Pepper spent his first two years of life on a chain in the back yard. Despite that (or, maybe, because of it) Pepper loves people of all ages and sizes. In fact he loves people so much that he is reluctant to share his human friends with other dogs. A confident, balanced resident dog may work out a compromise in the new household, but Pepper does not like to mix and mingle with random dogs around the block. Dog behaviorist terms for Pepper’s attitude are “resource guarding” and “leash reactivity.” He loves leash walks but prefers a solitary country road or a trail with only human hikers to a sidewalk thronged with other dogs.

Pepper has been a devoted pet in his foster home, following rules and learning commands. He is house trained and does not chew shoes or furniture. He likes squeaky toys and will fetch cheerfully, but not obsessively. He sits for a treat or a chew and knows the words so well that, when they are spoken, he takes up a position near the treat cabinet, looking expectant. He will sleep at your feet while you work on computer or read on the couch and will hope for an occasional pat on the head when he stands by your chair.

Pepper is not a demanding, high drive dog, but he does have stamina for long walks. During the day he likes to trot around in the yard, lie outside on a sunny porch or lounge inside on his bed. He must be fed in a closed crate or in a separate room if there are other animals in the household because, otherwise, he feels compelled to eat every bite of available food until it’s all gone. He rides nicely in a car, lying on the back seat or in a crate. He will bark at strangers who appear at the door and embrace them like long lost friends, once they’re in the house.

After an uncertain beginning, Pepper co-exists in an uneasy truce with the dog-savvy cat in his foster home. No guarantee this can happen with any other cat. He will pounce on a chicken escaped from her pen but will only make blustery fake attacks on chickens inside an electrified mesh fence.

Pepper will do best as the only dog in a household with adults and children over toddler age. He has never properly modified his over-enthusiastic greeting style and will surely bowl over a small child. A good fence will keep him from wandering or from stepping in front of a passing car. He is neither noise phobic nor a car chaser, but he may just be too trusting for his own good.

Pepper enjoys a good belly rub and will roll upside down at the slightest provocation. He is a master at licking greasy pans before they go in the dishwasher. His ears are velvety soft beyond belief.