Sutter Brown – An Appreciation

Most people should know that Corgis herd cattle. Those humans who share their house with a Corgi know that we will herd anything. If they even hint at a walk a good Corgi will have them herded out of the house before they can have second thoughts. It takes real skill to be able to herd politicians. They are even more self-centred and difficult to herd than cats. Sutter Brown, who died last week, was a dog who showed a lot of style in his job of herding the politicians of California. Sutter was the dog of Governor Jerry Brown and Anne Gust Brown. Sutter may not have made all the decisions or worried too much about the detail but he would have brought a constructive happier atmosphere to difficult work.

Like all good Californian Corgis, Sutter was fond of dark sunglasses and looking cool. Obviously, he thought he looked cooler when sharing lunch with one of his owner’s staff or even a republican politician. Sutter was very bipartisan in his search for treats. He was very happy and very good at generating goodwill between the democrats and republicans of California and has told his sister, Colusa Brown, that some republican senators are a particularly good sources of treats .

Sutter died of cancer. This disease affects a surprising number of dogs. Dogs do not tell their owners that they are sick. The owners need to regularly check their dogs and if they find a lump they should bring the dog to the vet sooner rather than later.

Sutter is survived by the state of California and the Corgis of Wales and beyond.

On belly rubbing

You would think these days, when the internet knows everything that there would be some simple instruction so that humans can learn to rub a dog’s belly. The lucky human gets a dog and searches the internet for how to make them happy. The internet replies: “Rub their bellies!” Then all they have to do is look it up and they will see some YouTube videos or a website called “Everything you wanted to know about rubbing a dog’s belly but were afraid to ask!”

Unfortunately, none of this is true. Rubbing a belly is a bit like kneading dough when making bread. They cannot learn this from a book or a computer screen but must practise it or better still get first hand instructions from a more experienced baker.

Amber showing how to encourage a human to start rubbing her belly.

Thankfully most dogs are willing to put some time and energy into teaching their humans how to rub a belly. You really need to keep at this. If you are living with more than one human, start with the one who is most easily manipulated shows most promise. Make sure you offer them lots of encouragement. They like that and respond well to a doggy grin or a wagging tale. When there are several humans in the room make sure the belly rubbing novices see how much fun the expert belly rubber can get from this. With a small effort you should have them trained in no time.

You probably noticed that my last post was December 31st, 2015 and it is now January 1st, 2017. I don’t really have a good reason for not posting during 2016 but will try and make up for it this year.