Three pampered pups

Discussion of specific It's Me or the Dog episodes.

Moderators: emmabeth, BoardHost

Post Reply
Lis & Addy
Posts: 204
Joined: Mon Jun 25, 2007 2:27 pm

Three pampered pups

Post by Lis & Addy » Sun Nov 28, 2010 6:26 pm

I just saw a rerun of this episode yesterday morning, and I was struck again by some things I noticed the first time through.

Sisters Heidi and Bridget have three female Maltese. Heidi keeps acquiring dogs with no real sensitivity to her sister's disagreement with this. Bridget, because she didn't want the dogs, thinks she can avoid responsibility for their training. All three dogs are very sound-reactive, Tillie and Jillian are afraid of storm drains, and the youngest, Pumpkin, is afraid of stairs and bare floors. Heidi wants Tillie to be a therapy dog, but she has failed the test, and Heidi has no real understanding of what's required of a therapy dog.

And the dogs have an extensive wardrobe.

Both the dogs and the owners have specific behavior problems that have to be addressed. The dogs need to learn not to react noisily to every little thing, they all need to learn to walk better on leash, Tillie and Jillian need to get over their fear of storm drains, and Pumpkin needs to learn to cope with stairs and bare floors.

Bridget needs to learn to take her share of responsibility for the care and training of the dogs they have Heidi needs to stop adding dogs, and learn both to take her dogs out more to socialize them, AND to leave them home for more than two hours at a time--something they can learn to cope with. There are, in short, lots of genuine problems here.

The wardrobe isn't one of them. The closet full of cute clothes isn't why the dogs aren't socialized, and trained, and it's not a symptom of the dogs not being socialized and trained. Little dogs, except for working terriers, mostly have the job of being cute and lovable, and a cute wardrobe, if it is well chosen and fits properly, enhances the cuteness. My dog,who actually is a nursing home Visiting Pet, has her own closet full of cute clothes. She's obedience trained, has her Canine Good Citizen certificate, has overcome the considerable socialization and behavior problems she had when I first got her, and is a welcome visitor not only at nursing homes, but at my club and various local businesses where dogs are not legally banned.

Clothes have nothing to do with whether or not a dog owner is taking the time to exercise, train, and socialize their dog. Yet every time Victoria sees a little dog with a wardrobe that goes beyond the relentlessly practical, she flips out. All her good sense and sound judgment plays no role when she sees doggy clothes that commit the sin of being Cute. Yet none of the problems that Tillie, Jillian, Pumpkin, Heidi, or Bridget had were related to the dogs' wardrobe. Nor is my own dog's behavior any less desirable merely because she wiggles with eager anticipation when I get out her Harley Davidson denim jacket.

There's also the little matter of the storm drains. Granted, I did not get a really close look at that storm drain Victoria was teaching Tillie and Jillian to walk across. I don't know, maybe it's completely different from storm drains here in Massachusetts. That's possible. I don't think it's likely, but it's possible. But I carefully guide my small dog around any storm drains in our path, because a misplaced paw could easily go through, and she could break her leg. If she were afraid of storm drains, I'd certainly be working on reducing that fear--but teach her to walk across them? Insane, utterly insane!

In fact, it seems not impossible that Tillie may have gotten her fear of storm drains from trying to walk across one, and having a scary or painful experience.

Of course Victoria's training and advice successfully addressed and relieved all of the actual problems these dogs and their owners were having. Nevertheless, I'm often frustrated when watching her with small dogs who aren't terriers of breeds that are still often working dogs.

Lis

dontpugme
Posts: 1294
Joined: Thu Oct 29, 2009 8:01 pm
Location: Houston, Texas

Re: Three pampered pups

Post by dontpugme » Sun Nov 28, 2010 11:19 pm

The dogs weren't walking across a gutter. I'm not sure what they're called but it was that circular metal cover that goes over the sewer. The only holes in is are smaller than a penny and there are only like five or six of them. It looked kind of like this http://images.google.com/m/search?aq=f& ... +drain#i=5
--dontpugme

Lis & Addy
Posts: 204
Joined: Mon Jun 25, 2007 2:27 pm

Re: Three pampered pups

Post by Lis & Addy » Mon Nov 29, 2010 9:27 am

That's a sewer manhole cover, but it's not a storm drain.

This is a storm drain:
Image

Or this:
Image

Or this:
Image

I'm not finding an exact match for what I did see, which was a round grate inside a square framework for it. It was not a manhole cover. It presumably did not have openings large enough to be an actual problem, but would certainly have given the dogs a sensation of walking over an area with lots of empty space beneath it, which could be very scary, especially if one of them ever had a negative experience with one.

And while you don't want the dog to be afraid, walking around is a better habit to get into. Especially with the additional issue of stray voltage, which kills or injures dogs every year, when they walk (in their bare feet, unlike our shod feet) over grates and access covers near streetlights and power poles.

sj96skittles
Posts: 262
Joined: Fri Nov 13, 2009 7:38 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Three pampered pups

Post by sj96skittles » Tue Dec 07, 2010 8:56 pm

Ya. Victoria taught the maltese to walk over the circle storm drain that looks like this
http://images.google.com/m/search?aq=f& ... drain#i=84

jacksdad
Posts: 4879
Joined: Thu Dec 10, 2009 10:48 pm

Re: Three pampered pups

Post by jacksdad » Tue Dec 14, 2010 3:22 pm

Victoria has chatted about dressing up dogs a few times now in her pod casts. I get the impression from her comments that her objection comes from two thoughts. first, dogs are dogs, not dress up dolls. And second, most dogs do not like being dressed up at all and it causes them stress. There are also a growing number of people taking the dressing up dogs to a very unhealthy extreme.

The op indicates their dog seems to enjoy waring "clothes" but it is important to realize, this is an exception to the rule. most dogs don't. So please, please if you get the urge to dress up your dog, be brutally honest with your self, does your dog really, really appear to enjoy it. Or are you just hoping they do because they look so "cute". If they don't seem to enjoy it, please, please don't make them wear clothes because you think they look cute and you think it's "harmless" fun.

sj96skittles
Posts: 262
Joined: Fri Nov 13, 2009 7:38 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Three pampered pups

Post by sj96skittles » Tue Dec 14, 2010 10:04 pm

Victoria also said when u dress a dog up and it's trying to communicate with another dog, the clothes can mask the dog's body signals- what It's trying to tell u

Lis & Addy
Posts: 204
Joined: Mon Jun 25, 2007 2:27 pm

Re: Three pampered pups

Post by Lis & Addy » Tue Dec 21, 2010 4:28 pm

There are, as with everything else, appropriate and inappropriate times for clothes. The dog park is not a good place for dog clothes. Also appropriate and inappropriate dogs for clothes. My sister's Lab, with her thick, insulating Lab coat, would not benefit from even the most relentlessly practical dog coat in any but the most extreme weather conditions.

My dog is a Chinese Crested. It is not owner self-indulgence that causes most Chinese Cresteds to have fairly extensive wardrobes. In the UK episode with the Chinese Crested Tallulah, I nearly spit my drink out when she said that the leggings wouldn't make any difference to Tallulah's comfort in the cold because after all her feet would still be bare. Of course covering the legs makes a difference in the cold! I would encourage Victoria and anyone else who doubts this to go outside on a day with suitably cold temps, say about 30F, -1C or -2C. Start by taking off your gloves. Then, when you've decided that's nice and comfy, take off your jacket. Make sure you're wearing a short-sleeve tshirt so that your arms are bare. And then tell me you aren't colder with your entire arms bare, than with just your hands bare.

Dogs are dogs. They don't need clothes for reasons of modesty, culture, or custom. But depending on size of dog, type of natural coat, living conditions, and activities, clothes may be appropriate. And, some people's Puritan instincts to the contrary, there's no reason why they shouldn't be cute.

There is in fact zero connection between "pampering," dog clothing, and a failure to train and socialize. They are unrelated to each other. With Teddy Pom-Pom and Prince Louis, these untrained, unsocialized, out of control dogs with their out-of-control owner--there was not a single scrap of dog clothing in sight, that I recall. Likewise the rather dim fashion model and her chihuahua pack and two bulldogs--untrained dogs, owner who was trying to shift the problem off onto someone else (her parents), and no dog clothing.

Tallulah had clothing. Tallulah also had what I believe were the only two owners in the history of the show, on both sides of the Atlantic, who didn't backslide from what VS told them to do while she was away. We are supposed to recoil in horror because, yes, they did buy her as a fashion accessory--but in fact they had a degree of commitment to their scared little dog that has not been shown by any number of older, presumably more experienced, allegedly more mature dog owners who've been on the show.

As for the storm drain--no, there was definitely a grate involved; I just couldn't see it from an angle that allowed a good look at the style and size of the grate. and: Two words: Stray Voltage.
http://www.thebostonchannel.com/news/15 ... etail.html
http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/article ... ay-voltage
http://news.nationalpost.com/2010/12/20 ... christmas/
http://www.nwcn.com/news/washington/Sea ... 20459.html

Tillie and/or Gillian may have at some point been slightly shocked, enough to scare them even though no real damage was done. And, sorry, no, even though you don't want the dog to be afraid of being near the drain, it makes no sense to teach dogs to walk across metal grates, plates, or access panels in the sidewalk.

Lis

dontpugme
Posts: 1294
Joined: Thu Oct 29, 2009 8:01 pm
Location: Houston, Texas

Re: Three pampered pups

Post by dontpugme » Thu Dec 30, 2010 12:13 am

I know this is an old thread, but I watched this episode again recently.
I have this episode on my iPod. I paused the episode many times during the storm drain desensitization. Tilly and Jillian were walking very close to the drain (closer than I like to get to it even without my dog), but they were walkng over a circular manhole cover. On the observation day, the Maltese scrabble away from a storm drain with only a grate, but they were at a different drain for the actual training.
--dontpugme

Glen123
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2015 2:53 am
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Contact:

Re: Three pampered pups

Post by Glen123 » Fri Jan 02, 2015 4:35 am

Lis & Addy wrote:That's a sewer manhole cover, but it's not a storm drain.

This is a storm drain:
Image

Or this:
Image

Or this:
Image

I'm not finding an exact match for what I did see, which was a round grate inside a square framework for it. It was not a manhole cover. It presumably did not have openings large enough to be an actual problem, but would certainly have given the dogs a sensation of walking over an area with lots of empty space beneath it, which could be very scary, especially if one of them ever had a negative experience with one.

And while you don't want the dog to be afraid, walking around is a better habit to get into. Especially with the additional issue of stray voltage, which kills or injures dogs every year, when they walk (in their bare feet, unlike our shod feet) over grates and access covers near streetlights and power poles.

Have you found the little bit similar match on it?
exactly agree with your point that you don't want the dog to be afraid, walking around is a better habit to get into.

Post Reply