Our dog is 16 years old. She is the best, best dog!! Smart. Oh yes, I am bragging!! My daughter wanted to take her for dog training classes and enter her in the fair. We did the classes although I wondered if Freckles (the dog) was too young. Ok, maybe it was because she was young that I agreed to the class. It was 16 years ago, you try remembering specifics from that long ago. Freckles was such a good and quick learner that the teacher thought she was about 3-5 years older than her actual age :)
Freckles caught on quickly that she wasn't to growl and snap at the kittie cats when I put food out for all of them. She had to wait until they had eaten alot before she could have her part. Smartie pants figured out that if she did the "vulture" thing (hanging her head down above the cats heads and making them nervous, thus making them "finish" faster) or if she was really impatient, she would just gently move her nose in between the cats until they finally moved out of the way, then she could eat quicker!!
Another memories that stands out is how, to this day, she will snag wasps right out of the air. SNAP!! then spit the dead bug out, and keep looking for more. Odd?? oh yeah. My daughter, Jocelyn, and I realized that she is "protecting Jocelyn". As a child she hated bugs, didn't want them around, and would scream (when outside) and there was a wasp around. I'm sure Freckles doesn't remember why, but even when nobody is around, she will go after wasps.
Rabbits. Jocelyn had lots of rabbits. :) I think this happened either her first or second year of having these rabbits. Big white rabbits, New Zealands. We had gone to town and when we came back, there was Freckles out in the yard. Not running to great us, but intently watching something White in the yard. What was it?? Rabbit. How did that big rabbit get out of the cage? maybe the door wasn't secured enough? But Freckles was guarding her! We saw the rabbit try to hop away and Freckles just got up and blocked the rabbit from moving too much and kept an eye on her!! What a good dog!
Another time, one of the cats was trying to bring her kittens up under the back porch and apparently Freckles took a shine to this baby. Near as we can figure, either the baby wandered out, or Freckles when in the picked her up and was guarding her out in the back yard. Well, Mamma cat came back with another kitten and then saw Freckles with the first one!! Freckles just laid between Mamma and Baby! When the cat would go around and try to approach her baby from another angle, Freckles just got up and blocked the way to the baby. Oh my, we watched that poor Mamma try about 5 times to get her poor baby. I know, but it was rather funny and nobody was hurt!! We finally had to distract Freckles away with a bone so Momma and baby could be together!!
Both out children are grown and gone from the house, but Freckles is still here and until last year, going strong. Isn't it funny how demanding they get as they get older. A few years ago, she discovered how to "shiver" as a means to TRY to get into the house. Then awhile after that, she learned how to make her teeth chatter! So funny to see. She will actually do a shiver and teeth chatter routine to try to get into the house! The other day, she forgot she was inside and instead of begging for scrap of food, she did the teeth chattering.. this was way too funny, because it was about 72 in the house!!
We love our Freckles and spoil her. She comes in and "visits" us in the evening. When she gets too warm in the house, out she goes. I fixed her a nice warm house. Hay bales, Board roof, Straw and yes, even a "blankie". I used an older bedspread to help insulate and control the wind. And, of course, she has her kitties. They all snuggle down in there for the night! Oh yes, her house is not open to the weather. It is up under an overhang and well protected from the weather!
I'll have to get a couple of pictures. :) Here she is eating. Notice she is spoiled. Her Food bowl is raised up for her!