Good Dogs: born that way or not?

Those puppies sure can produce a lot of waste! I’m wearing rubber gloves these days to clean up the enclosure. They’re all pretty good at doing their business on the pee-pads or newspaper. The problem is that there are so many puppies, that someone inevitably steps in something nasty, then scampers on his merry way. Perhaps it’s time for more space.

The puppies graduated to adult sized food bowls. They’d been using small cat bowls, but I had to refill them just to satisfy those little round bellies.

My neighbors helped with the feeding tonight. I got to hear the story of Oscar, their dog. They adopted him when he was 4 months old. He’d been in the shelter for 6 weeks. He’s a black lab. How could a cute little black lab puppy not get snatched up quicker than that? Well, he was a very demanding dog. On their first meeting, he bit his future owner. She wrote him off, but couldn’t quite get him out of her mind. After talking to a trainer, she gave it a shot.

They walked him morning, noon and night to help get some of his energy out. They took him to training classes twice a week for a year and a half. That’s incredible commitment! And it shows. Oscar is a wonderful dog. He’s full of personality and has his own agenda, but he’s a good dog. And he wasn’t just born that way.

How much time can you devote to a dog? How much effort can you put into making his life great, or forging the relationship? Everyone has their limits. Finding the dog that’s right for you takes time. Shelters and rescue organizations can help match your requirements with dogs’ personalities and known behaviors.

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