Let’s take a random sampling of things that I (a Border collie who is a Certified Therapy Dog) like and look forward to: Cookies, a BusyBone (registered trademark), some attention, a car ride, a pet, a scratch, a hamburger on a bun, barking at delivery trucks, barking at those trucks that carry new automobiles, barking when I drive UNDER a bridge, barking when I drive OVER a bridge, barking when I see a railroad crossing, barking when I see a Mail Truck (please do not start believing that I bark too much, although My Dad does wear orange ear plugs when he is driving – REALLY), playing with a Frisbee, playing with a squeaky toy, just playing….blah, blah, blah…I warned you that Border collies are VERY chatty. Anyway…the point is that I can communicate my needs, wants, and desires with a variety of politicking moves that most (not all) U.S. politicians would be fearful of trying. Let’s take a look at some of my proven politicking skills and I will even provide examples!
Ears up, head tilted, giving you “the eye” – I use this tactic VERY successfully with Dale, one of the maintenance guys employed by the complex. He too drives a Scion xB, although it is a bit older than my Dad’s xB and it is silver. I know Dale’s xB, and when I am out on a (off-leash) walk with my Dad, Dale will always stop to say Hi…and I know that Dale carries treats in his car. Here is where the politicking comes in – moving from one treat to MULTIPLE treats. After the first treat, I activate my politicking….ears up, head tilted, moving my front paws up and down, a bit of snorting under my breath, a lot of eye contact is important (you WILL bend to my willpower). I can score an extra two to four treats – easy stuff!
Head-butting – This move works best when I want to go for a walk (My Dad uses the term “hitting the washroom”). My Dad is usually in a sitting position for move….I don’t want to knock him over. I walk towards my Dad, or whoever is baby sitting me, put my head down and just keep going. A s-l-o-w, insistent walk is required – works every time.
Nuzzling with the muzzle – My first question with these terms is, “Why don’t they call it MUZZLING?” Think about it. Anyway, when I want attention or to just be petted, or have a conversation, I use this tactic called PERSISTENT MUZZLING (I’ll call it whatever I want). This works really well when I am laying to next to My Dad in bed – just before lights out. There is no reason he can’t hold his book with the left hand and pet my head with the right hand.
Paw on hand or arm – If you have been following my blog and reading all of the stories, you will remember CHILDREN READING TO ME. Even after I lay across Skaterdude’s lap, on my back, he would not acknowledge my presence. Desperate times call for desperate measures is what I say. I placed my paw (very gently and delicately) on Skaterdude’s forearm. But one must be delicate with that tactic – you don’t want to come across like some inconsiderate clodhopper.
Ears up, head tilted, giving eye and barking – Boy talk about pulling out all of the stops….wake-UP…hello, anyone home? If this doesn’t get you to bend to my will….
Herding – I RARELY pull this out of my skill set bag of tricks. I use it ONLY with My Dad because everyone else may find it irritating. My Dad knows he is required to bring SOMETHING with him for every walk. This is a must. After all is said and done with going out for a walk, before we make that 180 degree turn to head for home, I NEED A JOB! What do I like to carry home…Gator, my two-tone squeaky toy. A Frisbee. A tennis ball. My Dad’s glove (if he forgot to bring a REAL toy). And what kind of herding, My Dad calls it HINDERING, is activated? I get in front of you and stop…I get in front of you and walk backwards S-L-O-W-L-Y…I get in front of you and position myself diagonally across your path. Herding, hindering…whatever you want to call it, is also very effective when groceries are being unloaded.