Karen B. London
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Warming My Feet
Dogs contribute in so many ways
Tyson warms Karen

As I write this, I have a little ball of fire keeping my feet warm. Specifically, Tyson, an eight-pound Pomeranian sits right where I asked him to—on my feet. I like having him sit on my feet because my feet often get cold. My view is that he creates a lot of heat and I believe in sharing. He generally likes to be close to me, though when I first asked him to sit on my feet, he seemed puzzled as though he doubted that I REALLY wanted him to sit on them. Once I actually trained him to sit on my feet, he was more than willing to do so whenever I asked.

I’m happy when Tyson helps me out this way, and I’m all about getting as much out of the relationship as possible, as long, of course, as the dog is happy too. Do other people have services that their dogs provide that may not be standard?


Karen B. London, PhD, is a Bark columnist and a Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist specializing in the evaluation and treatment of serious behavior problems in the domestic dog.

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Submitted by Virginia | January 3 2010 |

Yes! My 70 lb pup sleeps in bed with us and he leans against me...the pressure on my back is like acupressure and is soooo relaxing! What service :)

Submitted by Frances | January 14 2010 |

I lend my tiny dogs to my sister when her hands are chilled from Reynaud's Syndrome - a cuddly toy dog is a perfect hot water bottle. They are also both trained to tell me when the timer on the cooker goes off - it is far too quiet to hear unless I am in the kitchen, but since I have got the dogs to help I rarely burn anything. I now just have to teach them the difference between the timer, and all the other things that buzz or ring or whistle!

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