Attention Blog Dogs!

Hi Guys – This is Ray. I recently had an experience which I want to share with all my dog buddies, as you may find it useful when training your humans.

My humans, compared to others that I have met, are quite smart really. They seem to know what I need in order to train them… and they clearly want to be trained. Our mailbox is about a 5 minute walk from our home and, the first time they took me there, I got a treat when we arrived and another when we left.

My deduction was quite simple. The faster we got to the mailbox, the faster I got my treats so, whenever I heard “Ray… mailbox!”, I was on a mission. My humans were happy because I not only knew what “mailbox” meant, but I knew exactly where it was and how to get there. They seemed to see it as an achievement, but of course we dogs know that the whole process was a “no(se)-brainer” and very simple to do!

Just the other day however, things changed a little, and that is what made me do this Post. I heard the usual “Ray… mailbox!” and excitedly took them there. As soon as we arrived, I got my treat. My Dad opened the mailbox and took some stuff out, and then they both started to walk away. Where was my other treat?

Well they tried to start to walk away, but didn’t get too far because I wasn’t going anywhere without my other treat. I sat down! Humans can be quite clueless sometimes… even mine! They were saying things like “C’mon Ray” and “Wassup buddy?” but here is the really important bit. I did not move!

I’ve come to the conclusion that whereas most humans know that our reflexes are so much faster than theirs, which means that their reflexes are so much slower than ours, they haven’t accepted that their brain workings are also very slow! It is important to understand this sad fact.

I just stayed in my sit position, and listened to their curious babbling, when I think a light went on somewhere deep inside their heads because I suddenly heard something about not giving me my other treat. As you can probably guess, my other treat suddenly appeared, and we all went home (which I was really happy about because it very close to my dinner time!).

The moral of this story is never give up on getting treats that you are entitled to because, if you do, your treats will probably becoming less and less. One day, there may be no treats! For you guys that are a lot smaller than me, perhaps just stand there and make lots of noise… otherwise they might just pick you up and carry you!

Dogs Rule! Woof! Ray

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21 thoughts on “Attention Blog Dogs!

  1. Smart and stubborn makes for a well fed dog! Kali does a similar thing along our walks. I carry treats to reinforce good behavior especially for when we encounter other dogs. She has come such a long way over the past two years giving me her attention, paying little to the other dogs and instead waiting for her treat. On occasion if we haven’t seen any other dogs she will abruptly stop. Not quite as big as Ray but nonetheless 55 pounds of dog muscle an abrupt stop is enough to in turn stop me in my tracks. I used to think that something had spooked her or she was confused. But the trail is her second home and she knows every inch of it. Now I am convinced that she is stopping in order for me to say, “Let’s go” and reward her for obeying me. It’s a bit of a conundrum because I want to reinforce the fact that she followed me when asked to but I am also reinforcing the fact that she stopped in the first place. The other day I simply dropped the leash ( we were in a very safe part of the trail with no streets nearby) and just started walking away. She immediately followed and of course I rewarded her with a treat. This behavior thing can be a bit confusing at times 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • As you and I have commented many times, Kali and Ray have many similarities. Like you, we are often left wondering whether the treats are being accepted in the manner intended, or whether we are giving out mixed messages! Dogs are by nature opportunistic, and so may well be simply “working” what to them is a very good system! With two of us out with Ray, and given his attachment to both of us, we can usually resolve his protest by one of us leaving. He seems to have a possible conflict at that time. Do I do what I had planned and watch the pack split up? The other thing to keep in mind is that they live “in the moment”. If Kali (e.g.) did something deserving of a treat and was a short distance away and you called her. When she arrived and got her treat, she would mostly likely explain it by her responding to your call (being the last thing that happened) rather than whatever it was she did a few moments earlier. They are fun aren’t they! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes Ray, it takes years to train them properly. I have done such a good job that, when Dad and Mom are late getting home to give me dinner, Dad says he can see in his mind me rolling around on my back, holding my stomach and saying, “I am starving to death.” Yep, they’ve got the picture, BOL.

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  3. This post made me smile! You are a smart one, Ray…I never once underestimated you. But sadly it is true; the brain workings of us humans are sadly pathetic in comparison to yours. :-/ Yay for successfully training your humans…I bet the treat was worth it! 😀

    Woof! 🙂

    -puppydoc

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