|Tiller- (Skansen's- Ira in the M|
I DO Exist...To- Drive You Batty
|Barked: Wed Feb 20, '13 9:04am PST |
|I absolutely loved Selli's description! I always, always admired the breed but living with one? Head over heels!
Very dear friends of my parents had retired near Asheville, NC to a gentleman farmer's existence on a nice spread of land, and when I got hired on a horse farm nearby I stayed with them in a small, private cottage that literally abutted the Blue Ridge Mountains. They warned me about a snake who lived there who was huge but "harmless" but I was from Manhattan...I was scared to put my feet on the floor the next morning Then I heard this huge footfall and this very heavy breathing by my window, and peeking over saw this huge thing with black fur and thought it was bear!
But it was Splash. He had belonged to tenants of theirs at their old CT house who had divorced, and they had agreed to take him. He settled himself in and took over being farm guardian. He was a senior, but he dragged himself up this huge hill every morning to escort me down to the main house. When everyone left the property for whatever reason, he'd work his way halfway down the winding driveway, and lay down flat across it and go to sleep. That way, you'd have to stop to wake him up to complete the drive up the long driveway. He'd follow you in. He was incredibly responsible and dear. An amazing guardian. As Selli said, not in a teeth bared sort of way. He just took all individuals into his heart and responsibility. He was always aware of where everyone was and tended to them. You always felt he was the giver rather than the receiver. He was just so together. A really remarkable, mega responsible and insightful animal.
He adopted me and was a very good friend. For however much I loved him, he was the most unfathomably messy creature. He drooled a lot, he shedded a lot....and that is a LOT of dog to drool and shed. When I got home every day sweated up from the horses, he'd follow me back to my cabin and as I sat in the chair to pat him drool would be going, all his flyaway hair coating me, and it was like sitting in front of a hot furnace with his happy face panting. I wanted space, but he was too sweet to tell to go away. You couldn't help but adore him. He was just such an awesome dog. And the Newf people I've dealt with in the years hence reflect on much the same. Dutiful, devoted, insightful and rock solid.
They put up with everything with a discernible steadiness. They are never in a rush to go anywhere...they are chill....but in an even way, as they are always up to go anywhere. They love water, they love hikes, they love training as well. Their draw to and patience with children is legendary, and they very naturally appoint themselves as guardians for them. They are VERY gentle, and save for when they are younger and a bit rambunctious, exceedingly aware despite their size and mass. Extremely earnest.
IMO, anything that is arouseable can't be considered bombproof. Dogs get involved in things that arouse them, and then there can be drama. Evenness and steadiness are an inherent part of bombproof, and those are quintessential Newfie traits.
I agree with Selli re the lifespan and mess. Those are two huge ticks on their negative column. I find by age five I am starting to get in a rhythm with a dog. They have done all their growing, have settled into their adult version, and then you settle into some sort of a perfect flow. That's one of the things about Giants I love. They literally don't get old....they do not grey, aren't particularly prone to arthritis, and if you are lucky live fifteen years, still bouncing around and vivacious. So while getting to five is really this drawn out pain in the bottom, in terms of years it truly is a beginning. Many more years now with a dog who has settled down with so much horizon. I think five or six on a breed like a Newf, and you know it is a few years more and then he's gone. Stuff like that really weighs on my heart.
But what an awesome breed. Social, trainable, reliable, incredibly responsible, insightful, fun, highly trainable and very willing about it. Everyone in their family is one of their "charges"....two legs or four, big or small, old or young. And they are incredibly attuned. Alas, you need to be very careful where you get them. Mill bred Newfs can show aggression, whereas the correct Newf is far removed from that possibility. They are not fearful....they are indeed quite confident....and are truly gentle souls. And then health matters also. No such thing as too much pedigree in terms of health. I pull a lot from shelters, and while granted I rarely see them in there, I'd never trust one I did. They are very easy dogs to get along with, and as such spectacular critters easy to rehome, despite their size. You can't meet one and fail to fall in love. So one in a shelter makes me extremely suspicious.
|my posts | my page | msg me | my family's posts | gift me | become pals|| [notify]|