Before she came to live with my father and his partner, Ambra spent her first three years in a very small dog crate at a kennel near Naples where they used to treat her quite badly; that’s when she learned to toughen up the hard way. Because of the little space she had, she got used to sleeping all curled up and she’s had this habit ever since.
Finally having a home has done wonders for her. She could spend hours sleeping in the sun (of course we let her do this for a limited time when it’s too hot outside) as she loves being out in the open air and being able to enjoy the beauty of nature.
I think Ambra embraces all the characteristics of the “perfect” dog; she is affectionate and loves being cuddled. When we scratch her belly she smiles at us, displaying a row of white, human-like teeth (I nicknamed her Dentina, which means “little tooth” in Italian) and will be thumping her tail on the floor. The noise of her tail thumping on the ground gave her the nickname of “Jumanji” (my father came up with it, as he is always making up new nicknames for our dogs).
Ambra smiles, almost to the point of laughing, every time she goes out with one of us for her daily walk; like the others, she enjoys exploring the countryside and the sidewalk that borders with the lagoon.
When it’s time for lunch, she often wants to pick the right moment to eat and could spend even 20 minutes resting beside her plate; she’s not obsessed with food (some of the other dogs would love to eat all day long!), except on the nights we order pizza, so we usually offer her a small bite.
Byron, one of our male dogs, has a huge crush on Ambra and sometimes he spends the whole day chasing after her and courting her (which she doesn’t really appreciate, since she was sterilized before leaving the kennel, so she is usually running from him and hiding behind a huge plant vase in the kitchen).
She is an amazing watch dog and does a great job at watching the house; if she hears the slightest noise she immediately stands up and sits behind the entrance door to check if anyone’s approaching the house. We don’t let her out in the garden when we aren’t home, since she usually barks at strangers and their dogs, as all watch dogs do.
With Ambra around, one can feel safe at home and enjoy her company; she is fun to be around, loves being close to any member of the family and will be sitting for hours beside the table when I work on my laptop.
All pictures are my own.
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