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The ball master

July 14, 2010

It didn’t take Sigrid long at all to sit. In fact, she learned it in an afternoon. She still can’t sit when there are lots of things going on, but she’s getting there. Her final exam, I think, will be to get her to sit and wait while I throw a tennis ball.

The thing is, Sigrid is crazy about tennis balls. I know many dogs are, but what’s so funny about Sigrid is that she doesn’t like anything else. Something ball-shaped might get a second glance and other balls makes her run, but they just don’t taste as good, do they?

She doesn’t eat bones, doesn’t run after sticks and definitely doesn’t run after other dogs. At the park there are three things in Sigrid’s world: the grass, the ball and the ball master.

The person throwing the ball is thus named because Sigrid seems to choose carefully who gets the honour. She places the ball carefully in front of that person and looks up expectantly. Sometimes the same person gets the honour every time, sometimes a different person is selected.

Once, I was out in the park together with my sister. Sigrid, being a good diplomat, toggled the ball master honour between us until she suddenly came to a halt. She looked between us two indecisively and wagged a little back and forth. Finally, she placed the ball directly between us. No feelings hurt and everyone was happy.

Since I’m a worse thrower than my boyfriend I rarely get the honours when we’re in the park together. I get stuck sitting on the bench. The only exercise I get is when I and Sigrid go to the park alone, when I can really give it a go. I’ll have to sneak out alone more often and get that pitch worked out, so I can be a proper ball master!

To teach a teenage dog to sit

July 14, 2010

Sigrid was born sometime April 2008. I don’t know how her mother looks like or where she was born.

Then, almost a year ago, Sigrid was brought to SOS-Animal’s dog shelter on Costa del Sol. Almost half a year ago, I saw her for the first time. I didn’t notice her then; one dog among 90 has to be lucky to be recognised, and at this time Sigrid wasn’t.

A few months later, however, I volunteered to take home a foster dog. I was just going to keep her for a month or so before she was going to Sweden for adoption. She never went.

They say you can’t train an old dog to sit. I’ve never even taught a young dog to sit. So Sigrid and I, after two months together, have some work to do.