In decades of dog ownership, some of the best memories are the funny dog stories. The ones that make you smile every time you remember. We’re choosing to start this year with smiles, and hoping you’ll share some of yours. All dog people have them, and sharing a laugh is always a good thing.
Spunky was our first dog. He was a Boston Terrier and the best friend two little girls could ever hope for. It was a long time ago, and our family knew almost nothing about dogs. Spunky was gated into the kitchen at night (although we later discovered that during thunderstorms he slept with our mom). And every night Spunky got his special “banky.” which he bundled up into a ball, held with his front paws, and sucked on like a pacifier. He also sang himself to sleep every night – a descending scale of “mm, mm, mm, mm, mm, mmmmmmmmm.” Whenever we think of Spunky, that sing-song comes to mind and we smile.
Daemon, another Boston we had as young adults, was possibly the world’s most angelic dog. He never put a foot wrong, never had obedience training, he was just a polite gentleman from the get-go. Never naughty. Until one Fourth of July. We were getting ready to grill a steak for dinner – a rare treat for the holiday. Standing around the kitchen, waiting for the grill to heat up. The steak was trimmed, seasoned, and ready to go.
Daemon was sitting on the kitchen chair, his usual place, “helping” with the meal prep. We looked over the that little “angel” had his fangs in the steak and was, slowly and surreptitiously (he thought), dragging it closer. We laughed so hard we almost let him get away with it! Yes, we did cook and eat it. And yes, he got some.
Our namesake was naughty
Golly, the little diva Brussels Griffon that our shop is named for, was Fran’s first obedience competition dog. She was a pretty easy-going dog, as long as she got her way. She could just look at us with those puppy dog eyes, and usually got exactly what she was aiming for.
We went to the national Brussels Griffon Specialty show one year in Louisville, Kentucky. It’s a showcase for all things dog, and a chance to get together with all our Griff friends. Golly and Hope’s boy, Roc, were there to compete in the Obedience trial at the show.
We got back to the hotel room one night after dinner and couldn’t get back in the room. There was obviously something blocking the door. After quite a few attempts at little shoves, slowly pushing the obstruction back, we discovered that Golly had rolled her portable crate all the way across the room and jammed it against the door. Apparently the princess objected to being left behind!
Right out in public
A few years later, at the same show, Hope was showing Dax, her first French Bulldog, in Novice Obedience. One of the exercises is the “Recall.” You leave your dog in a sit/stay, walk about 30 feet away, and call your dog. She’s supposed to dash toward you, come to a stop right in front of you, and sit. Hope left Dax, walked across the ring, and called. Dax came running across the ring, right past Hope, and directly to the little boy spectator with the ice cream cone sitting right outside the ring! She didn’t get any ice cream.
As a side note, if you’re easily embarrassed, don’t go into a competition ring with a dog. Or, if you are and want to get over it, start immediately.
Teddy, Hope’s French Bulldog, wasn’t crazy about agility, but he did it because Hope wanted to and he got treats. He was always pretty easily distracted.
One of the obstacles in agility is the A-Frame, two large boards, about four feet wide, hinged together to form the frame. It stands a bit over five feet at its apex. Teddy reached the top that day, saw something that caught his attention, and went to go check it out. Right off the side of the obstacle. Splat. It was the most terrifying moment we’ve ever experienced in agility. Watching the video, you can hear everyone in the place gasp simultaneously.
Fortunately, he was fine. A fellow competitor, who is a veterinarian, was there and checked him out. It wasn’t funny at the time, but it is now.
Torque, Hope’s French Bulldog, has a problem with people. He wants to kiss them all. He loves everybody, that funny dog. It’s a problem when he’s supposed to “sit/stay” in obedience competition. The Beginner Novice exercise is just that – have your dog sit and stay while you go to the end of the leash six feet away. The judge comes up and touches the dog lightly on the head, while he sits perfectly still.
Except Torque didn’t. He jumped up and planted a wet, sloppy kiss right on the judge. She laughed, and said “I don’t think he passed this exercise.”
We know he didn’t. Oh, Torque.
Lots of happy memories
Writing this brings lots of smiles and fond remembrances. These are just a few we thought of right away. There are tons more that we’ll probably remember. Maybe that’s a good resolution for 2021 – write down the good/funny/happy things when they happen. A diary of smiles. We hope you’ll share some of your funny dog stories with us. We could all use some shared joy for the new year.