Luke has been our most challenging and difficult dog yet. His fears, anxieties, and personality quirks have caused us so much worry, stress, and extra work. His reluctance to let me handle his paws or ears causes me endless frustration. Yet we wouldn’t trade him for anything in the world.
I wrote recently about how loving Sheba is, and Luke is just as loving, if not more. One thing I can say is that even though he is very, very selective about people, when he loves, he loves all the way. One of my sisters is the only other recipient of that love other than my hubby and I at this point. You should see how excited he is when she comes over (um, a little too excited at times if you get my drift).
Here are ten more things I love about him:
- His athleticism and good looks. He loves to run and that keeps him lean and strong. I love his lean muscular body – he is so darn handsome, and I am always telling him that!
2. He is SO smart. He learns quickly and he enjoys that learning as well. Teaching him tricks is such a joy and so much fun for both of us. His basic obedience still needs some work, but I have a feeling once he grows up just a little bit more, that will all fall into place too.
3. His “puppiness”. Luke will be three years old this fall but he is still very much a puppy at times. Watching him romp and roll around the yard and just act completely silly is such a joy!
4. He is the king of comfort. He finds the coziest places to sleep, putting pillows to good use. Seeing him so comfortable makes me feel comfortable!
5. His willingness to try new things and to be the perfect model. Neither of the girls have ever been too nuts about posing for pictures, and using treats to lure them just makes it worse (they just want the treats – NOW). Luke has learned to sit and stay so perfectly for photos, it amazes me sometimes. Even though I’d seen it on other blogs, I wasn’t really convinced it could be done!
6. The way he drinks water at times. It cracks me up every time he sticks his whole nose into the water dish and comes out dripping water everywhere. Of course, I’m not totally impressed when he then comes over and tries to share it with me, dripping all over my lap! I even wrote a post about it when he was about 8 months old “How Does Your Dog Drink?”. In the post I wondered if Luke would outgrow this habit – not yet anyway!
7. He keeps his sisters young, especially Sheba. Cricket will run all day chasing the ball, but Sheba is a little more laid back about that. So when Cricket is running around and Sheba just standing around, Luke will get her going by playing with her. They also often play together inside the house, and he’ll frequently be the one to motivate her and get her to play by biting at her (and she loves it).
8. Of all the difficulties Luke gives me – forget trimming his nails, cleaning his ears, or brushing his teeth. But one thing he will cooperate with is taking a bath! He’s not thrilled about it, but he lets me do it without too much fuss. Plus, he looks so darn cute when he’s wet!
9. Snuggles, snuggles, snuggles. He is the most snuggly dog, and there is nothing like sitting next to him and then having him come up to you and tuck his head right into your shoulder. It never gets old.
10. Luke is equally loyal to both my hubby and I. I might sometimes call him “Mommy’s boy” but he is totally Daddy’s as well. He splits his love and time equally between us and is just as happy when either of us comes home from work. I do all of his training, more of the playing, and I am the one that is home more with him. But the Dadz gets up early with them, feeds them all of their meals and takes him for more rides. I’d say he appreciates what we both do equally.
I sometimes feel like I let Luke down – that I should be doing more to help him get over his reactivity and his fears. That is something I will always struggle with. But when he is just home with me, the Dadz, and his sisters, he is the happiest dog in the world. I hope he might settle down someday, and accept strangers more readily and be able to go more places. But no matter what happens, we will always just keep working with him and trying, and do whatever we have to to keep him happy. The love he gives us back makes the extra work all worthwhile.