Silly Things My Dog Does


Our six year old, 89 pound lapdog.

A constant joy and pain in the butt. Like a child.

Toys and tufts of fur cover our beige carpet, makes me think of the Tasmanian Devil in the Loony-Toons cartoons. He traveled in a whirlwind, leaving debris and damage behind. He was always my favorite character. In fact, I am starting to think that he has secretly moved in here. I cannot keep up with the clutter that is my home, so I have given up and just move it out of my way as I go.

She was so cute as a puppy! Her BMD coloring made it look like she had a mask over her eyes, making her face look like a bandit. She bit people, especially me. I would cry – not because it hurt so bad, but it hurt my feelings. How could my sweet baby bite me? We eventually came to an understanding, that I was the boss of her. This took a lot of training with a professional trainer, but I finally caught on.

Should have named her Bandit!

Ziva, now portrays a mature and dignified canine. She still loves people and will get all whiny and wiggly when she sees someone she knows, but once she is within petting distance she will sit down (with her behind anchoring their feet) and allow them to pet her. This is a genetic trait for BMD’s by the way.

The I’m at home with just my people Ziva, behaves much differently. She snoozes around the house, in the most uncomfortable looking positions.

In the past year, one of her puppy phases returned – Wild Ziva. Around 5:00 pm, a seriously urgent spurt of energy causes her to run full bore in circles around our family room, suddenly stopping in a crouched position to challenge me to play. If I’m busy making dinner, she will attack her toy box and grab one, wrestle with it, then fling it up and away from her. If I accept the challenge, she watches me like a hawk as I retrieve one of her toys and toss it to her. Her reaction? She sits still and lets it hit her. No attempt to catch it or even acknowledge it. She studies me like I am being ridiculous. She knows this is not the reaction I’m looking for. She is teasing me.

Why do I keep doing it? Because every now and then, when the stars are aligned just right, or something, she will play. There are no witnesses to this, so of course hubby does not believe it happened. But she and I know. It goes like this: I toss her one of her stuffed animals and to my surprise, she jumps up and snatches it out of the air. Then she throws it directly at me. If I miss, the game is over. If I catch it and toss it back, she does it again. This excites me to no end because BMD’s do not catch, fetch or interact like other dogs. We do not know why this is. Maybe in Switzerland where BMD’s originate from, they know.

I figured out the other day why playing with her is so heart rendering for me. It is because she does not like to play like dogs do. But every once in a while she will play with me – because I like to. I can see it in her eyes that she loves me.


Looking Back

You know how people look at baby photos and go all soft and gushy?

Well, I get that way when I look at my dog’s puppy pictures. and when I found an old video we made (I filmed and she played herself), I had to share it.

It’s titled,  Meet Ziva To fully enjoy the clip, turn up your sound.



She, Who Does Not Fetch

I want to sit at my computer, sipping coffee all day and write. My Novel is nearing another editing phase and I need to bring all the ends together. Things get ignored – housework, my hubby, my dog. Hubby is busy with his own happy things and barely notices, but my puppy needs way more attention. Or she’s tearing up things she knows she shouldn’t just to get it.

If I use my laptop and sit in the family room she is content to lay next to my chair and just hang. But a puppy can only hang for so long. Suddenly it’s football rodeo time. She is running willy-nilly, crouching down, springing up, attacking her futon. Then she tosses her stuffed football and catches it a few times before flinging it my way.

Nothing can get one’s attention better than getting bopped in the head by a stuffed football. So of course I toss the ball back to her, and she watches it fall to the floor in front of her. Then she looks up at me to see what I’ll do next. She, who does not fetch.

It’s a Bernese Mountain Dog trait – not fetching. They are above the whole go-get-it-and-bring-it-back thing. They believe if we toss it away, we don’t want it. If I do want it, I can just go get it myself.

If I feel like it, I will go and pick up the toy and toss it to her again. She watches me intently. She has no desire to play ball again, but my behavior must amuse her, because she smiles and wags her tail. No doubt thinking “what an idiot!”

After 2 1/2 years, last night I got it. I knew I got it because I recognized the joy on Ziva’s face that happens when I understand what she wants. I too get excited. You have to be there, ya know?

I’ll get to the point.

Last night I tossed  Ziva her round stuffed ball (football season is over now) and she caught it, flipped her head back and tossed it right back at me. I had time to catch it and toss it back her direction. It was a bit high – no problem for her, she jumped and grabbed it, tossing it in one quick motion and I missed it. I am not as gifted and flexible as my pup.

I retrieved the ball from under the dining room table and tossed it. Ziva ignored it. Although she was still wagging her tail and smiling – the spell had broken. The ball had literally dropped. Game over. Until she decides to start another one.

She, who does play catch.

♥ TTFN ♥