Wednesday, January 2, 2008

In which Emma takes charge

Like sands through the hourglass, so are the Days of our Lives.

(OK, I admit it. I watched Days for a semester during my freshman year at college. My roommate and her friends watched it and we would go to the student union and get a lunch to go and watch the last 45ish minutes each day.)

In the past few weeks I've noticed some subtle changes in the way that Hannah and Emma interact. Hannah, a 13 year old chocolate lab, has always been in charge and she has always been an advocate of power sharing. She wants to handle the important stuff and her house mates have handled the rest. For example, Hannah is not in charge of backyard barking . Emma. a five year old golden retriever, is in charge of barking and the yap-yaps behind us as was Penny before her.

Lately we've had more posturing and power games. A recent example from the other night

The Scene: Hannah and Emma are playing in the living room. Hannah puts her paw on Emma's shoulder. A ruckus ensues and ends with Emma humping Hannah's head. Emma then attempts to banish Hannah from the living room at which point I intervened by saying, "Where's Hannah?" Emma was distracted, and Hannah felt free to join us again.

That brings me to the question of feeding order. Hannah has always been fed first and received treats first out of respect to the order of things in the household.

My dog friends have advised that the pack hierarchy thing is over rated and does not apply to households with only two dogs. My feeling is to leave the feeding order alone.


  1. This was quite informative! It will be interesting to see how our two are doing with their interactions when they get to be Emma's and then Hannah's ages too.

  2. It's not that hierarchy doesn't apply to two dogs - it's that true pack dynamics don't. There aren't enough layers. There can certainly be a shift in power, though.

    It's endlessly fascinating, isn't it? I never get tired of watching the ebbs and flows and subtle interactions.