Monday, February 20, 2012

Cozy Chick Pet of the Month: Duncan!

By Fred Yoder

Duncan Tryon(Duncan) is the second Westie that has owned me. After reading Miriam Grace Monfredo’s Seneca Falls series, I made up my mind that if I got another Westie he would be named after the “yapping white terrier” in her series. Then on a sunny day in April, 2002, I traveled to near Ft. Wayne, IN to pick up little Duncan. He was 2 1/2 months old when I got him and has been a total joy to be with.

Westies love to please their owners and Duncan is no exception. I like to say he came pre-trained, he knows right from wrong and does all the right things. He knows no and will stop whatever he is doing. In fact, for the most part all I need to do is say his name in a normal speaking voice. The only negative things I can say about him, is that he is a born runner and at the use of the word “come” he practices selective hearing. But then he is a Westie.

He loves car rides, but knows that he needs to stay on the passenger seat until I say okay. I think he fancies himself as a baseball player, as he loves to try and catch his tennis in the air when I bounce it or at the very least knock it down. Two descriptions fit the Westie well. The first is that they are a big dog in a little dog's body. Yes! The bigger they are, the more Duncan wants to meet them. He will go into a perfect show stance, legs apart, head up and tail erect. Looking as big as 24 lbs. can. The second comes from the breed standards and is brought up when the Westies are in the ring at Westminster: The Westie is a breed that will not be ignored. How true.

Two things that he does for my amusement are, he likes to sit in the recliner next to me and stare daggers at me. The other is that after coming in, he goes and sits by his treat dish, if I’m not quick enough he will either fidget a little or give a little sigh.

Another hilarious thing is that he is a snorer and a dreamer. I mean, not only do his paws twitch, but he growls, two or three types of barks and the best is that he will whimper, then growl back and forth. It’s like he is playing both the villain and victim in a mystery. I know I have been extremely lucky with the two Westies I have had. Neither was a chewer, a digger, nor a barker. They bark/barked but not excessively.

Westies make wonderful companions and will always provide some crazy thing to bring a smile to your face. Westies aren’t low maintenance, maybe medium. Their coats are two layers. A soft fur close to the body and a coarser top layer, They do need to be brushed on a regular basis and a proper grooming 2 or 3 times a year. If the Westie is going to be a show dog, they will be “stripped”. the hair is pulled out. Clippers are never used on a show dog.

The last book I read with a cozy animal was Clobbered By Camembert by Avery Aames. It’s always fun to stop in and visit with Charlotte at the Fromagerie Besette. And no visit to Providence would be complete without some ear scratches for Rags, Charlotte’s cat, and some belly rubs for the twin cousins’ Briard rescue puppy, Rocket.

Readers: What's your pet's favorite treat? Post a comment and we'll add your pet's name to our monthly donation to the ASPCA!