My sister and her husband, Dave, bought a 9-month-old Doberman Pinscher, named Prince. They say that Dobes are highly intelligent and I can attest to the fact that this one certainly was. All four of the stories I shall tell here are stories about Prince.
Story One – Meet and Greet
A few days after they got Prince, I took my three young children to meet him. I just finished getting the kids out of the car, and my brother-in-law came out the door with this new Doberman following him out. I turned from the kids to wave hello, and Prince took off at a full run toward us. I don’t mind saying that I was scared. There was no way I could get my kids out of the way before he reached us.
He headed straight for my daughter. She was the middle child and 5 years old at the time. My sons would have been 4 and 7.
Prince reached my daughter, his front paws came up and landed on her shoulders, and he somehow managed to hold all his own weight because she didn’t move backward at all. Her arms went around him, hugging him and he laid his head against hers. They were instantly and forever best buddies.
What was it that Prince felt when he saw my daughter. Why her and not one of the boys. I will never know, but he decided to bond with her the moment he laid eyes on her. I wish I could have read his mind. My kids are all grown up now, and I have to say that my daughter is the one with dogs but could Prince sense her love of animals at first sight from across the lawn?
Story Two – Who’s In Charge
About a week or two after getting Prince, my brother-in-law was home alone with him. He went to the kitchen for something, and Prince followed him to the doorway and stopped there. Dave finished whatever he was doing and turned to go back to the living room but there was Prince, and he gave Dave a bit of a growl. Dave spoke to him and took another step or two and Prince growled louder and was obviously not going to let Dave pass.
Dave was a little scared. This is a big dog, and he hadn’t had him very long, so he didn’t know what to make of this. Prince would turn his back on Dave and Dave would think everything was OK, but as soon as Dave would take a step, Prince would jump around facing him and growl lowly again.
So, there he stayed, trapped in the kitchen by his own dog, waiting for someone to come and help. It was a little more than an hour before my sister arrived home. Dave told her to be careful because Prince had him trapped and wouldn’t let him out. My sister walked into the kitchen from the outside door, passed Dave and patted Prince on his head and said ‘Good Boy.’
It took Dave and Prince a few weeks to work out who was the boss, and it wasn’t until Donny recognized it was all just a game to Prince that he could be comfortable with him. (My sister loved it, by the way!)
Story Three – Fetch
Now that Dave was no longer afraid of his dog, it was time for that visit to the vet for neutering. All went well there, but this story is about what followed a few days later.
My sister and brother-in-law were down in the recreation room to watch something on the TV. This was one of those 40 foot long rooms with tile flooring. They had put a carpet down at one end where the furniture and TV were. Prince was with them and brought his ball to Dave, wanting to play for the first time since his surgery.
So, Dave threw the ball down to the other end of the room, and Prince went tearing after it. When he came off the carpet and onto the flooring, he slid and hit the floor. OUCH! He screamed. Fortunately, there was no harm done — just a lot of pain for a few minutes.
I was there visiting a few days after this incident and Dave said ‘You’ve got to see Prince play fetch” and down to the rec room, we went. I didn’t know what to expect. Dave told him to get the ball sitting beside one of the chairs, and Prince got it and brought it to him. Dave threw the ball down to the other end of the room.
I watched the funniest thing I’ve ever seen in my life. Prince took off running and came to a screeching halt at the edge of the carpet. He then tip-toed all the way down the rest of the room on the flooring, retrieved the ball and then tip-toed BACKWARDS until his paws hit the carpet. Then he jumped to turn around and ran to Dave with the ball. He learned his lesson the first time but figured out how to still play the game without having to experience that pain again. SMART DOG!
Story Four – Prince Loves Me Too
My sister, brother-in-law, hubby, our three kids, and Prince went to a trailer park at the beach for a weekend. It was about 11:00 in the evening and I was starting to get a migraine and decided I was going to go for a walk in the fresh air to see if I could get rid of it before it really developed. Nobody wanted to go with me, but Dave insisted I take Prince with me. I thought he was silly, but I certainly didn’t mind taking him.
It was pitch black with all the trees around and no street lights. We walked for a bit and had turned around to head back. I didn’t hear the pick-up truck coming up behind us until it was almost beside us. It didn’t have any lights on. It just slammed to a stop beside me, and the moment it stopped the driver was jumping out of the truck. I froze. I wasn’t scared. I simply didn’t know what was happening. Prince did!
The man no sooner hit the ground, and Prince was literally in the air going for his throat. He was on a leash, and I had no idea yet that I was in danger. I was scared Prince was going to hurt this man. So I was pulling him down with the leash. Well, I don’t think the man’s second foot was on the ground for more than a second, and he was jumping back into the truck.
The truck sped off, still no lights on and it finally hit me that Prince had probably saved my life. I dropped to my knees, threw my arms around his neck and thanked him over and over again.
I loved that dog. We all did. Prince was smart. He was fun. He was loving. He was protective. Dogs just don’t come better than this Dobe!