Puppy Tries to Downsize Older Dog, Steal Her Job

At the ripe old age of not-quite-three-months, Cali made her first play for Jana’s job. She liked the idea of a paycheck, in the form of some treats, delivered as soon as the work was complete.

The newspaper was still bigger than Cali the first time she grabbed it and dashed off ahead of Jana. Reined in by a too-short leash, Cali was soon overtaken by Jana. Jana looked at her in annoyance, then reached over and snatched “her” newspaper back.

Jana’s held this job since she was a tiny pup, and she is not ready to retire.

get the paper

Since that day, I try to get the girls to take turns, and I give each one a reward, but Cali still wants that job. And Jana is not giving up without a fight. Sometimes the paper bears the brunt of this literal tug-of-war.

Cali and the Sunday Paper

Dogs need jobs. Ever more, dogs need opportunities to earn rewards. But I think what is really at play here is that Cali looks up to — worships — Jana and wants to do everything that Jana does. Cali learns new skills very quickly and I am sure it is partly because she is watching what her adored big sister does and copying every move, albeit in her clumsy puppy way.

Still, I think the best solution might be a second newspaper subscription.

5 thoughts on “Puppy Tries to Downsize Older Dog, Steal Her Job

  1. Pam, this is so adorable – Jana’s long-standing job being challenged by young newcomer Cali – what a story! I think 2 newspapers is a great idea, plus Barb’s suggestion of a mail bag is good too!


  2. Perhaps you could get a little sack to carry the mail in. Then you could take them to the mailbox each day, just as you take them out to get the paper and bringing back the mail could be Cali’s job just as carrying the paper is Jana’s. Even if you actually get your mail at school, you could plant mail in the box for Cali to carry. It would be interesting to see if they buy in to the routine and agree to each take a shift, so to speak. Then they’d each have the same jobs when you go back to FL.


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