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Thursday, April 14, 2011

Our New Dog: Meet Bullet

Hubby and Kiddo have been asking me for a long time to get a new dog.  It's been about 3 years since the older of our two dogs passed away, and about a year since the second one passed away, and I have to admit it's been mighty quiet around our house.  On the other hand I've really enjoyed not having dog hair everywhere, or worrying about who will care for them if we're not home, or the myriad other things that go along with dog ownership.

Still, we are dog people and we always will be so it was only a matter of time before another dog came into our lives.  We knew we wanted an adult dog because puppies are too much work.  We also knew we wanted a big and/or strong dog, since that is what all three of us like the best (our previous dogs were 90 lbs and 140 lbs, though the bigger on was a bit overweight).  No little yippy pooches for this family!

With that in mind Kiddo and I have been watching Dog Whisperer and It's Me Or The Dog! on TV for the past few months.  I didn't want to make the same mistakes with a new dog that we did with our previous ones, and I also wanted to be sure that there would be nothing to scare people about our dog other than the way he looks.  Little dogs can get away with bad behavior because they really don't seem that scary, but if you have a big dog barking and jumping at you, you're most likely going to be petrified!

Things just have a way of coming together, don't they?  Amidst all this dog talk, my sister informed me that her neighbors were looking for a new home for their 2 year old Rottweiler.  The family has three children plus the mom watches my sister's three kids a few days a week, so they really don't have time to care for such a big dog.  The dad is a police officer so he's on shift work, and that makes things all the more difficult.  The dog came to them as a little puppy; the dad adopted him after he was seized during a drug raid. The dog, Bullet (the dad is a police officer so of COURSE the dog is named Bullet!) had puppy training classes and is great with people and other dogs, according to the family.

SO we decided to do a weekend trial and see if Bullet would be a good fit at our house.  He came home with us on March 17 (that's St. Patrick's Day!) and has been here ever since.

Oh, did I mention that he JUST turned two on March 19 and that he already weighs 120 lbs?  I haven't measured his height, but this is THE BIGGEST Rottie I've ever seen.  He's fantastic!

Of course things did not go quite as smoothly as they could, but I was prepared for this and had already lined up a trainer in advance.  I'll tell you more about Bullet's issues and how we're handling them in another post (which I promise will come soon).


I know that many people are very afraid of Rotties (and Pit Bulls) as a breed , and though I understand why, I also hope to change that perception both through sharing Bullet's experiences here and getting people to meet him in real life.  I hope you'll keep in mind that it is often the owner and the lack of training (or the wrong kind of training) that make a dog mean rather than the breed that makes it that way.

Stay tuned for more on Bullet coming soon!
(Kiddo isn't home or I'd take a picture of him with Bullet so you get a better idea of the dog's size ...)

22 comments:

Teresa said...

We have a Rott Lab Mix and she is the most lovable dog. Rotts are a lot of fun. I hope you enjoy your new addition.

Alyce said...

He looks absolutely gorgeous - what a shiny coat! I have to admit though that I'm intimidated by the breed just because I've been around a lot of aggressive dogs in the past. In particular one of my in-laws' neighbors has one that is very scary and makes walking past their yard quite the adrenaline rush. I know that the dogs themselves can be fine with the right training, but that menacing image does get seared into you memory if you've had a bad experience.

Ti said...

He's a beauty!!

We got our pup Valentine's Day weekend so we are not too far ahead of you as far as ownership.

I reviewed a book called Pit Stops about pit bull rescue and the stigma attached to bully breeds. It's really changed my opinion of large dogs.

I also watch Pit Bulls and Parolless. If you haven't seen that show on Animal Planet you MUST see it. It's a local ranch right by me and Tia is amazing!

bermudaonion said...

Bullet is beautiful!

softdrink said...

He looks Very Dignified!

Avid Reader said...

Gorgeous! I'm with you, we're big dog people. I can't stand yippy little pups. We got our puppy Feb. 22 and he's 4 months old now. Can't wait to hear more about Bullet.

Meghan said...

He looks gorgeous in your photos! Unfortunately I have to admit I'd probably be afraid of him in real life - I have also known some very aggressive and scary Rottweilers in the past. I am glad you're trying to remedy that, though!

Kelly said...

What a beautiful dog! Can't wait to hear more!!

Ryan G said...

He's gorgeous!

Heather J. said...

Teresa - Our last two dogs were Rott mixes too - they're great, aren't they?!

Alyce - I totally understand, and I don't push him on anybody. I just hope that when I can tell someone that he's friendly, they'll believe me and be willing to come near him. :)

Ti - I watch that show too! I love what they're doing, both for the dogs and for the people. Kiddo actually wants a Pit Bull, but Bullet sort of fell into our laps and we're not ready for two dogs just yet.

bermudaonion - Thanks!

softdrink - "dignified" is a good description I think.

Avid Reader - Ooh, puppies are such fun - I hope you're enjoying yours!

Meghan - Very understandable! There are a lot of owners who just don't know what to do with big dogs, and they don't socialize them properly. Of course, as the dog grows to full size it becomes more and more difficult to socialize them because people are so afraid... it's a vicious cycle, unfortunately.

Kelly - I'll get more details up soon!

Ryan G - Thanks! We love him already. :)

Andi said...

I have pictures of our Rottie, Storme, lying next to Greyson when he'd just come home from the hospital. She's well trained and not mean at all. I hope Bullet fits in nicely! He's beautiful!

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea said...

What a handsome dog. Much happiness with the new addition.

dolleygurl said...

One of my neighbors have a very large Rottie, but he was the absolute sweetest dog ever. I am pretty sure he thought he was a lap dog and he would always somehow make his way over to our yard. Best of luck!

Dreamybee said...

Aw, what a handsome boy!

I read this article several years ago (when we were trying to decide whether or not to keep the pit mix that fell (or was thrown) into our yard). http://www.gladwell.com/pdf/pitbull.pdf
I think it's a good reference for when you find someone that is deadset on the "this breed is dangerous" mentality.

I bet he would make a good reading buddy! http://www.therapyanimals.org/R.E.A.D.html Of course he might still be a little bit scary for some kids. :)

Inside A Book said...

What a handsome guy! We have been taking care of our 'grand-dog' for almost a year. She's a Rottie-mix and is adorable!! What a sweet disposition and energetic personality. I love it when she lays near me and stretches out like a frog!! She's quite devoted and sweet.

Good luck with this new addition.

Michelle @ The True Book Addict said...

He is gorgeous! Congrats. Personally, I don't have a problem with any breed of dog because I firmly believe it's how a dog was raised and trained that makes it what it is. My sister has raised pit bulls for over 20 years and they were around her kids (and now her grandkids) since they were babies and she has never had a problem. I look forward to hearing more about him.

My sons asked me today if we could get a dog. I've already told them no several times. Now that we're back in an apartment, I just do not want to subject a dog to apartment living because I know we probably wouldn't have time to walk it enough, etc. Plus, I would get stuck with all the training, etc. and I'm not down with that...LOL! We are going to get another cat though. =O) I am much more of a cat person, to be honest.

Ty Johnston said...

I'm a beagle fan, but I have to admit Bullet is one handsome boy. Glad he found a home, and hope you have as few training troubles as possible. :-)

April (BooksandWine) said...

How adorable! I love larger dogs too, however my tastes run more towards German Shepherds.

Best of luck with your newest family member :-)

Trish said...

120 pounds is a beast!! but he looks like a sweetie. Congrats on the dog! I'm sure Kiddo is just thrilled.

Michelle said...

My sister and her former husband had a Rottie and he was truly the sweetest dog on the planet (once he got to know you). I hope you all enjoy him!

christa @ mental foodie said...

I am a little afraid of dogs (big or small), but one of my parents' neighbors had an all black Rottweiler who was very well behaved that I never was scared of him (in fact, at that time, I didn't even know Rottweiler is supposedly an aggressive bred).

Coffee and a Book Chick said...

Oh. My. Goodness. I just absolutely LOVE HIM!! He is beautiful! And as far as I'm concerned, it's nurture not nature that makes a dog react certain ways. If they are raised in a loving and disciplined environment where they know who their pack leader is, then they will not surprise you in any way. I love the Dog Whisperer show and believe in Cesar Milan's training and philosophy. My husband and I have a mixed breed dog who was a stray when we found her as a puppy, and we and the vet believe that she might have a bit of Pit Bull mixed in. And she happens to be sweeter than any teeny tiny dog out there, to the point that she and my cat snuggle almost every night at some point. Full on snuggling! It's all in how they are raised! Good for you and I can't wait see the pictures you post on your neww "puppy!" :)

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