I’d like to close out 2017 with a Christmas montage of Jellybean, my ever so silly puppy, sharing some of her best holiday poses. And so they say…”Feliz Naughty Dog!” “Have a dog-gone Merry Christmas!” “Happy Howlidays!” “May your days be furry and bright!” Until 2018…..Live! Love! Wag!
Bev & Jellybean
Merriam-Webster defines pouting as “to show displeasure by thrusting out the lips or wearing a sullen expression” or to “sulk.” We know that as humans, this is a common form of communication, but do dogs pout? That is a question I asked myself the first time I saw Jellybean flop on the floor with a huge sigh. Paws out in front of her, head resting on them, Jellybean’s dark, soulful eyes looked up at me pleading for attention. Then there was the time she turned her back to me. Let’s not even talk about the whimpering and whining. What do I do? I cave of course. “Oh my goodness, Jellybean, why do you look so sad? Do you want to play?” If you follow my blog, you know that Jellybean has quite the pampered life. There is no need for this behavior. She has toys and bones galore, opportunities to play with other dogs at doggy daycare, and lots of attention from family, neighbors, and people we meet on walks. In addition, her work as a therapy dog allows Jellybean to interact with people in many different venues outside of the home. In other words, she gets a lot of attention and has quite a full calendar. In reality, though, sometimes you just have to do silly things like the laundry, cleaning, make dinner, and write your blog. Yes, these tasks divert attention away from the dog, but just for a short amount of time.
Rick Smith, dog trainer, has lots to say about pouting dogs. In his Blog, Trainin’ Dogs with Rick Smith: The Pouting Dog, he says, “What does pouting look like? Displayed by a teenager, it’s easy to spot. For example, when asked to take out the trash for the umpteenth time, the teen does it…in slow motion, head down, shoulders slumped, and with an expression that clearly indicates they’re responding but only under protest and would rather be doing something else. Pouting displayed by a dog doesn’t look much different. It can look like any one or combination of the following: turning a back to you and not wanting to face you; ear drooping; head hanging low; tail dropping and tucked between their legs; whimpering or whining; a sad, pitiful look in their eyes and not wanting to maintain eye contact; not wanting to do anything if they can’t do it their way.” He goes on to say that we should completely ignore these behaviors. Well….I am just going to stop there and say, “Oh boy, I’m screwed!”