Jet is a 9 year old female German Shepherd Dog. Jet came to join our pack as our latest foster girl. She had been living outside chained to a small kennel with no company, humans or dogs. For 30 minutes each day she would be let off her chain for a run around the garden and she would be fed, than chained up again. She lived at a premises that was no longer occupied so she really was all alone. Her owner told us she had produced two litters, I suspect many more. With a very good hip score and with a good pedigree her puppies would bring a good price. The owner was moving away and neighbours didn’t like dogs so Jet had to go, she tried to rehome her without luck and time was running out before the move, so she was to be put to sleep.
Thankfully she came to us on the date she was due to be destroyed. She was not socialised and lived in isolation outdoors, she was now joining a pack of five dogs in a busy household. This was a very big ask for her to adjust. However this clever girl rose to the challenge. Within 48 hours she was in the house mixing with the other dogs, she was very nervous but she was doing very well. Within a week she was comfortable in the presence of all the dogs, and she found a close friend in our young female Rane. Before long she was learning to play.
For a nine year old dog Jet is in very good shape, she is strong and shows no signs at all of typical breed problems in a dog of her age. Jet loves her food and has filled out nicely so her ribs are no longer visible, her coat is soft, her eyes bright and intelligent, and her teeth are very clean.
Jet loves to have a fuss and on occasion she will sneak up behind me and paw at my legs asking for a fuss and a cuddle. This is great progress as at first she was nervous at being touched. At her first vet visit she was a very good girl but when the stethoscope was put to her chest she got quite frightened. She has some fur missing on her belly, the vet thinks as a result of and untreated skin infection. This is no longer active but the fur will not return. Jet walks on the lead well, though she does pull a little from time to time. She has met a number of dogs on walks and in our home, as long as the dog she meets doesn’t get in her face and give her a hard time she is very well behaved, otherwise she can be reactive. Time trust and love will correct this.
Her recall needs work but basic commands are in place. As much as she loves her food she will not eat until told to do so, even with the bowl under her nose. She really loves treats, and given how clever she is training should be simple, even at her age. Old dogs can learn new tricks. Jet is comfortable with all the usual household noises and his happy enough when we have guests visit the house. In the four months she has been with us she has undergone quite a transformation, yet there is still fear and uncertainty in the background. If confronted with a new experience she is best left to handle things in her own time. She can’t be pushed into things before she is ready, so she will need a little patience. Four months is not long enough to erase years of neglect.
Jet has a strong spirit, I suppose she needed to have. As such she has little tolerance towards overly dominant dogs, she will not allow herself to be pushed around. Jet would do well in a home with calm dogs, or equally she would be happy, I am sure, to be the only dog, that way she gets all the cuddles and fuss. I think Jet will need empathy and a little patience to adjust to her forever home. She is a wonderful soul with the most beautiful face and a very loving girl. She has never had a chance in life, never experienced the things normal dogs do on a day to day basis. No love, only solitude.
This poor girl is playing catch up, to learn as quickly as she can the things she should have learned in the first nine years of her life. With time love and patience she will make an amazing companion.