It all started the day I adopted my humans. I was ten weeks old, dozing warmly beside my litter mates when a pair of hands picked me up. The next thing I knew I was the proud owner of a family who needed me to train them.
First they had to learn come on command. They didn’t know that a bark outside the door meant, “Let me in; I’m lonely.” But persistence paid off, and eventually they mastered come on command at the first bark, like the intelligent breed I thought they were.
One day my food bowl was empty. That’s when I realized they were ready for the next step.
“Hey, Fido, what’s the matter?” Man-Human said at the dinner table. I was standing beside his chair with front paws on his knee.
“I need some food!” I whined. He didn’t get it. As my human kept munching his sandwich, I started drooling on his leg. It was time for the snatch and run approach. I jumped up and took a bite out of his sandwich.
Fido! Get over there and eat your own food!” bellowed Man-Human.
Clearly this was going to take some patience. I slunk, uh, slinked, over to my empty dish and stood there, casting mournful eyes his direction. Next I coughed. It worked. He filled my bowl and gave me the rest of his sandwich.
Now that my humans had learned to reason, we could move to the simple fetch command.
“Mmmfff!” I barked, looking toward my leash. Humans can be so dense sometimes. Fast wags and hopeful gazes didn’t work. Scratching on the wall beside the door DID work, and I rewarded my human by allowing him to walk me around the block.
Those are the basics of human obedience training that work with most breeds of people.
One last caution: Never allow humans to get the upper hand. Insist on instant obedience and you will live a long and happy life.