Sunday, January 07, 2007

Assessing the dog

1. Seems to have established good relationship with other animals.
2. Very tolerant of being held on lap and petted.
3. Has not barked much during the time I have known him (about 20 hours).
Barking moments: when CD was barking at him at his house; when he and CD got into a squabble (although his mouth was quickly occupied by biting back; when he was in the guest room alone and the door was shut. Even then it was a bark ... wait ... bark. When he heard Brian calling to him he remained quiet until Brian got there. He did not even bark when someone knocked on the door.
4. Has not had any accidents. He spends most of his time toddling around the house sniffing everything, but has not seemed to feel the need to smell the place up to pee.
5. Walks slowly, even his trotting run is fairly slow. This means that Brian can walk him without frustration.
6. So far has only got on furniture when Brian has picked him up to hold on his lap or sleep in the bed with him. He did not choose to use the "steps" Hubby had made for him.
7. Very mellow personality. He tends moves a lot -- he seems to be almost constantly toddling and and sniffing, but he is slow, quiet, and calm.

1. Woke Brian up in middle of night with licking. Brian assumed he needed to go out and got up to let him. I need to make certain that this dog does not regularly need to pee at 1:00am.
2. Grooming costs/commitment. I don't know how much that will be, but it is a factor. Of course it was likely to be a factor in all the breeds that Brian was considering. This dog definitely shows the influence of Cocker Spaniel in his coat. Though Cocker lovers would probably be horrified, I have no intention of having him trimmed with a fringe. I do need to find out how much it will cost to have him given a short, all-over clip. With such a clip, he should not need too much brushing.
3. Not particularly obedient. If you call him he clearly understands that you want him and then seems to decide whether he wants to come to you. About 60% of the time he does. We will need to teach him to sit and stay in order to get food at the very least. Not because he makes a pain of himself, just because I understand that to be important for him to understand his place in the pack.
4. I'm not certain that he is as affectionate as Brian really wanted. He accepts cuddling, but does not necessarily seek it out. Right now Brian is sitting in a big comfy chair watching cartoons. The dog could easily be in his lap. Instead he is lying on the carpet behind my chair. He will follow around whoever is moving, and will sometimes go lie down in the guest room alone for a while. That is the room with his crate and rug from home and where we fed him. He doesn't go into the crate, but I suspect he likes to lie next to it because it smells like home. We've brought the rug out of the crate into the living room.

It is the relationship with Brian that matters most. I just need to be certain that Brian will be happy with this level of affection. It is definitely more than CD. CD would never relax. Even when she rolls to let you rub her tummy you get the feeling that she is performing a trick. DCS will settle in Brian's lap, sigh and lay his end down to accept the petting that is clearly his due. So far after about 10 minutes he wants to go exploring again and doesn't seek out Brian. In fact when he wants to stop patrolling the house he has been coming to rest behind my chair for a few minutes, not going to Brian. I'm not sure Brian is noticing. Whenever he wants to the dog he gets him and holds him.

If this is enough for Brian, then this dog appears to be as close to a perfect addition to the household as we could hope to find. Fortunately the woman's policy is that she will refund the adoption fee for one month, so we will have plenty of time to make certain they bond. I have to call her this afternoon and either make arrangements for him to go home or to sign the full adoption contract and pay the fee. (BTW, Brian is paying the fee. We will be responsible for on-going expenses, but he had to be willing to put a couple months allowance into the dog.)

1 comment:

  1. ooooh, i didn't mention the carrying around, by the child in question of many little dog treats in the pocket.

    that really buys a lot of affection with some dogs.


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