I'm currently babysitting my friend's dog Max for three weeks while he's out of town (you can read all about it in the first entry here). We're in the home stretch now, as his time with me is coming to an end.
So how's Life With Max working out? So far so good! He hasn't had any accidents yet or torn up anything valuable (knock wood), and he's been reasonably well behaved, considering his orderly little world's been turned upside down.
Max is a very active dog, and as such is easily bored. This can lead to trouble if he doesn't have something to constantly occupy him. It's impossible to keep an eye on him every second of the day, so you have to provide him with some kind of safe, non-destructive distraction.
That's where his rawhide bones come in, and thank Thor for them. Every second he's chewing on that bone is a second he's not tearing up the house. As long as I could hear him chomping on his bone, I knew he wasn't destroying any appliances, furniture or high-priced collectibles.
It was important to get the exact same kind too, because off-label bones cause him to have diarrhea, which is something I definitely wanted to avoid if possible. Dogs!
Max knows what his bones are called. If I'd say, "Go get your bone!" he'd disappear into the other room and return with it in his mouth. Pretty smart!
Watching him crush those bones with his sharp teeth and powerful jaws made me realize just how strong he is for his size. He could really mess up a person if he decided to turn on them. I couldn't help but think how odd it was that I chose to let a potentially deadly animal live in my house with me.
Fortunately Max is a very friendly and affectionate dog. I'm not sure you could even make him bite you.
He loves kids too. On one of our nightly walks, I saw a group of kids, probably all around eight or nine years old, playing in front of their house. I knew if Max spotted them, I'd never be able to hold him back.
Sure enough, he saw 'em and started after them. The kids saw him and were terrified, thinking he was trying to attack them. I don't blame them, as it really did look like he was trying to kill them. I assured them he wouldn't bite and was just wanted to see them. Finally one of the kids tentatively held out his hand and Max immediately started licking him and wagging his tail. The kids all then started petting him and cooing at him, pleasing Max no end.
In fact, Max was friendly and affectionate with everyone he encountered the entire three weeks I had him, except for one person— my next door neighbor. I could write fifty thousand words about these people, but suffice it to say they're idiots and I don't like them.
I was sitting on the porch with Max enjoying our ridiculously warm November weather, when my neighbor stuck her head out her door to grab her mail. Max immediately started barking and growling, and it was all I could do to hold onto his leash. I've never seen him react like that to anyone. Good boy! Scare those idiots back into their house!
See? It's not just me. Even dogs know my neighbors are jerks!