Yesterday was a big day. This dude turned eight.
They really do grow up so fast. It feels like just yesterday we were bringing home.
We celebrated Ike's birthday with homemade dog treats (find the recipe here), tennis ball playing and snuggles. Sounds like a great birthday to me.
I often get asked questions about Ike. That squishy face attracts people left and right. We rarely make it through a walk without someone wanting to pet Ike. Nate and I love the Wire Fox Terrier breed and we think Ike is a perfect fit for us. The breed does have it's challenges and I'm not sure I balance that enough with the squishy face pictures. I feel that we will always own a Wire Fox Terrier because we love them so much. A lot of the qualities that we find charming, may not be so charming for a lot of people. I'm pretty confident that none of Nate or I's family members would own a Wire Fox Terrier (maybe my brother?). And that's okay. I always warn people to do their research before adopting any breed of dog!
The AKC describes the Wire Fox Terrier as gregarious, alert and confident. That would definitely be Ike in a nutshell. He loves to be with Nate and I. I think he would be happier if Nate and I both lost our jobs so we could stay home with him all day, every day. When we are home, he is constantly attached to one of us. And by attached, I mean he must be touching one of us the majority of the time. He follows me from room to room (including the bathroom). He's definitely alert and always ready to pounce on life's next great opportunity.
The confidence part of the description is where I think a lot of people could have difficulties with a Wire Fox Terrier. It's one of the qualities that challenges Nate and I but it's also the quality that we love so much about him. Wire Fox Terriers are independent thinkers. Once Ike gets something into his head, it's extremely challenging to change his mind. He needs constant reminders on proper behavior. He needs reminded daily about jumping, running like a bull through a China shop, and sitting before he receives food/treats. A Wire Fox Terrier can easily take over a home if it isn't made clear that they are not the boss.
Ike needs groomed about every 6 weeks. Wire Fox Terriers have a double layer coat. Show dogs will have the wire coat stripped. We just have Ike trimmed. The cost of grooming is totally outweighed by the fact that he doesn't shed!
Wire Fox Terriers are also known for their high energy levels. We try to take Ike on an hour walk most days of the week. This is obviously challenging to do in Winter. (Like today when the windchill is -20.) We try to do some kind of physical activity with him each day even if it's just running in the basement or playing with a ball. We tell everyone he's the best piece of exercise equipment we have purchased. In addition to exercise, we try to do "tricks" with him often. Wire Fox Terriers like to be challenged mentally and most are quick learners. Ike has a large variety of tricks that he perfoms. If the treat is good enough, he'll perform them all on his own without any commands. (It's usually high fives, beg, lie down and roll over all in about 3 seconds.)
I hope this sheds a little more light on the Wire Fox Terrier breed. Although he can be challenging, he's the happiest dog we have ever met. He loves life so very much. After a hard day, Ike is always there to remind us that things really aren't that bad as long as we can all take a walk and snuggle together on the couch.
Happy birthday little buddy.