The new problem for Spriggan and I to solve is the fact that she is, as the puppy trainer called it, “a flyer”.
She jumps off the couch with some regularity now, if she’s unsupervised. She’s even jumped off the bed once.
This wouldn’t be as upsetting if she were a larger dog or a different breed, but here’s the issue: about 75% of people that I meet when I’m out with Spriggan has, had, or knows someone who has or had a dachshund. About 75% of these people tell me how much they love dachshunds and share a story about them. About 50% of these stories are adorable anecdotes about the big personalities, big intellects, and big… stubbornness… of their favorite dachshund companion.
The other 50% are about dachshunds who died or were permanently disabled due to disc problems, often from jumping off of things. (Dachshunds, due to their very long backs, are incredibly prone to back problems like slipped or ruptured discs, and this can result in excruciating pain at best, paralysis at medium, and death from the injury or even the surgery at worst.)
WHY do people need to tell me this? Because people are jerks, that’s why. People see someone who’s practically delirious with love and joy — basking in the fuzzy warmth of a creature forged from the unicorniest, rainbow-barfing, daisy-field-running-through-est lovelight ever farted out by the creator of creatures who make the lives of other creatures worth living — so these people see this happy person, and they think, “How can I ruin this? Surely there’s a way for me to stomp all over her dreams of a long, happy life with this superb creature… I know! I’ll shove down her throat the crippling mortality of her little sunshine!”
They always tell me as a cautionary tale, usually ending with something along the lines of, “So definitely don’t let her do any jumping.” Yeah, well, I knew that already. You’re just being an asshole. I’m plenty neurotic without your input, thank you.
Where was I going with this? *looks back up at the title* Right, so Spriggan keeps jumping off the couch.
Mike and I don’t leave her on the couch anymore for this reason. It used to be that, when she was asleep, we could walk away for a while and the worst she’d do was wake up and paw adorably at the edge of the couch, whining. Now, she just goes sailing off like some sort of puppycopter.
Even though we don’t leave her up there unattended, it’s now a new problem because now she also jumps ON the couch.
There are several problems with this:
- I don’t want her on the couch unless she’s invited. She doesn’t own this house. Technically. I mean, my name’s on the deed.
- Jumping UP on things, while not as bad as jumping off of things, is still dangerous, especially if she makes it a habit.
- Once she jumps up on the couch, she is on the couch unattended and is therefore free to jump OFF the couch again. Damnit.
Tonight, I went into the kitchen to fix a salad. It took me a really long time ’cause I was weighing ingredients and logging foods and wishing that pistachios had no calories. When I was almost finished building it, I realized that I hadn’t heard the clickety-clack of little toenails in quite a while… I walked into the living room to find this: