Spring 2007 Newsletter
CCO Mystery Canaan Dog of the Quarter
A Chat with Cheryl Kent and Bob Ardinger and Ha�Aretz Gabriel Baruch "Macey"
from Columbia, Maryland

Sire: AKC Ch. Ha'Aretz Pei Mishacam
Dam: AKC Ch. Ha'Aretz TZ Starlite
Breeder: Bryna Comsky
How did you first hear about the Canaan Dog and what characteristics drew you to this breed?

We are both animal lovers, dogs especially, and when the time was finally right and we knew we would have the time and attention to devote, we adopted our first puppy, a female, from a rescue shelter.  We were told she was part Lab/German Shepherd mix.  We named her Blossom, and were simply enthralled.  It was not long before we thought about getting another dog.  We wanted a male, both as a playmate for Blossom, who was just shy of her third year, and as a companion and member of our family.  We decided we wanted a dog similar to Blossom, but this time we wanted a pure bred dog.  We watched dog shows a lot, and had a list of breeds we were interested in.  Then one day we saw an agility show, and flipped over the Canaan Dog on that show.  We watched more dog shows, and became totally intrigued.  We did tons of research, and the more we read, the more we liked the Canaan Dog.  There was an air of mystery about this pariah dog; they appeared to be a highly independent breed, but also loyal, regal and majestic.  The Canaan Dog seemed to be in a constant state of poise and self-motivation.  This didn�t mean not loving or fun, but the Canaan seemed like a dog in its natural state.  Our research finally brought us to a wonderful breeder, and we became the proud owners of Ha�Aretz Gabriel Baruch Macey.  Gabriel means son of God, and Baruch means blessed.  And blessed we were!
"Macey"  and Cheryl " "Hmmm, Cheryl I think you missed a spot on my neck."
Is there significance behind Macey�s name?

Gabriel was selected because of Macey�s �princely� manner, even as a puppy.  Ha�Aretz is the name of our breeder�s line of Canaani, and means �the Land� for the land of Israel.  �Baruch� comes from the name of a great Israel wheelchair basketball player.  �Macey� comes from a friend and well-known architect of accessible environments, Ron Mace.

What kinds of things do you and Macey enjoy doing together?

Macey is one of the funniest dogs you�ll ever meet�but not because of some trick or a particular behavior.  Macey entertains himself, and we watch and laugh.  Macey taught us what�s funny to him, and we laugh with him.  For example, Macey loves to hold a toy in his mouth and at the same time try to figure out how to carry a second toy with his mouth full.  Not succeeding with that, he will constantly bat and push the second toy around, all the while carrying the first one in his mouth. 

If you were asked to describe Macey with three adjectives, what would these be and why?

Independent, loving and loyal! 

Macey is very independent.  He is highly affectionate, but on his own terms.  Many a time, Cheryl or Bob will try to coax him over to be petted, and he will just offer a look that says, �Whatever for?� On the other hand, he loves to curl up next to either Bob or Cheryl, using us like a warm �bolster.�  Macey is so loving�he has not once acted in anger.  He never bites or snaps, and is as sweet as sweet can be.  If he meets another dog he is not sure about, he goes behind Cheryl and jumps up to put his front paws on her back, as if to say, �Hey, Cheryl, I don�t know about this here dog!�  His loyalty is without par.  He is the most loyal towards Cheryl, then to Bob and Blossom.  He follows Cheryl from room to room.  When he wants to be near both Cheryl and Bob, he will settle in the doorway between Cheryl�s den, and Bob�s home office.

Describe the most interesting incident to happen with your pariah pooch.

There have been so many interesting incidents with Macey it is hard to narrow it down to just one.  Probably the most amazing was the first time we heard him howl!  Not only did he howl, he taught Blossom to howl�she, who had never done anything like that before.  This all came about one day when Cheryl walked out the front door for a quick jaunt down to the mailbox, leaving young Macey behind with Blossom.  Bob was upstairs.  Suddenly there came this blood-curdling howl!  Bob nearly fell out of his chair!  Then Blossom joined in!  Bob got downstairs as fast as he could, sure that some awful harm had come to one of the dogs or Cheryl.  He could not quiet them down, and they kept up the howling until Cheryl came back up the front walk, then immediately ceased and ran over to her when she came in.  She had no idea, and could not believe it when Bob described what the two had been doing.
Is their anything in particular that Macey has a real fondness for?

Macey adores his toys that fit perfectly in his mouth.  He loves to carry them around.  Other times he will just sit with a favorite toy in his mouth.  He also has a great fondness for Blossom.  He loves to try to get Blossom to play with him. He will grab one of his toys and then egg her on, until she starts to chase him.  If he can�t get her to chase, he will charge towards her in little leaps and bounds!  He loves to tease her as well, and often will want to take whatever toy she has away from her.  He undoubtedly is trying to get even with her from when he was a puppy, and she would go over and take away from him whatever toy we gave him.  In an adorable manner, Macey did his best to stand up to her.  He would yodel angrily at her, and attempt to swat her to get the toy back.  She would give him a look designed to turn �pests� to stone, but it never worked on Macey.  He would keep heckling her until she gave the toy up!
"Macey"  and Bob reciprocating their "high fives"
Are there any interesting qualities about him that you would like to share?

A quality perhaps forgotten is the appreciation for what is a dog.  Dog behavior is entertaining and not �trained.�  We took Macey to a basic obedience training class.  He did fine in the class, but his instructor kept saying, �He doesn�t like me.�  She wanted very much to get him to respond to her without pressing his ears down, almost like he was frowning at her.  Macey was a good student, he did what was asked but the trainer did not understand that dogs�especially the Canaani�give love when they want or need.  Once that is respected, they will return love when we want and need it. 

Macey has really neat qualities:

He communicates by yodeling.  If you�ve never heard a dog yodel, it�s different but very sweet.  He warns or greets things he doesn�t understand with his bark. 

He also barks and paws Bob when someone is at the door, and won�t let Bob get away without going to the door.  He senses Cheryl�s hearing-impairment, and knows she is different from Bob so when he wants her attention or to go out, he climbs up on her and will �hit� on her gently with his paw, then more insistently if she tries to ignore him.  Cheryl easily gives in, but also loves to tease him back, push him on the floor, roll him over and tickle his tummy!

There is a loving presence about the Canaani which is reflected in their desire to be close to the family member who is at home�but not in the more traditional sense of a dog jumping around (this only happens after one of us comes home after being away) but sitting at the opening of a door to a room where you are, laying at the foot of the bed or more often on it with you when you�re taking a nap; napping when you are watching the TV, etc.  Macey has brought us together as a family with this innate sense of closeness and presence.  He fits perfectly the saying, altered here to fit Macey, �Macey may not be our whole life, but he makes our life whole.�  Again, we are blessed!
"Hey guys, do you know how many other toys I have hidden behind this soccer ball - I'm going for the world record!"
"Time for a guy to get his "princely" nap
Bob likes to play fetch with Macey in the house.  Macey let�s Bob know when it�s time to play by �biting down on the toy that squeaks the loudest� until Bob comes to play with him.  Macey also reacts to Bob being busy or taking a nap and not able to play by leaving a toy, sock or chew toy at the door way of the room where Bob is�Bob then knows Macey�s waiting for him to come play.  It�s different, though, if Macey needs a walk (bathroom).  Macey will steadily �hit� Bob on his shoulder (if Bob is trying to take a nap) or his leg (if Bob is at his computer) with his paw.  Macey starts off doing this about every ten minutes until he really needs to go and then he simply doesn�t stop with the �hits.�  He does the same with Cheryl, but if she continues to ignore him while working at her computer, he will make a loud yodeling noise at her while using his paw like a powerful right hook on her shoulder!  Needless to say, that works!
Cheryl enjoys taking Macey and Blossom for long walks.  Macey loves trying to catch up to squirrels or a bird, and hopes Cheryl can keep up.   Cheryl also loves taking pictures of Macey, and takes a lot of those!   Macey is not too keen on posing, and often Blossom pushes her way in, so it takes lots of patience to get good pictures of Macey.
"Blossom" and "Macey"
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