Sunday Thoughts (a dog interview?)
Something happened to me recently, and it stuck with me. So I thought I’d share it.
Maybe if you have a dog, something like this has happened to you.
Since we moved to Florida, and it’s our first experience with a pool, we wanted to get on a regular maintenance schedule.
Gotta keep it clean and safe.
And I probably should have asked around, but I saw a “pool guy” in the neighborhood and basically signed up on the spot.
But from the very first day, my dog Ellie did NOT like this man.
Just the sound of his truck pulling up had her on edge. She barked her head off. She paced. She generally wanted him out of our yard and out of our lives.
Every. Single. Time.
At first, I chalked it up to the big hat this guy wore. I mean, really big. Working out in the sunshine all day, you have to stay protected.
But this hat was VERY big, like nothing I – or Ellie for that matter – had ever seen before. No wonder she was freaked out, I thought.
As the days and weeks went by, it became more apparent that my pool guy wasn’t all he was cracked up to be. He’d miss his regular rounds. He’d do a marginal job.
And Ellie would look at me like “I told you so.” Hat or not, this guy had to go.
So we decided to find a new guy. Once we did, everyone was happy. The pool looks great. I’m actually saving money.
And Ellie LOVES Anthony. (Bonus: Anthony does not have a huge hat).
People always say dogs can smell fear. Or they can recognize a bad person.
Maybe Ellie did sense something, and she was trying to tell me?
I dug into this a bit, and I did find an interesting study that sort of bears this out.
A team of researchers in Japan decided to trick dogs, in the name of science.
If you have a dog you know that usually if you point to something, your dog will run to it. So during this experiment, they pointed to a container that had hidden treats inside.
Sure enough, the dog ran over and – yay – free snacks!
But the second time, they pointed to an empty container. When the dogs ran over, nothing. What gives?
When they pointed to a third container, the dogs said “the heck with you.” They didn’t go.
Because they now knew the researchers were liars.
They tried this with 34 different dogs, and not a single one trusted enough to be faked out again.
So, the takeaway is, if you lie to your dog, your dog may form the opinion that your word is no good.
Or at least, dogs value predictability. When things are inconsistent, they tap out.
Either way, the next time I hire someone, I may bring Ellie along. Because she’s proven to me to be a pretty good judge of talent.
Enjoy the rest of your weekend.