Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Smart Dumb Dog

Don't get me wrong - I love my dog.  Max is big and black and loud, and he scares strangers who come to the house (Perfect!  No salespeople ever come through the gate).  He is my running buddy - he's gone with me rain, shine, cold, hot, 2 miles, 5 miles.  When my neighbors' goats escaped the yard and began wandering down the road, Max rounded them up and herded them back - apparently by instinct (I never taught him that!).  One day at the beach, he got in front of a pit-bullish-type dog that was heading for Jason.  We adopted this dog from the pound, and I consider it one of the best deals ever.  He doesn't chew or dig up the yard, or require professional grooming, and he doesn't even poop in the grass (and we have a lot of grass!) - he always goes in the dirt way back by the fence.  He has been trained with relative ease to 'sit', 'shake hands', to leave the cat and chickens alone (the fact that he doesn't go after the chickens is quite major in Garden Farms, where it seems like everyone's dog has eaten one of everyone else's chickens), and most recently, Jason taught Max to lie down as if dead when one points at him and says, "Bang!"  He keeps critters out of the yard and has caught several squirrels and gophers (this is why Jamey likes him).
So it was confusing the other Sunday when Jason and I got home and there was a dog-head-sized hole in the picket fence.  And Max was sitting on the other side of it.  Our guess is that he panicked when he heard some distant gunshots (hey, it happens in my neighborhood...).  Perhaps the most puzzling thing, though, is that there is actually an opening in the fence about a foot to the right of where the dog went through.  It would be like me, leaving my room by going through a wall (using my head!) instead of the doorway just to the right.  So we stood and looked dumbfounded at the hole, wondering how a dog so smart could do such an utterly dumb thing, wishing that one person had been home to see it happening.  
And the debate among us continues: is he smart? Or is he truly a dumb, dumb dog?


Sharon said...

I would guess that perhaps he thought the opening to the side wasn't quite large enough and he is making his first attempt at widening the space. My vote? Smart!

Anonymous said...

any dog with that name must be smart...