Whole Dog Journal's Blog July 21, 2015

Best Dog Friends

Posted at 09:08AM - Comments: (8)

I’ve said it before and I will say it again: There is nothing as valuable as a “best dog friend” (BDF?) for your dog – particularly when you have a young, playful dog. Then, having or knowing a dog who plays well with your dog, and is available to you on a regular basis, is just priceless.

My son’s coonhound, Cole, loves coming to stay at my house when my son is travelling, but not because of who he gets to play with here – because he mostly has to play by himself here. He gets lots of off-leash running and swimming, and lots of love from Nana (me), but no love from my dogs, who are above playing with youngsters anymore, middle-aged bachelors who just don’t want to do that anymore.

However, at my son’s dad’s house, lives Cole’s best friend, Trixie, a German Shorthair Pointer who is not much older than he is, about the same size, and just as fit and as playful as he is. They first met when Cole was about five months old, immediately started playing, and haven’t stopped since. The moment they see each other, they just immediately dive in and start the games: chase games, tug games, bite-face, and more tug. They take turns being the “dog on the bottom” of the wrestling games; neither one is a bully, consistently putting the other dog on the defensive. Cole rolls on his back and uses his long legs to try to fend off Trixie’s jaws, as she goes for his elbows and throat; then she will do a somersault onto a dog bed and allow Cole to try to maul her as she growls and waves her long legs. It’s equal opportunity mauling!

My son lived at his dad’s house for several months after he graduated from college and as he looked for a job, and the dogs were in heaven. He’s since gotten a job and rents a house with friends, so Cole plays with Trixie now only when my son stops by his dad’s house (his stepmom is a fantastic cook, so it’s not infrequent!).

I took these photos the last time the dogs reunited after a week apart. I’ve had Cole at my house for the past three weeks. I can’t wait to see them play when they meet again.

Does your dog have a BDF?






Comments (8)

My Dalmatian had a bdf in another Dalmatian. They have both passed on but watching their friendship was amazing. One came from Minnesota and the other from England so there was no chance they were related. They would play all day long if allowed. One time at the park a German Shepard tried to join in and he played with a different set of rules. The two Dalmatians were nice but tried to actually snub the shepard. I never knew that dogs had rules by which they played and if you didn't follow those rules they didn't want you to play with them. Guess we aren't that removed from mans best friend.

Posted by: Bambi | July 22, 2015 12:00 AM    Report this comment

When my (now nine-year-old) Sheltie mix (Sasha) was young, a friend of mine had a rescued Golden Retriever (Duke) which was older (eight or so at the time) but still playful as a pup. They became best buds and would romp in my friend's yard whenever we went over for a visit (I was renting at the time and did not have a fenced yard). Her dog was 100 pounds and mine was less than 30 but they played full tilt. They would slam into each other then roll over each other--my dog would scream when she ended up on the bottom, then Duke would jump up and they would separate for a minute then Sasha would jump right back in for more. It was great fun just to watch them having fun.
Duke passed away several years ago and Sasha found a new BDF in my friend's Mother's 35 pound terrier mix, Sada . They have been best buds for several years now and, though they never romped as hard as Duke and Sasha used to, they always greeted each other with enthusiasm (Sasha would get excited whenever I'd tell her we were going to visit Sada--she knew her name) and would go off by themselves to "visit" away from the other dogs for awhile. Now, Sada, has recently passed away (she was 14) and I will be taking Sasha to my friend's house for the first time since Sada has been gone. I've been careful not to mention her name and I don't know how she will react to find her missing. She is cordial with my friend's other two dogs (both Bernese Mountain dogs) but not buddy-buddy with them.
Sasha has lost two BDFs now--I hope we can find her another one. She likes my newly rescued Boston but they will never be "buds".

Posted by: PJKutscher | July 21, 2015 6:30 PM    Report this comment

Gail Felice, you don't say anything about adding calcium, which is mandatory for all homemade diets. Other supplements may also be needed, depending on what you're feeding.

WDJ has published many articles on homemade diets, most recently one called "Dishing on Diets" that you can search for on this website.

Also see my DogAware website for more info.

Posted by: Mary Straus | July 21, 2015 1:24 PM    Report this comment

My 13 1/2 year old, quite lame Hovawart, Beau, found such a friend in the 10 1/2 year old Belgian Tervuren shepherd, Neppie, whom I had adopted only 4 months ago. No, they did not play very much any more, but it was love at first sight. Then a week ago we had to send Neppie off to the Rainbow Bridge because he was full if cancer. Beau must have known that before we did: he nuzzled him more and more, gave him doggie kisses and now grieves for his friend. Fortunately my young grandson is visiting whom Beau greeted with long joy-barking and adores immensely.
Mom of Garfield-cat, Slinky-ferret, and a most sensitive four-legged companion

Posted by: Hovifriend | July 21, 2015 12:32 PM    Report this comment

Love your comments, but I would love to know if my healthy 3 yr yorkie needs vits. He's so
active. I just got him and feed him fresh cooked protein, veggies, sweet potatoes, cottage cheese and a little fruit.

I know you are not a vet, but I would love you feedback.

Thank you again.

Posted by: Gail Felice | July 21, 2015 12:20 PM    Report this comment

I am. Retired Army Aviator who has been adopted by a very special canine. He is a Pomeranian/Feist mix. Looks like a toy Doberman. When he adopted me, he immediately Made it clear that he was a player. Now he has a BDF at daycare, and usually goes there 3 times a week. It is amazing to watch these two greet one another. They jump and squeal and roll all over one another. Blakely always takes the lead in game selection, and Anna (his BDF) goes along with everything with a twitch of her tail and a doggie kiss for B.

I never knew two dogs could be so affectionate and loving and still wrestle the way they do. I'm glad to see I'm not the only one graced by Canine affection.

Posted by: Blakely'sPetParent | July 21, 2015 10:45 AM    Report this comment

Chaos, a now 2 year old lab has 2 neighbor labs, Ellie (2 years) and Issy (5 years) who he plays with almost daily but he is crazy about Twister his 10 month brother. They have an off switch or things would get pretty crazy around here.

Posted by: Kody | July 21, 2015 10:38 AM    Report this comment

Unfortunately not, but he does go to daycare 1 day a week and I'm told is very playful when there.

BTW, I just LOVE the way you write and all your columns. I enjoy them all very much so thank you.

Posted by: Chester's mom | July 21, 2015 10:27 AM    Report this comment

New to Whole Dog Journal? Register for Free!

Already Registered?
Log In