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April 2012

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bang head here

Jiggy Jag and his Warning (label) Vest

The weather is having an identity crisis because I just drove through a sun belt, a rain shower and some pea soup fog, all in the same block. It's cold and windy, too. I am ready for summer as I can no longer tolerate this atmospheric tomfoolery. Spring needs to get get sprung and stay there.

Let's see.....On last night's dog walking adventure, Jagger tried to murder a pedestrian via a stealth maneuver wherein he sits angelically and obediently waiting for the passerby to get two feet past the beast, then launches forth with atomic pit bull force which wrenches the shoulder area and scares the victim absolutely senseless. This dog is not reliable. Of course he is scolded for this and immediately returned home to do severe time out, but this guy has a screw loose. For all I know he wants to kiss the stranger but from the looks of it, he probably wants to jump on the bloke or mow him down - or kill him. Pick one.

I have him in "reactive dog" class with specialty trainers and we are working very hard on his many disorders. I leave it to bigger brains than mine to determine what to do about a sweet, handsome, melancholy dog with bipolar tendencies and nose for trouble. Last night he woke me up at 3 am, just crying and whining and suffering. I took him outside and he did his business and then Jagger came and sat on the outdoor steps with me and we looked at the moon. Well, I looked at moon. Jagger's eyes darted around the yard like he was waiting for a runaway Prius to bust through our fence.

I love this dog. He has spooks in his head and I understand this. Don't we all? Right now he's sleeping and I think he might be happier asleep.

I don't fear him, because Jagger would never hurt me. He's not a hostile animal, just a nervous wreck. He was born with a poor set of nerves and would never make it in the dog park circuit. He is a crappy dog with horrible prospects of adoption unless I can use my writers finesse to pen the perfect advertisement. Let me try:

Beautiful, but, mentally fragile -strong as a bus, male 1 year old pit bull with tragic past looking for perfect home! Always unhappy, barks at old people, lunges indiscriminately, hair falls out when he gets nervous which is all the time, throws up on Fridays and thinks it's funny to hide in the bathroom when you call for him. Jiggy with strangers, mail personnel and birds. Great in the car!

I have my big opinions on spay and neuter, and not breeding and reclaiming the pit bulls from the politicians and the criminals because of dogs like Jagger - who came into the world innocent and full of promise, only to live a shit bomb existence and come up damaged. Rescue is about throwing all of that in reverse. Sometimes, the job is big and impossible - but I believe in Jagger's ability to heal and move forward. Time, patience and training will correct what hurt him- and I won't adopt him out until I'm convinced he's safe to live in the world. Today is not that day. He may be 15 years old when the time is right and that's OK with me.

Love is a verb.


Comments

You are my hero.

Of the dogs that I've seen you care for, I love Jagger relentlessly. He'd totally eat my cats or at least make them think they would, but look at that face, look at that history. The dog needs love. :(

Edited at 2010-04-14 08:32 pm (UTC)
Haha! Thanks - he probably would not eat your cats. Jagger is odd in that he does some things very well - he loves other dogs and little dogs and he really has no problem with other animals (in a prey drive sort of way)- he's just a study in contrasts I guess because there are some strangers who he locks on to - we call it the pit bull stare (which is NOT good and not OK) and that's what will get him killed if he's not with me. SO, he will be be with me until the end of time GAH! He is going to be amazing - eventually. You'll see!
He is amazing NOW. I love him. You have so much convinced me the only dog for me is a pibble. And I have a Thing for Gray Animals. I just wonder how much of a heart attack he'd give my cats. ;)
LMAO! **snort** OK first of all if you had Jagger in your house right now - your cats would be the least of your problems hahaha! Jagger is like a lovely gray grenade. About two months ago he lunged at this lady on a hiking trail and snatched her apple out of her friggin right hand. She went off screaming like someone lit her on fire. BAH he is no good - he'd probably chase your cat and break dry wall - that would be my best guess.
See, that's why I'd LOVE him. But probably only if I had a big house and could let him loose somewhere he could be openly destructive. Like a china shop. ;)

I love big, goofy dogs. Sigh. What's a girl to do.

I adopted my cat Ernest, a big, gregarious and floofy tortie and white kitty, because he was an outdoor cat in my neighborhood who LOVED my dog Alex. When his previous owner (and I use the term loosely) got a spastic puppy (as puppies are wont to be), Ernest decided enough was enough and started hanging with me more and more until I decided (with the "owner's" permission) he needed to be MY cat but indoors. So I've been a little hesitant to introduce a dog to my household because I know Ernest is very selective where canine company goes.

Moody, my other cat, would just make sure the dog knew it was Moody's bitch. No matter the gender. :)
Lillian Booth when she was young would also do that lunge at the jogger thing.
Any time we were out hiking or walking and I saw anything (jogger, walker, kids, bicycle, other dogs, etc) I would make her lay down, all the way on her side. And stay, until they passed. It took a few weeks, but now she's fine.

And why doesn't he have a Gentle Leader? Save your shoulder girlfriend!
Well, at least he has his INCREDIBLY HANDSOME LOOKS in his favor.
I love him too, for what it's worth. He's beyooooutiful and so sweet.
I'm admiring his vest. Wouldn't it be great if people could wear something similar.
I know several humans that need one.
When I picked up Sam I knew he wasn't going to me "normal" and all indications since that time have revealed to be loving but a bit of a wreck.
Will it be easy to find such a dog a home, no, it will not be, but for the right person, oh my god it is so worth it.
Aw, you're a good egg for sticking by him like that. :)

I don't know if it's intended, but his expression combined with the vest is making me lol.

p.s. I need to find a way to work "atmospheric tomfoolery" into future conversations.

Edited at 2010-04-14 10:31 pm (UTC)
His face makes me LOL all the time. He looks pensive and annoyed and startled all day so I just have to laugh at the guy and wonder WTF since I COOK AND CLEAN AND WAIT ON HIM HAND AND FOOT.

Boys. They never appreciate a good woman haha!

Here's Jagger- with a warning vest. Not that it works. People still approach me all the time hollering "OH I LOVE DOGS IS HE NICE LEMME PET HIM" as I back up with flames shooting out of my eyes like "Um no - Jagger can't well cya" then I run like a maniac the other way!
WHERE did you get that vest? I need one! DJ is going to be in training forever. He is afraid of old people, people coming towards him, people going away from him, squirrels, birds, other dogs, cats, bicycles, skateboards, baby carriages, vans, pickup trucks, hockey bags, men wearing hats, people with sunglasses on, people shovelling snow, but thank goodness he is interested in people doing outside of the home renovations because that's the only outdoor thing that he doesn't maniacally bark at and try to rip out my shoulder at. We've had him for two years now and despite training and patience and oodles of love, I think it's possible that he's getting worse as he finds new and more neurotic things to be afraid of. He doesn't much like fall when leaves are blowing around either....so where do I get that vest??
http://www.pawsitivedog.com/DogInTrainingVest.html

You can order one!

I can give you a million tips on what to do with him and how to cut some of that off - while Jagger is a total nightmare he has come a LONG way forward and he was doing all those things, too! Amazing.

It's fear and it's defensive behavior so we teach them to make new associations with the stimulus - like using food for example - take high value treats and see if you can get him to focus on treats when he is getting jiggy - you can't do it when he's already hysterical, but you can use them before which can get you out of a lot of trouble!

Hey Jagger is a blue pitbull...I don't see those very often....
Jagger has yellow eyes oh yes he does - It's quite a look and I'd love to know what your granddad says about yellow eyed dogs.

Pit bull maulings -I have a lot to say about this so I think I will write about it and post it. It is such a major part of the problem.
*hugs you tight*
You are awesome, and thank you for taking him on.
Jagger sounds like the canine version of me. I have developed ways of warning family and friends when to give me a wide berth. Thankfully I no longer bite.