My teenage son is embarrassed to be around his dad in public, and given what he has to put up with in private, I can't say I blame him.
I often use the three dogs as props to embarrass my son. It really doesn't take much.
For example, I'll stuff the Shih Tzu under my shirt and ask Isaac, "Have I put on a few pounds?" or "Does this dog make me look fat?" or "Have you seen Leonard?"
And when Leonard inevitably moves around trying to get out, I'll dramatically exclaim, "Oh no, my lunch is coming back up!" If he yips or growls, I'll say, "You hungry? Because I am. Can't you hear my stomach growling?"
When Leonard escapes, I'll pretend I have an alien bursting through my chest. I say to Isaac, "Say hi to your new baby brother! "Because they do look alike. They've both got that "I'm going to bite you if you don't stop" look.
I'll admit I enjoy this way too much. It's the reason all of my shirts are stretched out.
With the boxer, I've found that my son doesn't like it when I catch the big dog, cradle her in my arms and talk baby talk to her. She growls because she she doesn't like this, and Isaac rolls his eyes when I say, "Aw the poor wittle baby is a little growly -- will you put her down for a nap?"
He also doesn't like it when I plop the 50-pound dog on his lap when he's trying to play games on his laptop. I'm not sure why. When he says he doesn't want her, I tell him "But she's free!"
He even gets grief from the old dog, who likes to steal his spot when he gets up from the couch. When Isaac tried to reclaim his spot, I tell him to sit someplace else. When he says, "But it's my spot!" I counter with, "Well it's his spot now."
And Chester will back me up by growling at him. The old dog is usually pretty easy to get along with, but when he growls, it means he's serious and you shouldn't mess with him.
But I think what probably embarrasses my son the most is when I put Leonard on my shoulders. I know I look ridiculous with a fluffy Shih Tzu around my neck -- that's why I do it. But what really embarrassed my poor son is when I go out in public like this.
Usually it's around family I try pull this charade; but I'll go up complete strangers too. I ask them if they've seen my dog and when they tell me he's on my neck, I'll look back and say, "I don't think so, but I can't shake this this feeling on the back of my neck that he's right behind me."
It's funny. On days I do that, Isaac seems to disappear for the whole day.