Peach is steadily on her way to earning her “Master of the Outdoors!” achievement. She is a rather good girl, house-training-wise, especially considering she has every ability and opportunity to wander into a quiet corner and piddle where we’ll never find it. Instead, she is predictable. She stops to drink and snack about twice a day, between her two large meals, poops about twice a day, and pees at least six times. She is taken out first thing in the morning, last thing at night, and either after a long nap, before or after we leave, or if she just asks.
How does Peach ask to go outside and tame the great, snowy Canadian wilds? With music.
To the left, you’ll see some Poochie Bells. Poochie Bells are not a new idea, but they’re one great and functional take on it. When I was a kid, our dog had a bell, and she rang the bell to let us know she wanted to go outside. My last two dogs never really caught on to the idea. The male had a health issue that caused him to be unable to control his bladder, so he didn’t really have the option of asking us, and the female thought the bells were just a thing to get our attention in general.
I don’t actually have any Poochie Bells (Though I would like some!) but I do have some jingle-bells on a string, attached to my front door. I showed Peach they were there, had her ring them for a few treats, and left it at that. I figured she would someday ring them by accident while playing, and learn that her action had a positive consequence. Boy, was she quick on the uptake!
About ten days after the bells went up, Peach used them. I wasn’t home, but my boyfriend was, and he said she rang the bell, and went outside, and peed. She then proceeded to ring the bell three more times last night. And today, she continued her ring-a-dingling. She does it with a purpose. She rings the bell loudly, then sits oriented towards the door and looks back at us. She has a purpose: to pee. She has a tool to tell us she has to pee. And she will use it.