I Need a Dog Whisperer

Looks can be deceiving.

Looks can be deceiving.

Meet my dog-child. Cute, isn’t he? He’s a mini-dachshund that’s 9-years-young. We’ve had him since he was just a few weeks old.

He’s a smart little guy. When you ask him what he wants, he’ll direct you to whatever it is, usually food. When you ask him where his food goes, he touches his bowl with his paw. When you ask him where his food is, he taps the container. When you ask him to wait before eating a treat, he does. When he’s playing and does not return the toy close enough to you, you can tell him you can’t reach it and he will attempt to nudge it closer to you.

Speaking of playing… Even at 9, he loves to run and play… a lot. He’s pretty demanding, as in 2-3 hours of playing some nights, and if he doesn’t get his way, he is quite vocal. And all of this is becoming a problem. I may need a dog whisperer pretty soon.

Part of the problem is he will not play with the hubby. To the dog, the hubby is the meal provider, trick teacher, nail cutter, and poop master. I, on the other hand, am his playmate. Whenever I leave the house, I am told that the dog stays in his bed most of the time, even if the hubby is home. But when I’m at home, he never leaves me alone. He’s like my shadow…. If it’s possible for a dog to do this, I think he is stalking me.

It wouldn’t be such a big deal to play with the dog if it were not for something else. The other part of the problem is the dog screams when he plays. I don’t know if he’s anxious or excited or what, but he likes to scream and yelp. And these are no ordinary dog yelps, these are loud and constant. If the back door is open when he is in play mode, we have to close it for fear of the neighbors thinking that we are beating the dog. That’s how bad it is. He yelps when he wants you to throw the toy and when he begins pursuit of it. It’s a lot to endure after a while.

If I take away the toy from him, he runs around the house frantically trying to find it while making little yipping noises because he’s so distraught.

I don’t know if it’s my lack of patience after 8 years of him doing this or that he’s gotten worse as the years have gone by–he is an ornery 63 years now–but it’s about to drive me to drinking! What to do? What to do? I don’t know how to get him to calm down.

I’m going to try to channel Cesar Milan now.

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