The Hell Hound

Elmo told me that Jack looks demonic in this picture.

He’s got a dog biscuit sideways in his mouth, giving him that weird grin. And I have no idea what’s up with his left eye. It’s normally open, but it sets back in his head a little further than the other one. Maybe the socket got fucked up by the same accident that broke his tail and pelvis. Who knows.

I have a love/hate relationship with him.
I love him because he’s just a big ol’ puppy. All he wants from me when I go out is attention. I’ll start scratching his ears and he just melts at my feet, all squirmy and shit. It’s almost like he knows I saved his worthless ass and he has to show his gratitude every time he sees me. It’s hard to not like a dog like that, you know?

I hate him because he’s just a big ol’ puppy. I swear, he’s worse than a Lab the way he always has to be chewing on something – so far he’s got my favorite hat, a shovel handle, a picture frame, the porch table fake flower arrangement, the left rear seat belt in the truck, a half dozen flower pots (with the flowers still in them), a sapling, the porch railing, the lid to the trash can for burnable trash and its contents, an extension cord which was unfortunately unplugged, a corner of the chicken coop, my Kindle cover,  and that’s just the shit I can come up with right off the top of my head. Wait – I forgot about the bird house. Evidently the little bastard can climb trees.
I expect some morning I’ll wake up to four flat tires on the truck.

I went out to feed him the other day and saw where he had shredded a coke can. I only found about half that can and have no idea where the rest of it went unless he ate it. He hasn’t been yelping in pain or shitting blood, so I really don’t know.

Him and CharlieGodammit do not get along at all but I can’t put it off on Jack. Charlie’s always gotten along real well with other dogs, but not this one. I can understand it though – Charlie’s the Top Dog, but he’s old and he sees Jack as somebody trying to move in on him. Law of the pack and all that. And with Charlie having a lot of wolf in him, that instinct’s probably pretty strong. Because of that, Jack lives outside while Charlie lays around in an air conditioned house, dreaming about when he was young and could still run and play hard.
Because they don’t get along, I have to go out with Charlie, keeping myself between them until Charlie gets off the porch and I can grab Jack by his harness handle, then I have to sit there with him until Charlie finishes his business and goes back inside.

They’ve fought a couple three times. Nothing major and no injuries to either dog when I’d kick them apart, but it happens any time they get close together.

I gotta hand it to Jack, he’s got heart. He’s not vicious at all, but there’s not one inch of back-up to that dog. Charlie stands 26 inches at the shoulder and weighs a good 130. Jack stands 19 inches and weighs in at about 65 pounds, so Charlie’s got the height advantage and twice the ass. It doesn’t faze Jack one bit. When it’s on, it’s on.
I think if Charlie was a few years younger he could flat out fuck Jack up with no problem, but with Charlie at 11 years old, Jack would have the advantage if the fight goes on more than a few seconds which is why I’m so anxious to break them up when they do fuss. He’s nimbler and quicker, plus as you can see from the picture he’s got Boxer in him along with that breed’s jaw strength, which I can personally attest to. He accidentally nailed me in the thigh a couple weeks ago when I was kicking him and Charlie apart and the four puncture holes from his canines still haven’t healed completely up. Luckily for both of us I’m not well hung.
The good thing is they don’t go out of their way to start shit. When Charlie wants to go out, he goes down the steps and pays Jack no mind, and Jack knows when Charlie’s out he needs to be with me on the other side of the porch getting his ex nuts rubbed. Just don’t let them get close to each other.

He’s fine with Legal Lucy. He wants to play but he’s so damned big and clumsy he scares her a little. She’ll go outside, but she goes back inside the house as soon as her business is done if he’s running loose.
At first she was scared to death of him – he was laid up hurt and she sniffed and playfully jumped at him which caused him to snap at her, but that’s all he did and it was all it took to convince her he’s a fucking ax murderer or something. For the next two weeks I had to sneak her out front with Jack on the back porch so she could do her thing, but one day he heard the door and came dashing around the house just as she was taking a dump. She finished her shit and then he did that playful front paw stomp at her and she figured out he wasn’t going to kill her, so now she goes out back again. She’s still leery of him, but at least she doesn’t run from him, triggering that hunter instinct.

I had to buy a kennel for Jack. I got it on sale so it only set me back a couple hundred bucks, but it’s worth its weight in gold. It takes some of the pressure off of me when Charlie wants to take his morning walk around the property, but the main reason I bought it is because Jack absolutely hates delivery trucks. I’m pretty sure that’s what ran him over because if he’s in my truck and a box truck passes us going the other direction, Jack fucking nuts up trying to get through the rear window to attack. He can be at the far end of the property fucking something up and if he sees a box truck go past the house 150 yards away, he’ll start barking, not paying one bit of attention to tractors or semis traveling down the same road.
It’s funny, but if company shows up Jack’s playful as hell, even with Jason, our mailman. Let a UPS truck show up, which happens about once a week because Miss Lisa does a fair amount of shopping online, and I have to throw Jack in the cab of my truck so the UPS guy can deliver his package. I thought it was poetic justice that the UPS man was the one that delivered his kennel. So now if we’re expecting a package or delivery, Jack goes to the jailhouse.
The Jack Jail is covered and he’s got a couple rawhide bones in there as well as a bucket of water, plus I feed him in there so it’s not a punishment place, you know? And after the first day he realized I’m not going to let him out just because he’s barking so he’s generally pretty quiet when he’s confined. He actually doesn’t mind it too much – I’ve caught him napping in there more than once with the door wide open.

That fucking dog has more energy than the law allows. I heard a funny noise the other night about 10 and when I stepped out to investigate, the Hell Hound was running laps around the house and I mean belly-to-the-ground running. He made a couple more laps around the house and then flopped down at my feet panting. I swear, if I hadn’t seen the X-rays myself, there’s no way you could convince me he had a broken pelvis just a few weeks before.
I have to go outside 3-4 times a day to play with him otherwise he might get even more destructive and might gnaw on the house or something. I’m pushing 60 and that damned dog runs me ragged. He’s got a thick knotted rope about a foot long and his favorite thing is for me to grab both ends while he’s hanging onto the middle with me swinging him around in the air in a circle, just like you’d do with a kid. I don’t need to lift weights, I got Jack.

And then I found out the other morning that white trash dog’s been having company over at night. I woke up at my usual time, a little before dawn, and looked out the back door and him and one of the neighbor dogs were just playing away right there on the back porch. I don’t really mind him having company here, I just don’t want him following them home – somebody might shoot him. So far he hasn’t shown any inclination at all to leave the property.

All and all, he’s a pretty good outside dog. He barks at cars coming in but doesn’t bite, he doesn’t dig, and he stays on the property. He’d be perfect if he would just quit chewing on shit. It’s not like I don’t give him enough to chew on – right now he’s in his bed where he’s got a beef shoulder bone he’s been working on, a couple of rawhide bones, his rope and my fucking favorite hat. Hell, I’ve given that dog so many rawhide bones he’s got them scattered all over the property. Check it out – there’s one behind him in the picture. At least that one’s exposed. You ever run over a rawhide bone with a lawnmower? It’ll wake you up, that’s for sure.

I’ve given up on getting rid of him with as much money that’s been put into him, but there’s times I’ve actually been kinda happy not to see him on the porch when I come home, but then he comes trotting up from the woodpile all happy to see me and I feel guilty.
When I had him cut, I was picking him up at the vet that afternoon and the girls up front sent the kennel boy back to get him. I could hear his nails clicking with that odd gait he’s got and I said “Shit. Here he comes…” and the girls were going “Wha…?” with a WTF expression on their faces, and I said “Yeah, you ever have one of those dogs where when you get up in the morning you hope somebody had stolen him off the back porch during the night? Come on Jack, let’s go home. I’ll drive.”
We left ’em in tears, they were laughing so hard.

This entry was posted in CharlieGodammit, Dogs, Jack, Legal Lucy. Bookmark the permalink.

20 Responses to The Hell Hound

  1. Matt says:

    When we were growing up one of the dogs ate one of those old cardboard and metal cans of motor oil. How it could sand it was beyond us.


  2. Skipperdaddy says:

    I hate to chain a dog, but I had a german shepherd that would eat the siding off the house when I was younger. Had to chain him when I went to work but man he was happy to see me when I got home. I miss that dog.

    • Wirecutter says:

      Jack won’t chew anything up when I’m gone, only when I’m home and in the house. He’s just a big hyper pup that has a shitload of energy to burn and he expects me to help him out.
      He is calming down slowly but surely after his nut-cutting. I figure another month or two oughta do it.

  3. doverthere says:

    Glad Jack is doing well. Maybe with time Charlie will come around. Good luck.

    • Wirecutter says:

      Charlie’s so old and crippled up I doubt he makes it to next winter, I’m sad to say.

      • favill says:

        Poor old, Charlie. I’ve read so many of your stories about him…I hope he goes out fighting…like a good warrior should.(but not your new pup)

  4. pigpen51 says:

    My neighbors had a totally white German Shepherd. His name was Caesar. He looked fierce, but he was a big baby with us kids. But he acted tough to those who didn’t know him. One day a farmer came to our little town, to get some parts at the old parts store. He had a huge sow pig with him, in the back of his pickup truck. Somehow, that old pig got loose, and came wandering the block or so that we lived off of the main drag and came up to that dog. The dog was on the end of his chain trying to get to that old pig. When the pig showed no sign of stopping, but walked right up to old Caesar, that dog was running just as fast as he could, in the opposite direction, trying to get away from that pig, at the other end of his chain. That was probably the funniest thing we saw from the neighbors.
    The neighbors had two boys, quite a bit younger than my twin brother and I. They were all boy, and played rough and dangerously. But my mom never had to report them to their mom, save for the time when they discovered that one of them could hold on to the edge of the garage door, and the other could pull on the other edge of it, and since it was one of those old one piece doors, on a pivot, could give their brother a ride all the way up to the ceiling of the garage. My mom said that was one thing that scared her that the kid was going to fall 8 feet or so on their head then the other was going to get by the door flying back up at him.
    Hey, life in a small little village in Michigan was pretty boring back in the 70’s. I have heard it is even worse today.

  5. Tsgt Joe says:

    As an adult, I’ve not been much of a dog person simply because a dog needs more attention than I’m willing to give. When my wife and I married 6 or so years ago we each had 2 cats time has winnowed the packdown to a 14 year old cat who’se not that personable. My wife (whose name is charlie by the way) really wanted a dog and a friend who was dieing wanted her to get her shizu when she passed. The lady had “herbie” come over and visit at the house and really get to know us. Well she passed while we were down in florida and we never saw that dog again, he got scooped up by another of her friends who had no intention of letting him go. So we started making the rounds of shelters and fairs to find a dog. We wanted a small dog, adult and settled, housebroke and who liked cats and kids. Thre is a group called shelter angels next town over in bay city that had a prospect, we were told he was from Detroit and had been in the system a while. We went to the foster home and looked at him. Dog was blind in one eye and coulnt see much out of the other, darn near deaf and a stiff back. I was thinking that pretty much describes me. He was this little apricot colored poodle with long curly hair and my wife fell in love with him on the spot. He was the little gentleman, he didnt bark, did his business outside, loved being taken for walks he would come over to me and put his paws up on my knee for me to pick him up he loved being cuddled and petted, he was the best dog for us. It all came crashing down this week. He was happy and energetic on his walk sunday, 2 hours later he threw up in the house so my wife put him in the yard. I went out to get him an hour later and he couldn’t raise his head we rushed him to an urgent care then down to an animal hospital in Saginaw. Apparently his pancreas blew or something he got sicker through the night, you know its not good when the vet calls at 1am to tell you he cant get him stabilized. The next morning he was in such bad shape we had him put down. That little guy got to me. He had such joy with things, if it was walk time or supper time he would bounce around and spinn in circles. He would come over and get in my lap around 10 pm for me to give him his eye medicine. Like I said above he was a cuddly dog. My wife named him pretty boy he could have just as easily been called sweet boy. Everybody who met him liked him. We only had him 5 months but we miss the hell out of him.

    • Wirecutter says:

      I got lucky with Charlie. He was an adult when I got him and other than being ill-mannered, he was a pretty good dog. He respected a fence, didn’t dig, didn’t chew, the only thing he did was shit in my garage every day. He still shits in places where he knows I’m going to be walking.
      I’m sorry to hear about your dog but surely you must take comfort knowing that it died with a family that cared and you gave it a good life its last few months.

  6. bowwow@luis says:

    Good story!, read the whole thing..this time.

  7. Ed243 says:

    When they go at it, grab the hind legs of Jack and pull him away. Saw it done once with a bunch of sled dogs that were fighting. It has worked for me every time I’ve used it.

    • Wirecutter says:

      I can’t, I don’t want to fuck up his pelvis if it’s not completely healed. Maybe in the future.
      I just have to keep ’em separate. As long as they don’t get close, they pretty much ignore each other.

    • nonuts@luis says:

      or grab ’em by the balls and pull them away……..oh, wait….to late!!
      Ha Ha, I’m so funny!!!!!!!

  8. Granny says:

    Excellent tale, (heh) about your dogs. It is good that you have a back up pup for when Charlie God Dammit goes for that last walk. Prepare yourself for a genuine outpouring of grief when Charlie jumps the fence. All of your loyal readers have come to know that old cuss and to love him like you do.
    Wolf you say? That explains the shit packages around the place. You are the top dog in his world, but he still has an opinion.

  9. alfie195671 says:

    Get Jack some Kong toys. My dog is proof that they are indestructible.

  10. Rusty says:

    Been a while since I had to put down my beloved Blue heeler/black Lab. Ready for a new commitment and looking into the Catahoula Panther Dog. There’s a YouTube ‘Tasso Catahoula’ that gives a good presentation of the breed. By their account what you have there is a classic Catahoula! Jack has a bloodline that includes Red Wolf. It’s a hellofabreed indeed. I’ll not be getting one as they require more than my tired 63 year old frame can handle. Check out the YouTube video it will explain a lot. You know you are gonna keep him, he will probably wind up saving your in some way. Best regards.

  11. Deb says:

    Love reading the Jack stories. He’s come a long way. So what happens in the winter? You going to build him a heated dog house with maid service? Not sure he would allow you to come near him when you wear the maid outfit. Something about lace and a beard just doesn’t seem right.

    • Wirecutter says:

      I’m going to enclose the Jack Jail with plywood and build a doghouse in there, then he’ll have another storebought insulated house up on the porch.
      Old Farmer’s Almanac is predicting a warm wet winter here so he should be all right.
      If it gets too cold, I’ll make him a bed in my gun room. After I posted this story, he hasn’t chewed a single thing up, so maybe he’s settling down enough to sleep inside at night. I’ll just have to lock Charlie up in the bedroom until I can get the Hell Hound inside and behind closed doors.

      If you’ve got something against lace and beards, you’d have never made it in California.

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