As is to be expected, gentle is not a skill Micah has exactly mastered yet. My brother's dog is very sweet, but, unlike Nugget, she will bite/snap if prompted. Micah was rolling around on top of her, grabbing at her fur/skin, pinching her, and generally giving her reason to get nervous and snap. A number of times, I ran over to Micah, shook my finger at him and said "No" and told him to be gentle. I would demonstrate gentle...and usually he'd resume pinching and rough-housing with the dog.
Well, yesterday and today, Micah was sitting and reading his "Animals" book. The very first page is a picture of about 4 different dogs, with the word "DOG" printed at the top. As Micah reads the book, I ask him what the different animals are, and I ask him what sound they make. If he is able, he tells me, and if he doesn't know the words, I tell him. There are other pictures on the pages (balls, bubbles, balloons), and he likes to point out the different items and tell me what they are. Dog is one of the words he knows well. For the past two days, he points at the dogs, I ask what it is, he says "doggy," and then I ask him "What sound do doggies make?" As I prepare to tell him "Woof, woof," Micah now takes his finger, shakes it at the picture and says "No, no, no!" Yup, apparently he now things that dogs say "No, no, no." I'm guessing I must have inadvertently taught him that this weekend! In fact, tonight, as he was flipping through the book, all he needed to do was look at the picture of the dogs, and he started to shake his finger and say "No, no, no!"