68: Molly, The Great Communicator

68: Molly, The Great Communicator

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Dog Did What?

Molly, The Great Communicator

Communication works for those who work at it.

~John Powell

It’s said that a Brittany will welcome a burglar, show him to the valuables and then go home with him. Molly might be the exception to the rule. She’s a petite girl, the smallest in two litters totaling fifteen puppies born within a day of each other. When we saw her cowering in the corner and being pushed away from the food dishes, we snatched her up, took her home and never looked back. She was very timid at first, but soon found her feet and is one smart little girl.

We learned early on that Brits like to “talk.” Molly especially liked talking during puppy class when the instructor was speaking. The instructor didn’t find it amusing and gave us stern warnings about allowing such behavior. That instructor reminded me of my least favorite teacher, and since we rather enjoyed this aspect of Molly’s personality, we not only allowed it, we encouraged it. Now, six years later, we have frequent conversations with her, certain she understands every word by the way she reacts.

I work from home so we have chats throughout the day, usually about treats and squirrels. When I leave the house, she almost always rides along. Molly knows the household routine well. If we don’t leave on time to pick up my grandson Cody from school she lets me know. That has worked out well, especially for Cody. She knows what day we do the grocery shopping and, understanding she can’t participate, goes to her kennel when we get ready to leave. When we return she meets us at the door and carefully sniffs us over to see if we’re okay, where we’ve been, whom we’ve seen, and if we have any food on us.

Every summer, just before school starts, Cody has a get-together with his friends. They have a bonfire, eat piles of pizza, watch movies and play video games. Molly knows the boys well and is always happy to see them. Last year we decided to go see a movie so, of course, Molly had to stay home.

When we returned, instead of her usual checking over, Molly started frantically “talking” and showing no apparent interest in any tidbits we might be harboring. Laughing at her crazy antics, one of the boys asked, “Is she always like this when you come home?”

“No,” I said, watching Molly practically turn herself inside out. My first thought was she was overly excited because we had been gone so long.

As we made our way from the garage towards the living room she ran ahead and stopped in front of us, preventing us from entering. She took off like a shot to the front door where she crouched down frantically talking. She then took off across the room to her bed under the window that looks out to the back yard, jumped at the window and again turned to face us, crouching and continuing her frenzied conversation. She waited a moment, watching us. When we didn’t get it, she repeated the routine. The louder the boys laughed, the more frantic she became.

I kneeled down. “What’s the matter girl?” Loving anybody who will get on the floor with her, when Molly didn’t come to me, I knew something was up. She’d been alone for over three hours and in Molly-time that was nearly an eternity. She should have been in desperate need of love, playing hard to get while we begged forgiveness for leaving her alone for so long.

It was obvious Molly wasn’t going to give up, so I asked the boys to quiet down, now not only curious but a little concerned about what was on her mind. She looked at me and sighed as if to say, “Finally!” I followed as she ran to the front door again.

“Somebody came to the front door,” I said. She barked, a loud sharp bark.

She made the mad dash across the room, ending in a crash landing on her bed sliding into the wall under the window. She turned, crouched and looked at me again making a variety of sounds.

With Molly close at my heels I went out the front door to investigate. There I found a notice from the electric company on the porch. It must have blown off the door. I had known they were coming, something about my meter, but they couldn’t tell me exactly when. I assured them it was no problem, that I was almost always home and in the event I wasn’t, they had my permission to enter the yard and do what they needed to do. I picked up the notice and Molly and I went through the house, out the back door and around the corner to the meter. At it happens, it’s right below the living room window that’s on the other side of the wall next to her bed. The meter had a brand new tag on it. It made perfect sense!

Back inside, Molly sat proud and tall as I explained to the boys. “She was telling us somebody was here. They came to this door,” I said putting my hand on the front door. “Then,” I said, walking across the living room, “they were right outside this window. She wanted us to know that somebody came inside the fence. She knows nobody belongs in the yard unless we’re with them.”

Molly was in heaven as all four boys dropped to the floor to lavish her with praise. She trotted around and sniffed each one to make sure they were okay, where they’d been, whom they’d seen, and if they had any food.

~Rebecca Muchow

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