Sibling Rivalry, Sasha’s View

Sasha here.

One of my favorite photos, back in my youth.

Alpha Mom is exhausted and told me to have at it. I guess that means I can say whatever I want. Let’s see. I told you about our new puppy, Jackson, here last year. But Alpha Mom was looking over my shoulder the whole time, so you only heard ONE side of the tale. This time there’s no Alpha mom hanging around. Let me tell you what it’s really like having a puppy in the house.

Did I hear my name?

Well, he’s now a year old, so maybe not so much a puppy as in the “Oh, look at that cute puppy” phase. He’s more of a puppy in the “shepherds tend to grow up slowly; their puppy phase lasts longer than other breeds.” I myself was considered a puppy until I was nearly four! I pride myself on that.

Jackson’s puppyhood is more of the miserable-younger-sibling-who’s-always-trying-to-pick-a-fight type. I pick up one of my toys and suddenly it’s the toy HE wants. Alpha Mom bought him his own toys but does he want those? Oh noooooo. He only wants the one I’m chewing on.

Alpha Mom tells me Jackson didn’t get enough love when he was younger; she says Jackson is just starved for affection. I say,

Jackson is a pain in the buuuttttttttttt.

Sure, he lets me go out the door first — when Alpha Mom reminds him. She says, “Sasha first” and he even backs up. That makes Alpha Mom smile. So sure, I go out first; but then he comes torpedoing out the door and right into me, hard. I put him in his place soon enough but gheeeesh, I did not ask for any of this. I just like to chill these days.

My pre-Jackson life was idyllic. Well, there was that cancer diagnosis that bummed the Alphas out for awhile, but we’ve nearly forgotten about that thanks to the magic of modern medicine. I get a Vetprofen with each meal and once a month, with my regular heart worm and flea & tick stuff, Alpha Mom gives me a shot of Adequan, just like race horses get. That helps keep me limber. And I’m pretty much as I was before the Vet’s tech found that lump on my anal gland. They think they got all the cancer out though and I’m pretty much back to my pre-Jackson life, except that now my life has got Jackson in it.

I loved our pre-Jackson routine. I wrote about it in my very first post. If you don’t remember, you can click on THIS LINK and skim through it. I really loved those morning conversations the Alphas had over her second pot of tea and his last cup of coffee. I miss them. These days, mornings are filled with dog training videos.

In the old days, I’d go upstairs to Alpha Mom’s office and keep her company while she wrote her books. But we don’t go upstairs so much anymore, which reminds me: Jackson can’t do stairs. Isn’t that a hoot? I follow the Alphas into the basement while she does laundry or he gets firewood and Jackson just sits up at the top whining. If she goes upstairs to her office for something, he puts his front legs on the second step and whines. He seems to have no clue what to do with his back legs. It’s a riot.

Life was really good before the idiot dog came to live here. Sure, he helps keep the wildlife away, I suppose. And the Alphas believe he’ll grow into a good dog someday. But he digs in Alpha Mom’s garden. He chewed up her soaker hoses, even before the snow went away. Just dug them up and chawed down while I watched. He digs up her dianthus that she has at the back door. Oh wait, that was me. Oops, I forgot.

Here’s a photo that always make the Alphas laugh. It pretty much wraps up what I’m dealing with. At least it seems so to me.

Jackson is firmly in the 4 to 24 month phase.

They’ve hired a trainer.

Jackson’s a barker; that’s the real problem. My barking has always been focused on the wildlife I’m so good at sending away. Bear, deer, chipmunks, turkeys, you name it: they’ve gotta go. But Jackson barks at people; he barks at cars, too. In fact, he barks at anything new. The poor delivery guy from the pharmacy came recently and was really scared, even though Jackson was in his crate.

I never took to barking at people because I never wanted them to go away. People have always been good to me. I love it when our AirBnB guests come to stay in the Yurt. They’ll be sitting around their little fire pit and I’ll go down and join them in the evening. They scratch just above my tail. Alpha Mom left them a note telling them it’s my favorite spot. I’m not so big on the behind-the-ears thing.

But Jackson is different. I’m told he had bad folks in his early life and he takes a while to warm up to people. A while like in a few months. Or days. Or hours. It depends on the human. He likes them once they pass his perfect-human-being test, but that takes a lot of time and even more — really, A LOT — of treats. I considered starting to bark just so I could get some of those treats, but that’s just not my style. I’m pretty straightforward. Alpha mom says I’m authentic. She says that’s a really good thing.

Jackson is authentic too. Authentically nervous. He panics easily. But he’s trainable, like in that “Sasha first” thing. That didn’t take him long at all. And he sits politely while he gets fed. And he doesn’t jump up on people (yeah, he’s too busy barking at them furiously). I used to jump on people, I was just so happy to see them. As I got older, it became more of a problem because I grew into a solid 80 pounds, pretty big for a female. No svelte model-type figure for me.

Jackson wants to fit in, I know he does. He comes when called really quickly, so we’re allowed to romp around outside whenever we want. It’s fun to have a companion, even if it is Jackson. The Alphas aren’t romping much these days. They’re busy doing other things. Hopefully, someday she’ll write and tell you about it.

I know she misses you all.

See MY bone over there between his paws? Yup, that one’s MINE.

Do you have a dog at your home? If Alpha Mom lets me, I’ll answer all your comments.

4 Responses

  1. Darlene Foster
    | Reply

    Dot here. I feel your pain. We got Lia, a three-year-old holy terror, about 4 months ago. She always wants my bones, toys, food, blanket, etc. Mom says she didn’t have nice things where she lived before. I say, too bad! She is always waking me up when I want to sleep, chases me and bites my back leg as if I’m a deer or something to catch. I’m trying to teach her to behave but it’s a big job. At least she learned not to go to the bathroom in the house quickly. That was disgusting. I never did that! I let her know it was unacceptable. Why did they think I needed a sister? You are a pretty dog, Sash and I’m glad you are feeling better. Licks from Dot. (My mom says hi to your mom)
    Darlene Foster recently posted…The Big Day is Here!!My Profile

    • Janet Givens
      | Reply

      Hey Dot. Sniff sniff; I like you; you smell friendly. Sounds like we’ve got lots in common. What is it with our Moms, who think we need a sibling? And the leg biting? Jackson does that to me too. And he likes to grab my neck and give it a tug. He wants to be the boss of me, which is kind of fun. I know he’s just trying to show me he’s powerful, but it really freaked the Alphas out at first. That was kinda fun too; they don’t freak too often. Poor thing. Hang in there Dot. We’ve got seniority. If my mom were awake, I know she’d want to say Hi to your mom. So I’ll just say it for her. Hi.
      Janet Givens recently posted…Sibling Rivalry, Sasha’s ViewMy Profile

  2. Joan Z Rough
    | Reply

    My Mom, invited me to leave a comment. I’m Daisy, the cutest, bestest chihuahua mix in the world. I want NO siblings. I don’t like sharing my people and when I meet the puppies in my neighborhood I have to growl at them to leave me alone. I’m six years old and I’m over that puppy stuff. I would get along well with Sasha, I think, if she didn’t visit for too long. I’m a rescue. I was chained under a trailer for a couple of years, so am loving being a spoiled rotten love bug. I love chasing bunnies and squirrels and even birds sometimes, but I think bears and deer might scare me. I’m a bit nervous at times and have been seen growling at huge rocks on occasion. But I’m just making sure my Mom and Dad are protected from anything that might hurt them and me. Nice to chat with you, Sasha.

    • Janet Givens
      | Reply

      Well howdy there, Daisy. I apologize I hadn’t noticed you there before, you are a tiny thing. But cute; I’ll give you that. Are you what they call a lap dog? My mom really wants a lap dog, but I’m afraid I just can’t do that. Jackson still tries but he’s starting to hang off the edges too. I’d be delighted to sniff your butt anytime. Sincerely, Sasha
      Janet Givens recently posted…Sibling Rivalry, Sasha’s ViewMy Profile

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