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Wednesday, November 05 2014

Other Half is returning home today so I guess I'll have to return his dog.

Unlike the other dogs in this household who start out as his dogs and slowly migrate to become my dogs (Dillon & Ranger - because all good things in life come from Mommy!) Aja has always maintained her allegiance to him. That's a good thing because since she's a patrol dog, his life depends upon her. She absolutely adores him but is slowly deciding that while Daddy does all this fun stuff with her, Mom allows her to be a dog, and that's a lot of fun too.

That may not sound like much but it really is, because many police and military dogs live a very different life from pet dogs. Think Sparta versus Athens. Because we already have so many Athenian dogs living in this household, it is sometimes easier to keep Aja in Sparta. Instead of sleeping in the bed at night, she sleeps in her crate beside the bed. She isn't given free run of the yard because she is valuable so she must either be supervised, or locked in her kennel run. Since she doesn't know any better, unlike the Athenians living in this household, our Spartan pup is happy and doesn't pout when incarcerated.

But my argument is that she is a dog, not a tool, and she has social needs that cannot be met by humans. Aja came to us with few if any canine social skills. Dillon and Ranger have worked on that and she is a happy member of the pack now - a little rough, but she gets along with everyone. She doesn't eat Lily for being a micromanaging bitch, and she doesn't try to play power games with Briar. (That would be Clash Of The Titans)

Since Other Half has been at the ranch, Aja has had the luxury of living in Athens, where dogs are loose in the house, sleep on the bed during the day, clean up Mom's dinner plate, and play chase games with the rancher's dogs next door. This is a quick way to exercise ten dogs at one time. He turns his dogs loose and they immediately run to our fence. It is the high point of everyone's day - fence fighting with the neighbors.

The rancher sits on his porch and plays on his smart phone while his dogs get their exercise. I stand on the porch and watch my dogs get exercise. Even though there is a fence between them, an element of danger exists however. Not only must the dogs avoid crashing into each other, they must avoid crashing into trees.

I saw one of Justin's dogs do this once. UGH! Ouch! It was like watching an episode of Batman. I expected the word "WHAM!" to pop up on the television screen.

Aja loves this game and lasts longer than anyone else. Briar drops out first.

Not only is she carrying a heavy coat, face it, Briar is not designed for speed. Ranger drops out next. Little Blue Dog is a bit of a fat-ass plump now. (But so am I, so who am I to point fingers.) Dillon loses interest quickly because he's a pacifist and would rather carry a bucket around the yard or chew on a board instead. (And this is why Labradors end up in the ER for obstruction surgery.) Lily doesn't bother to run. She just stands there hoping they'll all run into trees.

Aja has a blast. It is the essence of just being a dog and not a Spartan.

And every evening since Other Half's been gone, Aja has spent the night sleeping in front of the bedroom door. Dillon and Lily sprawl in the bed with me, but my Spartan pup, puts herself on guard by the door.  I thought about this one night as I crawled in bed.

What am I afraid of at night?

Not a damned thing.

Posted by: forensicfarmgirl AT 11:54 am   |  Permalink   |  5 Comments  |  Email
Briar should be built for speed. [Maybe too much Athenian food?] However I suspect like a good LGD minimum is best if not a threat let Sparta take care of it. Besides she is a lady and it's beneath her dignity.
Posted by Liz (Vic. Aust) on 11/05/2014 - 04:26 PM
Lol! Pictures are deceiving. Briar is actually a little ribby. That's all hair you see. She has really bad hips so we can't afford to let her get too heavy. Even at her best, my lovable Yeti cannot outrun that police dog. Briar is fast when she gets moving, but Aja makes squirrels count their tail hairs.
Posted by Forensicfarmgirl on 11/05/2014 - 04:44 PM
what a gorgeous dog... Nothing like a dog bred and built to work....
Posted by Judi on 11/05/2014 - 07:26 PM
Aja is a German Shepherd from Czechoslovakia. I do like the look of those dogs. Very athletic.
Posted by Forensicfarmgirl on 11/05/2014 - 07:42 PM
Love it!
Posted by Mindy on 11/07/2014 - 11:50 PM

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