The Confusing Nature of Puppy and Toddler Behavior

I will never, ever understand toddler behavior… and I will especially never understand combining toddler behavior with that of a dog.  You see, I know that Norton loves T’akaya.  And I know that she plainly adores Norton.  If she didn’t, she probably would have eaten him by now.

Yesterday, I got annoyed with Norton, and so did T’akaya.  He was taking away her lobster toy.  He was jumping off of the arm of the loveseat and right on top of T’akaya.  Of course, T’akaya was getting quite annoyed with this.  She growled at him.  I couldn’t blame her for growling; he clearly needed to be warned by her that this was not okay.  After all, it’s not like I haven’t done my own bit to let him know that there are some forms of toddler behavior that aren’t acceptable, and hurting puppies is definitely one of them.  Mind you, it’s not like it actually did any good.  He still grabbed her tail and yanked as hard as he could.

The Confusing Nature of Puppy and Toddler Behavior

Norton and T’akaya, playing rough outside when the weather was nice.

Fine.  If that didn’t work, then it would be time to use our tried and true method of toddler discipline.  I sent Norton to his room.

You’d think that this would be perfect.  Everything would be just fine.  The dog would have time to calm down and get over Norton aggravating her.  Norton would have time to calm down and be the relaxed little boy that he can be.

You’d think wrong.

Norton was okay in his room for a while.  The problem was the dog.  Almost immediately, T’akaya was pacing outside Norton’s room, sniffing and scratching at the door.

Color me not impressed.  I separated the two of them for T’akaya’s safety.  (And Norton’s, of course.  A time might come when T’akaya will be so sick and tired of Norton yanking on her tail that she decides to defend herself.  I’d rather that time not come at all.)  She was over being annoyed and needed to not be harassed.  And there she was, just begging for me to let her tormenter out.

It’s crazy and stupid, of course, but at the end of the day, it seems that T’akaya really does adore Norton and hates to have him gone.  Even if he does aggravate the stuffing out of her.  It’s nuts, but there you go.

Have you observed any confusing stuff in your toddler/doggy relationship?  How did you cope?

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About Suzi

Suzi is an American ex-pat living in British Columbia. She's a cloth diaper addict, wife, mom of three, and President of the Prince George chapter of Cloth for a Cause.


  1. My cat and daughter are the same way. The cat sits down next to my daughter. My daughter yanks on the cat or lays on her. The cat meows and moves a foot away. Then my daughter crawls over to her and the whole thing starts again. If the cat wanted to get away, she totally could. Animals and babies are funny.

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