Monday, March 14, 2016

The Decision

I am not generally someone who takes a long time in making decisions.
I weigh the pros and cons and quickly make up my mind.
With issues of lesser importance I throw caution to the wind and decide
without much ado.

However, when it comes to adding a new "being" to the farm...
I take my good old time....
chewing it over and over...
making sure my final decision "feels right" from every angle.


I know, I know....cut to the chase, you say.
But that's just the point.
I can't.
Not quite yet.

We had the visit.


He's a really good boy.
The dogs liked him.


So, why did we not keep him on the spot?
This one is a really big decision.
REALLY big.

So, I am going to chew it over right here with you.

We took a walk with this fellow on a leash.
He's very strong...VERY strong, and pulled on the leash quite a bit on the way to the barn.
So, he needs work with leash manners.
He was afraid of the farm animals...barking, but wagging his tail the whole time.
He was quite fixated on the chickens, and being so strong was hard for me to hold...
but not impossible.
These were the only things that gave me pause...and they are not unfixable, right?
He is definitely part Staffordshire terrier...the "pit" in him is visible, both in facial structure
and body structure....although he is mixed with another unknown breed, that softens his looks.
I cannot blackball him based on his family history, though...
that would be an unfair prejudice.



On the other hand, when you talk to him he is engaging and looks you in the face...
trying to read your expressions.
He is super friendly and a little goofy...you can tell he still has a lot of puppy in him.
He is loving, affectionate, very sweet natured.
He showed no signs of any aggressive behavior towards the other dogs...not even when they all came running toward him (Sam with his hackles up)... he just stood there wagging his tail
ready to accept whatever they were willing to give.

His coloring is quite unique...black and white, but the black is slightly brindle.
He can't control his licker.
He very willingly rolled over and showed me his belly and loved having it rubbed.
He has the softest fur and skin that I have ever felt on a dog, except on a tiny puppy.


He is a real cuddler.
His tail wags all the time.
We don't know if he is housebroken, however, he never goes potty in his indoor pen,
only outside in his yard.
There is much more positive than negative.
MUCH more.


So, we are going to have another visit on Tuesday.
At this point the farm will not be new to him and we can better assess his ability to learn.
Decisions....decisions.......
To be continued.

17 comments:

Dawn McHugh said...

when we got Sol last year he was being retired from an assistance dog, unfortunately the family he came from had not kept up reaffirming his training, he would walk on a lead but when he saw another dog he would lurch towards it and was put in a halti, we now no longer use the halti and can walk him anywhere we have corrected the problem, when he was first brought here he would run and bark at all the animals we continued to check this behavior we no longer have this issue and can take him among livestock although we dont take him into the alpacas they dont like dogs, only you can make this choice but behavior issues can be corrected with patience love and persistence.

FAST SOS said...

I'm a massive softie and would have caved in by now if I were in your shoes! that being said it is right for you to be hesitant when adding a mouth to feed, but he seems like he'll do you proud with a bit of training and steering in the right direction

daisy gurl said...

You are wise to take your time with this one. Your farm is so peaceful with its present souls, I'm sure it is difficult to think about upsetting it. When he visits, do you keep him leashed the whole time? I sure hope things work out for the little guy. He'd be blessed to have you in his life.

Karen Ann said...


You know I work with rescue dogs - and here is my two cents. I have one that is "interested in my chickens".. he has lived here for four years now and we manage just fine, but he cannot be loose when the chickens are free roaming.. because he will kill them. Even if I am in the yard with him. That drive does not go away, so be sure it's not just "interest" in the chickens.

As for Pits.. I have known many who are wonderful family dogs and farm dogs. I hate that they have a stigma. That being said, they do possess certain traits that I'm sure you are already aware of - some dogs much stronger than others. You are very wise to get to know this dog more before taking him in. Might be a great addition, might not. You're doing the right thing by taking your time - both for the dogs sake, and for yours.

Candice said...

All of those who have posted before me make good points. We are all amazed at the congeniality of all of your animals who seem to live in such harmony. It's good to take your time with them, get to know them and hope that each visit will present new challenges for you to assess. The four dogs that this one will have as his mentors will hopefully help him learn what is expected of any dog in your care. The fact that he seems to be so eager to please warms my heart. Whatever decision you make will be the best for all concerned.

Country Gal said...

He sounds very sociable which is a good thing and he gets along with the other dogs and sounds like he is trying to understand and listen to you which is a good thing to he has a good attention span then as for the farm animals most dogs don't take to them right away especially when they have never seen or been around them big farm animals scare lots of dogs and they do the fight or flight thing , with that it is just a matter of training and getting him used to them and he knowing they do not pose a threat to him then he should be ok like any dog or horse one has to work with them , I am sure he will pick it all up fast and be comfortable around the farm animals they also learn from other dogs to and if he sees how they are with the animals he may just get it and all will be good . I hope all works out he seems to fit in with all of you in the photos . Lovely photos by the way to . Thanks for sharing , Have a good day !

Marsha said...

Our dog is too interested in our chickens (and squirrels that run on our land) but we have already decided that a shock collar will need to be a training device that we will add when we let the chickens free range. Just a thought, thanks.

Rebecca said...

My gut feeling on reading this is that there are some real issues here. I am not a dog trainer, but the fact that you hesitated....that makes me wonder. First instincts are something to pay attention to.
And another thought. Are you pulled to this dog because he looks like Annie? Something to think about.

Karen L. Bates said...

Tough decision but I feel your hesitation may have real concerns behind it.

Denise at Autumn Sky said...

I'm no help here. I want them all to have a loving home where they can thrive. I love the last photo with the dogs checking on him, maybe wanting him to play ball.

jaz@octoberfarm said...

and of course i hope you take him because your p[lace is heaven!

Deidre Lee said...

I was worried when you posted his picture. You are a smart lady and didn't need me sharing my unasked for advice. Since you have shared your hesitation, I'll share mine. He looks like a pit terrier mix of some sort. I am a lover of all breeds and do not subscribe to the idea that some are more dangerous to humans than others, but some are more dangerous to animals. Especially if not raised with them. I have experienced the loss of chickens and cats twice with some variation of this mix. Sadly pit terrier seems to enjoy small animals the most if not socialized from a pup. You have such a lovely safe haven for animals. I would not want to risk that peace. I'm sorry to say it. He deserves a good home and yours is the best.

Jean Bernick said...

Bev,I appreciate your willingness to give a good home to a resue dog,but was concerned when I saw that it was a pit mix. I have heard so much about pit bulls attacking people and children as well that I would be reluctant to adopt one. We also were aware of a case where a pit bull attacked a litter-mate of our Sheltie who was being walked by a 12 year old in his neighborhood. Only rapid response to the vet kept the dog alive.
I admit that I am prejusticed and you will have to make up your own mind about this dog.
I know that you will make the right decision for your farm family/

Missy George said...

I am sure you will make the right decision for the right reasons. I'm a little concerned about the breed...One on one they can be wonderful dogs. I'm a little concerned about the " pack" affect... I think they tend to get wound up and that's when things get out of control. I'm also a little concerned that you had to rethink it... Second thoughts. Whatever you do, I hope it is for the best for everyone. Xxxxxxooooo

Carine said...

this dog looks like he loves you. that is what strikes me. I read that this kind of dog is very faithful to his/her owner

Terra Hangen said...

I don't have any advice to give you, I think you will make the right decision for the dog and you and all concerned.

diane in wis said...

I think that you are making the right decision. Anytime you have that much concern over a decision.....there is a good reason for it. Perhaps this dog would be better off in a situation without a lot of other animals around it. You seem to have a lot of intuition when it comes to animals....I think there is a good reason you're hesitating. Wait a while....I'm sure just the right rescue dog will come along!

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