Sunday

As You May Know...

As many know, we have several dogs to say the least and with that being said, I see more than one personality in them and I will tell you they are all different, not good, not bad, just different, just like kids.  Each one has different needs, personalities, wants and desires. We think they would be the same, but they're not.  Some are needy, some independent, some loving, some outgoing and some are even aloof.  I have often wondered why this happens to some of our pups when I see dogs come back to visit but they are all over the gamut.  I know they left with the same upbringing and personality and I also think that most dogs start out the same, it’s the human aspect that makes them different.  We have a lot of people that visit just to see the dogs and watch and play with them.  If we come in the house with the dogs of their choice and play and interact with them. Everybody want to take Clancy home. He will always put on the charm, will jump on the couch with them and put his head in their lap.  I tell them if you want Clancy, you have to make him, he's inside every dog, but you have to work at it.  In the past, I've always told everyone that leaves with a pup, “Remember, whatever you put in, you will get out, nothing more, nothing less” It’s up to the owner, the fate of their dog is in their hands, it’s that simple.



 This brings me to my point. Why are they different? I think when a dog gets comfortable with the owner, they take on the personality and traits of the master or do what they are allowed to get away with. Sometimes we make it too complicated with our “stuff”. They are simple animals, and want nothing more than to be lead and loved.  They look to us as the “alpha” in their life. I have seen it time and time again, when something goes wrong, the human stops being the "alpha" and the dog takes up the position and this should never happen. We need to be stronger than the dog.
As I said earlier, mine are different. Abbie came back to us as a pup, she went to a house with 3 young kids and Abbie had problems or so we thought  After just a few days, Elaine and I looked at her and wondered what had gone wrong.   


Several days ago, I had most of the dogs up except Abbie. I had just got in the hot tub and as usual, Abbie got up on a small corner of the tub and stood there looking at me for just a minute. Then she wanted to get comfortable so she knelt down like a lamb folding both front legs down and resting on them before she curled into a small circle. At that point, she watched me on that very small space that had to be uncomfortable for her, where just a few feet away, she could have stretched out and lounged on a comfortable throw. A few days earlier, I was in the family room and had shooed her away because I didn’t want her to be involved in what I was doing. Elaine, knowing I had done this, watched her go to my “fuzzy” house slippers and push them together with her nose. She gathered them between her paws and laid her head on them. Elaine told me later Abbie “just missed you” and wanted to be near you, but you sent her away and she was crushed. 

Many times, we see dogs that come in and have anxiety issues, with people or other dogs.  I am stern with my dogs when needed but it always pays off because they will look to me as being in charge.  As a rule, when the guest dog realizes that their is a "boss", they relax and become my Velcro dog.   Never leaving my side, sitting under my me and sleeping in bed with me.  It’s not because I baby talk to them, it’s because they are comfortable with their surroundings and want to submit, this is their nature.

All of our dogs want to be near us in one way or another because we have always loved them and been in charge, touched them, played with them and included them in the many things we do each and every day. They are a part of our life and we are a part of theirs. Something that has always angered me is when I hear the comment, “it’s only a dog”. They are correct in that statement, but they are only a dog, because that is all “they” made” them to be.  I happen to want more, they are my friend, companion, cohort and at times my playmate. They make me feel special, needed and full of life. For the people that say that, they have never been loved by a dog. I feel sorry that they have never had that relationship and you have missed a great opportunity. I will tell you, it's wonderful and a good trade-off.

It's always a battle of the wills with them... always...
Be in charge but give your dog a hug, you might be surprised with what you get in return.   Ken

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