In addition to allowing her to compensate splendidly for her deafness and visual difference, BeeBee also uses her nose like a 5th appendage. Because of her pronounced overbite, she can stick her nose into narrower places than a dog of similar size and conformation with a normal jaw. This enables her, for example, to get her nose into the tiny space between the wood rack and wall. But much to her consternation, that’s all that fits there. I can always tell when her nose locates something tantalizing that she can’t grab or lick up with her lower jaw or partially paralyzed tongue because she emits sounds that are about as close to canine profanity as I’ve ever heard.
Other times Bee uses her nose more like a pointer. I don’t know if she does this on purpose or if it just happens in her quest to sniff up as much data as possible. I do know that I have to warn others about it because most people don’t expect to get clobbered by a dog nose, and especially not when they think the dog is going to cheerfully lick them as is often the case. Alas, the canine spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. A “lick” to the hand is actually a hard nose press followed by erratic tongue swipes that more often than not go side to side rather toward the hand. Were one to be so foolish as to ask her to bestow a kiss, one would wind up with her upper incisors resting on the bridge of one’s nose while her tongue scours one’s nostril. Hardly exciting, no matter how limited one’s social life is.
BeeBee also uses her nose to herd other dogs and the cat, and those not used to or intolerant of such behavior find this very boorish and off-putting. It took Frica several days to get used to it, whereas the cat and the hound have pretty much taken an, “Oh, it’s you” approach. If BeeBee gets too hard-nosed–literally!–a well-placed swipe from the cat and an “I don’t care if you can’t hear this, only an idiot would ignore the body language threat that goes with it” snarl from the dog usually settles the matter nicely.