I introduced Sonny to the vacuum cleaner the other day. I let him sniff it when it was just sitting there and unplugged, and then I let him approach it (read: a bunch of hopping around and play-bowing) when it was sitting there and running. He didn’t seem too afraid of it once I started moving it around to clean the stairs; in fact, he quickly grew bored with the whole lesson and decided to wander off in search of naughtiness, which resulted in my crating him until the chore was done.
But this Roomba is a different story. It moves by itself. Sonny sniffed it while it was docked and charging, and then I pushed the button. Once again, not terrified…but he looked upon it with what I would consider a healthy respect. Didn’t chase it, but was fascinated enough to watch it. He would move away when it got too close to him, but then he’d move cautiously toward it when it turned and rolled away from him.
To show him the Roomba is nothing to fear, I sat on the big dog bed and called him over to join me. I’m typing this as we sit here, calmly observing our helpful little robot dog-hair-sucker.
No sudden moves, Roomba. We are watching you.