Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Question of the Day.

Yesterday I got a call from Sweet Baboo at about 4:15 in the afternoon.

"Do you know where Jake is?"

Jake?  You mean a$$hole dog?  Because if he's calling me in the middle of the afternoon, from home, asking where he is, then today he's a$$hole dog and the dollar signs, folks, are there for a reason, not just to clean up my language.

No.  I don't know where Jake is.
But I do no one thing: There was a reason I didn't want any more kids.  And it had a lot to do with phone calls in the middle of the day.

As Sweet Baboo was standing there talking to me, he saw Jake come back over the wall, from the open space, where he'd escaped to.  Mind you, when I say open space, we're talking about the boundary between Cibola Wilderness and the city of Albuquerque.  At this point, I don't think Asshole dog will be around much longer, because there are hungry spring bears waking up, hungry enough to probably catch even a fast Blue-heeler, shepherd mix.

But, so.  I take my status as a parent very seriously.  And, we're out of money until the next pay day, I guess...so I had to tie him up.  I hate that.  My neighbors hate it, too, because he's barking continuously.  He has a long tie, access to water and shelter and shade, but of course he's Jake the A$$hole dog, so he wants to be able to roam, even though he has 1/3 of an acre with cool shade, warm dry sunny spots, and a large running water source.

It also occurs to me, right now, that there was another reason I didn't want kids.  It had something do with the sucking sound I heard every payday.  Kids, though, grow up and become people you like to talk to.  What does a dog become?  A larger, noisier expensive child who never grows up?

Chloe, for the record, is relatively well-behaved, stays in the yard, entertains herself, and doesn't cause trouble.  She will run with me.  Jake will not run without Chloe, and I can't run them both at the same time.   She does not tear up drip lines just because she can.  So.  Do I untie Jake so my neighbors can get some peace and the bears can have breakfast, or do I leave him tied up so that he's safe and my neighbors hate me?

That is the Q.O.D.

We're going to have to put an underground, electric fence on our credit card.  If this doesn't work, Jake is either Smokey's breakfast or he goes back to the pound, for a third time (He'd been surrendered twice when we got him.)



  1. If I was your neighbor, I'd say take the chance with the bears. Barking dogs, especially when they're not YOURS are freaking annoying. Thanks for the reminder of why we decided to stay pet free once the chickadee flew the coop.

  2. Wow-not good choices but the "already surrenderd twice thing" may be a bad sign. Whatever you decide, you are NOT a "bad parent"..

  3. that is why we have cats.

  4. Does Asshole dog bring you joy and comfort when he's Jake? Or, do you think Chloe would be devistated without him? If so, the neighbors will get over it - as long as the barking is temporary. Tie him up till payday, then figure something out. Remember, a dog running around the yard (not calmly sleeping like Chloe might be) is more of a deterrent for thieves. Even if you have to surrender him for a third time - you did all you could to give him a great home, and you should not feel bad.
    Annoying dogs or worrying about break-ins? That's the QOD.
    Good luck!

  5. All good questions! Chloe is our "watch dog" and my main companion. She barks only at intruders rather that just random things, and looks pretty ferocious when she does.
    We've decided our last ditch attempt is an invisible electric "containment system." This might also keep him off the windows as well. I'm pretty excited, maybe I'll have clean windows again, and intact screens.

  6. Just a note about the underground fence. My parents got the same thing for our dogs that wouldn't stay close to home in Idaho open space. Only problem is, they learn that if they just grin and bear it, they can leap past the underground line, get shocked for a few seconds, keep running, and the shock eventually goes away. Not sure if the fences are better now, but just sayin' before you hear more of that sucking sound come payday.
    Good luck with him...sometimes the wanderlust in a dog never goes away, no matter what we humans want for them. Don't they know *we* know better?! Silly puppy...

  7. Kennel or Crate training is a great thing. I thought it was mean at first also but once we tried it I changed my mind. When you are around they run around like normal dogs when you are not they are safe in their kennel.

  8. Anonymous10:19 AM

    My husband's asshole dog quickly learned to suffer through the pain of going through the electric underground fence. So now she stands on the OTHER side, barking. Wanting to come back home, but not willing to brave the "suffering" when it involves returning.

    Lovely conundrum, really. Grrrrr.

  9. The beauty of this system is that it will be buried at the base of a masonry wall that already encircles the back yard. This is a wall that takes him some time and effort to get over, but until now, there's been nothing to deter him from the attempt. I think it will work, because it takes him some time just to get up and over the wall, and so far, he's responded very well to training.

  10. sadly boy dogs will always be more naughty than the girls. blue heelers are cattle dogs. they are bred to be on a farm doing their thing so it will be hard to train a dog to not be who they are. They NEED massive amounts of exercise as they are working dogs - not really pets. have you tried calling the dog whisperer ? :).

  11. Can you leave him inside your house? Dogs don't have to be outside. My dog stays home alone every day in his crate, and he's fine with it. If you don't have a crate, would you be able to just leave him loose in the house? As long as he is house broken, this should not be a problem unless he's destructive. If he is destructive, maybe you can try crate training.

  12. My dogs stay in the house during the day. That way they don't annoy the neighbors, they don't get out, and they don't destroy (as fast) the drip system.

    I also bought a few citronella collars (kmart has them cheap-sh) that spray when they bark. put those on them when they seem to be in a barking moood and need to be outside. it works for my dogs, might not work for yours.

    best wishes

  13. Its a blue heeler thing. My parents had one and when he was younger, it was impossible to keep him home. They live in a spot with lots of acreage backing up to a lake. Jack would bound his happy butt over to the lake and jump in people's boats. We ALWAYS had to go get him, and trust me, he wasn't easy to catch. My dad had to save him from a "kidnapping" one time after he jumped in someone's truck (and they proceeded to drive off). I imagine they would have returned him when they saw how disobedient he was. Anyway, it caused massive headache for the family but he grew out of it. Now he is the most patient dog, and won't go out of sight. I wish you lots of luck and patience with Jake.


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