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The Story of Berti eps. 1

For all who prefer reading here is a transcript for you.

Hello everybody, here is Gianni.

You might know me from Twitter or Instagram. Well actually not me, but my dogs Ernie and Berti.
Since almost three years I have been sharing our life with you. Countless pictures have found their way on your screen and all of them were meant to cast a smile on your face, cheer you up, encourage you and entertain you.
But until now you only know our pictures, not our story. This will change. I am going to tell you how our anxious Airedale Berti found his way to us and how this fearful creature became a wonderful part of our family. Additionally, I will try to give you all some advices regarding anxious dogs and dog ownership in general. In the beginning Ernie will be a kind of Sidekick in this story, but that might change later on, so don’t be disappointed if you are a dedicated Ernie fan.
So let’s get started.
It all began with the decision to strengthen the relationship between my girlfriend (and now wife) and me. We wanted to get a dog together. My wife Alex searched the web for more than a week until she found the perfect dog breed for us. An Airedale Terrier. They are intelligent, fearless, happy, playful and slightly stubborn. Of course I agreed with her decision. Partly because Airedales sounded to be cool dogs, but mainly because in a working relationship you just know when you have to agree with your mate.
Again the Web was searched and after a little while Berti was found on “Airedales in Not” a website dedicated to help Airedale find a home. He was a 10 month old boy, who was still living with his breeder.
“Fantastic!”, was our first thought. “If he is still with his breeder than he will be perfectly socialized and trained!”
And here come my first little advice:
Breeding a dog doesn’t make you a dog expert. Always trust your own judgement and if you can, get some help with selecting a responsible breeder. May it be a good friend, a dog trainer or a web search.
Well, we didn’t listen to this advice.
So on a rainy day, we were driving to our beloved Berti.
As soon as we arrived at the breeder’s house, we were witness to a strange occurrence.
Berti freaked out totally. He was hysterically barking at another prospect and the dog of this prospect.
Here another little hint:
If some behaviour appears to be strange, it mostly is strange!
We didn’t understand that Berti gave us a broad hint in that instant. Blinded by our wish to get a dog we ignored this huge warning sign and we thought:
“Great!! This dog doesn’t want to be with the other person! He wants us!”
That Berti was an anxious dog didn’t come to our minds.
You might call this now stupidity, and to some extend I agree with you, but for me this was just fate.

Shortly after we watched this scene, we had our talk with the breeder. She was a shabby looking old woman who answered our questions swiftly and cagey.
Of course Berti is socialised.
Of course he is house trained and well behaved.
But you might need a dog trainer for the finishing touch.

Well, if a breeder tells you, that the dog he wants to sell you is perfect, but you might need some help for the finishing touch, you may rest assured that the dog is everything but not perfect.

Soon the conversation changed it’s topic and we were talking about money. All this took place while we were sitting at the breeders dining table. But Berti was almost not noticeable. His older Sister and a Aunt of him were permanently fighting for my attention. However his mother was nowhere to be seen.

Here is another advice for you:

Seeing the parents of your dog always helps to draw conclusions about the future health and behaviour of your dog. Future problems with your dog’s hip, elbow or knees might be seen by watching the parents or having a look at their medical fact sheet. (I don’t know if the breeder has to provide medical information about the parents of your dog where you live, but here in Germany it’s a common practice)

So, you might ask yourself now:
“Have they done anything right?”
Yes, we rescued Berti from an unpleasant situation, from an unpleasant life.
How awkward his life had been until then, we discovered as soon as he started to live with us.

But that is part of the next episode.
I hope you enjoyed this little glimpse at our story. Next week I will be telling you more.

And of course we will be honoured if you subscribe to our YouTube channel.
Oh, and if you are interested in our appearance on twitter and Instagram you will find the links in our description.

What do you think?

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  1. Wow so glad you have him thanks for the story! I don’t support breeders for this reason! My Dad (not) was a breeder so I know the ugly truth first hand! Messed me up growing up!

    Regards, Gallina

  2. Wow thank you for the story of Berti . He is lucky to have you and you having him. Nice story. My 2 dogs are rescues. Terrible life as well, before we got them. They have enriched our lives. So thankful. Thank-you Giovanni, for your love of dogs. Joan and Keith Bates

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