Thursday, October 23, 2014

More Dog Days

If you read the last post about our dog Ally, you're hoping when you come to visit she doesn't go ballistic upon your arrival.  That would besmirch your character in ways from which it's hard to recover.  (No dangling participle!)  No, you're hoping she will lick your outstretched hand, and snuggle up to your leg.

Not bloody likely.  

You may be able to touch her - briefly, and only under the chin - when you've known her for half an hour.  Like an old society matron, she has her own notions of what is appropriate, and she's not afraid to tell you when you're overstepping.  Although I would not advise chuckling an old society matron under the chin, no matter how long you've known her...

But here's the weird thing:  Wally can open the garage door (it rumbles as it goes up, so loudly you can hear it in our bedroom, about half a mile away).  He can open the back door (beep! beep! that's the alarm that tells us when a kid is heading for the pool.  Or for freedom, but that's another story) and not a peep out of the dog.  She doesn't even raise her head.  

In contrast to a rat climbing the drainpipe who gets the entire anvil chorus in barking, or an amorous squirrel who really must be out of the mood after listening to Ally carry on, Wally gets the silent treatment.  Just a wag of the tail.  Nope, he can walk right into the bedroom and she won't even come out of her house.  

Is it scent?  Or sound?  How does she know it's us?

And here's the other weird thing:  Ally rarely wags her tail.   She's not unhappy, she snuggles up to my leg and demands petting at breakfast, and she can be quite demanding.   Many mugs of tea and spoonfuls of cereal have landed on the rug thanks to her shoving me with her nose because I got engrossed in the newspaper and forgot to keep scratching. 

She hops up on the bed in the morning and burrows into the warm down comforter, pressing her back against me, then turning over to wash my face.  So as you can see she's not intimidated, or unaffectionate.   But that tail?  Mostly reserved for other dogs.  I'm feeling a bit like I'm in the cheap seats, at least where the tail is concerned.

Maybe she knows we don't know the code.  Maybe she's noticed we don't have tails.  Apparently our noses are not the only parts that are not up to snuff.  

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