Our home is in need of some roof work and so, as is my practise, I invited quotes/estimates from three companies who had high BBB ratings.
Whenever a stranger comes to our home, we have to advise them in advance of possible reactions from Ray because, while he is Mr. Congeniality when out on walks, he is very protective when on “his territory”. Typically, Ray starts barking as soon as he hears somebody step onto our front porch floor, and we have him restrained while we open the door and invite the visitor in (assuming they didn’t run away).
Our first roofing contractor arrived. I met him outside and took him into the house and was ready for Ray’s display of concern … but nothing happened, except that he went up to the man and checked him out. While we were sitting at the kitchen table discussing various aspects of the desired work, Ray allowed the man to stroke him! Carol and I were both rather puzzled, because he just does not accept a total stranger (he still barks at our neighbor of 4 years now!). That particular man was very professional, very thorough, and offered suggestions without any pressure to decide then and there. We learned that he was the owner of the business and, after he had left, we both felt very comfortable with the overall experience.
The second contractor arrived and, again, I met him outside. This time, Ray was barking away as we went into the house and continued to be disruptive, so Carol took him outside! This man was a little more assertive, and seemed to want to expand the work beyond what was being asked. Carol came back in later and once again had to control Ray, but she did hear part of the conversation. After that man had left, she asked what I thought about him. I explained that he was a little aggressive with his presentation, and was proposing additional work that I did not feel was necessary (the area in question was considered by the earlier contractor as very sound). She, like myself, had a discomfort level with that man.
We now await the third contractor and, upon reflection, perhaps we will take Ray’s reactions into consideration. He instantly liked the first man, and instantly disliked the second one. I would love to know what he was sensing however, given that is not likely to happen, perhaps we should simply trust his senses?