Should I be impressed…or worried…

7 Jun

You know my dog Zoey?  You know, this bundle of cuteness and innocence?



She’s not a big dog.  She’s on the small end of medium actually.  A nice petite dog.  A nice, smart, petite dog.

With apparent mad problem solving skills.

Sean stated earlier that he thought Zoey was able to get up enough to the counter to sneak stuff.  Which seemed a bit odd.  Like I said, she’s not big.

Later on, I hear a bit of a thud in the kitchen.  As Collin was upstairs, and the rest of us were in the living room, I became suspicious that the darling furry creature was up to no good in the kitchen.

I was right.

But I was also in time to see said dog with made problem-solving skills hop off the kitchen stool.

replica of our step-stool, which is yellow


Yes, our dog managed to use the steps to get up onto the seat of the stool, so she could easily reach bowls of leftover yumminess on the counter.

This would also explain why she yakked on the living room carpet earlier.  (kudos to Sean who cleaned the dog yak up without me asking.)

Needless to say, I yelled at the dog….who slinked out of the kitchen guiltily, getting lower and lower to the ground in an attitude of Doggie Guilt…meanwhile, I kept my stern face on until she went into her kennel as to ensure she knew she was in trouble.

On the inside – I was laughing.  Because it’s ridiculous.  A dog?  Using a step stool?  How freaking smart is that?  And scary?  If she has figured out how to use the step stool, what next?  How to unlock her kennel? How to use my credit card and Amazon?

I need a herd of sheep to keep this dog busy.  Meanwhile, I’m going to check her for opposable thumbs.  Just to be safe.





15 Responses to “Should I be impressed…or worried…”

  1. saracvt June 7, 2012 at 2:02 pm #

    Dogs are WAY smarter than we give them credit for–especially when there’s calories to be had. You probably didn’t know this, but before I was a stay-at-home mom, I was a certified vet technician (that’s what the “CVT” in my screen name stands for) and my specialty was ER. An occupational hazard, as you can imagine, was taking home animals that needed shelter, either for a night or a lifetime. Some of these animals needed extensive medical care. A colleague of mine couldn’t resist the eyes of a pit bull that had been in a car accident and had lost the use of both back legs. (She WAS pretty frickin’ sweet.) So she ended up taking this dog that dragged herself around home to wait for her to recover the use of her muscles. The vet said no major nerves had been damaged, and she should be able to run again in a few months.
    However, no soap. Sweetie (that became her name) just kept dragging herself around; never stood once. We all kept hoping but nothing. But my friend decided she would keep her anyway. She didn’t have a dog before Sweetie, so she got all the supplies plus some treats and stored the food in a high kitchen cabinet. Hey, Sweetie couldn’t reach, right?
    Wrong. One day, she came home, to hear a rustling in the kitchen. She went in to see Sweetie propped up on the kitchen counter on her perfectly fine back legs, chowing down on the treats. As soon as she saw my friend, she immediately jumped down and dragged herself to her, licking her hand. But she’d been busted.
    As long as she pretended to be disabled, she got sympathy AND treats. What more could a dog want?

  2. lexiemom June 7, 2012 at 2:51 pm #

    A herd of sheep? Don’t you have a herd of kids? 🙂

    • phoebz4 June 7, 2012 at 3:29 pm #

      Well, she does try to herd us. But sheep would be easier to maneuver. And my lawn wouldn’t need mowing!

  3. Cindy Alexander June 7, 2012 at 3:02 pm #

    Shelties (she looks like a blue merle) are the 3rd smartest dogs and total food hounds. I’ve had them for 30+ years. It’s no surprise to me that she’s that smart…just be careful of what she gets into…she’s a gorgeous dog.

    • phoebz4 June 7, 2012 at 3:27 pm #

      She’s actually a collie/Australian shepherd (hence the smarts).

  4. Sharon Hoover Weidemann June 7, 2012 at 3:03 pm #

    Lol… Gotta love them. Ours is a bit too submissive for my taste. We walk out and look at her and her guilt is written everywhere… Sometimes I can never even figure out what she did but she’s feeling guil anyhow…. Smart silly dogs. We gave our Aussie a job… She beards the squirrels in the yard and yes she is quite good at it. Best of luck helping Zoey find a meaningful job that will keep her out of trouble.

  5. Becky June 7, 2012 at 3:58 pm #

    Check around! I know in the states they have herding clubs for herding breeds. This would help to expel some of her energy while giving her the sense of purpose her breeds were meant. Herding = happy dog 🙂

  6. blackmouthcur June 7, 2012 at 4:20 pm #

    Yes we are way smarter than people think! 🙂

  7. Sarah June 7, 2012 at 4:34 pm #

    My terrier mix learned the same lesson – kids leave the step stool near the counter and up he goes! So much easier than jumping! And easier to train the kids to move the step stool away from the counter, than to train the dog away from that big temptation! I’ll let you know if I see any strange charges on my credit card though …

  8. janet6886 June 7, 2012 at 8:35 pm #

    This is our second aussie and they are unbelievable smart! Your girl is gorgeous! Most aussies like to have a job. Payson (Payson’s Peace) is a registered therapy dog and loves to go anywhere to meet new people and visit old friends. She is a rescue (we got her when she was a year old) and is one of the best dogs I have ever lived with. Love your blogs (you are the first and only for me ; ) – thank you!

  9. jonniasmith June 7, 2012 at 9:42 pm #

    I’ve had a few Aussies in my time. They are too bright. My Kramer needed something to feel responsible for, a job to do. Lacking a herd of sheep, like you, he settled for policing my kids and their friends, following them around enforcing rules. It worked pretty well, too. When the dog drags you off furniture with his teeth in your pant leg, you tend to not sit on the table any more.

  10. Karen June 8, 2012 at 3:06 pm #

    Hilariously funny!!

  11. Jessica June 10, 2012 at 6:32 am #

    A friend of mine has two huuuuge dogs. One of them managed to climb up enough to grab the better part of a stew that was cooling off. The friend left a FB-status. “Dog in good condition is traded for a grass-mower. All of interest” 😉

  12. David Allen June 16, 2012 at 4:40 pm #

    Our Aussie is way too smart, as well. I feel your pain. He once herded a small group (about 15) of white-tailed deer. Brought them right to us. Personally, I wasn’t quite sure what to do with a herd of deer running straight for me. But the Aussie sure was proud and happy.

  13. wonkafonka June 24, 2012 at 9:40 pm #

    Have you read “The Art of Racing in the Rain”? The opposable thumb comment made me think of it. It’s a wonderful read for any dog lover. 🙂

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