this boy is! He is so well behaved, extremely clever and very ‘zen’ oh and don’t forget handsome! He’s a right old fashioned staffy boy and the type of rescue dog that just slots into your life perfectly without much work, if any!
Not only does he know basic commands and walks perfectly on the lead, he doesn’t chase cats or birds! We came across a cat in the path in front of us on yesterday’s walk, Harley looked at it and then at me, then when the cat decided to run, Harley took half a jump forward, looked at me then took a step backwards all of his own accord. We then met a fat pigeon that wouldn’t move off the path in front of us until the last second, but it didn’t phase him in the slightest, he just kept plodding along, whereas if I had had Tess with me it would have been a different story! Tess’s only flaws are her penchant for chasing cats and birds! Nobody’s perfect! I found a coat that I had that fits him and he knows about coats, he immediatly put his head through the opening and was wagging his tail. The first couple of walks he just plodded along but yesterday mornings walk he started sniffing around, using his nose more and continued this on last night and this mornings walk. He doesn’t like to go a long walk and after 20 minutes yesterday he was trying to climb into the footwell of my mobility scooter to get a lift home, and every time we came to a fork in the path, he wanted to take the one that heads back in the direction of the house even though he had never been that walk before he knew instantly when we did take the path back, he started wiggling his butt and looking all happy at me, today it was 25 minutes until he wanted to get on the scooter!
Although saying that Harley is as close to perfect as you’ll get with a rescue dog! He is so intelligent. As I had mentioned in my first post about him, there was a little jealousy which resulted in Harley lunging and making a noise at my two when I was petting them as he thought he should be getting all the attention, which isn’t surprising really as he was in kennels for two weeks without much human interaction which is a long time for a dog, especially a breed that craves human company like staffies, they are very human orientated. Every time he has lunged I grab his lead, say no and put him in his crate for a minute then let him out and he has picked this up very quickly so much so that as of yesterday he stopped himself lunging, which was fantastic. He started to lunge, thought about it and stopped himself which is amazing. The other good thing is that my two aren’t scared of him lunging at them which just reinforces to me that he’s not being aggressive, he just wants to tell them off. The instant I grab his lead he relaxes, so he doesn’t want to do it, I think he’s insecure and no wonder as who knows what this poor boy has been through! He is trying to find his place in the house as well.
Although he is insecure, he isn’t a clingy dog and doesn’t follow you every where like a shadow, which both mine do! It makes a change being able to go to the bathroom by myself! He is almost perfect at being left alone in the house, the only improvement I’d like to see here is for him to lie down and relax when I’m out, as at the moment he is still standing in the exact same position as I left him in, I have tried making him lie down before I leave but he just keeps standing up immediately. I think when he’s more settled this will start to happen. He likes his chews but won’t start eating them until I have returned then he takes it in his crate. Today he came out his crate before Tess had finished her chew, for the first time, but he paid no interest in her chew until she walked away leaving it, but I picked it up and put it on the table for Tess to have later and Harley tried to take it off the table. He left it as soon as I said no.
Hes not used to eating in the morning, which I know as a stray they don’t eat properly but when he was with his family, I don’t think he was fed in the mornings, he does take a mouthful when you put it down then looks at you so I lifted the bowl to him and he looked at me took a tiny mouthful then walked away, he just so wants to please you that he tries to eat. Harley likes a chew around lunchtime and starts getting excited for dinner the minute I put the oven on to preheat, not following me around but very aware of my every move, then when my dinner goes in the oven that’s him straight into the kitchen sitting waiting at the oven, where he remains until I have finished eating. Last night I cooked a whole chicken for the dogs with some brown rice, wholemeal pasta, peas and carrots. As I was removing the chicken from the bone, I dropped a piece. Both Harley and Tess were at my feet so both dived towards it, and I thought there was going to be an argument but wee gentleman Harley let Tess get the dropped piece, so I gave him a bit, along with Coal so no-one was left out! I’m not worried about him not wanting to eat in the morning as he has got an appetite and Coal doesn’t eat breakfast either, so I’ve just altered the quantity that I gave him last night, though I tried again this morning with breakfast this time adding meat as in the mornings I feed dry food, soaked in hot water and I’ve been adding in a chicken sauce made by Vets Kitchen that contains Omega3 (derived from flaxseed, which is great for the heart, coat and skin) and vitamins A&E to add a little flavour as well as the benefits from the ingredients. The cheeky wee monkey ate all the meat this morning and left the biscuits! Tomorrow I will see if he will eat just meat without the biscuits and take it from there.
He is on antibiotics at the moment for his sore face, I have been wrapping the tablets in either ham or cheese, without him seeing but he’s realised that if he spits the tablet out then he gets another bit of cheese or ham! He’s not daft lol, he has been taking it the second time, until this morning when it was third time lucky! But he takes it without me having to put it down his throat. Just trying to get extra treats!
Harley loves getting attention and being cuddled but isn’t demanding by jumping all over you to get your attention, once he is getting the attention he will try to be a lapdog and give you kisses. He doesn’t jump up at you when you come back from leaving him, he stands looking at you with this comical cute face, wagging his tail until you go to him. Once you start petting him, he goes up on his back legs and leans against your hip and stands like that to get a good scratch up and down his back, he saw Tess do this then started doing it!
I haven’t had him in a car yet but was told by the rescue that on his way to me he didn’t make a peep the whole way here, so he travels well as well, what can’t this boy do?!
Harley has been sleeping in the livingroom at night whilst my 2 are in the bedroom with me and he is fine with this, he doesn’t cry or pace around, he just goes to sleep. In the morning once they’ve all been in the garden, he swaggers into the bedroom has a nosy, gets petted then ambles back into the livingroom. This morning he found out that he could jump onto my bed and was so pleased with himself. The minute I said off, off he went without hesitation!
This boy is going to make someone a very special companion. Anybody would be lucky to have this dog. If you think it could be you, please take a look at the adoption rules and fill out the adoption form on this website – http://www.staffiesmilesrescue.co.uk