Back in the days when I practiced as a dog training instructor and behaviour counsellor, my phone would often ring with enquiries about my services or sometimes just to try to cadge some free, over-the-phone advice. Now I rarely gave the latter as I considered it to be inapporiate to do so. After all, you would not ring up a plumber to ask how to fix a dripping tap now would you rather than pay him for his time and workmanship? I spent rather a lot of money and time on educating myself so that I could help people with their dogs and I was not a charity! But there would always be someone who tried it on and who would launch into a tale of woe about their dogs before I had the time to tell them I did not give advice over the phone.
Here are a few memorable examples;
Woman: Ello duck. (they call you duck round here, gawd knows why!) I've got a problem with me dog and I wondered if you could give me some advice?
Me: Well I don't actually do that? I could make you an appointment for me to come and see you though?
Woman: No need for that duck, just some advice I'm after. I've got this dog...........
I was then told that he destroyed furniture and carpets and 'messed' whilst being left alone all day, 5 days a week while she went out to work and that the blighter did the same on Tuesday and Thursday evenings when she went to Bingo! Then came the punchline, the one that actually did have me banging my head on the wall! I don't know why he does this to me as I buy him a cooked chicken from ASDA all to himself every Sunday!
I put the phone down on her. I was laughing so much that I was nearly crying. I had actually started to bang my head on the wall near the phone. I was in danger of disgracing myself and telling the stupid bat to 'F*** off back to ASDA and get him a pudding as well and then he won't be so naughty!'
Another one came earlier in my career as a DTI and BC.
Me: Hello? (noting the time was in fact 11.30 at night.)
Man: I'm ringing up about your dog training duck, what days it's on, what time classes are and how much it is?
Me: Do you have a clock?
Man: Errr yes?
Me: I suggest you look at it and then, after I have put the phone down on you, you will know exactly why.
I then put the phone down and rolled over whilst making a mental note to get an answering machine for idiots who make calls after 9pm.
Oh and then of course I just had to have a woman ring me at 6.50 am one morning to ask the same. She got the same response and I resolved to put on my new posters 'Please call for more details between 8.30am and 9pm only - answerphone in operation at other times!
Then there would be the people who called saying they had got a rescue dog the week (or even day) before and wondered why it wouldn't come back when they let it off on the park.... Or those with 9 week old pups who wondered when they would learn to be clean as they were fouling the kitchen when they went out to work all day 5 days a week.....................
We changed our number the day I decided not to do dog training and behaviour etc anymore. We also plastered up the dent in the wall. :o)
I miss it all in a way, lol!