Christmas, our Lhasa/Poodle/Pointer mutt and I made a pre-barn stop at the dog park yesterday, and I was practically knocked down again, this time by a middle aged woman. What IS it with this dog park?
“Where did you get that Dandie Dinmont?” she asked me, as my mutt raced off to play with a nice German Shepherd named Alice.
The dandy what? I’m thinking “handy dandy”, as in where did you get that dandy cell phone? I look to see what I have on. Designer purse? (Ha) Nope. Is she thinking my breeches are some fancy brand? The boots? Certainly can’t be the T-shirt. I’m baffled.
I follow her eyes…she’s looking at Christmas. His collar? Nah. Whoa. She’s pretty intense…looking at Christmas like she wants to snatch him. Nut case? Time to ease away.
I take a step towards my dog, who is happily standing on his hind legs licking Alice all over her grizzled muzzle. She lays down to give him easier access. Tolerant dog. He lays down facing her and washes her whole muzzle.
Linebacker lady picks up on my I-don’t-have-a-clue backing off.
“Your dog” she explains, waving her hand in his direction. “It’s rare to see a pure bred Dinmont. I haven’t seen one for years. They’re expensive.”
I check to make sure she’s actually looking at MY dog. He’s a Didmont? And a dandy one at that? What makes him a good Didmont?
She turns back to me. “Where did you get him? What breeder did you get him from? I’d love to have the name of the breeder.”
We got him from a kill shelter 5 hours away, in a town so small the shelter is only open for 2 hours a day, and is basically run by the police department.
“Um, he was a rescue. I don’t know his breeder. I thought he was a mutt. What is a Didmont?”
She doesn’t laugh at me, clue one that she’s dead serious, and goes into a lengthy explanation, clue two that she’s dead serious.
So I come home, thinking, nah, he’s just a mutt, but I’ll look it up online.
I’ll be darned if I don’t see Christmas’ face staring back at me from the AKC website, only in a silver color. Okay. Maybe he’s part…Dandie Dinmont. Body photos…small back feet, large front feet, XL back, short legs, weird S curve to body, thick tail…holy cow. Christmas is a Dandie Dinmont Terrier.
This explains a lot. The lack of lapdog sensibility, for one. The inexhaustability for another, and his apparently complete lack of awareness that he is a small dog.
I run through the AKC psychological checklist:
- Independent – check
- Easy going – check
- Won’t pick a fight, but sure as heck won’t back down – check
- Always on the look out for small game – quadruple check
- Stubborn in a friendly way – check
- Inexhaustible – check check check
- Hates to be left alone – check
- Loves to dig – check
- Great with kids – check
- Affectionate – check
- Surprisingly major teeth – oh yeah, it’s like looking at a mini Jaws
- Blue black with double coat going into tan or marbled markings on the legs & chest (and I thought that was the mutt!) check
Preferred colors are silvers. Hey. He’s the perfect color! He’s just dandy, thank you very much! Don’t be insulting my dog!
Now I have to find out what Dandie Dinmont Terriers like to do, so I can channel some of that energy for good.