JD Allinder


In Posts on January 19, 2011 at 8:53 pm

Jane’s four years old today. (Of course with a rescue dog there’s guess work involved, but her first post-rescue examination, conducted by Dr. Laura Chamberlain at Mid-Michigan Equine Services on September 19, 2008, aged her one year and eight months. So her birthday became January 19.) To celebrate, we took a ten-mile hike at Crosswinds Marsh with Annika and Duke. It was colder than I anticipated, and I’m afraid I didn’t dress warmly enough, but we made it through the walk in a little under three hours.

Overall it was a pretty mellow outing and, aside from Jane feasting on horse poop and Duke rolling in something especially stinky and dead, it was satisfying exercise for all participants. Jane disappeared from sight multiple times, but she always emerged from the brush or was found waiting around the next corner, and that is, I’d say, the single biggest difference in Jane the adult vs. Jane the puppy I brought home from Broken Road Rescue in 2008: she stays with me. She’s still got a strong desire to be off on her own, but she’s learned to do her wandering (and grazing) within earshot of my calls. Jane the four year old completely understands that we’re a pack and we stick together. I couldn’t ask for a better adult dog.

Something else that’s changed about Jane since her wild youth is her appearance. She’s put on weight, of course, but the shape of her head has changed. Rather than carrying it constantly in a relaxed, dome shape with limp ears, it’s more alert, erect, with ears pricked and pulled tighter. I know it sounds weird, but her head is often indistinguishable from a Lab’s when we’re on the trail. Annika has noticed this, too, and she suggests (and I concur) that the way Jane carries herself on our outings is more active and engaged. She’s certainly more confident than the skittish puppy I adopted. She owns the woods – or wherever we walk. It’s hers. And I believe a big part of that is simply telling her it’s so over and over. If you praise someone long enough, they eventually believe it. And Jane definitely thinks she’s the bee’s knees. I admit she’s a little spoilt, but I couldn’t care less. She deserves it.

  1. I love this picture!! I have a black & tan coonhound SUnnybelle and I wrap her up like that all the time!! She loves to be wrapped in a blanket, she’ll stay like that for about an hour and get nice and toasty!! I’m new to blogging and am excited to see there are other dog lovers out there!! Coonhound lovers for that matter!! Sunnybelle was viciously attacked in May and now we are having to do a lot of behavior work with her. I’ve decided to blog about it because it has been such a challenge and the learning curve is high!
    Jane is a beautiful dog, looks like you guys have a lot of fun in the snow!!

  2. Sunnybelle’s beautiful. I’m so sorry to hear she was attacked. My old lab mix, Georgia, was attacked a couple of times, and she worked through it in time. I imagine Sunnybelle will, too. I carry pepper spray in my pocket every time I go out with Jane. It works. You might consider getting some.

    Thanks for your comment. I look forward to checking out your blog.

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