Just outside my subdivision (which is exactly one street long), is the backyard of a house I can seldom avoid when I walk. In that yard reside two quite neglected dogs that bark, snarl, and jump at the chain link fence as Lizzie (my 4-legged walking buddy) and I walk by. Lizzie is intimidated by the loud barks and I'm angry that these dogs are unfriendly and neglected.
One day, I decided to see if I could turn the bad dogs into good ones. So, I began talking nicely to these guys as I walked by. Of course, Lizzie thought I was talking to her, so her ears perked up. She must have been doing something right, right?
After a few days of nice talk, I noticed that the angrier of the two dogs had a collar on which her name was embroidered - Sophie. So, I called her name. She's some sort of lab mix, altho' she's a pretty small dog. Short haired and yellowish - not very pretty. The other looks like a Cavalier Prince Charles Spaniel (I think that's the one. Like Charlotte fell in love with on Sex and the City.) The spaniel is both nameless and timid. But not Sophie.
Both dogs would stop barking and snarling as long as I talked to them. The spaniel would turn away from the fence, having lost interest in us. I decided to take a chance and 'meet' Sophie. So, I stopped, called her, and put my gloved hand for her to smell. She became immediately docile. She turned her side to the fence and pressed against it, clearly wanting to be petted. Now, the Spaniel is interested again.
It took several days before I was sure enough of Sophie's response to reach over the fence to pet her. She must stand up on the fence for me to reach her. She wouldn't do it - but the Spaniel would. So, Spaniel got an ear rub.
A couple days later, Sophie finally figured out what she had to do to get petted. So, she has been petted exactly twice by me.
Now, instead of crossing the street to avoid the snarling bad dogs, I have two friends I look forward to greeting. Tomorrow, I'm going to bring each a small treat.
I want to knock on the door of their house and ask the owners why they don't take care of these sweet dogs. In the almost 8 years I've lived here, these are the third couple of dogs in this house's back yard. Bad odds. I don't know how long these two will survive, but they're no longer bad dogs. Now, they're friends.
My 4-legged Valentines.
***************************Remember my 100% GUARANTEE. Should you decide to stop walking and resume your old habits, I personally guarantee that you'll get back 100% of your former life - your pain, your lifestyle, your attitude. You can trust the information you find here. It's from a dedicated walker. Trust me and your life will get better! I promise.
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