Today, we went down to Beach Estates Park. It’s a trail that winds down a ravine filled with a rushing stream and trees. We headed over to Departure Bay, where I got Amrikko’s awesome korma sauce to go with damn near everything I’m going to eat this coming week. Then we trekked back up to head to Booster Juice for something with pomegranate for me.
Unfortunately, whether it was a result of the newly sprung allergies or his Shiba devilry, Tierce decided to be a brat.
Me: Stop it.
Tierce: But I want to go over there! There’s THINGS over there!
Me: Well, you can’t. This is a public thoroughfare.
Tierce: Oh, look! YANK.
Tierce: Hey! I wanna sniff that! YANK.
Me: Tierce, back! [‘Back’ is my command for “I don’t give a shit whether you’re heeling snappily and with precision; just get beside me and stay within a 5 foot radius.”]
Tierce: Later; I have to look at this. PULL.
Me: [grabbing him by the scruff of the neck] No, you’ll do it now. You’ve had your fun, now I am tired of this shit and you will behave yourself.
Old man: How dare you hurt that dog like that!
Me (wearily): He’s a Shiba; he does that.
Old man: How would you want someone to grab your cheek like that?
Me: If I was behaving like him, I’d think I deserved it.
Old man: You don’t have to hurt animals!
Me: He’s not hurt.
Tierce: You should see her at home. She only feeds me dull, dry dog food!
Me: Look, he’s a Shiba. They shriek like that when they do not get their way.
Old man: You disgust me. He’s just a helpless little dog!
Me: Do you have one?
Old man: Yes, I have a dog!
Me: No, I mean, do you have a Shiba.
Old man: No.
Me: If there’s one thing that this dog is not, it’s ‘helpless’.
Tierce: I’m on a leash here, subject to your every whim.
Me: Oh, when was the last time you gave a shit about my whims?
Old man: Excuse me?
Me: Never mind; I was talking to the dog.
Tierce: You see? You see how she treats me?
Old man: You’re awful. You’re being mean to that poor little thing.
Me: Yeah, it’s a real tragedy. He’s obviously abused, poor thing, being expected to walk quietly through an outdoor shopping mall after four years of training.
Tierce: Can I help it if my concerns are more important than yours?
Old man: I saw you! You were hurting him!
Me: Okay, this is a Shiba. They shriek if they get their nails done and you don’t even hit the quick.
Old man: Whatever [waves hand in disgust and starts walking away]
Me: Look them up. S-H-I-B-A-I-N-U
Old man: [disgusted look]
Me: That’s S-H-I-B-A, not S-H-E-B-A.
Old man: [walks off]
I admit that it did look bad – nasty dog owner grabbing her dog by the scruff and the dog screaming like I was tearing his ear off with a pair of pliers. And I’m not saying that a scruff shake is the way to discipline all Shibas. However, it worked for Tierce; he heeled like an Obedience Trial Champion all the way back to the house.