Yesterday Mom told me it was time to go for a ride. Yippee! I love rides in the car! After a few minutes, we met up with Dusty and his Mom. Oh, this is going to be good! Dusty and I are going to have a play date! Woohoo!!

Off we went for a long ride. When we got out, I was super excited because we were at a pretty little park. I could just picture the fun Dusty and I were going to have with our moms exploring new trails together. Within a few minutes, tho, I began to realize something funny was going on here. Dusty went in this fenced area with his mom…but we didn’t go with him. Hey, what’s going on here? Aren’t we going for a hike, Mom?

Then I noticed Dusty was doing some kind of weird dance or something. Hmmm. I’ve never seen him so animated while going for a walkie. Oh well. I thought maybe he was just feeling frisky or something. I get that way all the time.

After a while, a nice man came and took me on my leash while Mom stayed a little distance away and watched. I thought this was a little odd, but the man was nice and I love walks, so I went.

All of a sudden I saw this weird thing that I’ve never seen before. It was long like a rope, but curled up and it had eyes that were staring at me. Wow, this rope’s alive, Mom!! I thought she should come check it out with me, but she didn’t. Oh well, I thought I’d just go check Mr. Live Rope out myself. I noticed he smelled really interesting, too. As I got closer to check him out, I felt a funny little * zing* in my collar. It didn’t hurt, but it sure surprised me!! I backed up and thought about it. Hmm. Must have been a weird coincidence. Ok, back to Mr. Live Rope… *zing* again. Now I started to think that Live Rope had something to do with all of this. He was still staring at me, his head following me around with a mean look on his face. I decided that maybe I shouldn’t sniff him after all.

So, this nice man kept walking along with me. Whew! Got away from Mr. Live…..uh oh. What was this? There are TWO more of them up ahead, and they are moving on the ground and making a funny sound.

I inched closer, when *zing*, there we go again. I don’t think I like these rope guys. Every time I thought about checking them out and started to move to investigate, I got the weird *zing* thing again. I didn’t dance like Dusty did. I’m not sure why he was dancing, but I learned he can jump really high!

Back to our walk. This kind of stuff went on for several times, but don’t worry, I learn pretty fast. No more Mr. Live Rope for me! Then the guy with my leash just let go of the leash and let me run. Yippeee!! My mom called me, so I was going to run over to her and tell her all about Mr. Rope when I noticed that there were more of these stupid Rope guys around here. I decided to run to her, but go waaaaaaaay around the Rope guys, just in case. Mom was super excited to see me and we jumped and played and celebrated. I’m not sure what we were celebrating, but whatever it was, Mom seemed happy that I had made a good choice of some kind. Then we left the fenced in area and went to be with Dusty and his mom. Boy, that was a weird way to play, and not even with Dusty. Dusty just wanted to get in his truck and go home I think.

Then we got to go to another park and Dusty and I went for a REAL walk, together, with no mean-eyed rattlely old Rope guys around. That was more like it!!! Whew, I’m glad it ended on a more fun note like that. I don’t think Dusty was in the mood to play with me after he met Mr. Live Rope. We’ll just have to get together again soon and run around for fun. Somewhere where we’re alone, maybe. Without any mean-eyed ropes, that is.

While we were driving home, Mom explained what all of that was about. She (and Dusty’s mom) were having us trained by a Mr. Patrick Callaghan to learn all about rattlesnakes. (oh, that’s why they made that funny noise..) We learned to recognize them by smell, sight, and sound, and to avoid them, AND alert our owners to the danger nearby!! She said that she has had another dog trained this way before me, and also told me about a cat that she had who was bitten by a rattlesnake. (he survived with veterinary care) Since I like to go for hikes with Dusty, she was protecting me from learning the hard way about the rattlesnakes. Now I understand.! Thank you, mom! Thank you, Dusty, for being a good sport and going to rattlesnake class with me.

Here Dusty is telling me he didn’t think my comment about his dancing was very funny.

Now, can we go for a hike please?

♥ Behr Behr, professional snake alarm dane

Comment from the mommers: Thank you, Patrick Callaghan for such an incredible organization to help our dogs stay safe. You are spoken of very highly by every professional dog trainer I know.

Just so you know, no snakes or dogs were harmed in the training. Surprised, yes, hurt, no 🙂 Yes, these were live, uncaged rattlesnakes. They had their venom “milked” that morning (not that that was so reassuring) and their mouths taped shut, long enough for 70 dogs to be trained. Yes, I said taped. I was wondering whose job it was to tape all of the snakes’ mouths shut that day. Can you imagine?

Hi, my name’s Frank.

Hi Frank, I’m Bob. So, what do you do for a living, Frank?

Oh, I put tape on rattlesnakes’ mouths when people come for snake training. Then I take the tape off later, taking care to not hurt those cute little snake lips any.

Then I put them back in their little snake houses and feed them din din, ‘cause they’ve been lookin’ at food all day, working up quite an appetite and all, ya know?

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