A-tennnn-hut! Russet, I am your new drill sergeant and you are in doggie boot camp. In military parlance, you are a grunt.
You are here because I love you. You are here because I don’t want to replace or repair property– neither mine nor somebody else’s –because of you. You are here because I do not want to retrieve you from the pound or find your remains splattered all over the road.
What I do want is a long, rewarding lifetime with you by my side.
During this period, I will not call myself “Mommy” or coo baby talk to you. I will not let you sleep on my bed, jump up on the couch, or do anything else that implies privilege or familiarity. You must first earn my trust.
During this training session, you will learn to walk along beside me on a leash, sit, stay, shake hands, and go potty, as directed. Obey my command, and you’ll receive a click and a treat, and hear “Good girl!”.
Oh, please, put away those pleading eyes. Put down that imploring paw. Still that happy tail and that slurpy tongue . Stifle that pitiful whimper.
This time, I mean business…my wittle Wussie-poo.