Jake never lets Mark out of his sight unless forced to, and has never attempted to bolt – even when there’s a door open to the big, great outdoor world. He’s pretty much a one-man dog, but he still respects family and friends.

He is very, very smart. He is so smart he is expert at playing dumb. Mark rates him in the top 5% of dogs he's trained and is excited to find out his potential for increasing vocabulary and obedience achievements.

His sense of smell and muzzle dexterity are uncanny. He took Mark's wallet out of his drawer (by opening it) and put it on his chair. He took Mark's cell phone out of its cradle, unplugged it somehow from the USB charger without upsetting the desk, and placed it on the floor in front of the entrance of Mark's office. These are Mark's two most handled objects. There are at least twenty other stories of him taking hidden, important family objects and placing them in the open. He is rarely destructive – only mischievous. It is almost as if he wants us to know he is smarter than we think. We think he secretly winks at our cluelessness to how he pull these things off.

We are pretty sure he was a failed police or attack dog, because he goes through very specific levels of escalation when he senses a threat, and the ramp up is not instinctive (alert, bark, lunge, poise, attack), but more rapid than would be acceptable in law enforcement. It scared the family a bit the first few times, but Mark's familiarized him with the friendlier vibe of our house and it shouldn't be an issue in the future. His attack days are over for the most part.

He is incredibly magnificent to watch, both on and off leash, and has five very distinct gates that we call grizzly bear, cat prowl, pony prance, wolf lope, and lion hunt (lion hunt is a full gate where he keeps his front and back legs together respectively). Every time he tries the lion hunt going down the stairs he takes a tumble.

Although he looks older, at around fourteen months old he's still a puppy in many ways. Welcome Home, Jake!

(original music by Larry Lenard and Mark VanDruff)

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