My husband likes bigger dogs. Me, not so much. So we’ve always ended up with medium sized dogs. There was Jake, the awesome Australian shepherd, and Jessie, our sweet Golden Retriever. Both passed away before their time. They were great dogs, great with the kids, smart and easy to train.
Then we got Fred.
We were told these puppies were an Australian shepherd/Border collie mix. Collin didn’t want the one that looked just like Jake did, so we chose the little furball with the mottled Aussie spots on his back. The little guy was the puppy who kept getting pushed away from the food dish by his siblings, so would sometimes eat rocks. Right there, that should have been a sign. Then the poor furball got car sick on the drive home. And yet, we kept him. The kids were trying to decide on a name. I suggested Max, but it was shot down. After a couple of hours, I jokingly said “Why don’t we just call him Fred.” It stuck, much to my chagrin. To this day, I’m certain our dog would have been smarter if his name was Max.
So Fred entered our family. He ate and grew and chewed through every leash we put him on, even though he wasn’t a chewy dog. The more he grew, the more we thought “Hmm…don’t see much border collie in him.” We could spot the Aussie, but not the collie. We had a feeling we weren’t given the truth about his heritage. I decided he was part jack rabbit because Fred has the biggest ears of any dog I know and he will stand them straight up at times. Ridiculous, but cute.
We decided to take him with us when we visited my in-laws. They had a German shepherd. At one point, Fred and the German shepherd were sitting side by side. Josh and I looked at them and went “OH!” We actually have an Aussie/German shepherd mix! Which explained the deep bark and tail shape. Of course, I then thought he should have been smarter than he is, what with his heritage. But, he’s great with the kids, and scares people at the door. What more could I want in a dog? Okay, housebroken completely, that’s what I really want.
Fred has been a happy doggie at our house, but sometimes bored, as the cat never wants to play with him (can’t blame the cat.) Then one day, my mother-in-law came for a visit. And her little dog too.
My mother-in-law has an elderly friend, who ended up in the hospital and then a nursing home. She became unable to keep the little Yorkshire terrier she had just gotten. So another friend took the puppy for three weeks, then brought him to my mother-in-law’s house. My mother-in-law was willing to keep the Yorkie short term. Then she discovered it would be more of a permanent basis. So with permission from both us and the elderly friend, she abandoned the Yorkie with us.
My husband is still trying to figure out how he got stuck with a little yappy girly dog.
The Yorkie was named Dakota – but Maura can’t say that. So we shortened his name to Cody. He’s a sweet little dog who needs to be housebroken still. We were doing great until it got really cold. But after dealing with the huge grossness that Fred has left on the floor, we’re not that grossed out by Cody’s tiny little deposits. I still would rather him do that outside though.
Meanwhile, Fred has never been so entertained in his life. Cody has a Napoleon complex, and so takes Fred on at least three times a day. Which is annoying, because Cody always does this from the safety of my shadow. Hence, I have dogs wrestling on my feet. Not cool. They also fight over bones. I bought tiny ones for Cody, and caught Fred nearly choking on it, trying to chew on the tiny bone. I bought big ones for Fred, and watched Cody drag a bone twice the length of his body into his little cage. Fred of course had to go after his bone, which resulted in Fred getting the cage with the Yorkie and the bone stuck on his head. Josh thought it was hysterical. The cat is disgusted by both of them.