I rather suspect the medical profession – and particularly psychiatrists – are in the business of inventing new conditions to keep themselves in their lucrative business. It all started with dyslexia. When I was young it was called “poor at reading and writing”. Then there was dyspraxia aka clumsy. After that we got ADHD (stupid), OCD (neurotic), ODD (naughty), Asperger’s (lacking social skills) &c. &c.. However, recent experience with Whisky has led me to believe that ODD (Oppositional Defiant Disorder) is a real condition – at least in dogs. Let me explain…
Whisky is a smart dog. He knows full well that he’s not allowed on the sofa, and during the day it’s not an issue. But every evening after I’ve eaten dinner and sat down to watch TV he’ll jump up on the sofa next to me, only to be pushed off, not once, but time and time again. I’ll tap him to show my disapproval. I’ll rattle my can of coins. I’ll raise my voice. But still he climbs on the sofa. I’ll exile him to the garden, and just as soon as he gets back in (there’s only so much scratching at the front door and whining that I can take), he’ll jump right back. Such defiance in one so young! Definitive proof of the existence of D-ODD.
I also suspect Whisky may have D-ADHD. He is rather prone to bouts of extreme hyperactivity. He’ll bound in from the garden, scattering the decorative pebbles by the front door under his paws and slipping on the mat on the way, only to turn round and run out, slipping on the mat and tumbling down the steps on the way, only to repeat the cycle a dozen times. Other times he’ll chase crazily around the coffee table, leaving me fearing for my furniture and ornaments. It’s at times like this I think about swapping him for a cat.
When Whisky is going through one of his phases I sometimes refer to him as “devildog” – an accurate and fair reflection of his demeanour. I was however, rather surprised to capture photographic proof of his satanic nature:
Isn’t having a tongue too large to fit into your mouth also a sign of demonic possession?
Oh Whisky! Truly you are a son of Lucifer.