Mad Jack Hanks: Tales from the O-NO Ranch 4-16-12
April 16, 2012
I have written in past columns about this wonderful dog I call Clancy. I call him Clancy because that was his name when I got him out of jail. Actually, I rescued him from the local animal shelter. That has been almost four years to the day.
He hadn’t been on puppy chow in a long, long time. He was 5-years-old then and now he’s nine. I had some reservations about ol’ Clancy right after I got him home.
He is a German Sheppard and a rather large one at that. I decided we would play catch with a rock. I picked it up, his ears went up and when I threw it he ran and got it post haste. He then laid down with the rock between his front paws and dared me to come get it. I crawled on all fours up to him and we are now eye to eye. When I reached for the rock he growled low and meaningful. I slapped him across the top of his head with the palm of my hand and our pecking order was established right then and there.
I have to tell you gentle readers that this dog of mine is the most trustful, honest, watchful and obedient dog I have ever owned. He is also my buddy and he watches me closely when we are together. He usually walks about 3-feet in front of me always looking back to be sure that he is on course and I’m okay. When I am outside he will circle the house about every 15 to 20 minutes to be sure all is well. What a great dog.
He is mindful of my guest and approaches them slowly and sniffs them out. No one, and I mean no one, has reached down to pet him until they are sure he is sure they are acceptable. If you were to get out and grab me to hug me (most likely you wouldn’t) and he didn’t know you, we might have a serious problem.
I was sitting on the back deck yesterday eating my daily orange. He came over and sat down in front of me and with ears erect and that personal stare that German Sheppard’s have, he asked for a bite of my orange. Knowing that dogs don’t eat oranges, I told him that he wouldn’t like it. He assured me that he would like to taste it simply because I was eating it. I gave in and broke off a small piece and extended my hand and he took it gently from me. He looked at me as if I had in mind to punish him and he spit it out. He gazed at it momentarily then picked it back up and chewed slightly and then spit it out again. Again he picked it up chewed it and down it went into his tummy. He politely asked for another piece of my orange. I gave him another, and another, and another, until he had devoured almost half of what I came out on the deck to eat for myself. I just came in from the back deck where ol’ Clancy and I shared another orange. Some dog this dog of mine is.
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Like me he is getting a little long in the tooth and time is not on his side at least for being as full of energy as he once was. He groans when he lays down, but so do I. We have a lot in common, that Clancy and me. He is not a house dog, he doesn’t like it in the house nor do I want him in here with his hair and dog odors. He wouldn’t want me in his dog house either, I betcha’.
I know most of you have pets. Could be your pet is a jackass, a rabbit, a snake, a horse, a dog, a cat or a mongoose. Whatever they might be I trust they bring you pleasure and visa versa. That’s why we have them I reckon.
I know that it’s popular now to take dogs into nursing homes, into prisons and anywhere they are needed to help folks regardless of their condition or conviction, if it will help to rehabilitate or make strong their resolve. There are dogs on the police force, in the armed services and on search and rescue teams. No cats, nope you won’t find a cat on the police force, they are more cut out to be burglars, you know, cat burglars.
Well, this column has gone on too long. Stay tuned, check yer cinch on occasion, pet your pet, and I’ll c y’all, all y’all.