An Unexpected Gift

I Never Asked For a Barkleah
Adding a second pet into our home was a big decision. After seven years of being the Queen bee, would our sweet, but spoiled, Lab accept a little brother? She gave us a resounding “No way.”
Here she was, a large eighty–five pound grand lady, used to having all of our attention. Now she shared us with Barkleah, a two pound cuddle-bug, who needed potty training and holding, lots of holding. Did I mention he was a lap dog? Oh, yes.
Soon after Barkleah arrived, Bailey tried to get up on the couch and sit on my lap. Being a little bottom-heavy, this was a feat to view. When she found her ability to get on the couch had vanished, she began to jump up and down in place.  She barked loudly, as if to say, “You get down. These are my people, not yours.”
Poor Barkleah, long ears not yet standing upright, dug deeper into his cuddle sack and napped as if hoping she would give up and go away. Once he disappeared into the sack, Bailey wandered off and flopped onto her dog bed to replenish her energy.
Soon the two siblings appeared to develop a treaty. Bailey watched Barkleah out of the corner of her eye and began to teach him the rules.
·        Rule 1: Mommy is the first to go out any door
·        Rule 2: Bailey is the first dog to go out any door
·        Rule 3:Bailey is fed first
·        Rule 4: Bailey gets treats first 
Once Barkleah was around six months old, he tried to engage Bailey in play. He instinctively knew the play bow and would greet her with excitement. Unfortunately, she had never played with another dog and had no idea what he wanted. So, he learned to play alone or with his people.
His favorite toys were all small and squeaked. He treated his toys as prey. He tossed them into the air and pounced on them as they landed onto the floor. But Bailey soon appeared on the scene to take the toy away from him or bark at him for being so noisy.
Naturally, being a terrier, Barkleah took this behavior as a challenge. He’s quite a tease. So he would squeak his toy, jump around, and upon Bailey’s approach, he’d dive under the bed in our master bedroom and pull the toy close to his chest. He knew Bailey was too large to crawl under the bed. Then the barking began. How he enjoyed watching her frustration. His coal black eyes sparkled.
To this day, teasing Bailey is his favorite pastime. And she has learned how to use his small sweet personality to get what she wants. Stop by next week and get a peek at squirrel-chasing training.

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