Thursday, December 4, 2008

Well Trained

When the mister and I got our dog, we had a tough time potty training him because we just did not know when he had to go out. I had beagles growing up and when they had to pee, they’d stand at the door and howl until you let them out.

Charlie, not so much.

So we devised a method for him notify us of his need to go outside. We hung bells by the back door and trained him to bat the bells with his paw when he needs to go.

There were some bumps. He used the bells as attention getting devices when he just wanted us to play with him, and he used the bells to get food. We had to untrain him out of some of the bad habits he’d gotten into, but now he rings the bells when he has to go and we let him out.

The end result is that I’m like Pavlov’s dogs. I hear a bell ring in my house and I get up, go to the back door, and open it.

Enter Fitz.

My friend KVE is in Hawaii. I’m bird-sitting her parakeet, Fitz. The parakeet has a nice cage with lots of mirrors and beads and toys. And bells.

For the past week, while the bird has been in residence, I have gone to the back door dozens of times after hearing a bell ring, expecting the dog to be there, prancing in his eagerness to go outside, and the dog has been nowhere in sight.

And I don’t learn. Five o’clock this morning Fitz started playing with the bells in her cage and I got out of bed, walked to the back door, and was shocked when the dog wasn’t there.

The dog was sleeping in my bed, you guys.

1 comment:

MOLLY said...

Hawaii!? Must be nice KVE! :) I think the bells were a genius idea, by the way. Bentley sort of got the idea - but not really. He's still not potty trained, which is why he wears peeny pads. I'm kind of scared of Fitz, but I bet she's fun to have around.