I Didn’t Train My Dog to Be Weird

Tom recently told me that my dog is weird, even though it’s his dog too.  I replied back with, “You trained him.”

To which he quickly replied, “I didn’t train him to be weird.”


When Ammo, our now six-year old Labrador, was only weeks old there were certain things Tom told me that I should get Ammo accustomed to:

  • Getting his teeth and fur brushed
  • Not to be afraid of the hair dryer
  • Health check from nose to tail daily
  • Down Stay away from his food bowl before meals
  • Join humans on the couch only when invited
  • Avoid wanting to sniff and beg around humans eating
  • And I’ll add that our veterinarian told us that we should wipe him down with a towel after outings because of how easily he gets an ear infection from environmental allergies

Because I enjoy cleanliness and consistency, I think I did a pretty good job keeping up to these standards.  These standards are what I hear Tom preach to clients at private trainings and Kindergarten classes every year.  So, in a sense, he trained Ammo…right?

Well, let’s look at the list again and maybe by the end of this post you can comment on whether or not Tom trained him, I trained him, or what we’ve concluded (but I hate to admit) we both trained him but I trained him to be weird. Haha!

  • When we’ve finished our day, Ammo is often in a deep, snoring slumber while we watch our evening television shows. But he wakes up instantaneously when one of us says, “I think we should go to bed,” or, “It’s time for bed.”  Ammo will jump up and head towards the sliding door so he could go potty one last time.  Then he hangs out in the kitchen to get brushed and heads straight to his bed to get his teeth brushed.  If we lag, he whines or does something obnoxious to get our attention and get the ball rolling.
  • His health check is done by going to my side of the bed and getting petted from nose to tail. Sometimes if I don’t remember he’ll leave a toy next to me.
  • Not only is he NOT afraid of the blow dryer, but even when he’s dry he will be in a Down Stay patiently until I finish drying my hair. I give him the OK and he trots over for a nice quick blow dry for himself!
  • Since he had to be at a Down Stay before his meals, I figured it was a good habit to begin praying for A+ Dog Training clients. Now anyone who dog sits has to pray (or at least say Amen) so he knows he can eat his meal.  Side Story:  One Thanksgiving my family made a circle and held hands away from the food tables.  Once I said, “Let’s pray.” Ammo went right into the middle of the circle, laid down, and bowed his head with us!
  • Ammo waits until someone pats the couch and says Up. He also has a bed sheet that he must lay on when on the human couch.  The first time Tom kept inviting Ammo Up, he didn’t understand why he wasn’t listening.  It wasn’t until I walked by and placed his bed sheet on the couch and then said Up.  Tom thought Ammo was being weird.  I thought I was a genius for training my dog to keep his shedding fur from spreading!
  • The command I taught Ammo to get him away from you as you eat your food (or just to get him away from you) is:  Privacy.   Tom thinks that’s weird.  I think it’s cool.
  • And because Ammo needs to be wiped down after walks, etc. once we’re home he expects to get cleaned up. Sometimes I sprinkle the occasional baby powder on him.  One time after a long day at Balboa Park in San Diego, Ammo couldn’t wait to get wiped down, brushed, and groomed so he could go straight into his kennel and sleep for the rest of the night!  Tom now calls him my prissy dog that wouldn’t make it camping for the weekend. Haha!

Yes, it’s okay to take Tom’s training and make it your own, as long as it’s consistent with everyone else in the family.  After all, they’re your dogs and were picked to fit your personality.  A+ Dog Training is here to guide you to train your dog to become happy  and well-balanced with peace in the home.

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