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Very Friendly and Active Boy Needs a Home

Discussion in 'Rescue & Adoption' started by LilianaLove, Jan 13, 2014.

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  1. LilianaLove

    LilianaLove GRCH Dog

    Hi all. I've found myself needing to rehome Jethro, my newly adopted fella. He's a great boy but, due to his dog reactivity and selectiveness, is unfortunately not going to be able to play flyball. Because of this, he needs to find a good working home where he can be the center of attention and have a job to do all or most of the day.

    Here's a video of him:

    And pictures:



    And his bio:
    Name: Jethro
    Breed: APBT
    Age: 2 years
    Sex: Neutered Male
    Color: Red and White
    Size: 42lb
    Microchipped, UTD on vaccines and deworming

    Owner surrender to an animal shelter, in shelter for almost 3 months. In current home since 11/25/13.

    Before getting into full detail, this is a short list of Jethro's perfect home:
    - Only dog
    - No cats or small animals
    - An abundance of human attention and affection
    - A job of some kind- help in the garden, keeping pests at bay, participating in a dog sport like weight pull or dock diving
    - A lot (hours) of physical and mental stimulation

    Jethro is a lovely boy. He is extremely people friendly and would love to spend his day with his people. He is up for anything and everything. He is perfect around children, does not get in their way or knock them down. He has been assessed with children of all ages, and despite his strength would be a perfect companion to a family with children. He can play fetch with a tennis ball, will tug on anything and everything, and is extremely athletic.

    True to his breed, Jethro is neither small animal nor dog safe. If you need a mouser, he's your man. He would need to be the only dog in the house or in a household capable of responsibly crating and rotating, his prospective owners would need to understand that he is not a dog social dog. He would be ideal for a person who is looking for a running companion and who is interested in starting out in dog sports such as weight pull or dock diving, or for someone looking for an all-purpose working dog that could pull yard equipment/mulch/soil/etc.

    He should never be off leash. He needs to be properly secured in a yard- a 6ft fence will not keep him in.

    He is a perfect boy in the house and with initial assessment, would be ok without being crated if the house is properly dog-proofed. He does have a moderate case of separation anxiety, mostly in his crate, but calms down with a peanut butter kong or some food.

    He is well-mannered and understands to wait before coming out of his crate and before going out a door. He still needs work on walking on a loose leash, though an easy-walk harness would probably suffice. He knows sit, down, and wait, and is very food and tug motivated.

    For anyone interested in adopting him, I am willing to continue to work with him and you if you are interested in teaching him a job or are interested in getting started in a dog sport. He is an amazing dog with so much potential. I will offer lifetime support for anything and everything that he does and will need. I am willing to travel anywhere to get him to the right home.

    You can also see him on the MDSPCA adoption site as well as the Philly PAWS site:
    Find a new home for Jethro - Maryland SPCA
    Philadelphia, PA - American Pit Bull Terrier Mix. Meet Jethro a Dog for Adoption.
  2. Blueduck1105

    Blueduck1105 Little Dog

    Sad you have to find another place for him! Good luck hope it goes well!

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  3. TannerG

    TannerG Boss Member

    Hope you find him a good home he looks like such a great dog
  4. LilianaLove

    LilianaLove GRCH Dog

    Thanks. Yea he is 100% awesome. He's just not going to be getting the quality of life here that he would if he could be out doing something all day. He THRIVES on being with people and doing basically anything, and unfortunately that's not the life he'd get in my house long-term due to his DA/selectivity.

    He has a GREAT nose and would be great for someone looking to start out in tracking or someone that needs a nose for hunting (it's been suggested that he may do well working a trap line). He is also incredibly athletic, has a minimum 5ft vertical leap with zero conditioning, can clear a 6ft fence with ease, and seems pretty weatherproof. He'd probably do great in a bitework sport.

    It hasn't been swimming weather yet, so I'm not sure how he'd do, but if he'll swim, he'd be GREAT at dock diving, especially extreme vertical. He'd also do great at weight pull- once he loves you, he will do anything you ask of him.

    He'd probably do fine living outside on a proper set-up as long as he couldn't see other dogs. Most of reactivity is barrier-based (leashes, fences, etc.). Once he's with another dog he's typically fine. He has shown outward aggression and cannot be trusted with certain dogs. Right now he's still ok with Lily. Due to his selectiveness, it's just too risky to run him in flyball, even though he's fine with most dogs. Like I said, he could go to a house with another dog but, for general purposes, HE would prefer to be an only dog where he could get all the attention.

    Also, like I said, I'm willing to go anywhere to find him a home. This will be his 3rd home and I won't accept anything that may be just another stop along the road for him. He really needs a stable living situation with someone who loves him and can give him a forever home.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 13, 2014
  5. RoxiePup

    RoxiePup Big Dog

    What an awesome video! Great looking dog I'm sure he will find a great home soon!

    BBPITS Good Dog

    He's a good looking boy!, you've done a great job with him in the short time you had him.Hopefully he finds a good home that meets his needs.
  7. lizzie13

    lizzie13 Good Dog

    He is so handsome! ! Good luck placing him. If I didn't have any dogs I would so take him :-)

    He should find a home in no time
  8. John Sauceda

    John Sauceda Big Dog

    Do you mind if I share that video?
  9. LilianaLove

    LilianaLove GRCH Dog

    Please do!
  10. John Sauceda

    John Sauceda Big Dog

    Thanks. I hope he finds a home soon. He's such a good dog.
  11. Tiffseagles

    Tiffseagles GRCH Dog Premium Member

    I'm going to update his listing with these new pictures! Is that video on youtube? I can embed it in his post if it is!
  12. LilianaLove

    LilianaLove GRCH Dog

    It's on vimeo not youtube, but you can include the link in the listing if that works.
  13. Tiffseagles

    Tiffseagles GRCH Dog Premium Member

    That works :)
  14. Jamielvsaustin

    Jamielvsaustin Good Dog

    Obviously I don't know the back story and I don't want to sound rude but-if you wanted a flyball dog why didn't you look for one that met those criteria? Why pick a dog that clearly looks like a PB mix and would likely have DA/selectiveness?

    This is a nice write up for him and he really sounds like a great dog. This is just really disappointing. I think you're going to have a difficult time finding the home you're looking for-everyone wants that home for the dog they no longer want.

    This forum ALWAYS tells people to know that there is a possibility of DA/AA ect when it comes to these dogs-you've been around a long time...why are you any different?
    3 people like this.
  15. LilianaLove

    LilianaLove GRCH Dog

    I wanted a pit bull and looked specifically for one that was dog tested. The shelter informed me that he was in the dog play group, so that was the best chance for ne to get a dog that, if not dog social, would tolerate other dogs in his space. It's less so his DA as it is his resource guarding, which can transfer to anything. I would not want that transferring to something in the lanes.

    His DA is not the main reason he needs a new home. His DA prevents him from safely playing flyball, even though he's only shown true aggression to one dog.

    It's the fact that he needs MUCH more attention and mental stimulation than I am able to provide him.

    He has a home with me until he finds a better one. I am not the right home for him, and I'm not willing to force a dog to live in less than ideal conditions. I love this dog, he is an AMAZING dog, I would love to do weight pull and dock diving and barn hunting and basically anything. He's freaking awesome. But my lifestyle and living situation are not what is best for him.

    It is why I am looking for a better home for him.
  16. LilianaLove

    LilianaLove GRCH Dog

    Alright that post was post-terrible work morning and pre-food so let me try to make that make more sense.

    In flyball, dogs are operating at 100% adrenaline and drive. Because of J's known resource guarding (tug and food) towards other dogs, I would not feel comfortable with him in that environment for one main reason and that is his threshold. There are two circumstances that limit his ability to function in that environment.

    1) Adrenaline- Adrenaline always decreases reactivity thresholds. Because he is already reactive, putting him in an environment that is basically flooding him with hos stressor is likely going to push him over his threshold and cause him to react predictably unpredictable.

    2) Resource Guarding- Given the first circumstance, a dog that has given itself a reason to be aggressive will have a lower threshold for tolerance of that aggressive trigger. He has shown to guard high value items, especially food. The problem with this type of aggression is that resource guarders rarely limit their 'resource' to one specific item. They may begin to transfer this aggression (ie. at one time he was only aggressive when with his kong, then he began to associate the dog bag with his kong, now he his aggressive when the bag is in play). Putting him in the lanes knowing that he has these tendencies is begging for failure.

    In my world, plenty of people get dogs that they think will be one thing and end up being something else. I knew I was up against the odds with a rescue, but figured I'd have better luck with an older dog that had been, to my knowledge, tested in an environment that I planned to put him in. His resource guarding and reactivity were either unknown or not shared with me when I adoptrd him.

    If he was only reactive, I would have ben fone with that. MOST dogs with that kind of energy and drive havve some level of reactivity. It is the known aggression and unpredictable resource guarding that make him unsafe in the lanes. In order to protect him, other dogs, and the breed, I have chosen to not pursue a flyball career with him. Anyone that knows me knows this is a terribly heartwrenching decision to make, but there is no other option.

    Because of this and my lifestyle, it would not be fair to him. If I was playing flyball with him and could give him a job it would be one thing. But there are only so many hours in a day and so many days in a week, and he needs all of that time. I don't have it, I can't give him the life he needs.

    Like I said, he's not leaving my house until the perfect home comes around. He's not in any danger of being euthanized, just of being bored out of his mind and not getting enough stimulation to quell his separation anxiety. His thundershirt is helping a lot, but it's obviously not the best situation.

    That wasn't me defending myself, as I have nothing to defend. It's just my explanation of why I am not the right home for this dog.
  17. Beret

    Beret Bullyflop

    Gawd, if I had the time, resources, and patience right now... I'd take Garp's twin in a second.

    Best of luck to you with all of this. I'm sure you'll find him the perfect home.
  18. TannerG

    TannerG Boss Member

    you're gonna take him sweeeeeet!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  19. Joey&Zoey

    Joey&Zoey Good Dog

    I have to agree with all of this.

    Honestly LL, going out to intentionally get a pit bull or pit bull mix solely to meet fly ball credentials otherwise, you're going to re-home it, after being a long time member and knowing the breed's background to be DA/selective DA/not dog social etc, is just pretty irresponsible of you. Especially, because this board indeed has a hard time as it is to get people to realize, that these dogs require committed owners who will accept the breeds tendency to be DA if it happens (especially if they already have pre existing dogs in their household and need to practice crate/rotate systems) and to not just give the dog the boot for it.

    You KNEW the high probabilities that would come with adopting a breed that more likely than not (but obviously, you went on a wishful thinking notion despite good intentions to give the dog a home), will show genetic breed traits, and now, after the dog shows he is true to his breed nature, now you're saying this dog won't fit your lifestyle? Don't we already have plenty of shelters filled with pit bulls/mixes in there because of situations like these? and I therefore, can't sympathize with your situation as being any different.

    I just hope, this dog truly finds the right home this time around.
    1 person likes this.
  20. LilianaLove

    LilianaLove GRCH Dog

    Alright, I'm going to type this out after a 13 hour work day so bear with me.

    First, reread the post I wrote about reactivity vs. resource guarding.

    DA I can deal with. Reactivity I can deal with. Unpredictable resource guarding is something I absolutely cannot tolerate in a working dog.

    Let me put this another way for you. A hog dogger picks up a dog from someone. These people use pit bulls a lot, even though they know there's a chance for DA. That dog takes one wrong look at another dog. Next day, it's pushing up daisies. Hog doggers don't mess around with DA and will cull anything that's a danger to the pack.

    This is the same thing. Except I'm not killing him. I'm finding a better home for him.

    Secondly, when I got him, I got him like any dog. I was told he was in the dog play group. To me, this meant that he could at the very least function around other dogs. All I needed was that. What I was unaware of was his resource guarding, on top of his reactivity. The problem is not his DA, for the millionth time. It's his resource guarding on top of it. It's why he's completely unpredictable around other dogs in an environment riddled with possible 'resources'. Ergo, he cannot safely play flyball.

    Thirdly, if I were to keep him, it'd be completely selfish of me to keep him. He needs a home that will give him all the attention and physical and mental stimulation he needs. He does not want to share his human. While he tolerates it, he is obviously distressed that he cannot be out with me by himself all the time. He would turn himself around 180 degrees in terms of his anxiety if he was an only dog.

    So let's remember that there are a lot of mitigating circumstances surrounding this.
    1) His selective resource guarding prevents him from getting constant 1:1 attention.
    2) His lack of constant attention creates increased separation anxiety.

    When I adopted him, I wasn't aware of any of that. I am not in a position to handle a dog like that right now. I've fostered dogs in the past that did need 6 months of extensive mental rehabilitation to get to the point where they could exist in a house. I've been there. That wasn't what I was looking for right now.

    What I was looking for in a dog was a dog that would be able to do what I wanted to do with it. The fact that he can't, coupled with his anxiety, means that he's not the dog for me and I'm not the owner for him. It's that simple.

    It's not that I don't love him, it's not that I'm not willing to work on some things with him, but I'm also not willing to force a dog to live in a less-than-ideal situation when there may be a better home out there for him. It's been two months and his anxiety is worsening.

    Being in a house crated for half the day is not what he wants. Lily is the type of dog that can handle that. The poodles, for the most part, can handle that. And if that was the case, crate and rotate would not be an issue. But when all you hear is crying, for hours, even when allowed to be outside his crate in a huge room all his own because all he wants in life is to be with his people, you'd have to be the most selfish person on earth to think that's the life that dog wants just because you're the one that happened to adopt him.

    I have a thundershirt and a DAP diffusor for him. Does that sound ideal to anyone?

    This isn't easy AT ALL for me to do. I debated for days about whether or not I was even going to post this to the public forum because I knew I'd get the 'well you knew he was a pit bull' lecture. I get it. I've given the lecture myself. But if you read anything I posted you would realize this isn't about dog aggression. It's about thinking you adopted one dog and taking home a completely different dog. It's about wracking your brain and not sleeping for weeks and crying your eyes out trying to figure out some way you can possibly make an impossible situation work. It's about being responsible for everyone involved and not being afraid to ask for help.

    So I'm asking for help, if for no one's sake but J's.

    I always think that, if I didn't adopt him, he would've been euthanized. He was there for 3 months at a city animal control and they basically threw him at me. Maybe they glossed over a few things because they knew he was a good dog but his time was running out. And, for a little bit there, I thought about it, I considered it, but I couldn't do it.

    I'm not willing to kill a dog like him, not with the potential he has to be something really special, not with the amount of life he has. He lives to love and he loves to live. He just needs a home that can give him the chance to thrive.

    And that home is not mine. And I'm not afraid to say that. And I'm not afraid to ask for help.
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