a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: Tika Has Improved-- Some--

Tuesday, June 17, 2003

Tika Has Improved-- Some--

A friend commented this weekend (after Tika rampaged around wildly & happily, pushy & jumping up & yelping and barking and all): "She certainly has calmed down since you first got her." Yoiks!

I went out to the garage last night to get something, and Tika followed me out to explore. I headed back into the house; she trotted quickly from the corner where she was sniffing right back into the house behind me. Those first couple of months, she just didn't want to come in, there were so many interesting things to smell out there. Even closing the door and leaving her there for a while didn't discourage her. I remember trying to chase her down (because she'd ignore my polite requests for her to "Come" or "Get your furry buns in here!") and having not much luck.

The Yard Guy was here last week, and as usual she put her vocal cords to work responding to that outspoken leafblower. Well, the Yard Guy has wised up, too: He knows to turn it off when I come out to get the dogs so they're not doubly distracted. Used to be that there was nothing I could do to get her into the house after the Yard Guy came--just too many potential excitements. It doesn't seem that long ago at all that I had to chase her down most of the time. Now, she waits a couple of moments, alert and on tiptoe, to see whether that loudmouth blower will speak up again, but then she skeedaddles right into the house at my direction.

Now, if we could deal with walking on a leash--and jumping up on people--and not grabbing my feet in competition--

We did go on a longer walk yesterday. I was *determined* to get my walking in. There was still a lot of course correction occurring, but much less than there has been at other times. When there were dogs barking in back yards, it became difficult to make progress. And she saw a squirrel or a cat or some other furry reprobate once and became almost unmanageable for a block or so. THAT was a lonnnnng block.

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