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It's a Dog's Life: Our Currency is Biscuits

Thursday, 23 May 2024 00:00

By Teddy (via Helen Stockton)

Teddy explains, through his human interpreter Helen Stockton, that currency transactions are not financial ones made through a bank as far as he is concerned...

May is a month with more than its fair share of bank holidays. Apparently, bank holidays were, historically, working days when the banks were shut. Very interesting, I’m sure, but as a dog, I don’t have any use for banks, which considering their dwindling presence on the High Street, is probably a good thing. In common with the reigning monarch, I also don’t carry cash, instead relying on ‘Them Indoors’ to wave the plastic, phone, or, in ‘Him Indoors’ case, watch, and, like a magic trick, that seems to suffice. I wonder if waving my tail would work as a payment option? I might try it....

I still require renumeration, of course, but my currency is treats. These are homogenously referred to as ‘biscuits’ in our household, even if they are not, and it’s a word that gets our immediate attention. We can hear our biscuit tin being opened from the furthest reaches of our property,

distinguishing it from other, less interesting tins, with a high degree of accuracy. We are generally paid for our obedience although the apprentice is sometimes paid to drop things she shouldn’t have. If we are playing or snoozing in the garden, and our presence is needed promptly, indoors, we get a biscuit. If we are reclining of an evening, and a late-night garden visit is required, a bedtime biscuit incentivises. And how do you think ‘Them Indoors’ get the photos accompanying my monthly musings? I am, of course, paid royally in delectable treats.

Sometimes it takes a while to work out what is required – ‘Them Indoors’ don’t speak dog bless them. Instead, they do that usual thing, when trying out a foreign language, speaking slower and louder than normal, as if we are  idiots! Anyway, at some point the language barrier is breached and we reach a happy  understanding. The apprentice  isn’t very good at photos. Her ‘sit’ is a mere brush  of the floor with her rear end, and her ‘stay’ is even briefer. Treats get her all over-excited and she tries to access them without performing the prerequisite task. Even if her presence isn’t required, she is desperate to join in, and usually gate crashes at some point.

If we are both needed, we try hard not to synchronise our activities. If one is looking at the camera, the other one wanders off. It takes teamwork, what can I tell you!

So, I think we’ll skip the bank and just do the holiday. After all, we enjoy playing on a beach, eating ice cream or walking round scenic spots as much as anyone. And if they want us to do something when we are out and about, let’s hope they’ve brought the biscuits for payment!

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