January 7th, 2004

i don't understand some things about my dog

If you've been to our house, you've been barked at by Fizgig the Pomeranian. A lot. If you're lucky, he calms down after awhile and gets playful and cuddly. But there's no denying he can be a rather anxious and needy guy.

When he's home with just us, he doesn't bark quite so much. In fact, most of his barking is quite explicable:

  • He's hungry, or
  • he wants a treat, or
  • he wants to wrestle with you, or
  • he's wrestling with you, or
  • he wants you to throw a toy, or
  • there's a toy stuck underneath the coat rack near the door (this deserves particularly desperate barking), or
  • he needs to go for a walk, or
  • someone or something is approaching the house.

These seem like more or less typical reasons for a dog to bark. It gets a little weirder though.

For example, he barks not only when people approach the house, but also when visitors leave the house. I imagine this could be some sort of abandonment issue: we got him from a rescue organization, and he'd been through at least two households prior to that, so maybe he's afraid that people who leave will never come back. But he doesn't bark at us when we leave the house, usually. (Actually, he does bark if only one of us leaves the house, but he doesn't usually bark if both of us leave the house at the same time--which you'd think should trigger whatever abandonment issue he has.)

He also often barks when we hug or kiss each other. Jealous of affection, maybe, or perhaps he doesn't approve of miscegenation.

But here's the one I really don't get: He barks at me whenever I remove a full trash bag from a trash can. Every single time.

What possible little doggie trauma could be associated with me taking a trash bag out of a trash can?