I have a very smart dog. She’s a mutt we got from a shelter in New Mexico when she was so young she weighed less than one of our cats. She went to puppy-training classes and then did a couple of runs through basic obedience when she was older. She knows a handful of commands and lots of words. I swear she can even figure out words she doesn’t know by their context. Anyway, she likes toys. We have taken to naming her toys so we can say, “Go get ‘blah’!” and she will.
We aren’t real elaborate or creative with the naming. It’s usually fairly literal like “squeaky ball” or “froggy.” So when she gets anything new, when we give it to her, we say something along the lines of “Want squeaky ball?” which of course she does. And then we give it to her, and now she knows its name.
Anyway, I bought several new squeaky toys. One was a pig, one was a frog, and the last was a beaver. So I unwrap the beaver and say to the dog, while making the toy squeak loudly, “I’ve got a squeaky beaver!”
I’ve tried renaming it just plain “squeaky toy,” but every time I say it, my husband starts grinning and the dog looks slightly confused. I’m going to have to throw it away when no one’s looking. The other problem is that I kind of don’t want to (throw it out) because, well, it’s a really good squeaky beaver.