"When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things."
This is a serious, sober and grown-up post. I hope you can tell.
You see, it was my second birthday yesterday. I’ll show you some pictures of the my presents another time (i.e. when Gail has found the card reader for the camera) but for the moment we shall pause to reflect upon what it means for a dog when he reaches that age at which he is considered fully mature.
In fact I have been issued with a set of instructions as to how the adult wire-haired fox terrier is supposed to conduct himself. It is a lengthy and frankly rather intimidating list. Apparently, at two years old, one can no longer excuse one’s misdemeanours as mere puppyish pranks. It is expected that henceforth one’s behaviour will be impeccable. For example:
- Chewing activities are restricted to designated toys and dog food.
- One will not jump up at humans unless explicitly invited.
- Commands will be obeyed at all times, instantaneously.
- In particular, one should be able to comprehend the meaning of every part of the word ‘NO!’
- Rolling is only permitted on odour-free surfaces, and hole digging in the garden is banned except in the designated corner.
- One will submit to one’s human’s cack-handed grooming efforts without complaint.
- Small and timorous dogs met in the park will not be terrorised, and bigger dogs will be treated with due respect.
- One must remember that sheep are for growing future woolly sweaters or providing Sunday roasts accompanied by mint sauce; they are not for chasing across the hillsides.
- Barking in the car is a thing of the past.
- As is ‘mad hour’ – that period of the day when one feels compelled to rush around the house, bouncing on and off the furniture and walls and randomly trying to grab in one’s jaw any available human limb …
I am going to find this being grown-up business awfully difficult.
Yes you may wish me a (belated) Happy Birthday.