Bad news: no more night time snacks for me at Barshaw. My master did get a torch for his birthday. It's a very good one apparently - 700 lumens. He says it's so strong he could make the moon full every night if he wanted.
"Why would you want to do that?" I asked.
"So it wouldn't be so dark."
"Then you wouldn't need the torch!" He didn't have a response to that. Circular logic makes him dizzy.
He's been on holiday this week, which is great for him and me. He gets to laze around and watch movies, like the 'Saw' series, without the mistress grumping at him. They're a wholly gruesome series of movies, with blood and gore and limbs being lost. Too horrible for me. I hid behind him on the couch. However he did make up for all that torture by taking me on some extra long walks in the afternoons. We've been to Mugdock country park, Loch Lomond, even up to the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park near Aberfoyle. It's been a blast.
I should really have shown more appreciation for all the extra attention I got but misbehaving, well, it's in my blood. I was a bad dog this week. Firstly, I chased a mountain biker - three times. I couldn't help it. When I see those woolly socks spinning on the pedal it's compelling. I must stop them. Then I chased a cat in the street. My master was upset but everyone else was very nice about it, stopping their cars to watch. And finally I let the world know that there was a hedgehog in the garden next door. It was big news. It needed sharing. I wanted Autumnwatch and David Attenborough to know. Did my master make the call? No. He made a dash for me, still in his slippers and dressing gown, in an attempt to shut me up and get me back into the house, just because it was 6.30am. Silly man! If he thought I was going to stay silent when a woodland creature was a plank-width away from my garden he was sadly mistaken.
There is always a price to pay when you've been bad. And this is where I question the influence of Hollywood over impressionable dog owners. My master introduced me to a new lead and collar. Not just a normal one. No, this was a 'Dog Whisperer' lead and collar. And to me it looked like one of the traps made by Jigsaw, the twisted anti-hero of the 'Saw' series.
At first it just felt odd, tight straps at the top and bottom linked to a cord lead looped around my neck. However, once adjusted, it was surprisingly comfortable. Then he took me for a walk. I noticed the cord getting tighter as I pulled but it wasn't until we met that growly Shih Tzu on the main road and I jumped towards it that I felt its full, choking effect. It's difficult sounding tough when your wind pipe's been throttled and all you can do is cough. The master just smiled. I played his walk-nicely game from then on, praying my head didn't explode or get sliced off.
Justice was served. I learned and survived. I'll behave from now on. I don't want to play another game. Next time it might be an exploding muzzle or I might wake up chained in a dirty room with a full food bowl just out of reach, requiring me to chew through my own leg to get dinner. I don't want that. I promise I'll be good.
Of course that's not the end of the story. The 'Saw' films always finish on a twist. I wrote to Cesar Milan, of 'Dog Whisperer' fame, explaining my position and he wrote back. He explained in almost all cases there is nothing wrong with the dog. It's the owners that need training. Cesar has promised to teach my master a lesson. I can't wait to see the contraption he locks him in to mend his ways. Cesar is the new Jigsaw. You heard it here first folks.