Dexter’s good morning 

Hmm… We’re up a bit earlier then usual. The little furry brother seems to be doing his usual thing and I can hear Him doing the stuff he always does when I wake up. That means it will be time to go soon.

Ah, here He is. I’ll watch Him to make sure I don’t miss the time we can go. Ok… Just a bit longer… I hear a dog outside … I have to let them know to stay away… Woof!! There, I told them… Feels good.

Ok, He is coming … And … I’m out. The neck thing is on and we go! As usual, the furry brother tries to come too, but I help Him to chase him away.

The room before we get outside is moving and I have to sit here and I get a treat! That feels good … All is in order.

I pee on my tree … Hi tree… Glad to see that no one inappropriate peed on you since I saw you!

Ok … Now I wait for Him to put those tasty things that I sniff out. Ah!!! I can bark at this small flying thing while I wait!

Ok … Here we go… He says Sook and I sniff and find tasty things and he is happy when I do and I am happy cause he is happy and tasty things make me happy… And that makes Him happy!!! GOOD!!!

I know this… Wait … No I don’t. Hmm … I walk close to him, but now he wants me to lie down as we go. I think I get it. Let me try to get up?!?! Nope … He doesn’t like that. He likes when I walk and when he says Down, I lie down! Got it! I lie down … He is happy and I get a tasty thing and I am happy!!! GOOD!

I do things I know and He is even happier. Wow… This is great!

Oh cool, this dark girl is here and He lets me play with her. She runs and I run and if she doesn’t run… I raff at her and she runs. Oh oh … He got my Preciuos! It is so cool how He does that. Ahh… She got my Preciuos!!!! Must get it back! That’s right!!! It’s mine and I’ll take your Precioius! Ha … I’m the Boss! Hmm … Ok, He is the Boss, but I am right after Him! Cause he controls Preciuos, but I got it back from the dark girl.

We’re back in the safe place and I know food is coming. Food!!! Ok… I wait until he makes that sound and now I can eat!!! Food!!! I like Food!

Food is gone… I wish there was more Food! Ah, little furry brother … Come here … I said Come Here!!! Look, I brought you Precious to throw for me! You still don’t know how to do it? It’s ok you’ll learn one day! Maybe if I press it on you and chase you you’ll learn. No? Fine, we’ll work on it more.

He gets me and throws the tasty stick into my home and he seems happy and I am happy. 

Now I wait until he is back and we do happy stuff! I know he’ll be back so I just got to wait here. Hey!!! The tasty stick… Let’s see if you got tastier!

It’s a GOOD morning!


Dexter is learning how to speak cat … aka not to bite Monya’s tail

We have been working on learning not to chase the cat every time. Dexter’s favorite thing is to run up and grab the tail, but Monya is not a fan. So we are working on hanging out together without chasing or biting.

These are important skills for Dexter to learn for peaceful co-existence with his buddy.

As an owner, even though it is quiet entertaining to watch their antics, it is my responsibility to teach Dexter proper etiquette with the cat and other smaller animals. Very soon he will be much bigger and stronger and bad learned behaviors can lead to lots of headache and conflicts.

Socialize and teach early!!!

The road to meeting Dexter … How to pick a puppy

The road to meeting Dexter was an interesting experience.

My last dog Dante passed away in December of 2013. After a month or so I began considering getting another dog. The new friend had to fit a number of criteria that I would require from my dog:

  1. I prefer mastiff breeds for their power, size, guard dog qualities and for their relaxed attitude in the house.
  2. It would have to be an active breed that can keep up with my activity level.
  3. A breed that would have the desire and drive to do obedience and protection training and enjoy the process.
  4. A breed that is established well enough in Unites States to allow for a large enough scope of choices and tested, proven parents.
  5. A breed that would be good with children. Mastiffs tend to be good with kids due to their size, tolerance to pain and annoyance and house activity levels.

After some research and from my previous experience, I settled on a Cane Corso. It is a lighter and more agile mastiff, males averaging at about 120 lb. The name Corso implies corsing mastiff and therefore is a breed that possesses the endurance, size and drive for an active and strong breed. In addition, there have been a few Cane Corsos coming up in the world of Schutzhund and PSA and demonstrating great abilities (Alla Zilberg’s Safir was definitely great example and inspiration). Few other mastiff breeds, from my research, have demonstrated same level of abilities in dog sports.

After inquiring about breeders and breed lines, I met Alla Zilberg on Facebook who has been very successful with her Cane Corso Safir. She has reached a high level of IPO3 with her male Corso. Through her, I was referred to Joe and Renee Liberty Cane Corso.

With a referral, I reached out to Joe. During our first conversation, I warned him that I will annoy the shit out of him with questions and details about his dogs, breeding program and his dog’s abilities and achievements. Joe’s response was the first indication of a responsible breeder. He was happy to answer all my questions and respected and appreciated my concerns and diligence. My list of questions was as follows (I continued asking over several conversations and online chats)

  1. Do they perform hip, elbow and knee tests on their dogs and if yes, which tests do they go for.
  2. What is an average longevity of their dogs.
  3. Are their dogs house kept or are kennel dogs.
  4. Does he require a contract for a working dog, show dog or pet owners.
  5. What are the specifics of the contract… such as co-ownership, spay/neuter requirements.
  6. At what age do they allow the puppies to be taken.
  7. Would it be ok for me to come out and meet his dogs (on several occasions; I think it is important to visit breeder’s home/facilities before you make a decision to buy the dog from them. The condition of the house and facility indicates to me the quality and responsibility of the breeder.)
  8. Do they concentrate on show or working trials? If yes, in what way and what is their preference.

Eventually Joe told me that he had two litters coming up Fifty x Lola and Brutus x Josie. According to our agreement, I would get the best working prospect from either litter.

I was lucky… Fifty x Lola had 7 puppies with 4 boys and Brutus x Josie had 5 boys.

I visited Joe and Renee when puppies were about 3-4 weeks old and got a chance to spend some time playing with Brutus. His drive and intensity were very impressive and combined with Josie’s (I’ve met her on my previous trip to Joe’s house) drive and conformation got me very excited for their puppies.

When puppies were 7-8 weeks old, I and my friend and experienced dog trainer Mike came to see the puppies and hopefully make a pick. After looking at several puppies we settled on 2. First was the pick of the litter formentino boy with high drive, alpha attitude and impeccable conformation. Second, was a darker boy, who was the “runt” and a bit smaller. He was extremely stable and unfazed by anything. When we let both boys play tug using a cloth, the darker one took a deep bite and held on. Formentino took as strong of a hold but was more excited and shook the rag. Both puppies were eager to chase, play and were comfortable with full set of jingling keys (darker one even grabbed them and played dug), dropped objects on the floor and being handled. However, while formentino displayed rebellious tough attitude, the darker one was more willing to please and tolerated being handled, checked and held down. Both puppies exhibit an amazing recovery time from any new experience or stress. They bounced back to playing, exploring and running around.

Mike and I were really impressed with both puppies, but both agreed that the darker one will be easier to train and is a better candidate for me and my life.

And thus after 24 hours of consideration I let Joe know that I want the darker smaller guy with a shorter muzzle.

Say Hello to Dexter