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RUSSELL, a striking 3 year old fawn male with natural ears and a docked tail, came to us from owners who became overwhelmed with his fighting with the other male Dobe in the house. Russell spent his early days at the DRU shelter in a state of confusion but once he found his first human friend things became easier for him. This handsome guy is physically very powerful and obviously spent a lot of time getting his own way. Some of what looks like neediness or even the separation anxiety his prior owner reported might better be characterized as a level of indignation when his humans dare to leave him in the yard for a minute or bring him back to his run. Clearly, Russell was used to calling the shots in life and now needs to have a confident and assertive handler to relieve him of that responsibility. Luckily for both Russell and us, we’ve been able to gain a lot of his trust and responsiveness through a predictable schedule and some clear cut boundaries that we introduced through training. Russell has learned how to quiet himself in the presence of his handlers and can be crated in our main office while people come and go, and best of all, can remain calmly in his crate when his handler leaves to take care of things in another part of the building. Russell reportedly did ok with the female Dobe in the house, so there may be room for a canine gal pal in his future although we have not introduced him to any here at this point. One of our favorite nicknames for this burly guy is “Russellmania” and he is ready to rumble with moving vehicles, a trait that caused his prior owner to restrict all of his walks to a secluded area. We are currently working on desensitizing Russell to cars but it will be a continuing effort that his next adopter will need to commit to pursuing. Like many of his dilute-colored relatives, Russell does have sensitive skin, although his coat is in fairly good shape for a fawn. Russell would do best in a home without kids or cats, and managed by a firm but kind human leader who can continue to broaden Russell’s horizons by limiting his options.