First a little background.
Ro, Cubby and myself are all animals lovers and 2 of the 3 of us has animal allergies. This makes it tough to have critters running about the house. A few years ago we had decided to get a dog, knowing we were headed for a financial outlay. Due to allergies, one of the non-shedding breeds was our destiny. We had decided on a Wheaton Terrier. My Aunt has one, and we like her. We then met a woman who told us about Portugeuse Water Dogs. It was an easy decision. Terriers bark a lot, Porties don't.
Ro researched the breed and found a reputable breeder about 90 minutes away. Up we went planning on purchasing a very young puppy. She introduced us to some older puppies that were about 6 months old and we fell in love with one named Archie. Archie has his picture posted in the puppy thread here on the forums and is just as cute now as he was 3 years ago.
Porties are often described as not for everyone, having an opinion and expressing it. They are highly intelligent and require a lot of mental and physical stimulation. I am here to tell you it is true. The past 3 years have been a roller coaster of fun, and I really would not know where to begin with his antics. The most recent of these is what Portie owners call table surfing. Table Surfing always involves jumping up on the table/counter/trash can when your owner isn't looking and eating whatever you can reach. Archie has a great love of bread in any form! For all the delight he has given us and love we give him, Archie got bored. So we decided we were ready for another dog, and ( of course) we got another Portie.
Paolo entered our home about 3 weeks ago. He is a young puppy at 10 weeks old when we brought him home. He was not house, kennel or leash trained. Much to our delight, within a week Paolo had mastered these 3 skills. We used boxes and laundry baskets to corral the puppy when he wasn't kenneled. Archie being taller and able to do a standing jump of 4 feet, could easily get over the barriers we erected. That was until Paolo grew a little steadier on his legs, a little bit stronger, and able to push through these barriers. When pushing fails, he chews them. Did I remember to mention that Porties are very mouthy? The breeder has lost window sills to their chewing desires. Archie only dented a chair leg. We learned quickly that many, many chew toys scattered about the house will save the furniture. Or it did, until Paolo came.
Paolo is still cutting teeth, and so EVERYTHING is a chew toy. Toys, shoes, furniture, clothes, you..your pants, you, Archie.
One of Paolo's favorite targets is Archie. He is small enough to walk under Archie and while there he nips at any bits that are hanging down. I confess that we find this hilarious, and we have to protect Archie from a beast that he out weighs by 40 pounds. So, Paolo gets corrected and Archie is safe. Now, when Paolo walks under him, no nipping happens to the under bits. Currently, it's all about the tail! Archie's tail, Paolo's tail, Paolo doesn't really seem to care. It moves, thus it must be attacked!
Porties are natural guard dogs, which is deceptive since they are so friendly when out and about. Yet, if you come into the home uninvited, they will attack. Archie held Ro's dad at bay until Ro rescued him one day. Paolo is certain that the newspaper in its plastic bag is a dangerous thing and rescues us from it daily. A Portie will prance when he/she thinks they have done a good job. Paolo and Archie prance a lot. They also like to play Tug 'o War. Paolo pulls for all he is worth and Archie just sits down. Lately, Archie lets go of the toy as we often use the word gentle or gently so he doesn't play to rough with Paolo. We really do want Paolo to grow to adulthood with as little damage as possible The Tug 'o War game can go on for hours. Picture if you can, Archie holding a soft toy or bone in his teeth. Paolo, will intentionally stick his nose in Archie's mouth to grab hold of the toy. Archie begins to walk, and Paolo is prancing along trying to take the toy from him.
Another favorite game is making noise that is neither a growl or bark while pawing each other and gaping jaws in the others general direction. Tonight they were playing it lying 6 inches apart pawing the sky.
Paolo grew, we know he grew because the box we used to block a hallway is thin, but 2 feet tall. He climbed up on the support we have holding it in place, and jumped over the barrier then went into the kitchen to get a drink, and came back to the living room. Never mind that both he and Archie have kennels in the living room with a bowl full of clean water.
Robear made the comment that the barrier now was more a suggestion. To which I stated in my best pirate voice, that it really was more like a guideline.
I am sure there will be more Portie stories as life continues with our two beloved demons. Did I mention they are marked almost identically. We have bookends.