Tuesday, March 3, 2015

A Sheepdog Named Buddy - and His Dish

I recently wrote about my pets, past and present.  Doing so, I was reminded of the antics of the Old English Sheepdog we had when I was growing up.

A dog with two names

His name was Buddy.  Well, actually he was registered as "Somebody's Bluebeard," but we only ever called him Buddy.  His bloodlines were pure, but hip dysplasia was prominent in his genes.  I am a little foggy on the details, but he became ours on several conditions. My parents had to agree that: 

  • we would give him a good home
  • never sell him or allow him to sire a litter
  • never neuter him.  
Strange and potentially difficult requirements - but true.  We honored the agreement. 

My Mom and Buddy

My parents probably lived to regret the "never neuter" clause. If any dog needed his hormones to be calmed a notch, it was Buddy.  But - that's another story!

Our dogs lived on a large fenced area of our property in a beautiful big doghouse my dad built for them. We fed them heartily out of big metal dishes.  Almost as soon as Buddy came to live with us, he developed two habits which we could never break.  I remember them well, because they had a direct affect on me.


A Dog Who Liked to Play Tag 

Buddy would finish eating, then immediately pick up his metal dish and run away with it.  It was often my job to feed the dogs and bring their dishes inside, so they would be ready to be filled for the next meal.  A game of chase would ensue, which was exactly what Buddy hoped for. I would rarely be the winner.  

I would try playing with our other dog and pretend to be indifferent, with the hope that Buddy would drop the dish where I could snatch it. Sometimes this would work.  Sometimes it was just too cold out to wait for that to happen.  I would go back inside, knowing the dish would have to be collected before I fed the dogs again.

We would be tired of this game of chase long before Buddy ever was!

Dirty Dishes

The second habit was the reason it was so important to bring the dishes indoors after the dogs finished eating. If a dish was left outside, the next thing Buddy would do was pee in it.  Yes - he urinated regularly in his own food dish!  Sometimes he filled our other dog's dish as well. We could not figure out why.  

I will never forget having to knock slushy, frozen urine out of the dog dishes before bringing them inside. Fortunately, we had a sink in our mud room where I could scrub them with hot and soapy water, prior to filling them again with dog food.

Our Buddy Dog - just as I remember him! A black nose buried in a mass of fur!
My family and I loved Buddy, and so did our other dog.  He was a pet with numerous good qualities - and a few really strange quirks!

Have you ever heard of a dog doing something like this?

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14 comments :

  1. Pets can be so funny and have some weird habits. I had a pug one time who took it upon himself to make my daughter's's life miserable to a huge degree. Whatever she sat down the dog would eat, cell phones, school books etc. She was completely house broke, but this never stopped her from getting up very early in the morning and sneak down the hallway to leave her a little good morning treat laying directly in front of her bedroom door. Every. Single. Morning! You would hear her scream down the hallway!

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    1. That would have been a few hard habits to live with!

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  2. I wonder why the do not neuter condition was imposed, particularly when they didn't want him to have a litter.
    I grew up with German Shepherds. One of them had a passion for sherry. If a visitor arrived and was given a glass Jedda would shoot forward and drain the glass as soon as they put it down. Weird.

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    1. I never understood the do not neuter part either. I like the name Jedda! Was wine appealing - or just sherry?!

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  3. He certainly sounds unique lol.

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  4. We've raised Old English Sheepdogs for over thirty years and I've never heard of that. We love the breed. They are simply the best of the doggie world. But urinating anywhere near his dog dish? That goes against everything. Usually dogs won't 'do their business' even in the vicinity of where they eat. Weird!
    He sure was a magnificent dog, though. Would had loved to have met him!

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    1. He was a great dog. Unfortunately, my parents were busy raising 4 little girls, and he didn't get the grooming he deserved. Living outside he would get quite muddy and into burrs. My dad used to shave him in the spring (body - not his head) and then he would look like an old man in long underwear!

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  5. Although I've never heard of a dog doing something as absurd as urinating in his food dish, I have to admit that it's those kinds of memories that make us smile when we look back on them.
    Buddy was a lucky dog, clearly he was much loved.

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    1. And I actually think he loved us as much as we loved him!

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  6. Buddy reminds me of our first lab, Fort. He was a loving, wonderful dog, but he had so much energy I could barely keep up with him. Buddy looks like he was so full of life! Glad you're back with us in the blogging world!

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  7. Susan, I remember there was many a night when he would pick up the dish still half full of food, and spill it across the ground in his eagerness to play! He was one of a kind, and a wonderful Buddy! <3

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  8. Sounds like he was quite a character!

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  9. I really enjoyed reading this article! I have just launched a book on The Old English Sheepdog care, here is the link http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00TH3FKOM/

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