I Promise Not to Kill My Dog

I figured that title might get some attention. This is my dog. Her name is Missy. We rescued her just prior to my husband becoming very ill. Timing is everything. This was not good timing.

When there is an ill person at home, and your primary job has become caregiver, everyone’s life changes. Even the dog’s.

Missy is having to entertain herself more and more these days. In doing so, she has discovered that rabbits live on the golf course, just on the other side of the fence. She has become fixated with “catching dat  rascal wabbit”, and that is why she is dressed in a “donut”. This keeps her from squeezing through the fence.

The other oh-so-annoying habit she has developed is barking. She barks at the golfers; never did before. She barks at the neighbors. Always did. She barks at imaginary things that she smells on the wind. She barks when people arrive, and when they leave. So, I now get to add “dog wrestler” to my list of daily activities.

I would marry the dog whisperer if he would just show up at the door. I used to pray for “the Millionaire” to come to the door. Now, it’s the dog whisperer. And, I’m trying not to kill the dog. So, I thought, perhaps if I post about this and go on record that I’m about to kill the dog, everyone will write guilt-laden comments on my site, and straighten me out.

Thank you for the opportunity to confess. I’m better for it. Feel free to write. If anyone has advice regarding barking that does not involve an electric-shock collar, I would love to hear it.



About susansplace

Widowed in 2012, I am a mother and grandmother. Born in San Francisco, I now live in the town I grew up in: Mill Valley, California. I love nature photography. Just an amateur but that's OK! My goal: world peace. Got any ideas?
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16 Responses to I Promise Not to Kill My Dog

  1. Great post! Cute dog. The donut is too funny! Sorry your husband’s ill.

  2. Andrew Maxwell says:

    We live on the 10th story of an apartment building, and the dog still finds people to bark at from that high up. It’s ridiculous. I understand your pain, and that donut move takes ingenuity. Nicely done.

  3. Lynn Toth says:

    Sorry Sue, but I really have no help for you on Missy’s barking, but to say that I guess it is one of her only ways of communicating. Our pets probably wish we would stop talking at times! ;o) Our 15 yr. old “granddog”, Bo has taken to barking very loudly when one of the two of us leaves the house. We’re thinking he may be getting senile? Maybe he doesn’t want us to leave? Maybe he’s saying, “Good, I’m glad you’re finally leaving!” ? I’ve been thinking of you both constantly and continue to pray for peace as only God can give.

  4. Jan Raffety says:

    Sue I know there are collars that are not electric shock for barking. We had a barking dog behind us and our neighbor next door went over and offered to buy a collar for him so he did not bark all the time. I never hear the dog barking anymore so it must have worked. Now if the other neighbor back there would do it for their two dogs life would be so much better. They do not bark near as much so it is not too bad. I’ll ask my neighbor if he bought one and if so what he bought.

    Thinking of you all the time and sorry I missed you at Coffee on Sunday. So glad you could get out for awhile.

    • susansplace says:

      Thanks for your note, Jan! Let me know if you hear more about that collar. I don’t want to do anything that causes the dog pain if I can help it. As soon as I can, I’ll get a trainer over here!

  5. Laura says:

    The donut of shame….poooorrrrr Missy.
    I think there is a collar that makes a noise that only the dog can hear….. not a shock, but something that will turn her off from barking. Ask your vet! Or ask your vet for the name of a trainer that will give you those ideas!!

    • susansplace says:

      Thanks for the ideas. Yes, I need to be really proactive, and turn this dog into a wonder-dog who never barks and only plays quietly, and hates to play fetch, and doesn’t shed!! Ha!

  6. Seasonsgirl says:

    Sorry about your husband. Your pup is a cute rescue 🙂 I know what you mean about being a care giver. My paralyzed father lives with my husband and I and it is tough at time. We have a rabbit chaser too and two barkers when someone is walking by our house. We have taught them the “enough” command. We did this by saying the command after a couple of barks and showed them a treat when they quited down for 3 seconds we gave the the treat and said the command again. They are getting it. You can also if you have time distract the pup with a basic commands and rewards so the barking is less rewarding.

    • susansplace says:

      Dear Seasonsgirl, thank you for writing! I am very sorry about your dad and I know, for sure, that your work is cut out for you. I’m happy for your dad, that he obviously has a very loving family to take care of him. I will try the ENOUGH command. I wonder, though, do you think the command teaches them that if they bark, you will say ENOUGH and they will get a treat? Drives me crazy!! Ha!

      • Seasonsgirl says:

        I don’t know what they think I guess I am just happy they stop and they don’t seem to bark any more then usual and if they bark at something we want them to we praise them and I guess they learn from that too. I was worried they would get confused when our friend told us to try this, but ours seem to know. Thanks for the kind words about my Dad.

  7. Marina Smith says:

    With my Sicilian heritage, I could probably put in a call to have Missy “sleeping with the fishes”, but her donut would probably act as a flotation device and the barking would continue……just kidding PETA!!!

  8. Marina Smith says:

    I want God to know that my last comment was just a joke……Wayne just called and one of his new puppies (11 week old Reggie) just fell into the pool. He was getting ready to chase his older sister (9 month old Mandy), and forgetting where he was, turned too quickly and….plop! Fortunately, Wayne was right there and fished him out of the pool……this time of the year a big BRRRRRRRRR. Anyway, dogs are a blessing…….. we’re best friends regardless of barking, whining, the ocassional accident, etc. ……….and forgiveness is just part of who they are. Right now I know that the barking must be trying and I pray that one of your many readers has a solution……….but doggone it, Missy sure is cute :o)

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