In these days since my JinJin has departed for another racing venue, I’ve been scoping around my kennel for a new Bobble Head player. It sure didn’t take long to find one.
With the arrival of new babies, there is always (or almost always) going to be one, or two, who need some special time. Last week, I finally got Baby Bella to come near enough for a Bobble. She was one that scooted just far enough away to be out of reach. Right there, at the edge of her Safe Zone. Calling her name sent her the other way. Fine honey. I do not see you, I will not touch you. I’ll just Bobble this pretty girlie right here.
Baby Bella watched very closely.
And stepped closer.
And so I Bobbled Tammers and I Bobbled Weenie (note to self, do NOT Bobble Weenie, she goes Kooky Whacko) and when I reached for my next player…. by gummy, there was the Baby Bella. “Do you want to play honey?” She thought maybe she did. My hands went soft around her face and I truly whispered the words as I squiggled my thumbs across her brow. “Oh bobble bobble bobble.” She didn’t much like the “Oh” part, and I have left it out since. Because now she comes to find me, to play her favorite game.
Comes when I call her, and that is the very first thing you need a timid to do.
I have come to believe in Bobble Head. I don’t know why it works. It shouldn’t. Handling a timid dogs head should be the very last thing in the whole wide world that will bring it ’round. It’s invasive. It’s threatening. Dogs do NOT like their heads messed with. But I’ve seen it work for me too many times to doubt it. Today, it’s Tynee.
Bless her, she’s no bigger’n a nickel, and as timid as a mouse. Ok darlin’.. let’s see what a bit of a Bobble will do. Hands as soft as linen, whisper the words, the first game is the one that will lead to the next. I have time.
I always have time.
There are few things I won’t do to get my dogs to come TO me. I want them confident and proud. I want them joyful. The tools I have are my hands and my voice. And… my heart. I use them all.
We are not in the business of generating pets. I know that. Most of what I do is to help me (and our kennel staff) to better be able to handle our dogs in this race arena. It is to see my dogs happy. But I want them all to go home when their racing is done. I want them to snuggle down on the sofa with their mommies and daddies and watch movies and eat ChexMix and have a big ol’ honkin’ toybox full of squeaky stuffies. I want them to have a shady tree in the yard, soft cool grass under their feet. If they forget me, that’s ok. My tearspots on their precious heads will dry.
Their noseprints on my soul ……. those are forever.
An explanation on Bobblehead:
Bobble Head doesn’t really require a lot of space in and of itself. It’s just that so many of them like the game, and if I start playing it with one, I am duty bound to play it with several.
The player stands directly in front of me, looking up expectantly. I take her pretty little face in both hands, and waggle it back and forth saying (quite earnestly) “Oh, bobble bobble bobble bobble!” Release and giggle while she shakes and prances.
This particular girlie arrived without any happiness in her. She moped around the turnout yard, stood pretty much in one spot looking all forlorn. Wouldn’t play with anybody, nothing delighted her. When I get a baby like this, he or she becomes my special project. I want my dogs to be joyful. And I don’t know why Bobble Head works on them, but it does. Now my little JinJin comes a-looking for me, wants to play her special game. I never refuse her.
This evening, she’ll be leaving me. On her way to Southland, and in time, from there perhaps to go make babies. I may see her again, I may not. She’s become one of my favorites, and I’ll miss her dreadfully. *sniffle*