Not all my clients shared my training goal.  Many were happy when their dogs stopped peeing in the house.  Some wanted more, a fairly good sit, a pretty reliable come when called, even a dog who wouldn’t bite the hand that fed him.  For me, there’s one goal.  I want a dog who will obey the command “Down,” when I am lying on my back on the living room rug and the dog is wearing nothing, not even a collar.  After all, when you think about it, isn’t the weight of the collar a little reminder of who’s who and what’s what?

When I lived and trained dogs in mid-town Manhattan, my goal was to graduate my clients’ dogs in the B. Altman department store, now, alas, wherever the dodo is.  I figured any dog who could be blasé enough to obey commands in a NYC department store was A OK in my book.  Some of these dogs had also learned off leash work on city streets.  They were pretty cool customers.  Still, a person wants what a person wants and today I had proof that my dogs had passed my own peculiar test.

After riding the ex bike, I lay on the rug to stretch and do a few strength building exercises.  When I tried some deep breathing, I got the muzzle of a small Border collie inserted into my mouth.  Her cohort was busy licking my feet and then the toys started coming, being lobbed at me from who knew where.  When I stopped laughing (yeah, yeah, I know), I said “Down.”  Sky plopped down where she’d been standing, the ball she was ready to toss at me still in her mouth.  Monk lay down at my side, pinning my right arm to the ground.

Done!  Good doggies!