I’m periodically reminded of what a good dog Dawg normally is. He’s resigned himself to wearing the muzzle when he goes out; in fact, he eagerly pushes his face into it in an attempt to help me get it on his head. I’m certain that the fact that his eager “help” actually makes dressing him for the great outdoors an exercise in frustration on my part is a coincidence — just “one of those things” that makes life a great mystery. Surely he couldn’t possibly know that he’s making life harder for me instead of easier. After all, he’s such a nice doggie.
Because I call Dawg to come lay by my chair every time we see anyone coming towards us when we’re out walking, he will normally preempt my command by laying on the ground the moment he sees anyone. The fact that doing such a thing means he’s got several more feet of leash at his disposal if he decides to attack that little ankle-biter being walked along the sidewalk (you notice I didn’t say he came to me before laying down) is just one of those things as well. As is the fact that he can get up without waiting for my release command (since I didn’t give him a down stay to begin with). Dawg’s not trying to circumvent me, he’s just trying to be helpful.
And if he somehow manages to get behind bushes, trash cans, etc. before finding something on the ground that I’d never let him have (he loves chicken bones and has figured out how to eat them even when wearing a muzzle), well, that’s just his good fortune and my bad luck. And he simply misunderstands when I tell him to drop it or give it to me. I know he misunderstands because why else would such a good doggie start eating faster at that point?
Even if the cumulative effect of all his actions is to make me a nervous wreck who looks like an idiot to his friends while Dawg comes off as a saint for putting up with me, well, that’s just one of those things. Surely there’s no way he could be plotting all this out like an evil mastermind. After all, he’s just a doggie, right?
Dawg’s not trying to gaslight me, he’s not, he’s not, he is not. At least I hope he isn’t, because if he is, he’s winning.