Advice from the pet psycho
“I’m going to start a new career as an advice columnist,” I informed husband-head. “You ARE?” he asked. “Advice on what? How to wriggle your way out of the little white jacket with no arm holes and pretend like you’re a normal, functioning person in society?”No.”Actually, I’m going to tell people about their pets – why they do what they do and what they’re thinking,” I explained. “It will be a huge hit and get syndicated around the world and I’ll write a book and I’ll go on tour all over the country and make TV appearances and …””You ARE nutburger,” husband-head interrupted.But having grown up with pets in the house all my life, I figured I’d be a natural to interpret animal behavior.”What are you going to call the column?” husband-head asked, raising an eyebrow.”The Pet Psychologist.””That’s too long,” husband-head insisted.I thought for a moment.”OK, then it will be called the Pet Psycho,” I said, pleased with the name.”Yes, that’s more appropriate,” he agreed.Because the column hadn’t been launched and I didn’t have any letters seeking advice yet, I decided to make up my own for the first installment.Q: Dear Pet Psycho: When my wife and I are being intimate, the dog likes to sit at the side of the bed and watch, which makes us a little uncomfortable. What in the world is he thinking? – Peek-A-BooA: Dear Peek-A-Boo: He’s thinking that he knows a better … style.Q: Dear Pet Psycho: Why do dogs sniff each other’s rear ends when they greet each other? What does that mean? – Nose A: Dear Nose: For dogs, (and some humans we might add), the rear end is a highly interesting body part that gives them a lot of information. Think of it like a doggie-newspaper. This is also why they give you the big sniff-down when you come home to see if you’ve been cheating on them by petting other dogs. Q: Dear Pet Psycho: My cat will sometimes jump in the air at nothing at all. Is she hallucinating or something? – FreakedA: Dear Freaked: Just like you had imaginary friends when you were a kid, your cat has imaginary mice to bat around. Either that, or she got into your stash …Q: Dear Pet Pyscho: I was thinking about getting a gerbil. Do they make good pets? – CuriousA: Dear Curious: Gerbils are great pets and a lot of fun – especially if you live in San Francisco.Q: Dear Pet Psycho: My turtle will not come out of its shell. Is it just shy? – ParanoidA: Dear Paranoid: Your turtle is scared to death. Take the big stockpot of boiling water off the stove and it will come out. It saw what happened to the lobster …Q. Dear Pet Psycho: My parakeet has an extremely foul mouth. How do I get it to stop swearing? – MimicA: Dear Mimic: Hello … pot?Q: Dear Pet Psycho: I have two rabbits, but am unsure if they are male or female. How do I tell? – UnisexA: Dear Unisex: Put them in a cage together. If in one month you have 17 rabbits, you have a male and a female.When I was done, I showed husband-head my new column.”I don’t know,” husband-head said with hesitation. “Don’t you have to be licensed or certified to give people advice? This is a little out there …””Of course it is,” I agreed. “How in the world does anyone know what our four-legged friends are actually thinking?”Just then one of our dogs started to bat at me with his paw and I knew he wanted a butt rub …Heidi Rice is a Rifle correspondent for the Post Independent. Her columns runs every Friday. Visit her Web site at http://www.heidirice.com.
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