share in some of the delicious smelling food that we were having. One day, I decided my wife and I should be able to eat dinner without a dog circling around our feet. I started teaching him to go to his “chair”, a place designated for him to wait until we are done with dinner and he is released. When we release him he
would get a treat. I was skeptical that he will learn this new command; after all “one can never teach an old dog new tricks”. Pico was 49 in human age and I held no hope of him getting it. It took a while for him to understand what “go to your chair” and “stay” meant, but with treats and my persistence in leading him back to his chair whenever he
jumps off before we finished paid off big time. Now he goes to his chair, stays there while we eat dinner. He gets released with an “all done” command and he is rewarded with “Bacon Bites” his favorite treat! All is well at the Wilson household at dinner time!
Pico taught me to disregard stereotypical thinking and “never say never”. If a dog, who cannot reason, can learn new “skills” at an age where intelligent humans think is not possible, we humans can definitely do it faster and better at any age. We are never too old to learn new skills. I embrace life-long learning not just for the “Bacon Bites” that may come with learning, but more importantly for the pure joy and satisfaction in taking on a new challenge and succeeding in having learned something new.