Friday, August 27, 2010

The Dog Whisperer

I should have known it was going to be a strange night when I saw three or four deer standing on the side of the road on my way home, ready to run out in front of me. Then a rabbit did try to dart out on the road moments after, but I think it went on its way.

It was about 11:30pm. Pmo was taking out the dogs for their last round when I heard barking. I went out on the front porch to see what was going on, and all of a sudden this big white dog comes bounding up the driveway. Pmo was trying to control our dogs and I was wondering where the runaway came from because I didn't see anyone around. A few minutes later, a woman comes walking up the driveway with a leash and a collar in her hands.

Apparently "Boomer" had made a break for it and his owner could not wrangle him. He toyed with Bug and Jack for a few minutes then he was off again, running around our house and into the backyard. I thought eventually he would calm down and let the woman put the collar back on, but that just wasn't happening. So I decided to help. I went back inside, got my shoes on and Pmo suggested I grab some treats.

And so the hunt began. To be honest, Boomer's owner wasn't doing much to get him under control. She had come from a neighborhood across a busy road where the dog almost got hit, and she seemed to have given up. And Boomer, well, he was playing a game. The treats did not tempt him at all. He would run up to me, almost where I could pet him, then he'd bolt away, jumping around like he was having the time of his life.

After a few trips around the house, I started to get irritated. I know, shocker, right? But here's this crazy dog running around my yard, his owner doesn't know what the hell she's doing, it's almost midnight and there's quite a commotion going on. That's when it hit me. My tone was all wrong. I was doing the high pitched, "here Boomer, come here, come here boy" and whistling which is fun and playful. He needed the low pitch "I mean business" voice. So that's what I did. I said, "Boomer, come here, come here, Boomer" in that stern Mom tone. You know, the one where she uses all three names? And just like that, he started to walk toward me really slow with his head down, and I walked toward him a little, making sure he wasn't going to bolt again, and I had him.

I yelled at the lady, "I got him!" She ran over, put the collar on him and thanked me a million times. In the meantime, her sister had pulled up in a vehicle, ready to take them home. But I heard the woman say she was just going to walk Boomer the rest of the way. I secretly hoped the collar would hold up and we wouldn't have to entertain Boomer again. So I am proclaiming myself: the dog whisperer. Now if I could only get my own dogs to listen to me!

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