I’m Doing This on Purpose

Black Lab Koala rests on her bed, next to the forbidden sofaIn keeping with our recent theme of communication with our dogs, Koala staged a mini-protest recently. A lie-in if you will.

Seemingly out of nowhere, she decided to spend her alone time on the living room sofa in her Florida home. Several days in a row, when Deni arrived at the door, she was able to see Koala step gracefully off the sofa and saunter over to the door to greet her.

“She’s doing this to make a point,” Deni told a friend one day as they entered the house. “She knows I’m home well before I get to the door. She knows the sound of the car.”

The friend agreed — and pointed out that some recent changes had affected Koala. And were probably the reason for Koala’s behavior.

Those recent changes in Koala’s home decor included swapping the TV viewing space with the dining space, Deni mused, not understanding the connection.

Go on, the friend prompted.

Finally, Deni got it.

Formerly, toward the back of the living room, a sofa and comfy dog bed marked the TV corner. These had been relocated to the former dining room. And now a table and four chairs occupy the front-room space. No dog bed.


It had not dawned on Deni that perhaps Koala liked spending her time waiting for Deni to return both in the living room — where she could keep an eye on things — and in comfort. Koala chose a not-very-subtle way to communicate that to Deni.

It’s a good thing that Deni has dog-savvy friends to interpret for her, or she’d be frustrated with Koala’s recent “bad” behavior, while Koala would be rolling her eyes at the obliviousness of humans. Again.

Even better, this friend had recently passed along an extra dog bed, so a solution was at hand. Or paw. Now Koala has a comfy bed in the front of the house — and she no longer needs to occupy the sofa.

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