Categories > Celebrities > Fall Out Boy > Canine Cupid

How to teach a new dog old tricks

by FrostedGlass 11 reviews

Joe and Dax meet Caroline and take a liking in her right away. One more than the other. Hey - if she can't take a joke...

Category: Fall Out Boy - Rating: G - Genres: Drama, Humor, Romance - Warnings: [!] - Published: 2007-01-13 - Updated: 2007-01-13 - 2463 words

H o w t o t e a c h a n e w d o g o l d t r i c k s

The following evening Joe's doorbell rang at 7 p.m. sharp.

"Here comes your trainer, Dax," Joe pointed at the beagle who previously had been sprawled out on one of the carpets, chewing on a little colorful gummy ball (nonetheless the man had stopped leaving his clothes scattered all over his house in case Dax grew bored of his doggie toy and would venture to leave a lasting dental impression on them), but was now barking and dashing in the direction of the front door.

"So you better show her your best side," he finished his introductory two-liner and went for the door himself. Before he passed through the glass door that separated the anteroom from the aisle, which led to the kitchen and the living room, he pulled out a dog snack from his pocket, showed it to Dax who was jumping up and down frantically in front of him, letting out the occasional yelp, and then threw it a few feet into the aisle. After the beagle had lept after it Joe quickly slipped through the glass door and closed it just in time before Dax reached it. He barked and wagged his tail expectantly.

Joe figured this was probably not the most conventional way to keep the puppy from pouncing on to his visitors in his gushing Dax manner and from running out the door, down the street in the manner of four days ago, but his method got the job done for now.

"Just a second, buddy. I will check her out for you first," the man winked at his pet and turned around to welcome the anticipated Caroline.

A few seconds later he was faced with a young woman who was slightly smaller than him. Her wavy auburn hair was pinned back in a ponytail that touched her back between the shoulder blades. Her green eyes darted over her counterpart, taking in his unruly brown locks, hardly describable and definitely-not-definable-from -bad and/ or-small-pictures-on-the-internet-and-photoshopped-ones-in-magazines colored eyes looking at her in expectation, his boyish grin and slumped posture as he was leaning casually against the door frame.

Very soon she got bored with the temporary freeze shot and dubiously sloppy description of their appearances, so she introduced herself, "Hi, I'm Caroline. Joe I presume?"

He nodded and extended his hand while straightening up, "Yes, that's me. Joe."

After they had shook hands he motioned for her to enter, "Come on in and meet Dax."

As soon as she had set foot in the anteroom she spied the source of the excited barking that she had heard while she had been waiting for somebody to answer the door.

"Yup, that's him," Joe nodded towards the animal.

Caroline smiled widely and opened the glass door to take a closer look at her new canine student. Dax let out a friendly yelp and started to sniff her shoes and the parts of her pants he could reach reach without getting onto his hind legs, followed by the parts of her pants he could reach by getting onto his hind legs.

"Aren't you the friendliest little pup I have ever met?" Caroline said as she knelt down and let him sniff her hands. When he was done she started patting his head which Dax obviously enjoyed a lot. Her hands traveled all over his body until the little dog lay on his back, presenting her his tummy to be stroked.

"Wow, I think he's in love with you. You guys already clicked," Joe expressed impressed.*

She smiled at the man for a second and then returned her attention to Dax, "Beagles are usually all around happy dogs which are dying to please. They hardly show signs of aggression or timidity when trained properly."

Joe listened intently, "And that's where you come into play."

"Right," she replied and finally got up. The puppy barked, demanding more love. The woman couldn't resist but scratch behind one of his ears and then told him, "But now it's time to work, Dax."

Joe had watched the scene, feeling both relieved that his dog not only accepted the new person but also seemed to be under her spell already and that she was more laid back in real life than she had led him to believe on the phone.

He went past Caroline and Dax and opened the glass door, leading the way into the inner parts of his home.

"I'm so glad you're going to help me. I am obviously seriously overtaxed with the little rascal's energy and pighead," Joe admitted. "Can I offer you something to drink?"

She declined and suggested they take Dax for a walk so she could see how he behaved around Joe in public. And also how Joe behaved around Dax, but she kept that to herself.

The next moment they walked down the street in the direction of the park. Maybe Joe would meet Brenda again today? I will hold my tongue.

Caroline kept her eyes pinned on Dax whose stubby legs hardly touched the ground as he speedily trotted in front of the couple.

"Notice how he's always sniffing something? The ground, the stuff on the ground and the air? Of course, that's pretty normal for a dog, especially for one that is in a new environment, but beagles are real scent dogs as they were originally bred for hunting."

Joe looked first at Dax and then at her and nodded.

"You gotta be really careful with them because they tend to follow their nose if they can have their way with you. That's why obedience training is a must from early age on."

"Oh, I learned that the hard way. He ran off yesterday," the man confessed.

In the meantime they had reached the park. "How about we work on that then right away?" the woman suggested.

During the half hour Caroline, who told Joe to call her Carl, showered the new dog owner with tips and tricks how to get the energetic pup to do what he wanted him to. They worked on the commands 'sit' and 'lay'. The experienced dog trainer had a bag of doggie treats, one of which was given to Dax after he had done something right.

"Oh yeah, positive conditioning," Joe smirked. "That also helped me train my ex-girlfriend."

Who doesn't like a joke? Everyone does! However, Carl usually preferred funny ones.

"I wonder why you guys broke up," she thought while softly pushing the dog's behind towards the floor, making him sit.

She caught the guy glancing around as if he were looking for someone.

"Are you looking for somebody or something? This is me showing you how to take care of your pet, you know?" she stroked Dax who had obediently laid down after she had carefully pressed against his back and tugged at his forelegs.

This interrupted the guy's mental repetition of "Brenda, Brenda, where are thou?" and he focused on his company again. "Sorry, ma'am," he mumbled. This Caroline was a little bit of a bitch, huh? Then he chuckled at the coincidence of the dog trainer being a bitch.

"Very good, Dax!" she praised the beagle a moment later when he lowered his tummy to the ground with only one soft push on the back and the word "lay".

"He's one quick learner," she beamed at Joe. "But you really have to be consistent with the training because this breed tends to lose interest easily, especially if the dog picks up a distracting scent or something of the kind... Joe?"

"Sorry, I wasn't paying attention again. Last time. Sorry. Really."

Before she could emit what was on her mind she bit her tongue. Was that man even interested in training his dog? Surely he didn't think that somebody else could do all the work for him. It was his dog, he lived with him. In the end Dax had to obey him, not her.

In the meantime Joe, insane guitarist in the studio and on the stage, Short Attention Span Man when scanning the park for pretty women with short blonde spiky hair and dark blue eyes, had given up the hope to see Brenda today and glued his eyes to his dog and Carl. He surely didn't want her to think that he didn't take an interest in his pet. In the end Dax had to obey him, not her.

He quickly summarized the steps Carl had shown him to get Dax to sit and lay. She nodded.

"So what you wanna do now is repeat this spiel a couple of times during the day. So he gets used to the commandos. As he grows more used to them you will see that you don't need to push him down anymore. And eventually you can lay off the treats and replace them by only verbal praise and patting... Remind you of you and your ex again?" She grinned. Alright, maybe she should try to loosen up a little. It wasn't his fault that she had had a fight with her lover yesterday.

"Is that patting or petting? For Dax, I mean?" Joe didn't know when to stop.

She rolled her eyes but smirked, "I won't hesitate to inform PETA of your evil doings if you french down the poor little creature."

"Gee, thanks," he huffed. "Anyways... The problem is..."

"Here it comes," Carl told herself.

"...that I don't really have the time to practice a couple of times during the day with him because my band's currently recording our new CD and yeah..."

"That is not good," she simply stated. The way the guy had uttered his last words made him sound as if he was in some superfamous band and the world just couldn't wait for their newest record.

Joe looked slightly ashamed and then changed his facial expression to one of expectation and plead.

"You want me to do it?" Caroline sighed.

"I will pay you."

"Oh, yes, you will," the woman thought to herself. She hadn't considered this to turn into a full-time job. Well, at least for the next couple of weeks, until Dax had been trained well enough so this canine retard would be able to get along with him. But she had become attached to the sweet puppy and could use the money.

"So how do you suggest we go about this?" she asked further. "I can't bring him to my place because I have two dogs myself and then I would have to check that Dax is ok with them. And the new environment. And then back to your place. That's a lot for a little dog, in addition to the basic training."

Joe shrugged, "I can give you the keys to my house. Do you live far away?"

"Didn't your ex-girlfriend teach you not to trust complete strangers?" Carl wondered about his naivety.

"I don't think you're gonna rob me. And I really wanna make this work with Dax."

The sincerity in the last sentence struck a chord with her. (Joe would probably laugh about the coincidence of a musician's sincerity striking a chord with somebody. And Carl would definitely find him even geekier after that.)

"Well, fine," she finally responded. "I guess that will work."

On their way back to Joe's house the both of them worked out the technicalities. The man learned that Carl was a freelance graphic designer and therefore worked at home which allowed her to come over to his pad every now and then or just bring her laptop and stay there for a while to practice with Dax. He also found out that she was 24, 2 years older than him.

"So, you're in a band. Professionally?" she asked, remembering how impressive his home had looked.

"Um, you're not quite the American mainstream culture person, are you?" Joe smirked.

"Not quite. And frankly, I sorta pride myself on that," she shot back. What did he mean by that? Should she be familiar with his band? Or even his name?

"Well, I'm in this band called 'Fall Out Boy'. And we're doing pretty alright these days," Joe explained. He didn't mean to brag but she had asked. "You're probably too old to fit into our main target group." the guy added to not make her feel like an idiot.

"What an idiot," the woman told herself and didn't let her current impression of him leak through. She really needed the job, especially since she had made up her mind about not moving in with her partner just yet. Things had become quite complicated lately and they had to talk them through first.

"I think I've heard of you before," she said out loud. Throw him a bone.

Joe asked about her musical preferences and she told him that she didn't listen to music too much but when she did it was mostly just instrumental, mainly classical stuff.

"Ha ha, did you see that 'Beethoven' movie? You know, the dog called 'Beethoven'? You must love that one," he snickered.

"Be calm. You need the dough," Caroline thought to herself. She mentally prepared herself for a job filled with silly dog references. Hopefully he wouldn't venture to call her a bitch. There is just so much you can take from a wanna-be comedian.

- - -

When Carl entered her apartment she was greeted by her female Dalmatian Pepper and Oreo, her black male mutt with a white tummy.

She threw her keys into the bowl made out of straw on the small table in the hall and started to carress her pets.

"Hello, guys. I met a cute beagle today," she told the dogs. "And his weirdo owner."

A few minutes later she saw the little red light blinking on her answering machine and hit the button to listen to the message. Then she picked up the receiver and dialed.


"Hi, it's me. I was out meeting a new dog. I just listened to your message," Carl replied.

"Hey... Yeah, I totally meant what I said. I'm sorry about the fight."

She smiled, "Me, too... So, how was your late class today?"

"Good, good... Say, how about I come over right now so we can have some passionate make-up sex?"

Caroline laughed out loud. The bluntness of a teenager. "Sounds like a perfect idea to me," she replied. "Can you pick up something to eat on your way here? I am starving and it skipped my mind to fill up the fridge."

"You got it, hot momma."

"Can't wait, sweets," the woman grinned to herself. This would surely take her mind off this Joe freak.


* And this is why I prefer to write in English.
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