Fear the Beer

In a multiple dog home, barking by multiple dogs is not unusual.  Sometimes a doorbell on TV gets the four-pack going.  Joggers, walkers and kids on bicycles require the posse to stand guard at the front windows barking out warnings and applying a generous coating of slobber sprinkled liberally with nose prints on the glass.  There are times when all four bark in different directions, like the points on the compass, brows wrinkled in confusion when they realize they have forgotten why they are barking.

George, however, barks when he is unhappy.  He is most unhappy in the summer when the temperatures soar and the humidity only adds to his misery.  Barks will soon give way to mournful howling and he is completely inconsolable.

Quite by accident I discovered that George loathed beer.  He is a quirky dog at best, and one day as I lightly blew air across the top of a bottle creating a low, hollow tone, George fled the room.

On a particularly hot and horrible evening, George was perched on top of his favorite air conditioning vent, hoarding the cool flow of air.  He was uncomfortable and miserable and he barked and howled his complaints incessantly.  The Englishman threatened George with the bark collar to no avail.  George was placed in time-out in his crate where he raged violently on his own.

Finally, I had had enough.  I looked at the Englishman, refusing to accept defeat by my twenty-eight pound dog and declared, "Bring me a bottle of beer, now!"

George paused mid-tantrum, and sat quietly with his eyes following the path of the Englishman.  A light pop could be heard from the kitchen and a slight tinkling of the metal top falling to the counter.  George's tail stopped wagging.  The Englishman returned with a green bottle, slick with condensation.  As I raised the bottle to my lips, George bolted from the room with no further audible complaints.

Fighting fire with fire?  I'm not sure but at least with one-fourth of my pack, when all else fails, try the ale!

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