs Boots, he'll come pester us into giving her what she wants.

Maggie Mae said...

All I has to do is look at my dad and he will gives me a treat. Mom is provin' to be a little harder to train. :)

Woofs and Licks,
Maggie Mae

Jessica M said...

This is unbelievable adorable! Where did you find that amazing little FACE!? Im obsessed!

bitt said...

Sienna barks and gets attention. Shucks I know it's not good but I can't just let her bark. I try to shush her in some way.

ForPetsSake said...

There isn't a "comment" box big enough for all the ways the girls have trained me. I'm pathetic, but loving every minute of it ;)

Tucker said...

Hmm ... I thought dogs were SUPPOSED to train humans? Humans usually require much more training than dogs do.

Shauna (Fido and Wino) said...

Mickey does this sad little look and hangs his head and I coddle him. Kayloo flops about on her bed and we rub her belly :)

jet said...

My dogs have trained me to feed them and walk them when they dance around. Barbie has trained me to let her out of her crate for wees at 5.30am! ;)

Kirby said...

Hmm...even after taking advance obedience class my mom has been really hard to crack! But let's see... I have taught her that at bedtime it's me time first before she goes to sleep! I always get her to rub my belly and ears before she closes her eyes.

Woof!
Kirby

Kari in WeHo said...

when Big Carl wants attention he bites my butt since he knows it will cause me to turn around and deal with him (it's not something I can just ignore)

Kari
http://dogisgodinreverse.com/

Nicole said...

Haha... too cute! Luffy has me trained that when he gets in my face, I stop whatever I'm doing to give him hugs and kisses and lots of attention. He just wants love!

mayziegal said...

Both dogs have trained us to pet them on demand. Mayzie walks up and gently pokes me with her nose and then gives me her best Miss M impression. Ranger takes the more direct approach of whacking me with his paw, which is less endearing but effective. I try to resist. I really do. But as with the Cyborgs - resistance is futile.

Benny and Lily said...

BOL, we have mom trained purrty good too. She does not even need Mr. Cesar
Benny & Lily
Love those pearly whites!

Kate@TwentySixToLife said...

Melanie has us trained to give her space on the sofa. Nemo has us trained so we pet him all.the.time. Molly has us trained to give her belly rubs whenever she rolls over. They all use positive reinforcement techniques, I am a very trainable human :)

accordingtogus.com said...

Cute post, and so true! Gus has us wrapped around his paw. A couple of stomps and a whimper will avert our attention to him just like that! Sorry about the neighbor dog, that sounds frustrating!

Those Elgin Pugs said...

Oh yes, our pooches have us trained.
But first, two houses down from us, we have the same setup you mentioned in your post. A fenced in front yard with a dog that barks at people who walk by and the owners will sit out on their porch and not even correct their dog.
It's so aggravating!

Okay, so Anakin gives me sad eyes for extra treats and I cave... Rob calls me a sucker...
Izzy demands extra attention sometimes. If I am working at home she will sit on my laptop and stare at me with the starved for attention face. I feel guilty I am ignoring her so I will stop working and pet her. She grab one of her toys... flip over on her back and expect me to play with her all day. When I have to stop she will get mad and stuff herself in the couch with her back facing me.
Josie can't see *unless bloggying ;) or walk much... but she sometimes takes adventage and will cry to be picked up and moved around.
Trixie is learning from the masters.
She just started this barking thing...
When Izzy starts barking Trixie starts and keeps going and even Izzy will look at her like "whats up with you" it's so funny.

Trixie also barks for us to pet her. I pet her... I mean... Ehem..
I'm working on her.

Daisy Dog said...

Ah in sooo many ways. Not all good!

Mary said...

I think I would just have to smother Ms. M. in kisses with all of those faces, especially when she's flashing her beautiful smile!

Levi was really good about not barking in the yard when we lived with my mom, but things might change when we live on a corner lot in the city! I'm going to super vigilant about not letting him be a jerk. Having a privacy fence will help a lot.

As far as training me, please, that dog is so spoiled. I don't even try to walk a different direction in the morning because he will pull the stubborn card and be a brick wall I have to pull and coax for the rest of the walk.

Mango said...

Are you kidding? Of course I train my momma. But PeeWee is a pro compared to me. He has her trained to scratch his belly, take him on walks, and even get up in the dark to give him breakfast.

Slobbers,
Mango

T2 - My life with pit bulls said...

We've worked really hard all summer not to be that yard people hate to walk past. Téa gets soooooo excited when dogs go by - not always aggressively, but always 110 percent. Even though we're not right next to the sidewalk, I can see that for some people ours is the yard they hate to pass. Mostly I distract her now by taking the girls through their tricks as soon as dogs walk by - but my favorite is when Téa has a new ball with the squeak still intact. She runs up and down, but she squeaks the whole time so it mostly just seems to make everyone crack up - even the other dogs.

As for training, I am certain that Toni has taught Téa to look her most pathetic and in need of a belly rub since when one gets some love, so does the other. It saves Toni the work of looking pathetic (she's not very good at looking pathetic anyway) but she still reaps the rewards.

road-dog-tales said...

Oh, yeah, we've got Mom & Dad trained pretty good about most things. Sometimes they're not exactly on time with our dinner and daylight savings time confuses them sometimes, but we let 'em know when it's time to eat!

The Road Dogs

Fiona, as typed by Dr. Liz said...

I think the better question would be: in what ways do my dogs NOT have me trained? *sigh* I just came in from 15 minutes in 25 degree weather with 15 mph winds because the girls know that if they start playing bitey-face on the bed I'll take them outside so my husband and I don't get trampled. I have a special 'coaches coat' (worn by ski racing coaches who spend long hours standing on the hill giving feedback to their racers) specifically for this purpose. Am I whipped? You betcha. And dinner time? Oh, the dramatics that go on as soon as it is a second past 5pm? Daylight savings time was a nightmare! ;-)

-Dr. Liz (Fiona and Abby's Mom)

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