You can teach an old dog…

Greetings blog readers. Frodo here today for your reading pleasure.

Today I must tell you my story which some might title “you CAN teach an old dog new tricks.” I would add – “because the old dog sees the POINT in doing the trick”.

As many of you know, our daily paper is delivered into a box at the end of our rather long driveway. And each day, upon returning from our morning constitutional along the road, someone is “invited” to carry the paper home from the box. Someone is usually the FG. He is the most likely to carry it. For at least a few feet before he drops it and stares at it like a scientist examining a specimen under a microscope. Should Her Highness attempt to pick it up, he grabs it, walks a few more feet and promptly drops it again. In this household the rule is two strikes and you’re out – we don’t follow baseball rules. After two drops, Her Highness then grabs the paper as he attempts to grab it back. She wins. Always. And she carries the paper home.

The Imp, on the other hand is happy to pick the paper up. He then tosses it, pounces on it and immediately attempts to shred it. He is no longer invited to carry it – after several confetti headlines.

And finally there is yours truly. I have absolutely no inclination to even pick up that plastic covered bundle. Her Highness pleads. I simply ignore her. What is the point in carrying it? She has two hands. Do I look like a paper carrier? I think not. I MAY have done it in my younger days, but I’m a senior with privilege- which includes the right of paper carrying refusal.

However….yesterday Her Highness took me to retrieve the paper and we had a…. revelation.

Yesterday, we had all done a jog to the lake and back, so we had short constitutionals on our own property. So that meant no one walked on the road, and passed the paper on the return. When that occurs, I am the one, the only one who goes to get the paper. Because I can go off leash. Her Highness walks me half way up the driveway, she tells me to wait, she retrieves the paper and she returns to me. Where I get a treat simply by playing the role of a statue. An easy gig.

But back to yesterday. When Her Highness returned to me she attempted to hand me the paper. Ugh. I snubbed the idea of carrying it. But then she asked me to sit in heel position. A spot I know and love because I long ago learned that the heel position ultimately results in treats. I stared at her waiting to see her next move. She told me to wait, and she rather awkwardly threw the plastic paper bundle. She immediately instructed me to “take it,” which is a command I know well from obedience training. Of course I raced out, grabbed the paper and quickly returned with it, with my brain focusing on the treat I was sure would await me. And voilà. Paper delivered, and treat delivered.

Her Highness proceeded to keep throwing the paper down the driveway, and yours truly happily obliged in bringing it to her. THIS was a paper job I could enjoy. Simply carrying it to take it home, was boring. BUT- to retrieve it repeatedly for treats was an entirely different task. Why? Simple math. More treats. You pick it up and carry home and get one measly treat. You repeatedly retrieve it and numerous treats are dispensed. THIS is my kind of game.

What else is thoroughly exciting in our little corner of the world? Ah yes- today is February 13 and it is apparently also known as Palentine’s Day – the day before Valentines Day. It is supposedly the day in which platonic friends and soul mates are celebrated. Possibly another way for florists and Hallmark to cash in on and extend the Valentines Day holiday. Which reminds me, I must find Her Highness’s credit card to order her some flowers from us boys.

Well, the Imp is off to some obedience practice thing today – which is an excellent holiday for me and the FG. To have him gone for a few hours is heaven. Not that we don’t love him (he said with rolling eyes) but when he is gone for just a bit, we both sleep well,

I bid you all a pleasant Sunday.

Have a good one. Peace and paws up. Stay safe

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