Jillian R.
While throwing out some old stuff, I found a page in my notebook from when we were living in Oman. Let me share the contents with you all.

Jillian's Notebook (undated; March-Aug 2011): 
Why Jester is the BEST little boy in the World

1. Hides chewies under the bed and couch for "later use".

2. Not supposed to go into the bathroom so he threw his ball/toy in there so that he'd HAVE to go after it - can't help it if his bally rolled in there, can he? He made sure that I watched him go fetch it the first couple of times. The third time his bally "accidentally" rolled into the bathroom he didn't come out. I went to check and found him going through the garbage.
(He doesn't get to do this anymore because we always keep our bathroom door closed here)

3. Sits and wags tail when other people are around to show what a good boy he is.

4. Learns commands in one lesson - 10 mins.

5. Stops us from getting dressed by tugging on our pant-legs and sleeves so that we couldn't leave him at home alone.
(I miss having my clothes tugged on. He has Ginger now so he doesn't really mind us leaving the house)

6. Pulls us by our fingers onto the bed so that he can snuggle with us.
(This too has stopped since Ginger joined the family)

(He had to wear a cone for a couple of days after getting neutered. We had to dodge gravel and rocks which he scooped and hurled at us)

7. Throws toys in the air and plays catch by himself. 
(New favorite game; keeping ALL the toys away from Ginger, piles them around himself)

(Loves Ginger very much though, and would protect her with his life)

8. Crawls under mine and Eric's work desk (at home) to keep us company while we work.
(Jester has mellowed out a lot, now he just naps on the bed while we're working on the computer)

9. Jumps on the bed and stares at us with cute-puppy-eyes before we leave the house - maybe we would decide to stay.
(He still does this now. Leaving the house while 2 pairs of the saddest eyes staring at you is very, very difficult to do)

Sometimes I think he tries to kill himself:-

10. He jumps in the air and tries to strangle himself on Eric's belt every time Eric tries to put it on. Maybe this is related to No.5. Don't know.

11. We have to leash him to a door when we have Muslim friends over. He would get upset and lay down as far as the leash would let him all the while choking himself.
(This was before we got a kennel)

12. Managed to open the bedroom window at one time and tried to jump out from our second floor apartment because no one was paying attention to him.

Okay, so maybe he wasn't the "best" little doggie. If anything these were downright bad dog behavior. Jester was merely an 8-month-old puppy when we adopted him. Six weeks of obedience classes and three weeks of "summer camp"* later, he's grown into such a mature, obedient dog that sometimes when he comes and snuggles with me on the bed, I get all teary-eyed because well, there's really nothing like loving a pet. Period.

That said, go ahead, go to a shelter, go to a rescue group; adopt your new best friend today. No words can describe what dogs can do for your soul.

*summer camp: Jester was kenneled at Canadian Jebel K-9 Dog Training & Services (Muscat, Oman) while we visited New York last year. We chose a kenneling program that includes daily basic training (and lots of walks!). It costs a bit of course, but nothing is ever too much for our best friends. They did an EXCELLENT job with him.

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