Friday, January 27, 2012

The Dog Diaries: Days 7 & 8

How I would love to tell you all that everything has settled down and the dog is now a well-behaved part of our family, but I’d be lying. Instead I must choose which of the stories of the last two days to tell…

Yesterday wasn’t actually too bad. The dog stole some food, chewed on a shoe, and knocked a kid or two into a wall, but he also played nicely in the yard, behaved for a trip to PetSmart, and handled the presence of lots of little children well.

Today it would be hard to give the dog a passing grade. Today he snuck past me to get out of the car at the bank, nearly knocking me over, slipped off his collar when I tried to catch him and generally refused to behave when I tried to recapture him. That was fun (for him). But that wasn’t the naughtiest part. The naughtiest part was when he locked me out of the house.

We’ve been working on crate training. This morning, Chevy successfully hung out in a locked crate for 15 minutes while I quickly drove my preschooler to school. So this afternoon, I thought I’d try it again for a half hour. I decided to take the kids door to door selling Girl Scout cookies. Chevy might have been hard to control if there were other dogs around, so I put him in his crate and gave him a treat to keep him occupied. Then out the door we went.

We were gone about 30 minutes. I knew I was in trouble as we walked up to our house and I could see the dog through the front window. Umm…wasn’t he supposed to be in his crate? Then (of course!) the kids started yelling “mom, the front door is locked, the front door is locked”. Apparently Chevy had been able to slide the catch on the top of his crate door and squirm out the top. The crate door was still locked from the bottom, but the top wasn’t. He must have really had to fight to get himself through the half-locked crate door because the crate was not in the same physical placement as when I left. Then he proceeded to the front door where he scratched the door, trying to get out. In the process, he turned the knob on the dead bolt…and locked us out. Of course, the garage door keypad was out of batteries and my parents weren’t home and I didn’t bring a cell phone with me.

It took me just a minute to figure out how to burglarize my parents’ garage door keypad to steal their battery and install it into my keypad. When we got into our house, I found that the dog had helped himself to more treats and spilled a glass of milk all over the floor. Besides that and the scratched front door, there wasn’t much damage.

Still, what’s next? Do I actually have to put a lock on the crate?

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