Sunday, April 19, 2015

The Cairn Terror

OOoh Poor Lucy has no ears...
Oooh there they are...
Toto from the Wizard of Oz was a Cairn.
Probably NO ONE ever told you that Cairns will almost INVARIABLY: 
Chase squirrels 
Chase bunnies 
Chase bugs
  • Chase bikes
  • Chase paper fluttering down the street
  • Chase anything that moves
  • Chase things that aren't moving, just to GET them moving so they'll have something to chase
  • Bark at cars
  • Bark at bikes
  • Bark at birds
  • Bark at trikes
  • Bark at trucks
  • Bark at the phone
  • Bark at fireworks
  • Bark at thunder
  • Bark at the doorbell
  • Bark at the doorbell on TV
  • Bark to hear themselves bark
  • Bark just to get your goat -- or your attention
  • Or both
  • Bark sometimes just cause it feels so damned GREAT
    • Dig up that mouse hole
    • Dig up your tulips
    • Dig up your roses
    • Dig up your lawn
    • Dig under your fence
    • Dig under your shed
    • Dig up your linoleum
    • Dig up your carpeting
    • Nip at people's feet if you haven't redirected their intense prey drive
    • Nip at your hands too, if not trained properly
    • Try to control their universe and everything in it -- INCLUDING YOU
    • Will succeed at this unless YOU intervene. And even then, they'll try again. And again. And again and again and again and again.
    • Lunge at other dogs on leash
    • Lunge at people, unless trained not to
    • Lunge ‘cause it feels good and they're in a hurry to get where they're going, and you're the only thing holding them back from experiencing the next exciting adventure around the corner or around the world.
    • Bolt out any open door in the blink of an eye
    • And won't return until they're good and ready.
    • Sometimes not even then
    • Refuse to come -- unless they want to
    • Refuse to sit -- unless they want to
    • Refuse to stay -- unless they're bored silly, and if so, that's the BEST time to move around to stir up the action anyway
    • Refuse to stop barking -- unless there's something in it for a fabulous treat
    • Refuse to do what you want at the PRECISE moment that it's most important that they when you're trying to show off how obedient and well-trained they are (which is, of course, a grand delusion on your part).
    • Nor, it seems, has anyone told you:
    • A Cairn can never, ever, ever be trusted off-leash, EVER.
    • Not even for a second. Regardless of how well-trained you have deluded yourself into believing he is
    • That all the dogs you've had before and have trained so well don't matter...if they weren't Cairns.
    • Because Cairns are different.
    • Very different
    • That they're generally NOT the best breed for a home with small children.
    • That one bears repeating: Cairns are generally NOT the best breed for a home with small children.
    • That Cairns WILL shed a little (or a lot) if you don't groom them properly.
    • That they're relatively resistant to housebreaking (don't expect them to be housebroken in a week, or even a month)!
      • And even when you think they're housebroken, if they've got something else on their agenda at the moment, they're likely to conveniently "forget."
      • That they are affectionate -- on their terms, not yours.
      • That they are stubborn and hardheaded, not to mention incredibly independent
      • That obedience training is a necessity, not a luxury. And that it's just the FIRST step in the process.
      • That you should read the previous sentence again, and forget everything you think you know.  If you haven't owned a Cairn, it doesn't apply.
      • That they were bred to hunt and kill, and their intense prey drive can NEVER be trained out of them.  Toto may not have KILLED those flying monkeys, but that's only because Toto KNEW they were fakes.  Otherwise, they'd have been dead, not merely outwitted.
      What they SHOULD have told you is:
      • They're wonderful for THE RIGHT OWNER
      • They're smart -- PROBABLY SMARTER THAN YOU
      • They're sweet -- WHEN THEY WANT TO BE
      • They're good with GOOD, WELL-BEHAVED CHILDREN WHO HAVE GOOD, RESPONSIBLE PARENTS.  And if they haven't had a bad experience previously with ill-behaved kids. Otherwise, it's a recipe for disaster.
      • They're strong
      • They're hearty
      • They're brave
      • They're relentless
      • They're devious
      • They're insightful
      • They're indomitable
      • They're energetic beyond description
      • They're intelligent beyond belief
      • They're the BEST dog you'll ever own
      • BUT...they just may be the WORST dog you can imagine.


Out on the prairie said...

And TOTO seemed so well minded. I couldn't imagine getting my dogs to ride inn a basket. Our pets are like my children to me,I would be lost not having someone to talk to.

turquoisemoon said...

Steve, I love my lil girl, Lucy. She goes everywhere with me...on leash. Never trust a Cairn off leash...hahaha

Debra She Who Seeks said...

Oh dear, LOL! All I know is that ANY terrier is a high-energy dog that is like the Energizer Bunny -- they never stop!

turquoisemoon said...

Debra, hahaha...A lot of people think Cairns are so cute and want to know about them. I always have them read this. It's the truth. I love them and find them to be a challenge, but they're sure not for everyone. Lucy is very high energy and devious and loving and conniving. luv her to pieces...

Linda Starr said...

that's quite a list. Ha., they are not for me either, ha, but for every person there is the perfect dog or cat or pet and no animals or perfect just like people aren't either.

turquoisemoon said...

Linda, I swear...Lucy has every one of those traits! hahaha I love her and try my best to outsmart her. A difficult task.

The only way I could house-train Lucy, was to hang a bell on the door. When she wants out she rings her bell and by golly you'd better hurry up and let her now. She can bang that bell... I just think she's a hoot.

One Fly said...

Dog issues eh??

I am sooooo damn tired of being barked at and frightened by dogs - just saying.

I think I could find even more ways for your pooch to enjoy.

turquoisemoon said...

Fly...I love her to pieces. She's a handful, but I enjoy the challenge and the rewards...

Cathy Sherman said...

I have a sneaking suspicion that you are just madly in love with Lucy!

My daughter has a stuffed animal cairn terrier in a basket (part of a Dorothy costume) and I swear even that toy dog seems ready to play!

turquoisemoon said...

Catherine, I adore the little terror...oops! terrier...