• Jayme Feary

Dog Named After a Hamburger Bites


Big Mac

Big Mac. Ironic name for a high-end French bulldog that flies in a private jet between multiple homes in different states. In keeping with his blue collar name, from a young age Big Mac liked to mix it up with other dogs no matter their size. Like many Frenchies, he'd rush up to a dog, especially a male he didn't know, and sort of bulldoze into it, bumping his chest against the other like a high school boy that didn't understand the consequences. He'd rarely start the fight but would trigger it in the other dog. Not good if he flipped the switch of a German shepherd or rotweiller. And he wouldn't have come when called even if his owner had been holding a tenderloin steak.

Who knows, maybe Big Mac felt his name was beneath him, or perhaps, like many Frenchies, Boston terriers, and similar breeds, he naturally leaned toward stubbornness and bullying. But whatever the reason, because Big Mac is such jet setter, he needs to act like a good citizen no matter where he is or who he meets.

Big Mac came to our place to attend "college" and complete our Good Dog course, which is a total immersion socialization into almost every imaginable situation, with an emphasis on meeting new dogs. At first he wanted to order around our lead trainer, Jayme Feary, but once he learned that wasn't going to work, he began to line out. He lost weight, got in better shape, and spent time in town, at the airport, on nature trails, in the dog parks, and in various strangers' homes. He learned to recall instantly no matter the circumstance. This would be a lifesaving skill should he encounter wolves, a cougar, a car, or moose.

Then came the crucial step: working with Big Mac's family. It took several sessions because Big Mac, once he returned home, began bossing his people around (they had inadvertently taught him this by allowing it). He people mom, in particular, had some difficulty getting him to listen, but once she tapped into her natural personal strength, Big Mac began listening. Her ability to recall him improved dramatically.

Apparently Big Mac still has his moments, but when his people are paying attention and showing strong leadership, he behaves well. At last report he was maintaining his weight and getting plenty of exercise. His is a classic case illustrating that no matter the quality of a dog's training, followup with the owner is everything.

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