Monday, August 29, 2005
Who Is The Alpha Dog?





"If that dog does not stop chasing my cats, she has got to go," my husband insisted. "I am NOT going to have them constantly in hiding because they are too terrified to move."

"I know," I admitted miserably. "I feel terrible too. I've even been doing some research to find out what obedience trainers have to say about it."

"And?"

"And they say that you have to establish yourself as the Alpha Dog in the household."

Rich looked at me blankly. "How exactly are you going to do that?"

"Next time I catch her going after one of the cats, I'm going to roll her over and grab her neck in my teeth."

"You're going to bite the dog?" my husband asked, genuinely startled.

"Of course not," I said indignantly. "I'm just going to assume the alpha position."

Rich raised a brow and his lips twitched.

"Ahem!" I looked at him sternly. "I meant I'm going to take on the dominant role."

"Really?" he grinned evilly.

"Don't even go there, buddy. Anyway, maybe it will work. I just have to catch her in the act."

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Five minutes later I got my chance. Rich and I were in our room when we heard a scuffle outside the door followed by hissing, yowling, and growling.

"PHOEBE, NO!!!!!" I yelled, running to break it up. The cat escaped and fled down the stairs.

The dog guiltily flipped on her back in submissive pose, her brown eyes apologetic. I fell to my knees and, baring my teeth, growled at her and clamped my mouth around her throat.

She licked my face, wagging her tail.

"She doesn't seem very afraid of you," my husband observed.

I released her neck and sat back on my heels. "I thought I was very fierce actually." I said, disappointed. "Didn't you think I looked fierce?"

Rich considered. "You definitely had a wild look about you. The growling thing was a nice touch."

"Thanks."

Phoebe put her paws on my shoulder and began cleaning my face. "Cut it out!" I wrinkled my nose and pushed her away. She trotted over to her pillow and curled up, watching us both. "You're still a bad dog." I told her.

I looked at Rich and sighed. "What now?"

"I don't know, hon. Let's just keep trying to work with her a little longer and see what happens."

Phoebe just closed her eyes and snuggled in for an afternoon nap. Alpha Dog One and Alpha Dog Two were really quite nice, she decided sleepily. But they really don't know the first thing about cats.
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I'm a 40-something writer, artist, and Jill-of-All-Trades. For me, magic is looking at the ordinary and seeing the extraordinary. My writing tends to take me to unexpected places--not so surprising when I think about it. I had an unusual growing up and have always chosen the offbeat over the "safe". I prefer interesting people over beautiful ones, and I am fascinated by people's stories. What I love most about life is its glorious imperfections and fantastic plot twists.

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