Pearl claims she’s the alpha bitch around here, but she has some odd ideas about what this entails. The alpha is supposed to look after the pack, but Pearl is only interested in looking after Number One and throwing her weight around.
For instance, there’s the job of guarding the house – a demanding job that requires a lot of time and energy. Although I’m getting on in years, Pearl leaves this exhausting task to me. As well as warning off intruders during the day, I have to make sure the house stays safe through the night while we’re all asleep indoors. This involves evening sentry duty – a half-hour stint of barking to let everyone in the area know the place is well guarded.
The only person Pearl guards the house against is me. She seems to think my place is outside – all the time. She doesn’t bark at me – Annabelle would put a stop to that – she just stands at the door, sneakily vibing me out with smellepathic signals.
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy being outside, especially when spring comes and the world warms up. The air is full of birdsong and interesting new smells. There’s a spot in the front garden that’s perfect for sunbathing and I love to lie there and watch the world go by.
But there are disadvantages to being outdoors, like wind and rain and bird poo. A lot of birds nest in the conifers near my spot – and while I enjoy the music that comes from their beaks, I don’t appreciate what comes out the other end.
Recently, the birds have been using my spot as a toilet. I ‘ve noticed a lot more poo than usual – thick, black, rubbery blobs that stick to my fur and paws. I didn’t think birds ate liquorice, but looking at their poo lately I might have to think again.
Much as I love the great outdoors, there are times when I need to be inside on a clean, soft bed or a comfy chair. Alpha or no, Pearl needs to remember that I was here first, and as an old lady I deserve respect and consideration.
Alpha is not about being a bully.
NB – Human readers may think I have a fixation on bottoms, but this is normal for a dog. You can learn a lot about someone by sniffing their bottom. Try it sometime – you could save yourselves a lot of grief at the hands of con artists. The face might be telling porkies, but the bottom can’t lie.