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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Alfie Loves Smarties

Our little Yorkie, Alfie, absolutely adores Smarties (alright, for those living outside the United Kingdom, I'm referring to the chocolate-centered sweets which come in a range of different colours and similar to M and M's.) Just bring out the packet and he'll do anything to get one. Or two . . . or three. Or more. Even after you've closed up the packet and told him 'no more' he will get as close as he can and touch it with his nose. He'd open it if he could. He's very artful. He's learnt quite a lot from our other dog, Poppy, who can be a complete control freak. She knows exactly when both dogs get fed, usually at 7.30 p.m. and knows the music that ends the 'One Show' on BBC1 and will sit directly in front of me and if I don't get up at once and move to the kitchen to prepare the food she will either sneeze, bark or come and prod me with her paw. Alfie has got into the habit of doing this, and whenever your eating he expects to get a bit of whatever it is you happen to be eating, such as a biscuit, piece of toast or your dinner, and does this so you give him a morsel. Poppy can do a trick or two, such as dancing around on her back legs. This is instead of begging, ie, sitting up with her body upright. She can do a twirl easily and will continue to do so everytime she is offered a treat. She knows that if she can get into your eye-line and you can see her clearly, her tricks will get noticed and you'll do whatever she wants ie, give her a treat or go and get her dinner ready.

Alfie, our Yorkie

Both dogs have a habit of going into the garden, and when you want them to come back in the house, they totally ignore you for as long as possible. To avoid this, we bought some doggy treats, which we keep in a small plastic box, which is usually kept either on the shelf behind the chair where I sit, or on the larger bookshelf. They will generally come in if you shake the box and make the treats inside it rattle. They get one for being good and doing as they're told. Alfie now has the trick of climbing onto the back of my chair and poking the box of treats with his nose and getting my attention so I will open the box to give him a treat. Or, if the box is the other side of the room, on the bookshelf, for example, he will stand and stare at it until he gets your attention or barks at it until you pick up the box and open it. He will even stand up on his back legs if he can see the box. How artful are our dogs? 
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