Ben suddenly appeared above the cross in Antigua. He had a thick leather collar on, and was clearly not a street dog. He was confused, scared, and very, very sad. He miraculously managed to avoid being struck by a car for several days, but was growing thinner by the day.
We hoped that he was lost, and posted him accordingly. But he had been dumped, a common and cruel practice here in Guatemala. People take dogs they no longer want, drive them several towns away, and dump them too far from home for them to find their way back.
Ben was pretty shut down for the first few days with us. We had him neutered and the cone prevented him from feeling comfortable. But the moment the one came off, he showed us who he really was.
He is a stunningly beautiful, sweet dog. He adores people and loves to give hugs. He has discovered toys (and their innards), and delights in chasing, shaking, tossing and un-stuffing them. He is fast and agile and loves, loves, loves to play. He is brusque, so would likely do best in an adult home or one with older children.
Ben gets along great with most of the dogs at the center. He is wonderful with the females and pups. He doesn’t like all males, but we are starting some slow introductions. He can be ‘guardy’ of his people with other dogs, so probably would do best as an only dog, and his adopter should be able to read canine body language.
He is learning basic manners, rides fine in the car, and is now walking on leash. He walks really well, and passes other dogs without issue, however if the other dog is off leash and approaches he will lunge and snap. This is part of his barrier frustration suite. He loves training games, is food motivated and very smart.
Ben is somewhat anxious at the center, and displays some barrier frustration at being behind a fence and separated from action. He also has some mild object guarding with some toys (to play fetch we toss a second toy rather than wrestle the toy away from him).
We are currently working to diagnose and manage his apparently itchy or sore tail, and possibly one hock. Ben has been licking at both areas. We have done x-rays and skin scrapes, and nothing shows, so we are trying allergy medication.
He is fully vaccinated, neutered, and weighs about 50 lbs. He has a short, shiny coat. We feel he has a mid to high energy level and would thrive in a home where he received long daily off leash walks and interactive play.