Library mascot

Today I went to the library with my person. The library is a special place because lots of different people go there. I like people. I like to watch people. I really like when people come up to me to say hello. They always pat my head and play with my ears. But mostly,  I like it because people make me feel special.

Last evening,  when I fell asleep on the sofa, I had a dream. It was a good dream (even my people knew because I heard them talking later and they said I was asleep and my tail was wagging!).  In this dream,  I was visiting the library – but in this dream I actually went inside.  A dog in a library- incredible!

In the library, I was greeted by a small person who kept saying I was cute. Then we went into the small people room. The small person took out a book and started to read a story to me. Imagine someone reading to me! How special is that?! The little person was showing me pictures in the book and can you believe the pictures looked like me? Who knew they had story books with dogs in them – dogs like me?!  I was very excited.  The small person sat next to me and did a good job reading the whole story.  I totally enjoyed it.

I guess sometimes little people have trouble reading. I think they just need someone to read to, someone who can listen.  I think I’m a good listener (unless of course there are birds flying around or my nose distracts me – Sometimes I just can’t focus because there are too many good things to smell). I bet that’s what happens to small people.  I bet they are just like me and they suddenly smell something wonderful,  like mice,  and they just can’t focus on the words they are trying to read. That’s where I could help. I could tell them to focus on the words and I’d focus on the smells. We’d work together to read. That’s what I was doing in this dream. The small person was reading and I was smelling. Library books smell wonderful because so many people have touched them and brought them to different places. Library books are an olfactory world – a mini United Nations.  Ahhh, to travel the world through the nose…the beach…curry…potato chips…chicken…chicken…chick…Wait, Wait…see that’s how I start to lose focus! Where was I?

I remember now – Listening and Reading.  When the small person in the dream finished reading to me they had a big smile. They were so proud.  I was proud of them too. That little one was so happy to have had someone who would listen to them and help them read that I was made the official Library Mascot.  The Library staff gave me a sweater with a big letter ‘L’ on it (it stood for Library they said). They told everyone I was the official Library Mascot because I helped the small person read.  But that’s not what made me really happy. What made me really happy was when the little one smiled at me, hugged me around my neck and thanked me for my help.  I felt so special.  A dog, a child, a book and reading – what did I tell you – It was a WONDERFUL dream.

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4 Comments

  1. kat

    My daughter adopted a tw coon hound her name is Addy, she came from a shelter almost a year ago, shes a crazy dog. She is afraid a thunderstorms, fireworks and freaks at the site of water or the possibility of being alone we go from the house even for a minute and she barks as if we left her all day can anyone tell me how to help this dog with out going to the vet and giving her medication

    • Daisy was very highstrung and skiddish (and still is around dogs who are larger than she is). Like Daisy, it sounds like Addy may never have lived in an actual home – so first of all patience is the key. The second thing – exercise, exercise and exercise. Walkers were bred to hunt “tirelessly”. They need to expend the energy – my motto is a tired dog is a good dog. Without exercise excessive barking (and baying!!) as well as other behavioral problems may arise. My next piece of advice: dog training!!! Ask your local ASPCA or Humane Society for places they would recommend – like my ASPCA, they may offer classes themselves. Dog training is much more than sit and stay. It is about building a working relationship between you and your dog – I’m not talking showing your dog “whose boss” – I’m talking confidence building and trust. Often times we don’t realize how we contribute to the anxieties our dog may have. A good dog trainer can help you learn how to ‘talk dog’ and understand how our actions influence the dog behavior – for example, perhaps during a thunderstorm your daughter may be trying to be reassuring the way she might a child – unfortunately that may be adding to the problem – I try to pretend that I’m deaf and have not heard the thunder…zen like calm…I don’t reassure her because ‘nothing’ is happening. Don’t reward behavior you want to stop…and our ‘reassurances’ are actually rewarding for the dog. Reward her for laying down and being quiet. You must start slowly and keep working at it – patience!! And again – if I know we might get a thunderstorm or it’s the 4th of July I’ll try and walk her paws off so she’s too tired to care. As for leaving the house – again, exercise her first – then start by leaving for small periods of time, say out the door and back in again altering the time between when you leave and when you come back. I like to think of it as teaching her that I’m going but I’ll be back. I do not make a big deal about leaving and I do not make a big deal when returning. I do however, give her a stuffed Kong with her favorite treats (pieces of chicken, hotdogs, cheese, etc with either peanut butter or cream cheese which I freeze) and only give her when I’m walking out the door. She ONLY gets this very special treat WHEN I’M LEAVING. I want her to associate my leaving with very good things happening. For Daisy this works.
      I also suggest that you watch the Animal Planet TV series “It’s Me or the Dog” with dog trainer Victoria Stilwell. Victoria is wonderful. When I mentioned her to our dog trainer at the MSPCA she couldn’t say enough about her either. Great show with loads of training tips!! Just remember, be patient, go slowly and keep working at it! Please let me know how things work out. I’m pulling for your daughter and Addy!!

  2. kat

    Addy is a dog whom i believe has been abused at one point why someone would do this i dont know I am a hound crazed person, we take her to th dog park 3 times a week but let it start raining she wont go nowhere.
    Farah is so trying hard but i think she needs to learn more and be Addys support memories last a long time
    thanks

    • Daisy doesn’t like going out in the rain either…but then I’m not to crazy about it myself. We suffer through it together. I think many treeing walkers were bred (not unlike greyhounds) for a specific job – in this case hunting. I would bet their experiences are (again like greyhounds) limited to the kennel or cage they live in. Many different experiences are the key.

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