Sunday, December 03, 2006

Happy (Belated) Birthday to Bean Sprout

Bean Sprout turned three last week.
It has been too much fun watching him mature. How does he do it?
I haven't taught him much more than "sit" and "wait" (that last command is unbelievably useful and could be a lifesaver, so teach your dog to wait). The rest he's figured out on his own.
For the first couple of years, he was Cranky's main man. Wouldn't have much to do with me, romantically (though I was the tolerated technician: vet visits, behavior classes, haircuts, etc.). Then suddenly, last summer, he fell in love with me (and why is there a Motels song in my head?). We snuggle, romp and kiss. He trusts me. He feels safe in my lap, flat on his back with his tenderest parts exposed to the mean, scary world. (Cover up, ya perv!) I don't know what caused the breakthrough, but it's most welcome. He learned it all by himself.
He has figured out when I'm about to turn off the computer. I, myself, have not figured out how he figured it out. Do I make special noises as I go through the key-tapping shut-down process? Is there a particular butt wiggle I make in my chair? I don't know. But he does. He jumps up, and we play.
He has also learned to be unbelievably, sickeningly, adorably cute when we're in the kitchen cooking. I have always tried to keep him from learning that people food is tasty, so he won't beg. I don't reward him for begging. But he has taught himself to be heartbreakingly, George-Cloonily cute, and sometimes that results in my taking a break from the cutting board to hand him a dog treat.
Oh, and about that cutting board? Bean Sprout has taught himself to snorf up all the little particles that seem to have fallen to the floor.
Good heavens, am I that messy?
Well, I consider it effective cute-behavior reinforcement.
Or maybe he's just giving me a hard time. Clever little bastard.


Catherine said...

Bean Sprout is unbelievably cute! Aren't you lucky!

Dagny said...

Happy birthday Bean Sprout! You don't look a day over one.

Julie said...

What an irresistible little muzzle. Happy birthday to the Sprout!

(Great picture!)

chilebrown said...

Bean Sprout is awesome! My golden retrievers, Mojo and Oscar want to compare notes on how spoiled they are. Mojo has figured if he takes a running start towards the apple tree and stops and knocks the tree with his paws extended he can knock a couple of apples down. He claims that apple breath is healthy!

cookiecrumb said...

Catherine: I'm ashamed to say that when Cranky and I picked out Bean Sprout from his litter, he was the most beautiful. I thought it was so shallow of me to choose the cutie. But his breeder said "Totally!"

Dagny: Aw. Murf-murf!

Julie: Needing a little trimming, but... we can live with it.

Chilebrown: He's pretty cute. Not enough strength to denude a fruit tree, though. Good trick, Mojo!

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Bean Sprout you know how to keep your fans happy with the cutest of poses. I could do with you in my kitchen, not me of course, but there are some people in this household who manage to get more on the floor than in their sandwiches!!

Liz said...

I *need* a Bean Sprout.

Kate said...

He is darling. Makes me want to tweak his nose.

My big cat is always underfoot when I cook, quickly tackling the scraps that fly off the counter. He especially loves pizza night, and the messy way I grate the cheese. Too often though he is the unfortunate victim of a tail stepping, yet it never deters him.

Any slight puttering in the kitchen brings him from a dead sleep to stand groggily underfoot. "Meat?? Is there any meat???" his little face says, looking up so innocently. "No, my large one, but try that onion from the curry that fell on the floor. What?? You don't like it??"

Anna said...

(Anna is 6 years old. She's home from school with a little cold. Typing assistance provided by mom.)

"I really love dogs. Bean Sprout is really cute. And happy birthday Bean Sprout!"

Bean Sprout said...

Anna! Rowf-rowf. Rhank you rherry much! Hope you feel all puppy-peppy-better soon. Rowrrr!

kudzu said...

"Woof-woof woof-woof arf arrf!!"
And many more -------------

cookiecrumb said...

ChrisB: He's much more than a food vacuum. He's a dust mop too! Handy little critter.

Liz: He loves to meet new people. He's generous with hugs...

Kate: At least your cat stays on the floor. We used to have one that would jump up on the counter.

Kudzu: Arf!

seantimberlake said...

Faccia bella! What a cutie!

cookiecrumb said...

Sean: It pains me that dogs and food establishments are deemed mutually incompatible. I'd love to hang with my foodbloghomies AND the little animal.
As if his feet are any dirtier than my shoes.
Bean Sprout thanks you for the compliment.

mrs d said...

A very happy belated birthday to the little sprout! Platelicker would have posted her best wishes, but she's off pouting due to all the attention heaped upon my cat. Silly dog.

Speaking of the Motels, we've got a bar two blocks away that does karaoke on weekends. Saturday, a woman did a very nice rendition of Only the Lonely only I have a rather hard time taking that song seriously as I spent half the `80s mishearing the lyric as "only the lonely get laid." Which, of course, makes no friggin' sense at all.

cookiecrumb said...

Miz D: Bean Sprout wags appreciatively. And I thought it was only cats that pouted. C'mon, PL!
Got one for you: My mom misheard a Paul Simon's Mother and Child Reunion line as "I've never been laid so long."
Heh. Over and over again!

dancingmorganmouse said...

A furry friend is the BEST company in the kitchen - canine or feline.

cookiecrumb said...

DMM: He even has his own little bed in the kitchen, underneath a small table (so not in the way). For his next birthday I'm giving him an apron and a spatula, and we'll see what he can do.

tinarama said...

I say, embrace the obvious: cook for your dog! I, who once laughed out loud when I saw my aunt cooking up a special meat hash for her Shitzus, would never have believed I'd be caught dead doing such a thing, but hey -- we love good food, and so do they, and so every night I make a little something dog-healthy and delicious to mix in with their expensive gourmet kibble. There are several good cookbooks out with recipes for dogs, if you can't think where to start. Good luck & I look forward to reading about your adventures in the ultimate culinary frontier: Cooking For Dogs! (P.S. I am an occasional reader of your blog and I think this is the first time I've commented - so hi! Love the blog.)

cookiecrumb said...

Hi Tinarama: Wow. Cook for my dog...
Uh. I'll get back to you?
Hah. Just kidding. I cooked for my old deceased doggie who developed renal insufficiency (kidney disease). It was a loving ordeal.
Fortunately Bean Sprout is fine on "easy" commercial food for now.
But I do think he deserves a special something. Thanks for the idea.
I'm so glad you popped out of lurkerdom.