Newest Review: ... following a home visit where he was introduced to the cats and chickens without too much of a do, he came to stay. Initially he could... more
Henry the Rescue Basset
Author Name: Dawn Rawlings
Advantages: Loving, laid back, affectionate, like exercise in moderation, real characters.
Disadvantages: Stubborn, willful, slobbery, lazy
We got Henry from the National Animal Welfare Trust in Somerset on Friday 13 Jan 12 - lucky for him as it turned out. Previously we had owned a miniature smooth haired dachshund who was an absolute delight. Unfortunately she passed away in Dec 11 and we decided not to get another dog for a while - yeah right! Anyway one morning while my other half was in bed nursing the mother of all hangovers, I decided to have a look on the Internet to see if there were any mini dachshunds looking to be rehomed. Unfortunately there weren't but I did find Henry, staring back at me from the pages of the NAWT website.
I rang the rescue centre and made an appointment to go and see him and following a home visit where he was introduced to the cats and chickens without too much of a do, he came to stay.
Initially he could be very aggressive - he bit my partner a couple of times and had a go at me on more than one occasion although to look at him you would think that butter wouldn't melt. However 9 months on he's still with us and has turned into the most lovely, affectionate dog. We believe he was a stud dog before he was unceremoniously dumped at the rescue centre which could explain his intial mistrust of humans. He still has his moments but that's usually with other people who like to play rough with him despite our warnings!
Despite being a lovely dog he does have traits that are less than appealing and I would strongly urge anyone who hasn't owned one before to think carefully about whether they could deal with Bassets' little peculiarities. They are extremely stubborn - if they say, "No" then it's 'no'. This can be embarrassing if you are out walking and they decide they've had enough. Henry regularly 'goes starfish' as we call it (lays down on the ground with paws outstretched and won't budge). This usually occurs in the middle of the street in front of an audience - very amusing for them, not so for us.
They are also extremely dribbly. We have old towels situated around the house for mopping up saliva off the dog, the furniture and walls.
I'm not sure if this is peculiar to all Bassets but Henry does love to roll in the most disgusting of substances. The worse it smells, the more he likes it. It's impossible to get him in the bath so we regularly have to wash him off in the back garden. Despite being short-haired their coats are really thick and absorb water like there's no tomorrow. Consequently getting him dry is an art form in itself.
They are led by their noses. If they are off the lead and pick up a scent or, in Henry's case see another dog, they'll be off and you won't stand a cat in Hell's chance of getting them back. Calling them or even shaking the treats bag will prove utterly fruitless. I've lost count of the amount of times my partner and I have legged it across some field or other to fetch him back.
That said, we love him to bits although if I'm honest I wouldn't have another one!
Summary: All in all lovely dogs but beware of their little peculiarities which aren't for the faint hearted.