Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Preemptive Strike

Zachary doesn't like thuds, thumps or banging noises coming from outside. Period. He responds to such noises with a series of Gatling gun barks, with a growl thrown in every now and then for good measure.

Beau couldn't care less if there were thuds, thumps, or banging noises outside, but will dutifully back up his housemate with his heavy Howitzer bark.

Since fireworks falls under the category of "bangs", and I didn't care to have my house sounding like a war zone Sunday night, I figured a preemptive strike was in order.

So shortly before the rockets were due to launch, I tuned to the PBS channel on TV (fortuitously replaying the National fireworks display backed by patriotic marching band songs and the 1812 Overture - an advantage to living on the west coast) and cranked it up really loud. Then I pulled out the cookies, and proceeded to march around the house with a pair of oblivious Golden Retrievers marching along right beside me.

We had a grand time.

I have never done much heeling with both of them at the same time, but that night I gave it a try. It was a riot. We were marching forwards, backwards(!), and I was flinging cookies left and right.

Then I switched to some glove retrieves. Two dogs, two gloves at 20' - on your mark... get set... Bring!

Zachary was the clear winner, paws down, and when things slowed down because Uncle Beau isn't the fastest retriever in the west, Zachary "helped" by grabbing the glove from Uncle Beau and quick-timing it back to me.

I'm not sure if either of them learned a darned thing, but there were lots of laughs (from me) lots of cookies (for them) and nary a bark to be heard.

I guess you could say that all was quiet on the western front...

... well, except for "Stars and Strips Forever" blaring away in the background.

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