Chica & Jamal

Wednesday 21st of August

When my kids were born, we had shepherds. A German and a Belgian one. We bought them from a Spanish dog trainer and he stressed how important it is to train a dog like that because they are smart and loyal but can be aggressive so if you do not train them, it is like owning a loaded gun and not knowing how to shoot it. Or so he said.. and so we trained them.

Obviously, we trained them in Dutch because that is what we speak. The Spanish trainer even wrote down all our words in phonetics so he could pronounce them too. The funniest thing was though that Chica (the female) refused to listen to the word ‘wacht’ (wait). The trainer said it happens sometimes, that there is one word that just doesn’t click or gets accepted by the dog. So if Chica needed to wait, we said ‘espera’.

I heard that a lot of military and police dogs are trained in Dutch (or German). I got this piece of worthless information from a show I am watching on DVD but it turns out it is true. Apparently, most trained dogs in the service were trained in their native language (or the native language of the trainer) and then exported to the country they are to be stationed and work in. I also read it is snobism for some, because it is cool to speak another language to your dog. Not me, I just spoke my language to my dog.

Funnily enough, the girls are convinced that our Great Dane speaks Danish. They have a friend who is Danish and when she yells ‘nay!’ to Stella, Stella listens. Does that mean that my friend’s chihuahua speaks Spanish?

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