Dogs (and an assortment of other animals) can be trained to do a number of things. Some are working dogs, like my parents' dog/child, Carmen, who has been taking sheepherding classes. Others can perform amazing feats, like water jumping. The most interesting to me are the ones who help their handicapped owners, whether they are blind, deaf or paralyzed.
Which brings me to Samson. Yorkies are not known for their trainability. Any of you who have met Sam or heard our stories about him will know that we're content if he doesn't pee on our bed and doesn't drag out our dirty underwear when we have company. We've learned to settle. Oh, sure, we're working on a few tricks, like "sit", "give me kisses" and "get back there with that, you stupid dog!" but we have accepted his limitations.
So imagine my delight when I discovered Sam's special gift. He, like assistance dogs, can make up for his owner's shortcomings. This morning I was making cookies. I don't have a timer--I don't know why, I guess I just always forget to buy one--and remembering when to take things out of the oven is a bit of a challenge for me. And since I've been pregnant, it's hard to even remember that I have things IN the oven! So this morning I put in a batch of cookies and then Sam and I went to hang out with Russ in the computer room with the door closed to keep in the nice air conditioning. After a few minutes I got up and opened the door, thinking of something I was going to do around the house. Sam saw the open door and bolted out of the room and headed straight to the oven, where he stood until I arrived. When I checked in on the cookies, they were perfectly done.
There you have it--I have a Baking Assistance Dog. I don't think that qualifies Sam to get on airplanes free or come to the mall with me but it's useful nonetheless. He's proved his usefulness so I guess we'll keep him a little longer, even if he did make Randy and me chase him up and down the stairs yesterday, peeing all the way.