When we first adopted Gemma the Blunderdog, she was incredibly shy. It took about a week of coaxing to get her to even come into the house. Of course, now we wish she still had a bit of that shyness because five years on, she thinks she owns the place.
Because we adopted her off a friend of a friend, we found out later her old owner had been incredibly house proud. I think if Gem's little doggy brain could process it, she'd be extremely thankful she's found people who care more about her than the state of their home.
* The old owners got her when they were expecting their second child. I have all kinds of rants about people adopting dogs while pregnant or with young babies. In a word, DON'T!
Anyway, the level of Gemma ruling the house has changed lately. Before it was just copious amounts of dog hair being shed. Every item of clothing I own is tri-coloured beagle. When I'm working, I do take off my work clothes and put them away when I get home so I can look kinda professional but always forget about my tights!
What has upped the level of lack of house proudness lately is a new game we've discovered. While Gem gets walks (not as regular as we'd like because I won't take her out of the house outside the 'safe' time, when all the bogan dog owners are at work or still asleep) and she has free access to the backyard, she still seemed bored.
We used to play 'find the food' with her but that wasn't enough, although she wasn't as good at it as you'd expect a beagle to be.
This has now morphed into EXTREME DOG SCRAMBLE OBSTACLE COURSE.
Every object around the house that could be used as an obstacle has found it's way into the back living room as part of the game - the sofas get moved around, the coffee tables get lined up to make tunnels, bolster cushions become hurdles.
It is seriously the most fun game ever. She loves it and it tires her out. It also makes her less sensitive to outside noise - she used to bark like crazy every time she heard a noise in the street. Watching her doggy brain ticking over as she tries to solve the obstacles is the best.
My sister even mentioned buying more 'big ticket' items so we have the boxes to use for the obstacle course. And it is getting more challenging to come up with new courses because she conquers them so easily.
So at the moment, half the course hasn't been dismantled and it's hard to move around sometimes (those obstacles are much harder for me than for her) but that's okay. Who needs tidiness?
I don't actually have any photos of the obstacle courses because it's too hard to get it all in one shot.
Do you have any fun games you play with your dog?