Jameson was saved from the e-list at MCACC where he was listed for being too scared and shut down in the shelter. We were originally led to believe that Jameson was 5 years old, but after his vet visit and time with our trainer, we now believe he is closer to 3. The vet actually believes he had distemper as a puppy and was one of the very lucky few to survive this deadly disease. Having worse teeth for their age and some neurological side effects – like his tongue sticking out a little bit – are just remnants of the disease that will be with him the rest of his life. Understanding his background has also helped us to understand his behaviors a great deal more. After all he has been through, he deserves that much!
Jameson has a lot of puppy-like tendencies, and a few oddities that will make him a unique and lovable companion. He is high-energy, active and enjoys playing with other dogs and toys, though he does have a shorter attention span. He does well with the other large dogs and he likes running up and down the fence with his neighbors’ smaller dog. He does not do the best with stairs (another neurological side effect of distemper), though he still tries his best! He has improved greatly with leash pulling, but will need continued reinforcement over time. As much as he loves walks and running around, he has not shown any desire to escape his fenced-in yard.
Jameson had one resource-guarding bite incident, and we decided from her to send him to a board and train program. He has learned so many amazing skills and we have not had any further incidents since! Our trainer believe this was from him having little respect for boundaries and expecting he could always get his way.
Jameson loves food and treats, so positive reinforcement works great for him. In what is another neurological side effect, he has depth perception issues that are most noticeable when giving him treats flat-handed from a palm. His trainer left us with some very helpful notes on him at the conclusion of his training:
Jameson is a super sweet and funny boy that tries to do things right. His future owner just needs to be patient because the neurological damage is definitely a bit of a handicap at times. I know Jameson knows the commands but I do give him time to put his body in the right, most comfortable position. So, he might not fall down the instant I ask him to lay down or sit but he is obeying and I can tell he tries. He gets distracted easily but all it takes it a little reminder, a second command, and he is back in business. Jameson has never tried to be a brat or very sassy. He took a little longer in the beginning to “warm up” but all the changes these dogs have to deal with is tough on them. I was proud of him today and how he listened on the trail.
Jameson has a shy side, he is also very sweet. When he finds his person, he becomes very attached. He has done well around teenagers in his foster home and new strangers. He’s also talkative and loves to sings the husky song, especially around people and cars. Jameson would love to find an active family to call his own. A home with one or more other active dogs would be ideal an outlet for his energy. If you’re looking for a sweet, fun-loving adventure buddy, Jameson is your guy!