If you live in the country, you'll want to get yourself a really good guard dog. You are isolated, after all, the laneway is long, it gets dark early in the winter, and your neighbours can't really see you , or hear you, for that matter. When the windows are closed, the thick layers of brick don't let sound travel well at all. You never wired in a doorbell. The obvious solution? a dog! A dog that barks the minute someone rolls onto the gravel driveway. A dog with enough size and potential menace that would make strangers think twice before getting out of their cars. A dog like this
"Oh hi, I'm the guard dog, will you scratch my belly?"
Meet Scout, the almost-german shepherd. His bark is fierce and loud.....when he demands his breakfast, or one of his twenty daily belly scratches. He is greatly protective of his turf, and birds and squirrels don't stand a chance. He really is a superior dog, and in his doggy wisdom has decided that people and cars are not bark-worthy, and that, instead, he will greet visitors (or potential intruders, for that matter) with an overwhelming display of love and affection exhibited by invading their personal space, standing on their feet, and rubbing himself on their pants, especially black pants.
He only rarely runs away, and only during thunderstorms and fireworks displays, or when he feels the uncontrollable urge to do so. And mostly to our neighbour Colleen's house. She kindly always delivers him, or calls to let us know he's there. At five-thirty a.m. Thanks Colleen, you're the best. And those twenty or thirty other places I've had to fetch him from? no big deal. But through all the puppy stages, the crashing through of window-screens, eating of patio furniture, and tearing up of winter coats (three), I haven't given up hope. Hope that one day he will wake up and be the true german shepherd that I know he can be. Hope that his ears will stand up....hope that he will bark at people, not birds. He's only six years old, after all. You can do it, Scout, I know you can!