“Dogs that misbehave just want attention,” is what you tell your clients. “I don’t give it to them.”
Today you’re working with Felix, a terrier mix that won’t stop yapping day and night, and loves to tear up the couch cushions.
“Give me seventy-five days,” you tell his owners. “That’s all I need.”
They pay you your twenty thousand dollar fee and you spend the next seventy-five days living in their home with Felix (they’re required to find lodging elsewhere) and ignoring him.
No matter how much he barks, no matter how many items in the house he destroys, you won’t even look in Felix’s direction. By the seventy-fifth day, when the owners come home, they’ll find Felix sitting despondently in the corner, wondering why he doesn’t matter to anybody, wondering if he even exists. When the owners pet Felix, he’ll have trouble registering the affection. He won’t be able to understand that there are other beings in the room with him and that they know he is there. That’s the power you have over dogs.
“You did it!” they’ll shout, before looking around the house and seeing what a shambles Felix made of it. “Guess it was worth it.”
“Your dog should be existentially terrorized enough to behave now,” you tell them while bagging up everything in the fridge (you never leave food behind).
“Thank you, Dog Ignorer!” they’ll shout as you climb into your car to go home to your cats.
Happy The Dog Ignorer Day!