Impulse Control / by Dana Bergstrom

Since Ray’s barky, bitey self disrupted all learning at dog school for two weeks straight, we've graduated on to private sessions!

That's my positive spin on our little demotion.

Congrats, doggo!

But it's Ray's human classmates who are really celebrating. 

They finally get to concentrate on their own dog's education instead of spending the better part of an hour giving me, Pauly and Ray the evil eye.

I'm not kidding.

Because of Ray's loud outbursts, people couldn't hear the trainer, nobody could think, other dogs started to get in on the act. It was madness. I don't blame 'em for all of the dirty looks. Not one bit.


We had our very first lesson today and after analyzing Ray's behavior and getting a history (kept in an unheated barn with 60+ dogs, intense fear of other dogs, plus the story of Pauly’s and my haphazard home training methods), the trainer decided that we need to work on impulse control.


Oh my God, I'm the one who needs help with impulse control!

In ways, I’m as feral as Ray.

I asked the trainer if this will also work for humans and donut holes.

Suddenly, with evangelical fervor, she launched into a lengthy story about how she was inspired by her body building son (whose food and exercise regime was recited in detail) to change her evil food consuming ways.

She’s been off sugar for A WHOLE MONTH,  and ONLY EATS CLEAN.





And she's lost 11 lbs without trying.


"Oh, good for you," I thought with both hands inside my sweatshirt pouch, resting on my potbelly.

Sorry I asked.

More dog training, less food sermons.



I take that back.

I’m kinda glad she gave her inspiring testimonial because I’ve been thinking of making a change to my diet.

This 47-year-old body can no longer handle what it occasionally consumes, even in small amounts. It mostly affects my skin, which is constantly yelling at me to knock it off.

My impulse control is pretty low when it comes to processed foods. Cheese cheese cheese cheese. Oh my god. I love cheese. Marry me, cheese. Marry me!

And I can’t even have cold cereal in the house because I won’t eat anything BUT THAT. Cold cereal is my absolute favorite drug. A big ol’ brain numbing, comfort food drug. Sometimes when I’m PMSing, I lose my mind and buy a box.

I’m not right for days after that.

Impulse control.

Maybe since I'll be working with Ray every day on controlling his impulses, I’ll be more mindful of my own.

This isn’t the first time Lil' Ray has been a perfect mirror for my own stuff.

He’s good for me like that.