Jake and His Boot

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My Jack Russell Jake is 10 months old now. I really love him, but he has one quirk about him. He’s obsessed with shoes.

Jake, like most dogs, likes to chew. If he can get it in his mouth, he’ll chew on it. Shoes are no exception. He’s crafty about it. He simply waits until nobody is paying attention to him, and he will grab a shoe and take off. He’s figured out that when the humans are watching TV is a pretty good time to do his snatch and run. Sometimes, he doesn’t even bother to do that. Jake will try to chew on the shoes while I’m still wearing them.

My stepdad is already due for a new pair of boots. Jake didn’t help things along. As far as Jake was concerned, the right boot had his name written all over it. Every day or two, without fail, David would no sooner sit down to watch the evening news, then here would come Jake, streaking through the living room with the right boot in his mouth every single time. The pup couldn’t have been happier.

Sure, we would grab a rolled up magazine and do the “NO, NO, Bad Dog!” routine plenty of times. Jake has an angle on that too. He gives us “the look.” I refer to it as the “pity look.” A couple of days later, he would be back to the streaking through the living room again, right boot in tow.

Finally, David has a new pair of boots. His old pair of boots and an old pair of my sneakers are now Jake’s to chew on to his heart’s content. Last week, he brought the boot to bed and fell asleep. This morning, I woke up to find Jake curled up beside me with both the old boot and an old sneaker. OK, fine, as long as it’s not the shoes that we are currently wearing.

Sticks, that’s another fascination of Jake’s. The bigger the stick the happier Jake is to show it off. He’ll carry it around like it’s some sort of trophy he has just won. But I think his biggest trophy up to this point is the boot. My old sneaker comes in second. The sticks are third. Thank goodness that we don’t own a leather sofa.

“Don’t worry, Mom, I’ll take care of the trash.”