Say what? The phrase “You dirty booper!” or some variation, “Ohh yous a dirty booper. Boop boop! Come here my little booper!” can be frequently heard around our house. It’s our favorite thing to jokingly say to Maggie. Imagine a cross between that hilarious meme with the husky (see below) and that scene from Superbad (see further below.)
And there you have it; we coined the term “booper”. Obviously we have excellent senses of humor–but the catalyst behind this funny phrase sadly isn’t that funny.
It took probably a good 6 months before Maggie really began to relax in our home and her true colors started to show. I can’t honestly remember the first time that it happened, but one day Maggie and the other two were running from one room to another, riled up about something outside, and Maggie did this weird snarl/snap at them and kept running. It was hilarious! She didn’t make contact with either of them, she just made a funny sound with a little snap of her mouth, and they all kept going. Hello boop, nice to meet you.
The “boop” continued to make appearances, few and far between, and I basically did nothing but laugh at them because they were always seemingly random, quick, and without consequence. It wasn’t until after this horrible event that I began to grown concerned about the booping situation. Don’t get me wrong, I could see from the get go that the boop was some sort of redirected aggression/frustration (due to whatever it was that was outside that they wanted to get to) but I assumed that my two good-natured, steady-as-a-rock dogs would always just ignore little Maggie. No harm, no foul kind of thing. Well after the fight (which I still firmly but sadly believe was Tag’s fault, and completely unrelated to “booping”) I began to consider the potential consequences to Maggie’s actions.
Nothing happened between the time of the fight and our move into the new house with a nice yard, but the boop continued to make little random appearances and I did my best to discourage them. Now that we have this big back yard for them to run around in, the boop is continuing to make appearances, but this time at top Maggie speed–which is fast and generally results in her barreling into someone at the end. I can see that the other two are getting annoyed with it. And after a boop I can sometimes see that she has a stressed, wide eyed, trembly face too, and I’ll grab her and calm her down. This is rare but afterwards she always goes up to the dogs and does her best “I’m-super-submissive-and-so-sorry” face-kissing, flopping-on-her-back act. And the incident is over.
I know that the dogs all love each other, enjoy each others company, and are probably the happiest they have ever been (thank you big back yard!) but I feel like it’s time to put an end to this booping before, God forbid, something bad does happen. So, fellow dog owners/lovers have any of you experienced this with one of your dogs? Do I seek professional help? I am a firm believer in positive reinforcement, so I always praise them when they are all playing nicely and Maggie runs around boop-free, but it’s not stopping the behavior. Any ideas or recommendations would be so super appreciated! Oh, and Happy Hump Day!