Friday, October 22, 2010

Dog Trainer

No. Not in the manner you're thinking.

Bouie has a tendency to be a little over-the-top territorial when he's in the yard. He does the "I'm a big fierce black lab" routine pretty well when neighbors stroll past the fence. And he really goes nuts when someone attempts to put something in his yard or his mailbox (fortunately for the mailman -- and our homeowners' liability premiums -- the mailbox has a slot that is loaded from outside the fence).

I doubt whether he would really bite anyone -- he's actually just a big ol' coward when it comes to interacting with strangers -- but his "fierce act" has delivery guys pretty well buffaloed. And now he's taken it to a new level.

 He has trained the UPS guy to give him treats.

We regularly take delivery of shipments of wine that requires an adult signature. I know when to expect delivery because UPS does a robo-call telling me that "a delivery is coming tomorrow sometime between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. that requires a signature." (Yeah -- that 's a pretty broad window, huh?) So, over a period of months, when I would go out to the gate to sign the electronic box-thingy and Bouie would be going nuts, the very nice delivery guy would talk to Bouie and get him to "sit" by offering him a Milk Bone (which he would then toss to him over the fence because, well, you know!).

Then, on a day without a scheduled delivery, I heard the UPS truck coming down the street and Bouie woofing like mad in the yard. I looked out the window and saw the driver tossing a Milk Bone to Bouie without really even coming to a complete stop!

Today we got an unexpected delivery while I was in the shower. I knew something was going on in the yard because Bouie was going nuts at the front door as I was getting dressed, so I looked out the window and saw a package.

When I went out to get it, this is what I saw --

Yep. My Dog is a Master Trainer!

And a real sweetheart.


  1. Well. That is just too danged cool. For school. Dog school!

  2. That is awesome!!!! He is a beautiful lab! The UPS man is smart to carry bones like that.I love the drive-by snack throwing!!! Soon Bouie will be knowing what time to look for him each day!
    It always cracks me up inside when people are afraid of Mac the Labradoodle who would lick someone to death...but...on the other hand is helpful when strangers are scary! Mac and I can play up her scariness when we need to.
    Lucy the Goldendoodle (whose doodle never arrived) is a true scaredy "cat" with no pretense of being mean. When Mac barks, she takes off for a hiding place... ha.

  3. I would love to meet Lucy! I made Mac's acquaintance at your Art Show -- she's a sweetie. This whole UPS thing has been hysterical!

  4. Dunno what it is about the mailman that sets mine off. Today he had a certified mail I had to sign for, and both dogs were going crazy. Usually they only give one half-hearted woof when somebody knocks, but it's like they can see through the door when the mailman is here.

    Must be because he's stingy with the treats.

  5. Maybe your pups should confer with Bouie. He could give them some tips on training the mailman.