In other news.............
Spidey and Flash getting a little taste of freedom as another volunteer and I took them out to the play in the exercise yard together.
This is Frida!
What a gorgeous dog! After last weeks happy reunion with an old foster dog, I was pleasantly surprised this week when I came upon this and other photos (thanks oh magic of the internet and networking sites) of my once foster puppy. Frida was among a flea ridden litter of cattle dog pups once abandoned in a flooding barn and later being given away at a local park or so the story goes . One thing led to another and Frida found herself being sponsored by Protege Canine Rescue. I had the delight of fostering her. Make no mistake, a typical cattle dog pup, this puppy was a handful! I knew from day one that this adorable pup, while clearly cute to anyone that laid eyes on her, was NOT going to grow to be a dog that would fit into just any household. This is a high energy, independent and intelligent breed. Without proper amounts of exercise and attention this pup could become a serious problem OR with the proper amount of exercise and some training could become a marvelous dog indeed.
It is so important that when a person or family chooses a dog that they take into account the energy level, intelligence level, breed behaviors and general health and coat maintenance that will come with the dog of choice Also it is very important to understand not just the standards of the breed, if choosing a purebred dog, but the individual dogs personality. An Australian Shepard bred from working dogs may act very differently than one bred for a house pet and even puppies from the same litter may become very different dogs. Many possible adopters have preconceived notions about certain breeds of dog, or little knowledge about differing breeds and may make adoption choices based on misinformation.
Last summer I was volunteering at an adoption event as a dog handler. I was holding the leash of a lovely brindle boxer who was about 8 years old. She was quiet and sweet, playful and very mellow. A family came along and the teenage son walked over with a gushing look of love on his face. " I LOVE boxers!" he said "Mom, look! This is the dog for us!"
The mother never came near the boxer. She waved it away, saying "That dog needs too much attention, lots of walks, tons of exercise, we don't have time for that dog! Boxers have too much energy!" Instead the woman walked over to a 75 pound husky/Akita?/Great Dane? mix that was under a year old. She cooed over the dog as the volunteer handler struggled to manage the big exuberant animal . The woman asked several questions of the volunteer and asked her son to consider the larger dog.
The woman wanted a family friendly dog with lower energy requirements but enough spunk to say, keep the family laughing, and the older boxer was a perfect fit. The young husky mix on the other hand would require a lot of time, patience, training and exercise. The problem: the woman was not taking into account the age and personality of the dogs as well as the breed. It is also very likely that the woman was unfamiliar with the breeds that made up the large mixed dog.
Did you know that many behavior problems are the result of lack of exercise? Next time Fido tips over the hamper and deposits dirty underpants all over your home ask yourself,.....Did Fido get a long enough walk before I left the house today? Or did he need to all out run? Do you know how much exercise Fido needs? Remember, a tired dog is a good dog!