Monday, April 2, 2012

Having People Over

The number of friends we have has been steadily declining ever since we got Badger. Since getting Mushroom, it's all but plummeted down to zero. Yes, we can meet for dinner - but we can't go for a movie afterwards because the dogs to be walked and fed. Yes, we can go to a party - but we can't drink because we have to leave early for the dogs' pre-bedtime potty break. Yes, we can spend the day at an outdoor event - but not if it's in Boston because of BSL. Our two options for social interaction with other humans are basically limited to: 1. spend an absurdly short amount of time there, or 2. invite people over to our place.

Option #2 is preferred, but we can rarely get friends to agree to it because we live waaaaayyyy out in the suburbs, and our dogs like to jump on strangers. (Far too many people have reinforced this negative behavior with 15-lb puppy-Badger, only to find that it's not as welcome with 45-lb adolescent-Badger.) To make things even more difficult, most of our dog-loving friends have small dogs who would not appreciate Badger's overly enthusiastic play style. And "you can come over to help train our dogs not to jump, but please leave your dog at home" has not proven to be an effective invitation.

We are in the process of scheduling a consultation with a trainer, so hopefully our friends will be more willing to come over after the jumping has been retrained.

Welcome. You can come in, but you can NEVER LEAVE

Do you have any tips for preserving human friendships after getting a dog?

1 comment:

  1. We are having this problem with Schultz. At best he jumps on people and at worst he hides in the corner and growls so it is difficult to invite people over at all. I want to practice and teach him how to positively interact with visitors but most of our friends are scared of him and prefer he be put away if they come over. Tess is much more social and I feel guilty bringing her for outing and leaving him alone, but I always don't want her to miss out because of his issues.