It’s not a problem for the Dutch alone, but when it comes to walking their dogs, it’s usually a case of the dog walking the Dutch. When a dog’s pulling at the lead, the dog is telling the walker that the dog is boss. It’s not very helpful in a world where the busy road next to them has cars travelling at 60km/h (40mph). Oh, and it’s a 30km/h zone… but again, that’s not something limited to the Dutch alone. But these are problems we’ve created for ourselves.
If you’re going to have a car, use it responsibly. If you’re going to own a dog, be responsible and train it. I guarantee it’ll be a nicer pet.
But the Dutch don’t know this, and don’t care. Well that’s not something that’s limited to the Dutch, is it? It’s the way the Dutch do things is an honest representation of who they are, and to tell you the truth, they are not the brightest people on the planet. Put a little more bluntly, they are, collectively speaking, the stupidest people on the planet. They really don’t know any better than not giving a shit.
Which is what Dutch dog walkers usually leave behind them. In Holland it’s called being civilized, elsewhere it’s called being antisocial. The Dutch don’t give a shit if their dog does a poop or not. According to one person, a retired major from the marines, he said that there is nothing one can do about a dog’s nature. No guesses as to whether his dogs pull on the leash… he knows no better, and doesn’t want to know. He knows that telling his soldiers to do something means they did it, no training needed.
Perhaps, like so many Dutch people, he simply hasn’t applied his knowledge of one situation to another. Well, that’s why our modern world has so many problems: they can’t see the processes that make things happen. Without that, they’re lost. But then, they don’t actually know they’re lost. It’s not as if the subconscious comes up to you and says ‘hello’ to you, is it? That it does precisely that need not detain us here because they’d be utterly oblivious to it.
So there he is, and his dogs don’t foul the grass outside my gardens any more. It took a few years for the message to sink in, but it did eventually. One little step on the way to a socialized Dutch person.
Most other people don’t take any notice of what I say. They didn’t have the ready excuse of my officer neighbour, they’re just upset at someone wanting people to behave in a social manner. Because this isn’t fair! The Dutch expect to be able to do as they please and be able to think of letting their dogs shit on the pavement as being social.
It does mean there aren’t any arguments. The Dutch don’t like arguing. They’d prefer to lie to each other than argue over the truth.
You see, most Dutch don’t mind wiping the smelly stuff off. After all, they have an expression here: “shit happens.” The problem here is that you need a Dutchman to create the mess in the first place (or his dog). Other cultures are more careful with the things they do and have a little more respect for those around them. Not by much, but it does show.
They don’t care that children play on the grass, because it’s not their children. Their own children are grown up and have dogs that… well, you can guess the rest.
So, having failed to train the Dutch person, I began with the dogs. And it works a treat. It did take me a while to realize that the human doesn’t have any real instincts to speak of and thus there is little that one can speak to and get a consistent response. Dogs are another matter altogether: dogs don’t need consciousness because their instincts tell them everything they need to know. In the case of a dog, this is based on three things, their ability to smell, their being a pack animal and the fact that they are carnivores. This usually expresses itself as their smelling a squirrel, slipping the lead to catch and eat it.
The front runner in a pack is the leader, and in that they have a set instinct to determine who this is, it’s pretty easy to establish yourself as the leader. If you are happy to deal with a dog as if they could think (the ‘as if’ they could think is operative here with the Dutch, by the way) then you’re onto a loser. Dealing with illusions as though they were reality will lead to problems. It’s almost the definition of what an illusion really is: it’s not real. Ergo, if you treat it as reality, you are going to make a mess.
And the Dutch are astonishingly good at making a mess. So much so that I’m amazed that they still have a society. But I could say that about the Brits, too… the Brits do it in a different way, that’s all.
So what did I do?
It was simple: I looked to the dogs’ ability to smell. It’s a good twenty times better than ours, sometimes a great deal more. It’s why they have a long nose which doesn’t leave much room for brains – but dogs aren’t philosophers, are they? Leave that to those who can’t smell but can think. I mean, if a human could smell as well as a dog, they’d be pissing on lampposts too.
And yes, I have one of those for the male dogs.
What I did was to pick up the fresh and very smelly turds and keeping them apart from each other – because the dog can tell from this smell who it is, where they’ve been, what they had for their last dinner and a good deal more. I put them next to a lamppost further up the lane in a place that few people walk on.
I put them all near it. Within two metres of it (yards).
Walking my cat this morning, I was pleased to see that the dogs had responded as I had intended. They’d been past the place a few times and the message came across loud and clear: “this is the doggy Facebook!”
They knew who’d been there, what they’d done and there were the doggy equivalents of photos of their last dinner. So they joined in and left their own.
Not that their owners would notice this, of course. It’s just how dogs are and there’s no training them, is there? It does mean that I get one poop on my lawn each week instead of two a day…
Because if you’re going to train an animal, you have to meet its needs. That is to say, its instincts. If you don’t you are simply wasting your time. Like the bloke whose dog is always barking. He tells it to shut up, and the dog does. Well, it does, just as long as there’s no stimulus to tell it to warn the pack of more danger… and since the dog is the leader (he’s not been shown otherwise) he’s the one to tell everybody. The owner thinks that the dog is doing as it’s told by being quiet; the secret is to keep the dog quiet for longer than a few minutes…
You see, his last dog did this too. It’s as if a barking dog is the metaphor of his comfort zone: it shows where he’s not aware, and in that he’s not aware, he doesn’t know it’s his fault. It’s the dog’s fault you see, and dogs should know better. Illusions and the comfort zone walk their dogs hand in hand.
It’s not hard, it does take doing. Now where’ve I heard that before?