***Adopted!*** Benji

***Adopted!*** Benji

Benji

Meet Benji! Benji is an energetic little Heinz 57 terrier mix. He is 11 pounds and young, probably around 2 years old.  He is playful and affectionate once he knows and trusts you, and he definitely has that opinionated terrier personality that terrier lovers tend to find so endearing. (Those of us at the shelter who are terrier lovers think he’s awesome.)  He loves walks!  He’ll hop right up in the car with you and look out the window all the way to the park.  He would prefer a lap to ride in if possible; he’s not a back seat kind of dog.  He wants to be with you and a part of the action!  He really enjoys good long jaunts through Ramsey Park.  He gets along with cats and small dogs, and some large dogs.  (Some large dogs intimidate him.) He seems to have a fear of small, loud children that he doesn’t know, but children who can respect him should be fine. I suspect he would even enjoy rough housing with them once he has warmed up and trusts them. (That really is the key with Benji: trust. Earn his trust, and he has so much affection to give!) He can be leery of strangers, but has been getting trained while at the shelter and is learning they are a good thing.  (Though he will likely always still bark at strangers who come to visit him at home- he is an excellent little watchdog.)  It would be best if Benji ended up in a home without a lot of visitors, or else a home that was willing to consistently socialize him to teach him to be okay with visitors.

Benji has been neutered. He has also been updated on his shots, tested negative for heartworm, wormed, and treated topically with a flea/tick preventative.

If you are interested in adopting Benji, please call the shelter at 507-644-3853 or else feel free to stop in during open hours, no appointment necessary. M-F 3-7 and Sat 11-1. Even if you aren’t looking to adopt, come on in and play with the critters. It makes their stay more pleasant while they wait for a forever home!

Benji

Benji

Benji

Benji

Benji

Benji

Benji

Benji

Update 7/20: Benji’s day out! Gustav, a regular volunteer at the shelter (he’s the sable fuzzball) invited Benji to join him at Ramsey Park today, and Benji LOVED it! He really enjoys car rides, though he wasn’t content to sit in the back. He had to join Gustav up front. (He is an opinionated little fellow.) I think he would have preferred my lap, except I tied him to the seat so that he had to stay on his side. Sorry, Benji, I can’t have you distracting me while driving. And oh, once we reached the park, he was so excited! He couldn’t take in the sights and smells fast enough. We went for several miles all over the park. When we stopped at the overlook, Benji had to jump up and sit next to me on the bench for a bit. He really seems to like to be close to the people he trusts. He is really quite smart. He was already picking up on some of my signals just in the time we spent together in the park. With some time put into his training, who knows what he could learn!

Benji is a friendly little Heinz 57 terrier mix (your guess is as good as ours for breed!) He weighs in at 11 lbs. We estimate he is around 2 years old. He is young and full of energy! He enjoys the company of other small dogs, and seems fine with the cats he’s met. He can be intimidated by large dogs. We would also like to see him go to a home without young children.

If you are interested in adopting Benji, please call the shelter at 507-644-3853 or else feel free to stop in during open hours, no appointment necessary. M-F 3-7 and Sat 11-1. Even if you aren’t looking to adopt, come on in and play with the critters. It makes their stay more pleasant while they wait for a forever home!

Benji, the tricolor terrier, at Ramsey Park, with regular volunteer Gustav (the sable fuzzball.)

Benji, the tricolor terrier, at Ramsey Park, with regular volunteer Gustav (the sable fuzzball.)

Benji, the tricolor terrier, at Ramsey Park, with regular volunteer Gustav (the sable fuzzball.)

Benji, the tricolor terrier, at Ramsey Park, with regular volunteer Gustav (the sable fuzzball.)

Benji, the tricolor terrier, at Ramsey Park, with regular volunteer Gustav (the sable fuzzball.)

Benji, the tricolor terrier, at Ramsey Park, with regular volunteer Gustav (the sable fuzzball.)

Benji, the tricolor terrier, at Ramsey Park, with regular volunteer Gustav (the sable fuzzball.)

Benji, the tricolor terrier, at Ramsey Park, with regular volunteer Gustav (the sable fuzzball.)

Benji, the tricolor terrier, at Ramsey Park, with regular volunteer Gustav (the sable fuzzball.)

Benji, the tricolor terrier, at Ramsey Park, with regular volunteer Gustav (the sable fuzzball.)

Benji, the tricolor terrier, at Ramsey Park, with regular volunteer Gustav (the sable fuzzball.)

Update October 10, 2018.

It’s hard to overstate just how much Benji loves walks. The moment he saw the park appear through the car window, he went up on his back legs, paws on the sill, and started trembling and whining in excited anticipation. When I tried to convince him to stand still for a photo, I got this look like, come on, what are you waiting for? Let’s keep going!

Benji is just waiting at the shelter for that perfect home. He would love a home that will take him on walks regularly and give him an outlet for his terrier energy. It’s a need for him, really, like food. He is nervous about new things and new people, but once he warms to you, he is sweet and cuddly and playful. A gentle introduction goes a long way with him. Rambunctious children he doesn’t know frighten him; however, we have learned that he is fine with children who are willing to introduce themselves politely. I suspect that once a person became “his person”, that he would quite happily play and rough house with that person. While he is at the shelter, I will continue to take him on walks, getting him used to new places and people. I think he would in time become much more accustomed to strangers, and thus less nervous, if someone consistently took the time to socialize him in a positive environment. (He didn’t let out a single yap the entire walk through the park; he was too happily distracted with sniffing everything around him.) Though I suspect he will always be a watchdog of the house; he will bark when strangers come to visit.

Benji waiting for me to get a move on at Ramsey Park.

Update Oct. 12, 2018:

Today’s adventure for Benji was a trip to Runnings before we went to the park. Benji can be shy of strangers, and has a tendency to bark at them, so I thought it would be a good way to help get him used to people he doesn’t know. He did great! I found some treats he enjoys, and had him switch it up between “sit” and coming to his name to get one. Next thing you know, he is so absorbed in enjoying the smells and getting treats that strange people are just a background noise. He never barked or seemed concerned about a single person. 🙂 This little guy has such a great capacity for learning, and can really be quite brave if he is with someone he trusts. Same story later in Ramsey Park; just ignored all the passerbys. He wasn’t even concerned about the jogger! (A strange person running at them can be intimidating to dogs.)

Benji at Runnings.

Benji at Runnings.

Update Oct. 16, 2018.

Benji is still looking for that perfect home! He has so much love to give.

Benji’s adventure; Tuesday, Oct. 16. Today Benji was so excited to get to the park, that when I held up his collar to slip it on, instead he slipped his own head through! He has been responding so well to positive reinforcement training; he is so willing to learn in a positive environment, especially where treats are involved. (Unless it’s those little bacon strip treats- he doesn’t like those. But then again, he is an opinionated little fellow.) Benji is continuing to learn that strangers are a good thing. I have been teaching him to “sit” and to come to me when I call his name. When we see a stranger, I call his name, and he happily trots to me for his treat. In this way he is learning to associate strangers as good things. He has seen so many new people on our walks now, and mostly just ignores them these days. And if he does get at all uneasy, I call him to me, give him his treat, and he’s like okay, I guess that person must be alright and is just fine with him or her afterwards. He has gotten pretty good with his leash manners already too. He doesn’t pull anymore; if he hits the end of his leash, he slows down so he doesn’t tug it. Another quirk of his that I’ve learned is that he has a happy growl. When he gets eager and excited about something, he makes this funny little growly noise as if to say,”Come on, let’s go! I’m ready to get started! I can’t wait!” Benji also has a funny little smile, I’ve come to realize. His lower canines stick out at angles a bit, so that often when he closes his mouth, the go over his upper lip rather than under. It gives him a cute little bulldoggish smile.

Benji, Oct. 16, 2018.

Benji, Oct. 16, 2018.

Benji, Oct. 16, 2018.

Benji, Oct. 16, 2018.

Benji, Oct. 16, 2018.

Benji, Oct. 16, 2018.

Update Oct. 19, 2018.

Benji is still looking for his perfect home! I will keep sharing his adventures and training while he waits to find his family.

Friday’s adventure had him meeting yet another new dog, this one a big German shepherd/collie mix named Teddy who also happens to be a shelter Alumnus. The introduction was totally uneventful; a few sniffs and they acted like they knew each other for ages. Benji in general seems to enjoy the company of other dogs, big or small.

This day I got to look like a dog walker with my two and Benji all going for a walk at once. Benji did great! He really doesn’t pull much, and fell right into step with the other two. I could walk all three with one hand. 🙂

Benji met many strangers along the way, which can make him nervous. However, I have been teaching him to come to me when I call his name, and then he gets a treat. I do this whenever we see a stranger. He is learning that seeing strangers means treats, which means they are a good thing. He is doing so excellent! He casually walks past passerby these days without getting nervous or feeling the need to bark. 🙂

Benji also visited the geese. He was rewarded for a very calm approach to them. He was interested, but showed no tendency to want to chase them. He takes his treats so gently and politely from me too.

Benji, taken October 19, 2018.

Benji, taken October 19, 2018.

Benji, taken October 19, 2018.

Benji, taken October 19, 2018.

Benji, taken October 19, 2018.

Update Oct. 23, 2018.

Today’s adventure was a lot more of the same, but that really is the key with training an animal. Like people, they learn by repetition and creating habits. And of course, the more positive you can make the experience, the better they remember the lesson and want to repeat it!

Benji went to Ramsey Park, where he saw multiple strangers and practiced coming to his name. I also took him down to the zoo area, where he saw elk and bison. He didn’t seem too concerned. He is learning now to sit to ask for something that he wants. Now that he has “sit” down pat, it’s amazing what kind of a learning tool it can be! If he wants to go through a door, I ask him to sit first. If he wants to be let out of his kennel, he must sit nicely first. Etcetera.

Something in Benji’s past has taught him to be fearful, sometimes even to the point of shutting down. I am trying to help teach him confidence and trust, and replace his past with a better future. Watching his confidence grow has been so rewarding; watching him become a trusting, silly little goof rolling around in my lap fills the heart.

He is good with cats and most other dogs (with a proper introduction), and he has been fine with older children who know how to respect dogs and give Benji the time to learn to trust them. He would not be a good fit for a home with young children.

Benji, Oct. 24, 2018.

Benji, Oct. 24, 2018.

Benji, Oct. 24, 2018.

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4 responses to “***Adopted!*** Benji

  1. Thank You for Sharing Wonderful Information If you are going for finest contents like me, only visit this website Hope!!!

  2. Hi!
    What is his adoption fee?

  3. He is so cute I want him but I’m only 10 and but my birthday is come up so let’s go hope!!!

  4. Hi there, its fastidious article concerning media print,
    we all understand media is a wonderful source of facts.

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