Saturday, June 7, 2008

Mama didn't raise no beggar

When we first started training Milo, Andy and I had our doubts about his intellect. Truthfully, we thought he might be inbred and a little retarded. That little detail always just made him more special to us. As you can see from the videos and photos I've posted, we've now concluded that he's definitely more than just a little retarded.

Sometimes I wonder, though. Milo will occasionally do something so amazingly and incredibly cute that I start to think the whole "Dum dee dum... huh?" routine he's been putting on is all an act. He knows EXACTLY how to get what he wants from us.

The other day, he pulled out one of these genius manipulation moves.

We've trained Milo to do his tricks in a certain order: Sit, Shake, Lay Down, Play Dead, and Roll Over. We chose this order mostly because that's how I taught my old dog, Samantha how to do her tricks. Samantha was a much more excitable dog than Milo is. While Milo looks sort of sleepy and drugged through his trick performances, Samantha would whip through them in less than 30 seconds flat if she caught a whiff of Pup-Peroni.

Milo's laid back, stoner attitude is pretty fantastic for the most part. He never tears things up, never barks, never begs when we're eating or does any of that annoying stuff some dogs do (Yeah, I know I'm biased. So what?). Because I never have to worry about him snatching food, I often leave things where he can get to them.

Last week, I was eating some Trader Joe's Triple Ginger, Ginger Snaps (Um, please do yourself a favor and buy these. You will be amazed at your ability to consume only cookies for breakfast, lunch and dinner.) while sitting on the floor in the living room. I realized that Milo was sitting off to my immediate right and watching me intently. I started to get worried that this might be a precursor to begging behavior, when he decided to blow my mind with his cuteness.

Very slowly, his eyes locked on me and my ginger snap, Milo lowered his furry butt to the floor, then lifted his right front paw for a shake. As my mouth dropped, he continued to slowly slide his way to the floor and roll onto his side to play dead.

Great pet owner that I am, I quickly popped the rest of the ginger snaps in my mouth and gave him a "Nice try, better luck next time, sucker."

After all, he didn't even go for the Roll Over, which I consider the true Pièce de Résistance of his repertoire. What kind of a precedent would I be setting if I didn't demand high standards? Plus, we don't feed Milo people food outside of the occasional piece of cheese to hide a pill, so he was screwed from the get-go.

Ladies and gentleman, I think we have a future street performer on our hands. No handouts for Milo. We apparently trained him better than we thought. No freeloaders in our house!

Update: This post is the perfect example of why I blog rather than tumbl.

I am a writer and therefore totally long winded. What others say in 3 sentences (i.e. The other day my dog started doing tricks for my cookies! OMG it totally had me ROTFL! hahahaha!!!!!), I choose to drag out to 10 paragraphs.

If you haven't noticed, I have added a Twitter log to my blog page for all those short updates and general witticisms, but I prefer to offer a bit of a deeper insight into my life for friends and family. I hope you enjoy it.

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