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Copper 4

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Entered: 01/05/2019
Status: Adopted
Age: 23 months; born 03/26/2017
Color: Liver/White
Weight: 69 lbs.
Gender: Altered Male
Location: Silver Spring, MD
Health: UTD, HW-, attained a healthy weight, overall excellent health
Temperament: Good with people as young as 12 (may be too enthusiastic a greeter for younger), good with other dogs, not good with cats or other small pets due to high prey drive

Copper 4's Story . . .

Update 02/17/2019:  “Food is a great motivator for Copper. So great is his love for treats that, when told to ‘crate up,’ he will run to it and open the door himself if the treat looks particularly tasty.”

Copper has settled beautifully into being a house dog. He has yet to make peace with the vacuum cleaner, but no longer startles at the sound of other appliances. He no longer barks at people on TV or jumps at a televised soccer ball. His main indoor joy is stretching out on the floor near his people, with a careful eye on their movements in case they try to leave the area. In those cases, he’s up and right by their side.

Out of doors, Copper’s main joy is tracking rabbits and squirrels. On walks, he alternates nose-to-the-ground exploration with treetop searches. There is no puddle too large or small to avoid. His foster parents use a restraining harness to walk him due to his strength and intense prey drive. When the harness prevents his chase of local wildlife, he leaps upwards in excitement. If he can’t go forward, he goes airborne!

Copper is rapidly learning commands, such as “down” and “wait.” He has made his greatest progress in the area of not chewing inappropriately. His foster family suspects that grabbing items was an attention-getting device in his former home, where the family had little time for him. His foster family counters this behavior by not chasing him or engaging in tug-of-war to get an item back. Instead, they use treats as a lure to get Copper to bring them an item to “give” or to “leave it” when he approaches something he shouldn’t have. Copper initially showed a particular taste for cheap and crunchy reading glasses, so his foster mom worked with him on this specific item. She can now kick a pair of glasses by his nose without a reaction. However, Copper is a very smart dog that recognizes entrapment when he sees it. Food suspiciously placed close to the edge of the counter or dropped on the floor is ignored, but it will disappear when he knows he isn’t under surveillance.

Food is a great motivator for Copper. So great is his love for treats that, when told to “crate up,” he will run to it and open the door himself if the treat looks particularly tasty. He may go stand in his crate with a hopeful expression while his foster mom makes dinner. Lots of attention and exercise has also helped to improve Copper’s behavior. Show him a grooming brush and he goes belly up for joy. His foster parents spend most of their time in the large kitchen/family room area. In this area, shoes, gloves, books, and other enticing items are safe. Instead, he enjoys a basketful of stuffed toys and chew toys. Those with squeakers are particularly short-lived.

Copper has spent a few days in day care, where he has done well. Although he doesn’t engage in active play with other dogs, he does follow them around all day and comes home tired. He has visited another dog in its home and had a dog visit in his. He showed no aggression toward the visiting dog, even when he checked out Copper’s food bowl.

Copper is a big and big-hearted dog ready for a new start. He would be a wonderful companion for someone who wants an exercise buddy and a devoted friend

Original: “He is thrilled to be allowed in a house, which he sees as a wonderland of new experiences.”
Copper is large, strong, and active, which proved too much for a Pennsylvania family with two toddlers and too little time to train him. Consequently, the family asked MAESSR to find Copper a loving family that can give him the attention he deserves.
Copper was raised as an outdoor dog, with a dog house in the yard and a crate for sleeping in the garage. He is thrilled to be allowed in a house, which he sees as a wonderland of new experiences. His foster family has been amused to see him place his paws on a bathroom sink to see if the dog in the mirror has returned or to see his tail disappear under the bed as he explores every corner. Less amusing are his efforts to sample items carelessly left about, because…hey! --nobody taught him the difference between a chew toy and his foster dad’s wallet. Thankfully, Copper is proving to be a fast learner, with “off” and “give” as top commands to learn.
Copper is crate trained and appears to be housetrained. He does not signal that he wants to go out, other than to chase squirrels. He sleeps quietly in his crate at night and when his foster parents are not at home. When they are home, Copper is confined to whatever room they’re in. He doesn’t get on the furniture but will counter-surf and may pull items off a shelf. His curiosity is such that he has jumped onto the workbench in the basement to see what he could see.
Copper loves people and attention. He will greet visitors with a jump and then try to climb in their laps. He will bring them a toy to toss. He does the Springer lean on a leg to encourage petting. He is delighted to be invited for car rides, where he somewhat unhappily remains in the back seat. Copper happily greets all dogs he meets on a walk, but larger dogs intimidated him at the dog park, and he begged to leave. He was briefly in a multi-dog foster home, where he played with other dogs outside but quarreled with them inside. Losing his family, moving indoors, and being one of six dogs all within a day may have been too stressful for him to adapt quickly. He has shown no aggression toward humans. His foster parents can pet him while he eats, take items from his mouth, and pull him by his collar.
He is basically a very large and sweet puppy that has had little training. Copper only knows “sit.”  Leash manners, “come,” “wait,” and other commands are a mystery to him. Due to Copper’s lack of training early in his life, MAESSR is requiring two series of obedience classes to be started within 90 days of adoption.
In addition to formal training, Copper’s forever family must be committed to providing him with plenty of exercise. Like many of us humans, he has a few holiday pounds to lose. Copper will need long walks and playtime. A game of inside fetch on a rainy day will be helpful. Agility and nose work might be satisfying for this active boy. Copper’s foster parents impart this vital wisdom: A tired Springer is a calm dog; a smart but bored Springer will seek out his own entertainment!
Smart, sweet Copper is just looking for a special family willing to invest their time to help him acquire the behaviors of a well-behaved Springer. The return on this investment will be priceless!