Our Gracie has made such great strides…
Heeling. Bringing items she’s stolen to me instead of running to hide under a table. (Yes, I actually consider this progress.) Sometimes releasing these things on command.
Coming when she’s called. Not jumping up on people. (Okay, she’s made extremely tiny strides in this area, but still.)
Sitting on command. Heck, on a walk she even sits when we give Phoebe the command. It’s hard not to be impressed when she plunks her furry butt down for that one.
Yet T-man pretty much boiled it down to the bare bones when he said this. “Mom, I just don’t get how she can learn all this other stuff, but when it comes to counters…”
I know, son. I know.
And now for Gracie’s updated tally:
- Part of a styrofoam egg carton. I was making sausage and egg sandwiches for dinner one night when I realized there was only one egg left in the house fridge. I set the carton on the counter and stepped into the garage, intending to grab another and return right away. As timing would have it there was a neighbor in my driveway and I, momentarily forgetting that we live with the dog who cannot be left unattended at all, paused to say hi. It took me all of 30 seconds but by the time I got back to the kitchen Gracie had the first egg carton under the table, had chewed through the top, and was happily licking the egg inside.
- Almost anything from the kids’ backpacks. I’d understand if it was food – they do carry snacks back and forth to school – but if they leave the bag unzipped even the smallest bit she’ll go after almost anything. She’s pulled out pencils, a treat bag (which was actually a favor to me seeing as it was two months old), science flash cards, a scarf, and (of course) Ziplock bags of snack food.
- Paper towels snatched from the kitchen counter.
- About five yards of toilet paper. The cleaning lady was here, and let’s just say she’s working things out with the dog. Gracie loves her to death, following her room to room and waiting patiently in the hall when she closes the door behind her. (She learned on her first visit that Gracie will eat anything from a supply bucket.) Well, this last time she stepped away from the bathroom to do something and returned to find Gracie crouched on the floor, surrounded by toilet paper she’d unrolled, enthusiastically munching away.
In the plus column, here’s a list of things Gracie simply eyeballed but did not actually steal:
- slices of garlic bread
- a bag of shredded cheese
- a loaf of sandwich bread
- T-man’s deli sub (as he dangled it dangerously close to Gracie’s snout)
I’m choosing to look at the glass half full here and say hey look! Progress! Because really, that’s the only way to survive living with this dog…