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Those humans who decide to share their lives with Siberian Huskies learn a key phrase – “I don’t wanna.” That endearing streak of stubbornness has a real value as a sled dog – the ability to sense danger in a musher’s command and chose a safer alternative. However, it reveals itself differently in everyday life.
Yesterday, the Hu-dad needed to mow Sibe Quentin. Inmate lockdown – er, dogs in crates – has to be complete before the gates can be opened, so Hu-dad issued the Kennel Up command.
Natasha was already crated in the Hu-dad’s study as part of her TPLO surgery recovery. But where was the Cheesewhiz? The Warden – er, the Hu-dad – began a perimeter search.
After calling for Cheesewhiz repeatedly, Hu-dad finally walked out into the yard to deal with that unique Siberian Husky Trait – Siberian Husky Selective Hearing. Arriving at her carefully landscaped section of the yard, Hu-dad asks if she plans to come inside with the rest of us.
Now long time readers know that Hu-dad is a movie fanatic. We don’t watch much TV around here, but we tend to watch 4-5 movies a week sprawled out in our den. This is important background, because Hu-dad’s reply to Cheoah’s, “I don’t wanna, ” went roughly like this:
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Hehe… it’s not just limited to Huskies. We’ve got a 16.5 year old third world street dog (who is part Lab, part Collie, part Chow and lots of everything else) who has the same ‘I don’t wanna’ syndrome. Super opinionated, super stubborn/willful, super intelligent and super hyper (as a puppy and most of adulthood). To top it off, she’s also very fearful (just like Kiska). So in short, a complete handful. She has nightly battles with Hu-dad about sleeping in the bedroom (Hu-dad doesn’t wants dogs in the bedroom, but our Tina thinks differently). Barks, cries and scratches the bedroom door so that nobody can sleep. Behaviour is now extended to all the important doors in the home must be open: she has an eternal fascination for all closed doors and they must be all open so she can have all her options available to her. Known to bark in Hu-brother ear in the middle of the night to wake him up so she can make him open Hu-dad and mum’s bedroom door for her. Other strategies include sneaking in the bedroom early and refusing to get out and pretending to be deaf to Hu-dad’s nightly ‘Get out’ command and rants. In the end, what happens is Hu-mum gets up at 3 or 4 am (just before dawn) and sleeps in the living room couch with Tina. Now all is well and no more ‘I don’t wanna’ syndrome. This could be called separation anxiety but when Tina doesn’t feel like sleeping with Hu-mum and dad (because it is cold in winter on the bedroom floor) she doesn’t bark and/or kick up a fuss. So therefore this is a ‘I don’t wanna…’ incident.
PS. Just found your blog recently. Lots of entertaining hours reading through these old posts.
Heehee. The ‘what we have here is a failure to communicate’ thing is a line often used in family discussions when I was growing up (and is still used – just because my brothers and I are all ostensibly ‘middle aged’ doesn’t mean the old family dynamics have died). For the record, Goldendoodles are also seem to suffer from Selective Hearing Syndrome…. The word ‘dinner’ works vastly better than ‘come’, for instance….
LOL. You never fail to amaze me with your ability to capture that perfect expression. “Don’t wanna” and “Don’t need to” are tops on a sibes retort list.
Yep. “A failure to communicate” ends up with a “night in the box”, right, Cheesewhiz? I’ve seen that movie, too. It’s frighteningly applicable to our lives, isn’t it?
Ha roo roo roo.
I know exactly where Cheoah is coming from …….. Ice suffers from the same things …… Between “I don’t wanna”, and “selective hearing”, there are some days when I can get very angry with him, because my one fear is that he could run into danger one day, and be in real trouble. I’m glad I’m not the only one who has this problem! As you say, it IS a “Siber-Trait”, and I know this, but knowing doesn’t make it any easier to live with some days. Ayla used to do the same thing, though not to the extent that Ice does. Usually, with Ayla, all it took was “Ayla, COME”, and she most often heard THAT!