My then 13 year old daughter pestered us about having a dog. On Saturday the 09.09.2000 we went to a kennel Only three dogs were looking for new homes. My husband saw this dog on a photograph and without us even seeing the photo, he said "That's the one". A short while later this woman came out with a shaking, thin and dirty dog. No one knew where he came from. He was found walking along country lanes. It was thought that he had been on the road for quite some time. My daughter instantly disliked him.
Hubby took the dog for a short walk and came back with him, convinced he was the right dog for us. The dog moved closer and closer into my husband, to which the woman commented "the dog has chosen his family". Shame if he doesn't find a family today, as Monday is his last day here. My husband had already made his mind up, and went in to sign the papers.I was trying to tell my daughter that the dog would be just fine, once he had a bath.
When we were about to leave we saw our dog in the kennel. He was jumping up the fence. I have never in my life seen a dog jump so high. He wanted to come with us, it was heart breaking. My daughter went shopping dog lead, bowls, bed, shampoo, treats and many more treats. She choose Jack to be his name. Monday the 11th of September came (one year before the disaster), we waited all day for the dog warden to come. Finally she arrived at 15.00, checked the garden and looked into the children's eyes. She smiled and said, run along children, your dog is waiting for you. All four children beat dad to the car.
When they came back they were all over the moon, but the dog wouldn't get out of the car. I was called, and no dog treats or coaxing would make Jack move. In the end I decided to carry him. Once indoors Jack was intrigued, he tried to follow my daughter everywhere, but got stuck on the third step, as if he had never been on stairs. Again I carried Jack. Jack would not go into the garden, nor would he eat. Hubby decided it was time for Jack to have a bath. Well Jack had to showered down six times, until he was clean. That's when we discovered that poor Jack was infested with fleas. I dashed down town to get suitable treatment. Now that Jack was clean and presentable, he looked much better, but still like a skeleton.
Whatever we tried he would not eat. Early days we thought, he'll come around. My husband opened a can of beer that evening and Jack ran and hid. With a lot of re-assurance Jack came out two hours later. Jack still continued to follow my daughter around, he was her shadow. All of a sudden Jack jumped up and nicked one of the children on the chin. I was extremely worried. I asked again and again, in case he had hurt the dog, but my son re-assured me that he had only stroked Jack's head. The following morning Jack scratched his left ear and screamed. I went to the vet immediately, who wanted to prosecute me for the neglect of our dog. We only had Jack barely two days, but it took the vet some time to calm down.
Jack's ears, especially the left was infested with mites. Mites that had been there for a very long time. It took 3 of us to hold the Jack down, as he wanted to bite us when cleaning his ears and putting the drops in. I phoned the kennel to point out Jack's dreadful condition, and that I was under the impression that the animals had veterinary checks. All I was told was that if I don't want the dog I should bring him back. It took 8 weeks to sort Jack's ears out, by which time he still did not eat much. But he loved the family and we loved him.
By that time I fell for my fifth child, Jack became more and more protective. In fact no outsider was allowed to come too close to me or the children. Jack started eating more, but one noise and he would leave his food. Then I would sit and stroke him, he would then carry on eating. In the spring one of our neighbours put up anew fence, Jack by then was feeling much more himself and he used to run around the Wendy house, but this time he got caught on the new fence. Jack was bleeding, I thought we would loose him. I phoned the vet, who came around as fast as he could. Jack needed an operation and fast. We sat crying waiting for news. The vet phoned, he was able to save Jack.
Baby number five was almost due to be born, I worried that Jack would not accept the baby, so I delivered at home. Jack fell in love with junior, cuddling into him, wanting to clean him. That baby was his as well. Jack is confident and strong now, he still hates strangers, but loves curries and his family. To this day he pines when my daughter goes out without him. He lays by the door waiting for her return. Every night Jack does the round through the house, but every night he sleeps in her room. My daughter can't understand why she disliked Jack at first, because he is just simply wonderful.
Jack and our other dog Jess
This is Jess
This is Jack