Cheryl called me a few months ago regarding Spike, her 130 lb Mutt (Mastiff and Lab mix). When left alone in the home with their other dog, Spike was “stealing”. Standing on his hind legs he would clear the counter tops and table, empty the trash, and sometimes eat what he found.
During our first consultation I asked Spike why he was creating such mischief He said, “I used to have a dog friend that would play with me and get into trouble too. This new dog, Floyd, does not like to do things with me. I thought if I knocked everything down, then he would get in trouble too and it would be a common bond. ” Essentially Spike was attempting to frame Floyd. The problem with his plan; Floyd is a Bassett Hound with an obvious height disadvantage. It would not be physically possible for Floyd to be responsible for the “trouble” and was therefore never even considered by the humans as the potential culprit. I explained this the Spike, who, despite being a very clever dog in general, had not considered Floyd’s height when attempting to frame him.
Cheryl and I asked Spike to change his ways and we set up a plan for Cheryl to remind him daily to keep his feet on the floor. A few weeks later she wrote, “as far as Spike – he is doing WONDERFUL!!! Only I believe twice has he snooped around on either the table or counter, and neither time to the extent he was before – it is wonderful.” She did have a few more incidences with Spike, but mostly he takes her request seriously and is well-behaved. Hopefully he and Floyd will become good friends in time.