01687: About Yoshi

I've cared for many dogs over the years, and I can't quite get over how distinct Yoshi seems to be. Sure, every pet owner says that about their pet at one time or another, but I really do feel like there's something different about this dog.

Anyone who has cared for a dog knows that over time they seem to exhibit some sort of a personality, or whatever you want to call it. They have distinct mannerism and quirks and they respond to you in somewhat predictable ways - and I'm not referring to training here. That's the best way I can describe it without totally weirding you non-dog people there with how much we anthropomorphise our pets. It's really a thing.

But Yoshi feels distinct given how strong his personality seems to be. He stares a lot - and staring isn't typical dog behavior. And he doesn't stare at nothing either - he stares at you when you're busy with something or when you might have something he is interested or actually wants like food. He doesn't bark a lot either - he seems to get his message across with looks, stares and the occasional cat-like stretch.

I don't have a video yet of Yoshi doing his "stretchy paws", but it's basically him plopping down on the floor and extending his forepaws in an alternating sequence. He does this to get your attention, as best as we can determine. He typically does it right at your feet or sometimes even on your foot to be a bit more direct. More recently he gets up on his hind legs and does the stretchy either on your knee or at the edge of the bed when Tobie and I have yet to get up for the day. It's crazy and adorable at the same time.

When my alarm goes off before work, he immediately runs to the bedroom and gets up on the bed with me. He does his best to nudge me, nibble my fingers and basically get my attention until I finally turn the alarm off and get out of bed. It's actually kind of helpful, although it's funny that he doesn't join me in bed the whole time that I'm sleeping. He actually waits for the alarm.

And there are so many other little things that he does that really make him feel like a human member of the Sietch. He has enough of a personality to essentially make demands of me and Tobie when he wants something and yet he also knows how to comfort us when we're not feeling well. He kisses - whether these consist of little licks on the side of your face or his weird habit of pressing his nose against your cheek ever so briefly. I've yet to have a dog do nose-press kisses.

Tobie and I absolutely love Yoshi. He has totally changed our lives.