Chester (The Mad Little Turnip

American Cocker Spaniel
Picture of Chester (The Mad Little Turnip, a male American Cocker Spaniel

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Home:Warwick, RI  
Age: 17 Years   Sex: Male

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   Leave a bone for Chester (The Mad Little Turnip

Poo, Poo Poo, The Royal Poo, The Wriggler, Chessapee, Puppy

Doggie Dynamics:
not playfulvery playful

Quick Bio:

September 5th 1999

Himself. Then me Then cats.....everything is else is in another clump he will indulge if he so chooses.

The fact that no one....other than me....seems to grasp that he is crowned leader of the world.

Favorite Toy:
Save for one ball, no toy lasts long enough to be a favorite, so I guess cats are his favorite toy.

Favorite Food:
He's a hearty eater, but smoked anything goes over particularly big. That and whatever he's eating at the time.

Favorite Walk:
The woods....although a Chester walk in the woods is NOT the favorite of those to dwell there.

Best Tricks:
He has MANY. Kneel a distance away and yell "Schutzhund" and he'll pretend to be a police dog, dash over and grab your arm (very soft bite)...his addendum (boho Chester!) is to then run into the tub and ask for the water to be turned on.

Arrival Story:
After diligent research, I decided an Am Cocker was the right small breed addition to suit my needs and mesh with my two very large German dogs, a Giant Schnauzer and a GSD. I worried about Cocker softness and wanted to find a very confident puppy. The first time I saw Ches, he was on top of another puppy's head, chewing it. Fair enough! I picked him up a week later, but on the car ride home got a knot in my stomach. When looking at him initially, I had puppy on the brain and all I saw him near were other puppies. Now, however, I stared down at this sleepy gentleman who literally fit into my cupped hands. Was I mad?! What on earth was I doing with so preciously tiny a thing! With much trepidation, I put him down on the kitchen floor, saw my two large German hulks come over, and that, as they say, was the end of THAT! Chester has been house ruler ever since. The two large dogs had not a CLUE what to do with him. He was/is insanely high play drive, VERY vigorous about it, and yet he was so tiny they could not figure out how to respond. So they coped with him stradding their heads and playing tug with their ears, biting their sensitive male parts, and when they'd had enough of having their hocks nipped at would go run into the bedroom to leap onto the bed to take refuge. They absolutely never corrected him. It bugged me at the time as he was just outlandish, and years later it forced a big problem when I was fostering and one female decided to correct him. Now he can get a little funky when overcrowded, but he's still the ruler, still the king, still the tyrant, and underneath it all a sweet and on fire dog who has totally addicted me to this charmingly impetuous little breed...Cocker Spaniels love life and few do it with as much aplomb as does Chester.

Those very passionate about sharing life with dogs come to know that while we love them all, some just get inside a little deeper. I had my first fit of panic imagining a life without Chester before he was a year old, and it has been a taunting musing every year since. If he were a wild animal, he'd be a thick maned lion on the savannah....he is the STUFF! He has the most beautiful fine silky coat in such a beautiful shade (daddy was a red, momma a buff), is awesomely athletic and for this breed insanely healthy...I barely bother cleaning his ears anymore they are so perfect (not the Cocker norm) He is a jarringly intelligent animal. If I can mark a behavior twice, he learns it, which has resulted in me (never one trick train her dogs) having one with a huge bag of novel tricks. I have seen him display a conscience, Chester style. There are certain things he knows he cannot mess with....such as a half filled garbage bag waiting to be completed, or a shoe. What he will do is sweetly bring me his ball (his ball drive is huge) ask me to throw it, and then when he catches it trots over to the garbage or shoe, drops it IN there and then starts to rummage or gnaw. I yell "Chester!" and he immediately fetches his ball out, as if to say "oh no, I was just getting my ball!" He's a master seducer at getting food off your plate, having developed the perfect balance of the intense stare, the perfect distance to stand so as not to push it too far (and thereby to failure's grasp), and of course the sweetest face he can muster. His dog buddies lack such finesse, so Chester is always the big scorer. Maybe he'll train Daniel one day in the artform! ;) There is no toy he won't ruin in less than one hour...only his rubber ball has survived these years. He's torn giant dog Kongs within an hour....he is the terminator. He loves to drag things before me and then passionately roll all over them, grunting in spasm, reminding me of his kingship. He ADORES the woods, but he immediately goes into intense hound dog mode, and I am pretty sure he'd kill any fuzzy little cute thing he managed to corner, so I will not let him is just too extreme and scary! He's outlandish, he's vigorous, he's brilliant and totally one of kind. He's not a cuddler, he's not very biddable, sometimes he forgets his housebreaking, but who cares!.....he is cool as I don't know what and it just is an ego trip that he counts me as his main person. When he's gotten the occasional attack of tummy ache or diarrhea, he'll show his softer side as he just wants me near him. Then he does better. He knows I'd climb any mountain for him, and that makes me feel good...he has implicit trust in me and as a being, on two legs or on four, is just one the coolest, most vibrant and unique individuals I have ever had the privilege to know.

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