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Puppy Dog Blues

 
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Sun 13 Jul, 2003 06:25 am
I don't think they knew it would be aggressive. We kept her almost two months before it surfaced.
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msolga
 
  1  
Reply Mon 14 Jul, 2003 12:56 am
Oh, sorry Edgar, I thought that's what the "X" meant.
Hope you're feeling OK after doing what you have to do. Crying or Very sad
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Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Mon 14 Jul, 2003 04:40 am
I had a lab once, who had been raised by being spoiled by others. The previous companion asked me to take the dog, rather than those with whom he had roomed, and who had spoiled her. They were very offended--to hell with them. She chewed up many of my items, including a very expensive pear-wood recorder. Finally, she totally trashed the house when i was gone one day. I took her out back, and tied her up to a tree. I then fed and watered her, but would not look at or speak to her. After three days, i would take her out to walk her on a lead, and was very severe about her following the rules, just so. When she had behaved for a few days (an eternity for dogs) on the regime, i allowed her back in the house. Within a few weeks, i could walk her without the lead, under voice control--only the sudden appearance of a squirrel could interfer with her devotion to "the rules." She was good with children, but then, she'd already whelped when i got her (she was about three then, and had been bred way to young), so she knew about puppies--and seemed to take children as such. I'd never have been able to do this without devoting lots of time, and she would not have been a safe dog to have had in a family without a good deal of vigorous training as a puppy--which she simply did not have. She was one of the most intelligent dogs i'd ever known, however, and could be great fun.
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Mon 14 Jul, 2003 05:05 am
I would have disciplined the dog and trained it. I just could not trust that she would be safe around my grandkids. I still believe that labs, generally speaking, are a fine animal.
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Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Mon 14 Jul, 2003 06:02 am
I agree with you EB, both about labs, as well as about the children. It was dificult enough to take a bitch which had already whelped and had never been trained, and make a reasonably socialized dog out of her--she definitely considered herself to be second only to me in the house (a few of those who had spoiled her as a puppy lived in the same house, and hence their resentment that i was given the care of the dog), and paid absolutely no attention to the other residents, in terms of minding or "the rules." After the three day exile to the back yard (those with whom i roomed were out of town, thankfully), and then the disciplined walks, i could keep up her adherence to rules by simply shaming her, showing her a broken window (she had a habit of diving through them, if she saw something of interest in the yard), or someone's chewed personal item. But this had more to do with her acknowledgement of the alpha male's authority, and i'd not have trusted her alone with adults uknown to her, let alone children.

Her original companion had named her Black Sabbath. Sabbath was a fearless snake killer, and it was hilarious to see her in the tall grass in the woods, leaping straight up in the air from all four legs, to avoid a snake's strike. I knew her to kill several black snakes, and once she brought me a water moccasin (you can imagine my delight). I don't know that she ever took on a timber rattler, she might have come off the worse for it, but she was successful because no snake ever got it's fangs into her. She was obsessed with snakes, she'd run off squirrels, coons, coyotes, but she killed every snake she saw, including little garter snakes. When i moved to a home where it would not have been fair to keep her (small house in a city), i left her with friends who had known her from a puppy, and she lived out her life, probably killing snakes, in a large stretch of wood in the Mississippi river bottoms.
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Mon 14 Jul, 2003 05:25 pm
What a tale. I would love to have been there.
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