Friday, April 21, 2017

Jack and Jesus

Jack and I have had a few "come to Jesus" moments in the past few days. He's just pretty wild and I can't say that he's settling down. The influence of Max and Theo isn't particularly helpful. Male shepherds are the only creatures I know where adding more of them lowers the collective IQ of the group. Actually, the same seems to be true for male Republicans, the "Trump effect."

Our view from the pole barn. You can see a faint rainbow
against the dark cloud that was still producing lightning.
Max is very high strung, bordering on insane, and he pulls Theo in that direction when they are together in the dog yard. Jack is in a kennel adjacent to the dog yard, so he sees and hears them barking and acting stupid and he's desperate to join in. I can't keep Jack in the dog yard, however, because he climbs out. I haven't been walking much the past few days because of work and weather, but I have made a point of taking Jack, Theo, and Max to the pasture for some ball playing each day. Today I kept Jack indoors mostly, wanting to socialize him a bit and not have him isolated in that one kennel all day. The result was a huge amount of pent up energy that came out as rather aggressive behavior towards another dog late this afternoon. I've taken him to the ground a number of times, but the alpha male approach really doesn't have much effect on this dog. I wish we had a female rottie who would just take him down and sit on him until he learned to behave.
He actually settled down pretty quickly on the hike. He wasn't
sure about walking in the rain and thunder for the first mile
or so, but I convinced him we were going on.

Maya and I took him on a hike this afternoon, starting out just when our daily thunderstorm was moving in. We were going, regardless, because I had to subdue Jack. We were all soaked within the first half mile, but it was warm, spring rain. Besides, none of us is so sweet that we were in any danger of melting in the rain. We did take refuge under the pole barn at Pleasant Grove while we waited for the lightning and thunder to move on, then we continued our hike.

I had an Easy Walk harness and a prong collar on Jack, with a leash attached to each of them. He really wasn't too bad on the leash, the harness did most of the work, but what settled him down the most was him finding a rock to carry. He carried that damn rock for three miles before he finally dropped it so he could let his tongue hang out so he could pant properly. He tried a stick for a bit but ended up with another idiot rock that he brought home.

Jack and his stupid rock.
I'm not sure what the answer is for this dog. He really needs someone working with him on a daily basis. One thing that would help is being able to contain him in an outdoor space that was big enough for another dog or two. On Sunday I'm going to make Sparky's former kennel escape proof, somehow. It's big enough for Jack plus Theo and even Max, so they can work out their stupid on each other.

The sky was very pretty after the storm.

Maya wasn't deterred by the storm or the rock
carrying shepherd who accompanied us.
The woods are really turning green.

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