I go to the office 3 days a week now. My human says I am there so my leg will heal, but I have an ulterior motive. I am pursuing my CMSW (canine master’s of social work.) My human loves her work, loves the people she sees, she loves me (a LOT) AND I love her, so why not give it a try? Hey, a gal needs a purpose while she heals right?

The most important thing I’ve discovered while at the office is how to love and appreciate humans by LISTENING. I’m a natural listener. I pay close attention to almost everything people say, until I fall asleep. I’ve learned that I should listen to understand, not to judge or defend my turf. I do this with other dogs too. I can tell a lot about a dog by listening to their bark, yip or growl. My motto is “why bite when a growl will do.”

Part of listening is also about hearing the way humans talk. My human calls it “listening beyond the words”. When people are upset their voices sound different. If they are stressed they talk really fast. If they are sad they make the runny nose sounds. If they are mad, their voice gets loud. My ears go really high when they laugh. Laughter is my favorite human sound! It tells me people are embracing their true “doggie nature” (which means more love, fun and less stress.)

A listening advantage that I have over my human is my great sense of smell. My human NEVER sniffs anyone. Smell is my doggie super power. Not to brag, but I can sniff a single blade of grass for a long time and figure out that someone dropped a French fry there 6 months ago. So, the first way I listen is to people is to give ‘em the ‘ol sniff test.

Although I prefer butt or crotch sniffing, I try to be a good dog and sniff only hands and feet. Humans smell different when they are stressed, sad, angry or happy. If people are sad they smell like the poop of a dog that is really old and worn out. If people are stressed they smell like the liquid poop of a dog after it eats a stick of butter. If people are happy, they smell like fresh, healthy dog poop (mmmm, mmmmm, my favorite smell of all!)

So if you want to really show your human that you love and appreciate them, start LISTENING. This shows how much you care, especially when you don’t like or agree with what they say.   Oh yeah… also tell them when they smell good. That works too.