Juniper Pope

Juni & Charlie

written by Kay & Dennis Pope

We have had Juniper for about six weeks now. She is eleven months old. She has settled in nicely and taken control of the house. Thank you very much. She is very well house trained. She is one of the brightest Airedales we have had. Juni is our seventh rescue Airedale. What a wonderful breed they are. They have all had similar traits, but each one is a definite individual.

Juniper has a tremendous amount of energy. She and Charlie will chase one another back and forth across the yard until they are exhausted. Charlie really enjoys her. Charlie had seldom been around other dogs nor had the opportunity to be a puppy, having been neglected on the end of a chain for his first year and a half. It’s a testament to the Airedale’s will that he is such a gentle and loving dog after his sorrowful introduction to life. At two years old, Charlie is a puppy at last and taking full advantage of it with Juni.

She and Charlie have obviously taken to one another. They will play as long as we will let them. She and Charlie will lie on the floor facing each other and spar with their mouths. It looks like a canine fencing duel. One will lunge and the other will parry, then vice-versa. Occasionally Charlie will tire of her antics and simply lay on her. She appears to welcome the togetherness even under his weight for a short time.

Juni is very possessive of toys and bones. They must have at least 20 toys and bones, but Charlie always has the one that Juni must have. He is very submissive to her even though he is 75 pounds and she is about 40 pounds.

Juni sleeps with us and wakes up religiously between 6:30 and 7:00. When Juni wakes up it’s time for the whole family to wake up. Kay will let her out to whiz and when she returns she will clamber onto my head which has been surreptitiously hidden under the covers for protection. If she can find a way under the covers she will lick me with unrestrained enthusiasm.

Juni takes a long morning nap after filling her tummy with food. She can inhale two cups of food about as quickly as you can recite Jack Spratt. She will then play with her toys and or Charlie for an hour or so and then take an afternoon nap. They eat again between five and six. Juni will become very playful from about seven to eight in the evening and she will then crash flat out on the floor while we watch TV.

She thinks she is King Kong when she goes out in the backyard. She will trot to the middle of the yard in a proud manner and usually bark at least once. It is as if she is announcing her presence to all creatures large and small. She has taken up stalking. She will stalk Charlie or me or Kay. When I turn tail on her and stalk her, she isn’t quite sure how she should act. I usually crack up laughing and then she charges me.

Charlie and Juni will lie in the den under the windows that look out onto the street and front yard while I practice with my fiddle. She is mesmerized by the bow as it saws to and fro. I must carefully place the fiddle and bow on top of the bookcase when I am not playing. She may have noticed the rosin odor and decided she might like to taste it.

Juniper is a bit of a klutz at times. In her desire to always be first she will lead any procession while looking behind to see that she is being followed. She will walk into doors, walls, furniture or whatever may be in her path. Sometimes Charlie seems to use a bush or a tree as a pick when they are flying across the yard. If she hits a tree head-on, she could be hurt, but so far she has avoided this disaster.

Juniper has started obedience training. She just completed her second week out of seven. She is doing quite well so far. There is a little wire haired fox terrier in the class that is the wildest thing I have seen. The young fellow that brings him yanks him around like a yo-yo. He has made a couple of passes at Juni and she pretty well puts him in his place.

Our Florida room has several large floor standing plants. Juniper has acquired a taste for one in particular that she has taken off many leaves and some of the dirt. Scolding her had no effect. So several days ago we finally resorted to the snap-mouse-trap trick. We laid four mouse traps on the dirt in her favorite pot. The next morning I had forgotten about it and was working the cross word at the kitchen table when I heard a strange noise. The doors were open and I dismissed the noise as something out of doors. About ten seconds later here came Juni to sit beside me. Her tail was between her legs and both ears were standing straight up. She looked as though she had been plugged into an electric outlet. She had tripped two of the four traps. She hasn’t been interested in the plants since then.

I wonder what the future holds for our life with Juniper and Charlie. We know it will be eventful. It has been great so far and we look forward to it.


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