Honey and I were enjoying ourselves.
I sat on the porch reading my book. She pressed up against me with her head on my knee—who doesn’t love having a furry lap blanket on an 85 degree day—totally relaxed.
I quietly leaned over to pick up the object sitting on the table beside me. In a moment, I had snipped off the tip of a single nail on her front, right paw.
Honey looked up at me with surprise. But no sign of distress.
I put the nail clipper down and continued reading. Honey relaxed her head and sniffed the air.
Several chapters and a few hours later, I had clipped all four nails on that paw.
Honey became slightly more agitated each time I clipped a nail. But she tolerated it well. And she doesn’t hold a grudge. At least if I can judge by her post-breakfast greeting a few minutes ago.
Apparently Honey is as big a fan of doing yucky things a little at a time as I am.
Bugging The Family A Little At A Time
Since I was a kid, I preferred to do the yucky things of life a little at a time.
I’m not known for my concentration and focus.
My mom went nuts when she asked me to clean my room. She’d come in to check on me to find me reading a book. I tried to explain that I picked up ten things and then read a few paragraphs of my book but she wasn’t having any of it.
Today, it’s my husband who has to tolerate my flaky method of doing the yucky things.
We’ll sit down to watch a movie on Hulu. Every commercial I get up to start a load of laundry, scrub the toilet, or start filing papers hanging around the office.
It’s hard for us to work together because Mike is a deep-focus guy. Once he gets started on a project, he sticks to it. I’d rather do a little bit, then take a break, then do a little more.
But I find it a pleasing rhythm to do chores a little at a time. And based on her reaction to the nail clipping, I think Honey does too.
Who Dreads Nail Clipping More
I don’t know who dreads nail clipping more: me or Honey.
We did everything the trainers told us to do. Since she was a puppy, we’ve handled her paws regularly. And it worked. I squeeze and touch her nails and paws constantly while we’re sitting together and she has no reaction.
Nail clipping accompanies treats of peanut butter, liverwurst, and stinky salmon.
And Honey does tolerate having her nails trimmed. But she doesn’t like it. And neither do I.
At least Honey doesn’t know about the Greyhound Scream of Death. Because if she reacted like a certain greyhound we read about recently, her nails would look like grizzly claws.
But I think we’ve come up with the solution that works for both of us—clipping Honey’s nails a few at a time.
Don’t Make Up Stupid Rules
What rule fairy says I have to put my head down and muscle through doing the yucky things? Just because that’s the way most people do things doesn’t mean I have to do them that way. After all, most people do all kinds of silly things—like driving half a mile instead of walking, watching television to get “news,” and cleaning dog nose schmutz off the window when it’s just going to reappear in ten minutes.
I’m smarter than that.
If it takes a week for me to trim all of Honey’s nails, who cares? I see no reason to stuff all the yucky things into one day. We’ll just do it a little at a time.
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Your Turn: Do you and your dog do the yucky things all at once to get them over with? Or do you like our little bit at a time approach?