Animal Scene - - COVER STORY -

Orig­i­nally serv­ing as watch­dogs for boat­men in Europe, the alert­ness that char­ac­ter­ized their an­ces­tors re­mains with the Keeshond to­day. They may bark at strangers but will quickly calm down; it is rare for one to be ag­gres­sive with visi­tors af­ter their own­ers have wel­comed those peo­ple. These play­ful dogs can sur­prise own­ers with their quick re­flexes and amaz­ing abil­ity to jump fairly high. Even if they are not taught cer­tain things, such as how to open doors, the Keeshond can learn how to do this on their own. As they are nat­u­rally obe­di­ent, it is easy to train them, es­pe­cially since they love to please their own­ers. They have even been suc­cess­fully taught as guide dogs for the blind, although big­ger dog breeds are gen­er­ally pre­ferred for this role. You may have heard of Tikva, the Keeshond who pro­vided com­fort to res­cue work­ers at Ground Zero dur­ing 9/11. Highly em­pathic, these dogs are of­ten cho­sen by peo­ple who need emo­tional sup­port but who can­not get it from other peo­ple; their de­vo­tion to their own­ers is leg­endary. Fam­i­lies with chil­dren also choose the Keeshond for its af­fec­tion to­wards kids, though par­ents of tod­dlers and younger chil­dren will still need to su­per­vise their in­ter­ac­tions to en­sure the dog does not be­come too ex­u­ber­ant while play­ing with them. Breed­ers rec­om­mend that the Keeshond be so­cial­ized early, both with hu­mans and with other dogs and an­i­mal species, so that they will learn to ac­cept oth­ers with ease.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Philippines

© PressReader. All rights reserved.