Tag Archives: Jack

From a Jack to a King



Sometimes the inner beauty of an animal shines through his eyes and lights up his whole battered body with love.     Battle-scarred Jack – my first rescued male and superstar. He never started a fight – but he sure finished it!

Rescued from the streets with a broken leg after being hit by a car,  Jack was cared for in a rescue organisation for two years, until I adopted him. He had been fighting with males in the kennels next to him, so had been relegated to solitary confinement in a back kennel, with solid high walls and door. He could not see out at all. (It is not like that there now.) His only escape was to refuse food and to starve himself to death. He weighed 18kg when we got him, but his proper healthy weight, as seen here, was 25kg.

It took Jack six months to truly settle in to the home he had never had, helped by his old kennel mate Lady. As an alpha male, he was the easiest to handle of all my males and gave unconditional love for the whole six and a half years he was with us.



Lady and Jack Play-Fight

Lady and Jack Play-Fight *These are trained stunt dogs – do not try this at home!

It was 5.30 on a pleasant Spring evening, with the sun mellow rather than blistering. I sat out on the stoep with my glass of ice cold white wine and breathed a sigh of contentment. Just a short interlude before starting the evening meal.

Little Monkey was running round the garden with various toys, shouting, “Look at me Mum!” while the old dogs were up on the stoep with me. Madam the old girl came up for attention, so I gave her a quick pat on the head and she went away. Then TJ came up, and he got the same brief pat. Next second Madam has launched herself at TJ!

I jumped up and took my wine safely inside; not too bothered about the dogs. Maybe twice a year there was a little tiff and a reasserting of pack order. It was never aggressive or vicious, and never any injuries. Little monkey had now joined in, surprisingly on the side of Madam. Usually the two females squared off with a “There can be only one!” attitude and Little Monkey and TJ were best friends.

But this is all instinct. Attack the wounded, the weak, the sick, the old, the different. When it was TJ who had the underhand, the two girls joined forces.

Then Madam tripped over the chair and was down. Instantly the two other dogs laid into her. And though there was a lot of noise and teeth, it still wasn’t a serious fight. We’re talking seconds here.

But enough is enough, and I stepped in to separate them all.

Since Madam seemed to have come out the worst from the engagement, I shut the others outside and checked her over. Though there was no blood, unfortunately she had a six centimetre gash in the ruff of her neck. An unlucky accident; maybe Little Monkey got her fang caught in the collar when going for the thick neck mane.

I looked at the clock. Quarter to six. The vets shut at six. I downed the rest of my wine in one and rushed Madam to the vets for stitches, pain killers and antibiotics. Although she felt pretty sorry for herself, she was all right, and all the dogs were fine with each other again. Never a dull moment with three dogs.

So much for the interlude!

post script: I don’t have any photos of my dogs fighting. Not surprisingly, I rush to grab the dogs, not the camera. This photo is the best I have – great friends mock-fighting.