Little Phineas (13 lbs.) was about two-years-old, intact, not housebroken, a devoted resource guarder – and consistently and confidently aggressive with strangers. But after being altered – and given seven weeks of intensive socialization using food rewards – he decided that “selling his soul for a cookie” worked better than aggression. -Today he is friendly and social, a solid citizen, -and sometimes even has his own fan club on the sidelines.
After doing some research, -it turns out he is an intentional cross from Chihuahua, MinPin and Pekingese. We joke that he has the work ethic of a Peke. But fortunately, he will run agility for any kind of treats.
This is his second Cynosports, with a “bye” into Steeplechase, our favorite. He won the Dog of the Year (Ch-10”) title in the inaugural Titlemania in Ohio last year, and is consistently in Top Ten rankings, winning Gamblers last year.
But mainly now he is an affectionate lap dog, ever joyful, and a devoted companion.
Platinum PDCH, LAA Platinum, Diamond Snooker, Smarty is a rescue dog from North Carolina farm country. He would show up at a local factory every day to share the workers’ lunch. That’s why we call him a “Professional Beggar,” because he made his living at it for awhile. When not there, he was begging at Hardees – or cruising the farms “lookin’ for love” and helping populate the farm dog community.
Smarty spent a year in two foster homes with the wonderful people at Down East Animal Refuge in Scotland Neck, NC. He escaped twice, but always turned up again at Hardee’s in town – seven miles away – still begging.
His agility career was initially plagued by his numerous physical limitations (heartworm, tick-borne diseases, frozen shoulders, strained deep flexors, etc.). Consequently, he has only been shown in the Performance 16” classes. Thanks to a number of talented practitioners, Smarty is now totally healthy and in great physical shape at 10-years-old.
He is showing in his second Cynosport, with a “bye” in GP. He won the Dog of the Year ( P-16) title at the inaugural Titlemania last year in Ohio, and has been consistently in the Top Ten rankings, winning Snooker in 2014.
Smarty’s agility training centers around bacon – his favorite food, along with prime rib leftovers. Mr. Smarty has also earned his PACH, and has competed at the AKC Nationals.
But most of all, he is the best companion farm dog a body could ever want.
(author of “Purely Positive Training”)
Photo Credit: M. Nicole Fischer