Oh how time flies by! Hank is becoming such a teenager… He recently started sleeping on the couch downstairs. Guess he’s getting too old to sleep in mommy & daddy’s room.
There are other tall tale signs that he is really beginning to mature and fully become an “adult dog”.
Hank has a very sweet and mellow disposition. He is the quintessential example of a beta male. He is a very confident dog but he is much more comfortable sitting back and letting another male act as alpha.
According to my boyfriend a Cesar Milan disciple, this is why he tends to be the “humpee” at the dog park. Apparently when a male dog humps another male dog, it is not necessarily a sexual act, but more likely a show of dominance. Since dogs are very perceptive, they pick up on Hank’s docile disposition and “initiate” him into the pack (whether it be the dog park pack, a friends dog pack etc.) by letting him know who is boss.
Recently however, he has started to stand up for himself. Instead of flopping down to the floor to show obedience and subordination, he now lets it be known with a big bark and an assertive paw when he does not think you are the boss. It’s been a very curious thing to witness. Where as before he would submit to any and all dog, big or small, he is now very conscious of who he chooses to submit too.
He is by nature very docile, and just a natural beta male so I don’t think he will ever have that alpha attitude. However, he has become very aware of his size and power and no longer lets just anyone pick on him anymore.
My boyfriend and I used to always joke that Hank was a useless guard dog, because he would never bark at strangers coming to our door, but instead would happily greet anyone at the door with a waggling tail and lots of kisses! This too is beginning to change. He has become a really great guard dog actually. He barks whenever he hears the doorbell and apprehensively stands at the door. Of course once he recognizes our visitor his “tough” demeanor immediately changes and he becomes the big lovable puppy we all know and love. He’s got quite a BIG and intimidating bark however, and it is always funny to see a stranger’s reaction, because in about two minutes of smelling you he drops his guard dog act and begs you for a belly rub!
I knew the inevitable would someday come, but I guess I’m just not ready for my baby to grow up! While he is on his way to becoming a full fledged adult, he currently is just a teenager trying to figure out what it means to be grown up.