Little Pickle is my Working Cocker Spaniel.
Oh – yes?
No surprise then.
I feed my dogs out on covered decking then come in and leave them to it. The greediest dog, my Labrador Zara (again no surprise there) is fed in a crate to keep her out of trouble.
The water bucket is out there on the decking with them.
When the dogs come back from the field, Pickle’s way of drinking water is to put his front feet in the water bucket as he drinks, and then to dig furiously in the water, getting it filthy and half-emptying the bucket (see the wet feet?).
That’s fine. It’s just Pickle. I change the water.
Over a period of weeks I have been noticing small wet patches on the decking, in the morning, when it’s not been raining. There is wet on the side of the water bucket when nobody has been drinking. There may be a puddle beside Zara’s crate or by my boots on against the chair.
A while ago I put my foot into my boot – ugh!!! I didn’t know who the culprit was though suspected – and I do know now.
Yesterday I watched through the glass door as Pickle finished his meal. He went to sniff to see if Milly had left anything and then went to lift his leg on the water bucket.
I threw open the door and yelled ‘NO!’. He stopped. He looked surprised and then pottered off into the garden.
This morning I watched through the glass door as he finished his meal. He went to sniff to see if Milly had left anything and then went to lift his leg on Zara’s crate.
I threw open the door and yelled ‘NO!’. He stopped. Again, he looked surprised and then pottered off into the garden.
Looking back, I realise that this has gone on for a long time and so it will now be a habit.
Clever people will now say I should teach him an MEB – Mutually Incompatible Behaviour, also called DRI – Differential Rate of Incompatible Behaviour.
What? I could probably think up something. As soon as he’s finished teach him to come indoors? But I don’t want him indoors at this time, I have jobs to do and he can be a pain.
It’s a lot easier to catch him in the act and yell ‘NO!’
Breaking all the rules and I would never do it if he was in any way a fearful dog. Not what I would advise my clients to do, that’s for sure.
Will it work long-term? Only time will tell!