His genetic contributors were all secondary... meaning he is a Heinz 57 mix... but he is that high class premium 57 mix... not just any ordinary ketchup.
In order of size, because the larger breeds must have been the more recent ingredients to this awesome buddy of mine, Trooper is a blend of Borzoi (Russian Wolfhound), Boxer, Collie, Whippet, and Chihuahua. Really. Chihuahua.
Unfortunately from the time he was about six months old until he was almost two years old, he was brutally kicked by my now-ex-husband every time he tried to jump up on the bed. It left him terrified of being on the bed in the dark because he never knew when or where Jason would kick him. When the TV went off and the lights went out, Trooper throw himself off the bed in a panic and go sleep on his floor pallet. Trust me, if Jason had done it when I was in bed, it would have been Jason who wound up on the floor. I didn't catch him doing it until shortly before we divorced.
I am pleased to say, however, that Trooper has now overcome his fear of being on the bed after the room is dark. I say pleased, because it really is a good thing for Trooper. I hated that it was the last of his fear of men that he still had not overcome.
But for my husband, David, our pug, Henry, and me ... eh, not so much a good thing. See, Trooper weighs about 78 pounds, and when he stretches out on the bed, he sort of forms a square. We only have a queen sized bed. When it is the both dogs and only one of us two-legged, line-shaped-stretched-out people... we all have room to get comfortable. Henry is a little dude and all we have to worry about with him since he snores AND farts in his sleep is to make sure he stays at the foot of the bed. With both David and I on the bed and Henry... we're still all comfortable if not a little wary of where Henry is sleeping.
But now... Trooper still wants to make sure there are no legs under the covers that might surprise him with a kick, so he has the following routine for making sure the coast is clear:
- If the people are sleeping, first put a cold nose on any exposed skin.
- If that doesn't wake them into moving out of the way, next put head and chin on the bed and nudge them.
- If nudging doesn't get them to move, lift head several times and bang the mattress with chin repeatedly until one of them wakes up. Be sure to move from one side of the bed to the other to wake both people.
- If banging on the mattress still fails to produce the desired results, stand out of arms reach and moan loudly like an old man. Mmmooohhhhhooooohhhmmmmm. This generally provokes one of the people into some movement, but not always the desired shift of room on the bed.
- If all else fails, stand in the hall silently until you can see the people are just drifting off to sleep again. Now bark, just one bark, as loud and sharply as you can. This final effort is guaranteed to lift one, if not both people, off of the bed as they are startled into full consciousness.