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Dumb as a Stick

Updated on June 20, 2009

My dog Keegan

 I have written about dog breeds before but my Wheaton, God love him is as dumb as a stick.  Honestly.  I have always believed that dogs are highly intelligent creatures.  That all dogs have some level of training ability with patience and encouragement.  Not my Keegan.

I got Keegan when he was around 5 months old.  I don't know what happened to him before I got him.  I went to the breeder's house and this fun loving, funny little guy came running up to me and showed me his humorous side.  He would run, roll over by triping on his own feet and then come up and lay in my lap.  He basically chose me.  The breeder kept suggesting I take home a "little girl" who kept squatting and peeing every time you walked up to her.  I decided that Keegan was the one however with his funny behaviors and the fact he seemed to love me.

Wheaton Terrier's are little bundles of fur when they are pups.  Just adorable!  With dark brown, curly fur and black beards with white eye masks.  It looks like they need a bath or something.  As they age, they turn an apricot/ wheat color and may keep some of their darkness on their face or ears. 

From the beginning, Keegan appeared to be a bit slow.  I already had my shepherd Lacey who was the most intelligent dog I've ever owned.  Compared to Lacey, Keegan didn't seem to own a brain; he was just a big motor running around and going with the flow around him.  He was afraid of his own shadow and he refused to be housebroken.

I always crate train my animals in the beginning.  It works wonders and they don't like to mess in their sleeping area.  Not Keegan.  Keegan would defecate and urinate every time he was in the crate; didn't matter if it was an hour or three.  I would come home and my cute little fur bundle would be a matt of poop and pee.  Thank God he fit in the kitchen sink so I could bathe him and bathe him, I did; everyday for two months.

One day, I looked at my dumb liitle puppy and then looked at my shepherd who appeared to love him and told Lacey that I started school again in a couple weeks and if she wanted this ball of fur to stick around, then she better relay to him in dog language that he needed to stop messing himself or I wouldn't be able to keep him.  I just couldn't expect my middle school aged son to come home to a poop covered dog and take care of him everyday.

Well, whether she did or not, the next day Keegan didn't poop in his crate nor pee.  This continued on until I realized he would no longer mess his crate.  Needless to say, he got to stay!

Now, when I say Keegan is dumb as a stick, it is because the dog doesn't understand many things that we have tried to teach him.  When asked to sit, he lays.  When told to lay, he sits and raises his paw to be shaken.  It has taken Keegan two years to get these simple commands straight.  He also is content to just place his head on your lap and wiggle his tail one hundred miles per hour as long as you will permit him. 

Lovable is the best word to describe my bundle of fur.  Smart...never.  I can throw Lacey something in the air and she can catch it 15 feet away.  Especially food.  If I throw Keegan something on the floor, he still can't find it.  The vet said his vision is fine...that he's special in his own way.  Keegan can be sitting on the floor and if you walk toward him without speaking, he knocks you against the wall or off your feet trying to run in the next room.  He has never been hit nor punished.  Just looking at him with big eyes and lowering your voice is enough to send this pooch into a panic.  I just don't understand it. 

Today, I was throwing the three dogs bits of cheese.  Keegan, instead of trying to catch it, kept flinching and it would get caught in his fur on his head and then, he didn't know it was there, so he kept sniffing the floor.  It is simply pathetic.  I don't know if all Wheaton Terriers are like Keegan.  He has the best temperament.  He is sweeter than sugar.  He is quiet and loves to play like a puppy.  He's just really dumb.  We still love him any way. 

sweet Keegan
sweet Keegan


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    • ljrc1961 profile image

      Laura Cole 5 years ago from Michigan

      lol, Jennifer, I don't know what it is about that breed. They are loving and sweet but definitely don't like to be alone. The people I gave Keegan to adore him and he doesn't have any accidents but someone is home all the time. He does take off on them once in a while and then doesn't know how to get home! Even if he is a house away. He will also hop in the car with anyone. Loveable but dumb! Good luck with Henry.

    • profile image

      Jennifer Earnest 5 years ago

      We have a new Wheaten puppy.... Henry. And guess what, he pees in his crate daily. Apparently Wheatens are the exception to the DOGS NEVER SOIL WHERE THEY EAT rule. We cannot help but love him anyway. The weird thing is that he definitely knows he should go outside, he even barks in the morning to be taken out. But it is like he just forgets sometimes. I have even observed him peeing in the yard, standing there over it, forgetting that he peed there and then lying down in it. It makes me crazy. Our miniature schnauzer Millie is almost freakishly clean, so this has been really unexpected and annoying. However, as he hops and flops around our house, I just smile and think... Who cares about a little mess now and then? But maybe your German Shepherd come for a visit and relay the message???

    • ljrc1961 profile image

      Laura Cole 8 years ago from Michigan

      I love your story too. I don't know why they are so timid. Keegan became destructive the past few months from being over powered by my shepherd and my yorkie (yes, the yorkie). My girlfriend and her family took him as the "only" dog and he is a changed creature! He is lifting his leg for the first time to pee! He must have been supressing this manly feature out of fear. He is acting like a guard dog with a loud bark; even though he would never actually protect them except for his "licker". He is so happy and getting so spoiled as the only dog that I feel so happy over the decision to find him a new home. A happy ending for all of us. Except for maybe my two other dogs who have now taken to bullying the cat because they don't have Keegan any more to knock around.

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      vanboo 8 years ago

      This is quite funny! I also have a wheaten named... you guessed it.... Keegan! And, although I wouldn't call my Keegan dumb, it is quite annoying that he's scared of so many things - timid I'd say. He learns tricks very quickly, but since he was a pup, he's absolutely terrified of "rolling over".... Every time I say "roll over" he runs into the other room with his tail between his legs.

      He used to be terrified of garbage cans, and that made walking pretty hard to do with Keegan being drug past the houses on garbage day. Needless to say, at age 4, he's gotten much better, and is not scared of garbage cans anymore.

      He's the love of my life, and has made non-dog lovers very comfortable. My boyfriend who never did like dogs, now wants a Bouvier! My wheaten will warm anyone's heart, just like your Keegan, and that's ok with me. :)

    • Paper Moon profile image

      Paper Moon 8 years ago from In the clouds

      Who needs brains with a big heart and a face like that!