Do my dogs manipulate me?
As you know, our dogs run our house. If you ask them, they’ll tell you it’s their house and they’re just really nice and let us live there too. That might be more accurate than I care to admit. With that said, I recently read an article that tried to enlighten me about how my dogs manipulate me. Genius right? I mean, I really had no idea this was happening. (Sarcasm is so handy). Let’s be honest and say, of course I know this is happening on a daily basis. No; more like an hourly basis. The dogs we have right now, foster and resident, are what people call Master Manipulators. Yea, they get a freakin’ title because they’re so good at it. I’m pretty sure that anyone reading this is shaking their head saying, “Yup, mine do it too.” So I call bullshit on the author for saying “some” dogs do it. Isn’t this a no-brainer for every true “dog person?” I’m not here to tell you how your dog manipulates you but I will share with you how my dogs manipulate me!
Crispie. Crispie is my Lab granddaughter that lives with us. I’m fairly certain that she is one of those mythical characters that are part human-part animal. However, Crispie’s mix is a bit different. I believe her to be 33.3% dog (fun and cute), 33.3% human (intelligent, pushy, creative and sometimes delusional), and 33.3% cat (controlling, fun, controlling, cute, controlling, pushy, controlling, never delusional, controlling). Uh yea; try dealing with that on a daily basis. So, at ten years old, she’s in a bit of denial about her abilities and age; much like a person would be. For instance, she tries to jump in my lap. Not a big deal right? Wrong. Unfortunately for me, Crispie’s vertical leap is .002174 inches. So, what she ends up doing is tearing the crap out of my skin as she misses and drags her nails down my leg in the hope of catching herself before all 65-pounds of her slams into the ground. Needless to say, her jump doesn’t work. While I’m left trying to stop the bleeding and determine if I need stitches or not, I make sure I tell her “good try” while I clap like an idiot. I’m sure that, like a child, it helps to take her attention away from any pain she might have and will also help her forget the seal-like flopping that just occurred. She then stands and stares at me so indignantly, as if it’s my fault (much like a cat would), and I immediately feel guilty. I let the blood gush down my leg, knowing that at some point it’ll clot or I’ll pass out. Neither of those things matter at the moment. The important thing here is to make sure Crispie knows she did a great job. She tried hard. I probably was at fault and with a bit of practice, she might only take the first 30 layers of skin off rather than taking it down to the bone. Manipulation? Well duh!
Ryder. Most of you know that Ryder is our ginormous Mastiff. Ryder has a great personality but isn’t the brightest color on the palette if you know what I mean. With that said, his manipulation is pretty darn subtle. Here’s one great example: Ryder is forever resting his enormously heavy head on my leg, arm, desk, or whatever. For a long time, I didn’t think he understood that he was stopping me from things like, using the computer mouse or that he was actually being a bit rude and pushy. Now? I’m not only certain that he knows but I’m 100% positive that he doesn’t care. He gives me his best I’m innocent eyes that also say, “Aren’t I the cutest thing to ever rest its 20-pound head on your arm while you’re typing?” I know this seems innocent enough but while he’s looking at me, my screen looks like thisssss sssdkkdiissssssss sssssss;k;lll kj;klj;ioij kljd ;hhak;siiosk;h;s0o;l oooooooooooosla;9ojuda””[-)9dk=1xhs2@@nx @jkn;ahdjsois;;e]]ds} djwhysloydmmmmmmm jk;aaoieywoe uieywpsld j;aidufpwhwywh;::>>>><<</;adfjao;iaajije;ia. As I get frustrated I look at that face again and I just absolutely have to scratch his ears and have a conversation with him; which I know is all he wants. When he’s done with me and walks away, I silently thank the Keyboard Wizard who invented the delete key! Manipulation? Well duh!
Carson. Carson is about 12 pounds of too-damn-cuteness and is the lap dog I never knew I wanted. There are times that he has zero manners in everything he does. A for instance? When you’re sitting down and Carson is around, you can bet that he will catch you off-guard as he jumps in your lap. This too doesn’t seem like such a bad thing but, just wait. When he does this, I can assure you that he is not looking to jump in your lap and nuzzle up against you all warm and cozy, all while gazing up at you sweetly. Nope. Not my boy. Instead, while you’re still in that moment of surprise he puts his front paws on your chest and at the same time bites your nose while immediately sticking his tongue up it. This is actually quite the talent because he makes these movements with pure grace and precision. So much so that until you feel the wetness on and in your nose, you’re not totally sure what the hell just took place. As you formulate how you’re going to correct him and make him understand why you feel violated, he then looks into your eyes and slowly, lightly licks your cheek. As you take a second to melt at this moment of sweetness, he’s off your lap, discarding you, and looking for his next victim. Leaving you to decide that surely he didn’t mean to be obnoxious so you just let it go. Manipulation? Well duh!
Hudson. Hudson also weighs in at 12 or so pounds and is around two years old. Like Carson, Hudson, is also too-damn-cute. He knows how to manipulate and he is not afraid to do it. Couple that with the fact that he has the most expressive eyes I’ve ever seen in a dog and, well, yup, he has me under his Manipulation Spell. Hudson’s example revolves around my desk chair. He loves to lay in it and of course, I don’t have a problem with that. Well, unless I’m using it. You see, Hudson can be rather stealth when he chooses to be. So when I get up from my desk, he waits about 1.03 seconds and gets in my chair. Marc told me it’s because he (Hudson) likes how I smell. Uh my butt? Seriously? Is that a compliment? Shouldn’t I be worried about this? Anyway, when I get back, he completely avoids eye contact. I know! I’ll talk to him, only expecting an answer sometimes, and he will continue to look away at, well, nothing. Once that happens, he’ll use those seriously innocent eyes to say, “But I love you and I’m super comfortable.” I then have to pick him up while I, of course, gush on about how cute he is. I don’t want to be a complete jerk so I just move him to the other desk chair while at the same time explaining that he can have my chair as soon as I’m done. Manipulation? Well duh!
Shelby. I wrote about Shelby a while back and she’s still pretty upset with me. She’s ignoring me more than she normally does which in itself is an amazing feat. I feel like she’s constantly giving me the stink eye, and I’m fairly certain that she’s been waiting until she’s under my desk to fart . I think it’d be wise for me to skip Shelby this one time. Manipulation? Absolutely not. It’s fear, 100% fear!