The first thing that happened last week after our hike was I got an email from the owner of our dog training facility that Lukey was kicked out of Relationship Class. She made it sound like I had taken him to the class on my own initiative, so I wrote back and said that the trainer had instructed me to try it out. She said she didn’t know that, and we would talk about it on Saturday. They had had a bad day, because a woman drove through the front of their building, Wayne reported, just before he arrived to pick up Lukey from Puppy Play and Train.
I was pretty angry at her tone and way of handling this, and on Saturday, I tried to point out to her that she had handled it poorly and that she should have talked to the trainer before sending the email. I didn’t care whether Luke went to Relationship Class or not, even though I felt that he had done as well as some of the other dogs in the class. However, either she misunderstood me or she lied, because she said she did talk to the trainer, which was exactly opposite of what she had told me before. Anyway, Luke is now just taking the adult obedience class.
And he has been a real pain lately. Wayne says he is suffering from an excess of testosterone, but he is adverse to the idea of having him fixed now. He wants to wait until Luke is almost a year old. I asked the trainer about it, but she said she didn’t think dogs should be fixed at all, so that is no help. In any case, he takes a few naps, but when he is awake, he is either playing (good) or getting into mischief (bad). There is no middle ground.
A case in point is the baby gate at the opening to the hall. Our original intention was to install a semi-permanent gate at the opening of the hall so that Hillary could come and go in the back part of the house without worrying that Luke could get her. However, we could not install that metal gate at the opening because of the pocket doors in the hallway. We ended up installing it towards the other end, so that it only blocks off the doors to the two bedrooms. Since Hillary’s cat box is in the laundry room, however, we supplemented that with a wooden baby gate at the opening of the hall.
That gate worked fine until he figured out that he could just push the ends aside and squeak back behind it, at which point, Wayne tied it to a bookcase on one end and the pantry cabinet doors on the other. Then, he just chewed through the twine on the pantry end, so Wayne chained the gate to the pantry doors.
That worked for a while until Luke figured out that he could bully his way through the door. So, we put a ladder behind it so that the door could only open towards him.
That worked for a while until Luke figured out that he could work at the door until he opened it toward him. So, the last few days, Wayne has been bungee-cording the door shut, which, by the way, makes it very hard to get through. Then, this morning, Luke got through the bungee cords three times.
So, we finally gave up and removed the gate. Hillary is still safe behind the second gate, and I moved her cat box to the other side. We are keeping all the doors shut, so, sure enough, now that there’s nothing keeping him from going down that hall and nothing to see, he’s not interested.
He is generally always on a path of destruction. We had to block off the downstairs stairs with a large, heavy footstool, because he went down to the bottom of the stairs and began ripping up the carpet. He has been steadily chewing on the gate, and although he hasn’t been chewing on the windowsills or coffee table as much, we still catch him chewing on the door frames. He ripped a huge hole in our old quilt, which I had the forethought to put on top of the nice bedding. His latest is to have chewed his leash in half. The trainers told us to keep him on a leash inside so that we could give him a correction when he chewed something he wasn’t supposed to chew, used his teeth inappropriately on us, or jumped up on me. The result was not that he stopped doing any of these things but that he has destroyed his leash. Wayne tied it back together. We bought him a new leash for class, but he will wear the old one at home until he stops doing some of these things. That was his latest, but his worst thing was to get a hold of my reading glasses (prescription) when I wasn’t home and chew them up. He also tried to chew up my hairbrush, but Wayne rescued it.
He is certainly in a contrary stage of his life. He knows what he is supposed to do, but he doesn’t want to do it, except in class. He knows what he isn’t supposed to do, so he is determined to do it. I hope he gets out of this stage soon. Before I got up, I heard Wayne cursing him all morning long as he went from one misdeed to another.
No hike this morning, but we went on a nice one last week, although it was raining. When it’s a soggy day, we usually keep to one of two parks that have nice, paved trails. Last week, we went to Lewisville Park. What with the pack walk last Monday, the hike, and the mini pack walk on Thursday, I got quite a bit of exercise last week. This week it will just be my jaunts with Luke and the mini pack walk tomorrow.
Oh, and my friend Deb and I went for a walk along the Vancouver Waterfront Renaissance Trail on Sunday. First, I met her at the Cascade train station in north Portland, and then we drove back across the bridge to Vancouver. We first went to When the Shoe Fits, where Deb bought a pair of hiking shoes just like mine. Then we went for lunch at a waterfront restaurant called Twigs, and we walked along the trail for a while afterwards. It was a gorgeous day, clear and not too cold. Finally, we went to see the movie The Favourite. It was quite entertaining, although I think it took huge liberties with history. I read a biography of Queen Anne a few years ago, and she wasn’t the nincompoop that this movie and history has made her out to be. What she was, was very ill.