Friday, August 15, 2008

Bark bark bark bark...GOOD dog!

Mina's a sweetie, but she has an annoying habit of barking whenever there's someone at the door. We've tried various tactics to stop her, from "go sit in your bed!" to "Ok, ok, I hear you, now STOP" to "all right, stop and you get some treats!" None have really worked.

Well...I was sitting on the couch in my living room tonight, around 11 pm, watching tv with Mina on my lap. All of a sudden she's up and barking like crazy! I couldn't imagine that she was just barking for no reason, so I stood up to go investigate...and as I turn around, I see a man I'd never seen before standing IN MY LIVING ROOM! My jaw dropped - this had never happened before and I was too stunned to react. But Mina knew this was not right and she barked frantically at the stranger, circling and staying between me and him.

"Is this where [name] and [name] live?" he asked.

", that's next door," I answered over Mina's barking. At the same time, I was idly wondering if she'd bite him. I could see now that he was just a lost party-goer, looking for the neighbors, but the pure shock of having a stranger walk unannounced into my home still had me kind of floored and I just gaped at him as he figured it out.

He thanked me and left, and after the door was shut - and locked, this time! - I sat down on the floor with my dog. She quieted after a moment, to a frustrated little moan, then stopped and laid down next to me.

Right about then, my husband comes wandering in from the other side of the house. "What was that?" he asked. When I told him what happened, he knelt down and gave Mina a big hug and a heart-felt "Good dog!"

"Remember this," I said, "next time you're mad because she barks when someone comes over."

He agreed and called Mina a good protector, and gave her another long scratch and hug.

We all learned something tonight! I won't have quite the same reaction next time Mina barks when the doorbell rings, from now on.

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