Monday, May 28, 2007

Bluesipher, The Original Dog from Hell

As some of you no doubt know, I'm being paid $40/day to dogsit my uncle's dog while he and my aunt are off in NYC. The dog's name is "Blue." He is a Prince Something's Spaniel - very round in shape, somewhat smelly, moody, and, I am sorry to say, he seems to be of the persuasion that consumes its own waste to ward off anxiety.

Luckily for me, all of my duties were carefully spelled out for me in a single-spaced, 2-page memorandum left in triplicate (quite literally) throughout the house. Blue requires morning and evening medicine, as well as three square meals a day - so far so good. Blue's other requirements are more irregular - for example, I am to sleep with him every night in the master bedroom:
[Blue]'s a good bed-mate and sleeps with both of us in the bed. In the morning he loves to be ruffled up (push him on his back and rub his stomach and he'll sound like he's growling, but he's just happy).
If I take him on walks, I can let him off leash, and, to retrieve him, shout "Blue, Come! In a loud commanding voice - then give him an occasional reinforcement with a half-biscuit." To say that this dog responds to biscuits as reinforcement would be an exercise in meiosis.

Blue and I had our differences at first - when his mommy and daddy left, he became a bit disoriented and decided it was no longer safe to use the outdoors as his bathroom. But the truth is, our relationship has steadily improved. And it ends Thursday. Which is for the best.

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