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The Doggy Dictionary

LEASH: A strap which attaches to your collar, enabling you to lead your person where you want him/her to go.

DOG BED: Any soft, clean surface, such as the white bedspread in the guest room or the newly upholstered couch in the living room.

DROOL: What to do when your persons have food and you don’t. To do this properly you must sit as close as you can and look sad and let the drool fall to the floor or, better yet, on their laps.

SNIFF: A social custom to use when you greet other dogs until your person makes you stop.

GARBAGE CAN: A container which your neighbors put out once a week to test your ingenuity. You must stand on your hind legs and try to push the lid off with your nose. If you do it right you are rewarded with margarine wrappers to shred, beef bones to consume and moldy crusts of bread.

BICYCLES: Two-wheeled exercise machines, invented for dogs to control body fat. To get maximum aerobic benefit, you must hide behind a bush and dash out, bark loudly and run alongside for a few yards; the person then swerves and falls into the bushes, and you complete the exercise by prancing away.

DEAFNESS: A malady which affects a dog when its person wants it in and the dog wants to stay out. Symptoms include staring blankly at the person, then running in the opposite direction, or lying down.

THUNDER: A signal that the world is coming to an end. Humans remain amazingly calm during thunderstorms, so it is necessary to warn them of the danger by trembling uncontrollably, panting, peeing on the rug, rolling your eyes wildly and following at their heels.

WASTEBASKET: A dog toy filled with paper, envelopes, and old candy wrappers. When you get bored, turn over the basket and strew the papers all over the house for your person to play with by putting back in the wastebasket when they come home.

SOFAS: Are to dogs like napkins are to people. After eating it is polite to run up and down the front of the sofa and wipe your whiskers clean.

BATH: A process by which the humans drench the floor, walls and themselves. You can help by shaking vigorously and frequently.

LEAN: Every good dog’s response to the command “sit!” — especially if your person is dressed for an evening out. Incredibly effective before black-tie events.

BUMP: The best way to get your human’s attention when they are drinking a fresh cup of coffee or tea.

GOOSE BUMP: A last-resort maneuver used when the Regular Bump doesn’t get the attention you require. Especially effective when combined with The Sniff (see above).

LOVE: A feeling of intense affection, given freely and without restriction. To show your love, wag your tail and gaze adoringly. If you’re lucky, a human will love you in return.

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