Ahhhhh, my dog Portia. She’s super cute, always soft and warm, and sleeps curled up in a cute little ball. . .
She also is a counter-surfer. Our kitchen counter at home has an imaginary line I call the Portia-Line. Behind this line, your items are safe, on the wrong side of this line (The Portia Zone), kiss your stuff goodbye!!
After it became impossible to leave anything on the counter I had a serious discussion with my local vet (you can go to your local vet and get a behavioural consultation if you like). She told me to put a mouse trap on the counter.
I nodded politely and agreed that would most likely do the trick but in my head I thought “My Baby!! Snapped by a mouse trap!! I can’t do it! She could get hurt!!”
So the counter surfing continued. And then I went to visit Larry at the The Pet Stop and he also told me to put mouse traps on the counter. He said that in 25 years of dog training he’s never heard of a dog that actually got caught. They just get the fur scared right off them.
So I was ready to listen. The trick is to set it up when Portia is not around. That way when it goes off it has NOTHING to do with mummy, it’s a horrendous consequence of counter surfing. So I bought some mousetraps at my local Home Depot and set one up on the counter (this was right after the incident where she ate an entire tub of margarine and sour cream!). I started making myself my peanut butter on english muffin and waited. Sure enough, Portia saddled up to the counter and tried to get the peanut butter knife I left in the Portia Zone. I heard a snap! A yip! and she skedaddled outta there like wildfire! And promptly hid behind the piano!
She hasn’t been much of a counter surfer since.
But yesterday I came home and found my Scarlett Pimpernel VHS tapes DESTROYED (Yes Mark and Heidi, it’s sad but TRUE). Little fiend has found a new hobby. This is right on the heels of her destroying several VHS tape cases. And this morning I came downstairs and found another tape ruined (completly. You can barely tell it used to be a VHS tape) So I got out my trusty mouse trap and set it up while she was outside frolicking in blissful ingnorance. I put it right on top of my copy of The Matrix Reloaded. I let the puppies in, grabbed a magazine and waitied.
10 minutes later . . . SNAP!! YIP!! She is currently hiding out under the covers in my bed. But I think my VHS tapes are safe!!
And before you go all PETA on me, I might remind you that I contacted my vet and a competent dog trainer for this advice and they both told me it is SAFE, that she WOULDN’T GET HURT, and was a HUMANE training option. It’s the sound and the surprise that are the deterrent. If you think this could be an option for you, discuss it with your local vet. I also add that Portia is a large (50lb) dog, and her nose and paws are too big to get caught in the mouse trap. If you have a smaller dog I HIGHLY RECOMMEND you contact your vet first.
Not the SCARLET PIMPERNAL! Bad dog!
I can’t image a whole tub of margarine AND sour cream, owwwww.
The Scarlet Pimpernel, I didn’t even get a chance to watch it! Bad Portia!
Well at least she has taste. In a perfect world it would have been old Young and the Restless episodes that went to the great VCR in the sky, alas what can you do.