Yesterday I had the girls out for their very early morning walk. Since we added Tilley to our family; she and Jessie have had an clearly defined relationship. Tilley could well be the alpha of the pack but she really has no desire to be. Jessie is the alpha but it was established years ago that she would not be disciplining Tilley in anyway. Jessie disciplines Luke on a regular basis but not Tilley. Every once in a while she forgets herself when there is commotion and will jump on Tilley; this causes a split second realization from Jessie and they both go about their business.
So on their walk yesterday Tilley was lagging as usual; but on this day Jessie was on a mission. When I stopped to let Tilley sniff; Jessie turned to see what the hold up was. Seeing Tilley sniffing Jessie ran back to her; gave her a very gentle touch with her nose and with this Tilley immediately stopped her sniffing and quickly caught up. It was obvious that Jessie had just told her; "enough sniffing, let's go." I love watching dogs communicate; it is with such precision, the smallest body movement says alot.
Luke did the same thing on the weekend on our canyon walk. Jessie was the one lagging this time; she had found a great smell and was taking a longtime to sniff each and every blade of grass. When Luke is in the canyon it is mission time; he is always out ahead and in full charged mode. He had gone way out ahead of us but after waiting for what he considered to be too long he came running back; gently nudging her to get a move on. As pack leader she ignored him; but he tried.
So much can be said by a gentle touch; our dogs communicate with us all the time. Often we miss it all; but if you are paying attention you will see it. Tilley tells me all the time when she is hungry; if I am on the computer in the morning she will come and gently touch my arm. She continues to do this until I tell her to stop; I explain to her that I know she has not eaten and I will be making breakfast momentarily.
Watching Jessie tell Tilley to hurry up made me smile yesterday; it was as if the two were talking. "Hey Tilley come on; stop sniffing so much and let's go." With Tilley's response "oops; sorry, I'm coming."