Adopted: May 22, 2016
Age: 10 months DOB 7/7/15
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Update: July 1, 2016
Ryker is doing very well, although it seems like he’s been with us for a lot longer than the 6 weeks he’s actually lived with us. He loves to play with us and with Kensey, and he enjoys going to the park where he often gets to meet and play with other dogs off-leash. He has wonderful manners when meeting other dogs and always wags his tail and approaches the other dog slowly. He’s been great with other dogs both small and large and has never been rough with any of them. Sometimes the other dog may act defensive against him, but he always quickly backs off if the other dog indicates they do not want him near or to be sniffed. He may sometimes get a little rough with Kensey and ignore her defensive maneuvers, but this mainly happens when we are at the park and it may be that he is so excited that he finds it hard to control himself with her. We are careful to watch their interactions all the time and especially at the park when this happens. It doesn’t seem to happen at home or only rarely when they are playing in the backyard and they get too excited.
Another favorite thing that Ryker loves to do is play a simple game of toss and catch with a ball or another rubber toy. He will drop the toy on our lap (if we are sitting), sits or lies down and wait, then just jump upwards to catch the ball when we gently toss it in the air. He brings the ball back, drops it on our lap, sits or lies down and waits, etc…This pattern continues until you get up/stop. We think he could continue this game for hours if given that opportunity!! Mark played this game with him once non-stop for over an hour while watching TV! I know I’ve done it for quite a long time more than once too. It’s basically a nightly ritual for him to want to play this game!
Also, we have a trainer that started coming out to the house about once a week to work on training for both Ryker and Kensey. She’s had 3 visits so far with the first visit being mainly as an introduction for all of us. They love seeing her because she always brings a large bag of toys to let them play with and to use as part of training (on top of the yummy treats)!…and they also really like how nice she is!! Ryker already knew the sit command when we adopted him, and now he is learning the down and stay commands, though he ‘forgets’ when he gets overly excited and eventually we hope he might be able to be less excited when greeting new people who come into the house or backyard. He is a smart boy so we know he will learn quickly but he needs to channel or control his puppy exuberance. We believe he will be better as he matures and over a period of time. Kensey still also gets very excited when meeting new people so we know this energy is not easy for friendly, outgoing dogs to control when they are still on the younger side. She is calmer when familiar people come over, but is still very excitable with newer people or people who also are themselves giving off an excited energy level. As you know, sometimes it’s more about the people than it is about the dog!
Ryker had a clean bill of health following his vet appointment on 6/15. Our vet clipped his nails and as we had anticipated, this was not an easy task as we had been warned by Don (his foster dad). Ryker struggled and tried to nip the vet when he first tried, even though he had been sitting and playing on the floor with Ryker, so our vet ended up using a soft muzzle while both Mark and the vet tech tried to hold him down. Ryker struggled mightily, but eventually all the nails that needed clipping were clipped and he was fine once we walked out of the exam room. Mark left with a few scratches on his legs and arms (shorts and short sleeves) as Ryker tried desperately to get free during the clipping. So this will be a challenge. The vet didn’t feel it reached the level of the worst cases he had come across. Our trainer offered to come with us to the vet’s the next time we bring Ryker for a clipping so that she can see what happens to Ryker and perhaps help. He doesn’t have any issues with us holding his paws and playing with his nails, but he definitely flips a switch when it comes time for the nail clippings.
Update: May 22, 2016
The magic has happened for our young male, Ryker, who will turn 1 year old with his adopters.
His foster Dad worked with him to tone down his enthusiasm when meeting new people, helped him learn to walk nicely on a leash and got him used to staying in a crate for short periods until he learned that he wouldn’t have to stay there all day. Once we posted Ryker on our Available Dogs page, we heard from a lot of people who were interested in meeting him.
We knew that Ryker would need an experienced adopter, someone who has lived with and loved German Shepherds previously, and we thought he would do best with a confident dog in the home….a calm female who could become a good
role model for him. There was a female German Shepherd in his foster home, and Ryker followed her around and enjoyed their play sessions.
Among our approved adopters waiting to be matched with a dog, we found the ones we were looking for. They brought their 2-year-old female Chocolate Lab to the adoption meeting, and the two dogs went for a walk as part of
their introduction to each other. The humans knew, pretty quickly, that they wanted Ryker to join their family; and when their dog seemed to agree, the match was made.
Ryker’s original write up:
This enthusiastic boy is big for his age and still figuring out what to do with all his energy. He has learned the basic obedience commands and will walk nicely on leash once he gets moving on the sidewalk or on a walking trail.
His recall is good, but he does want to jump up in excitement when he gets to you. He has the same inclination when greeting a visitor to the home and has to learn to tone things down a bit.
Ryker lives with a female German Shepherd in his foster home and gets along well with her. He wants to play and will follow her around in the yard to see whether she finds anything interesting to do. When meeting another dog outside the home, he barks and becomes very excited.
After some good exercise, he loves to relax with you in the house and will roll onto his back for a good belly rub.
He doesn’t have long periods of time home alone and will bark and scratch at the pan when he has to be left in his crate. He does settle down eventually, though.
Ryker will do well with an adopter who has some German Shepherd experience and knows positive training techniques….someone with a calm and loving personality who will enjoy the company of this outgoing and energetic boy.