Brody is the first dog I’ve owned that “rings a bell” when he wants to go outside. He doesn’t actually ring a bell. Attached to our back door is a set of horizontal blinds extending to within a foot of the floor. Brody rattles them when wants to go outside. If my wife and I are watching TV and fail to heed the sound of the rattling blinds, he will jump up on the couch, climb in my lap and start licking my hands or face. If that doesn’t attract the necessary attention he gets back off the couch and moves to a spot on the living room floor halfway halfway between the couch and the back door and starts barking.
“He’s a smart dog,” you might be inclined to say. But when Brody is bored he does this five or six times in the span of half an hour and it becomes like a game.
Once outside it’s our hope Brody will do his business. The matter gets complicated if it’s raining. I’ve never seen a dog so inhibited to walk on wet grass in the rain. He will walk the full length of our garden retaining wall, touching down on the wet grass only after I exhort him continually. Yes, I have to don rain gear and stand out there with him to keep him from sneaking up onto the back porch before the job is done.
Snow is a different matter, Brody loves it. During the winter months he signals us more than ever, anxious to go outside and frolic in the white stuff.