Monday, April 7, 2008

The following post was not written by me, Ransom.
I lifted this post directly off my Spokesperson's personal blog, "Dumplings, Three".

Here are Gram and Gus! This was only my second time meeting Gus, but what a profound difference! Saturday evening his response to my arrival made Kujo look like a kitten! Last night, he sat at regal attention as my car pulled into Gram's drive, but he never so much as growled or even rose to a standing position. I was expecting a repeat performance of the previous evening, when he had repeatedly lept to the top of the six foot fence snarling savagely at me, furious at my audacity to approach 'his' territory. I miscalculated. Having been introduced to me once, he no longer regarded me an intruder and sat calmly (though attentively) as he watched me approach the fence and let myself in.

I think Gus is a gorgeous animal. I was even more impressed by his quickness to learn and eagerness to be obedient. Gram only acquired Gus recently. Believe it or not, she had located him through the German Shepherd Rescue group in KC. He looked awful when she first brought him home...just skin and could count his ribs. (When Gram brought him to the vet right after acquiring him, he weighed only SIXTY pounds. At his previous visit to the vet (before his long siege of neglect after his original owner was sent to prison) he had weighed NINETY pounds and had been fit and trim at THAT weight.) He looked just awful when Gram first brought him home, but, look at him now! That's what a month or so of tender loving care from a Grandma will do for a critter! He is five years old but has not apparently had any previous training, apart from attack training. No obedience training...didn't even know how to walk on a leash. In spite of his lack of training,I noticed right off how obedient and attentive he is to Gram, and I was REALLY impressed with how quickly he learned new rules. I noticed that he tended to come from behind Gram and push his way in front of her each time she went in or out of the house. That didn't seem safe. So, Gram and I worked all of about five minutes with Gus and we were able to teach him to SIT and wait for Gram to go through the door first and not to come through the open doorway himself UNTIL Gram gives him verbal permission to do so. Putting him on a leash, I saw again just how POWERFUL this dog is. He could drag me like a straw doll around the yard. However, after just the briefest of instruction regarding proper leash etiquette, he was heeling beside me, able to walk nicely with the leash slack.

I really had my heart set on one of Violet's puppies...but, quite truthfully, I'd take Gus over one of the puppies. Of course GRAM would never part with him! Boy, I like that dog a LOT!

Here are Gus and Violet, together! Lisa and I were originally planning on trying to acclimate them to each other tonight, but, on the spur of the moment, we decided to get together yesterday evening instead. Lisa brought Violet down from KC and we met up in Osceola at Gram's. We were expecting fireworks...based on Violet's reaction to Gus a week or so earlier. Wrong. Violet came up to the gate with her tail wagging and her body language relaxed! And, Gus, for his part, remained the gentleman he has always been towards Her Highness, Miss Violet.

Have to finish out with a few more pictures of Gus!...
(Lisa took the last five photos in this post! I am wearing Grant's oversized fleece jacket...but I wore it on purpose thinking that if Gus reverted to Kujo, at least I would have baggy clothing on to make me look bigger and to maybe save me from catching as much of his teeth! You laugh, but I am a very practical person and I wasn't ruling out getting bit along the way!)

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