Q&A Friday #68: How Did You End Up With Patton As A Pet?

Question: “How about a topic that we all can enjoy? How did you decide on Patton for a pet? Why a dog instead of a cat or canary? Why his breed? Why him instead of one of his other litter mates? Temperament? Looks? Will you ever breed him?” — Cartman

Answer: When I was in Charlotte, I had a roommate whose parents bred Jack Russell Terriers. Patton was the offspring of one of those pure blooded Jack Russells and a mutt. For whatever reason, except for my roommate’s sister, who adored Patton, my roommate’s family wasn’t particularly fond of him. So, they decided to get rid of Patton. My roommate, as a favor to his sister, decided to take him in.

The way I found out about this was he came to me and said, “Guess what? We’re getting a dog tomorrow. You don’t mind, do you?” To tell you the truth, I didn’t mind because I like dogs and since he told me Patton was house broken, I figured he wouldn’t be any trouble.

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Well, Patton shows up and it turns out that *** surprise *** he was not house broken. I think that’s because my roommate’s family had a doggie door and Patton could just go outside and use the bathroom whenever he wanted. Since we didn’t have a doggie door, and since Patton wasn’t used to signaling that he needed to go out to use the bathroom, he was peeing and pooping in the house every day.

In addition, Patton had really bad separation anxiety when he was young. If we were in one room and he was in the other and couldn’t get to us, he started tearing things up. Sometimes he did the same thing if we left for a while. He tore up pillows, internet cable, the carpet, the blinds, and even chewed a hole in one side of the couch.

Because of that, my roommate decided that he didn’t like Patton and said he wanted to get rid of him. But, by then, I decided that I liked him and I told him I would start being responsible for him.

Unfortunately, those were difficult circumstances, Jack Russells are a willful and stubborn breed, and Patton was my first dog. So, it took me forever to figure out that I needed to crate train him to get him to stop using the bathroom in the house and it took me a good while to teach him not to chew on things (Hint: Put together a mixture of white vinegar and red pepper. Put just a dash on things you don’t want the dog to chew on and the problem will quickly be solved).

The rest is history.

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