Thursday, July 29, 2010

Jack's first days

Jack is doing very well here at Rancho de los Perros. He fits in well, and the other dogs have accepted him without any glitches or problem-areas. Mags is a bit jealous, but I am giving her extra attention and of course she is the only dog allowed on the bed at night, so that helps. But whenever I pet or make a fuss over Jack she finds a ball and brings it to be thrown. I throw it, of course!

There is obviously a "bond of fascination" for Jack with Emma. (Not the other way. Yet, at least.) Whenever Em is close by he gravitates to her and tries to follow her when she's exploring (which is all the time!). But she is too fast and has no obvious interest in him. Much too busy; makes no concessions to little legs. Typical Shorthair. But he watches her with admiration in his eyes and whenever she comes close enough he tries to go with her.

He also has a thing for brush. I trim the yard right up to the high grass so there is a real demarcation line between "lawn" and "tall grass." He will stand in the lawn, close to the high, thick grass and stare into it -- as if he could actually see anything! Then he makes a mighty leap into it, thrashes around for a few seconds, and bounces out again. The sort of thing that Mags never did, and has no interest in now. But it is just the kind of play you would like to associate with a bird dog. Soon now the pheasant wings!

He spends a lot of his day in the front pen, under the big cedar, often with Mags. Mags is very patient with him and has yet to do one of her big, back-off ROWR-ROWRs as are so frequent with some pushy, rude smaller dogs which she despises. He even grabbed loose skin on her lower neck and twisted and she just got loose and moved away. Given time, I think they will be friends. Once he's big enough to matter, I'm certain that Em will enjoy his company on their rounds and she will be a great help in keeping him safe and within bounds. Nevertheless, I will be keeping a close eye on him as he is sure to get a measure of wanderlust at some point. It'll be quite some time before he gets the freedom that Emma has.

This morning he got his nails clipped for the first time. He did NOT like it, but put up with it pretty well. He's sleeping through the night and has learned that whining and howling gets him exactly nothing.

And that's the news about Jack's first four days. Mine, too, as I'm having to adjust to having a puppy on the place again.


BobG said...

It appears that he has imprinted on Emma; he will probably learn quite a bit from her as he gets older.

Rio Arriba said...

Actually, Bob, he has imprinted on ME! Wherever I walk, he has to go, too. If I sit down he has to climb into my lap. (Good climber, by the way. I'm a little concerned about the fence for later.)

But he recognizes Emma as "his kind." I have seen this before, several times: hunting dogs recognize hunting dogs. But Emma has no interest in him now. Total indifference. Later, it may be different. But Emma has only one affectionate relationship in her life and that's me. She will play, sorta and very briefly, with Mags, but there is no real affection there that I can discern. She is all business: hunt, cast, observe, move.

I think they'll make a good team when Jack gets some maturity (and speed!) on him. But for now he has to settle for "worship from afar."