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The tintinnabulation of the bells. June 8, 2011

Posted by ourfriendben in pets, wit and wisdom.
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Silence Dogood here. I guess our friend Ben and I are really hippies at heart. We love tie-dyed clothes, shiny rainbow-casting crystal drops in our windows, beaded curtains, and pretty much anything bright, colorful, and glittery. Not to mention incense and bells. You know, those strings of brass Indian bells you can find at flea markets and, ahem, uh, tie-dye shops. No, wait, that would be import shops.

Over the years, I’ve amassed quite a collection of these strings of bells, and I’ve hung them over doorknobs all over the house. I initially figured it was extra early-warning insurance in case someone was trying to break in, or, say, OFB or a guest was going in or out of our bathroom. (A bit more subtle than an “occupied” sign, don’t you agree?)

But I quickly discovered a quite different use for the bells, and one that wasn’t thought up by us. If our black German shepherd, Shiloh, wants to go out of the bedroom, she rings the bells on the bedroom door. If she wants to go outside, she rings the bells on the deck door. If our cats want to leave the bedroom, they ring the bedroom-door bells, too. The whole thing is pretty mind-boggling.

Unfortunately, another way you can tell that OFB and I are hippies at heart is that, while we marveled at this development, it never occurred to us to try to turn it into a money-making venture. But this morning, I discovered that it had definitely occurred to somebody, and that our pets weren’t the only smart ones on the block.

Our friend Ben and I get regular e-mail updates from a site called FetchDog (www.fetchdog.com) that sells premium dog products. And sure enough, there in today’s e-mail was an offer for “Puppy Training Bells.” These jingle-bell-type bells are hung in two pairs from a 30-inch-long nylon, leash-like cord that comes in two designs, birds and multi-dots, and fits over the doorknob.

I quote: “Recommended by professional trainers, the Puppy Training Bells hang securely from any doorknob and offer a 95% training success rate. In no time at all, this house training aid will have your dog telling you when nature calls. No more trying to read that puppy body language!”

The bells come with housetraining tips and normally cost $24.95 each, but are currently on sale for just $12! Sigh. Where are our marketing brains, I always wonder when I see something like this.

Oh, well, another day of bankruptcy. But on the plus side, I can say that these bells definitely work. And if you’d rather, you can use strings of Indian bells instead. I can’t swear they’re cheaper—especially at the sale price of the FetchDog version—because it’s been so long since I’ve bought any. But to me, at least, they’re prettier!

          ‘Til next time,

                     Silence

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