MINIATURE BULL TERRIER
Terriers are like terrier PEOPLE, always up for adventure and fun. Mighty Mouth teaches Terrier Type.
WHAT IS TERRIER TYPE?
Barbara (BJ) Andrews, Publisher - TheDogPlace.org
Terriers are never at a loss for words, a mouse, or a funny story. Mighty Mouth was a typical Bull Terrier…
But first, a funny story from an old friend, a terrier person tried and true. I’ve changed the names to protect them from the uninformed but there isn’t a real terrier person out there who won’t read this and laugh. Joan Ronalder has working Smooth Fox Terrier puppies on her horse farm.
“My pups had a great Easter. We took them into the lower pasture while we were working. Put them into the old goat pen, now all in knee deep grass. I heard some barking but let them play, they were loving being next to the bull. Would have made a cute picture with the little female licking the bull’s huge black head.
“When we were again close to the pen I noticed that little Petunia had a dead body hanging from her mouth. She and Huck were playing "keep away" with a little creature. We went to investigate. Sure enough they had found a nest of bunnies and had their own Easter bunny - lunch. Sort of disgusting but the bunnies died quickly and the pups had a super holiday.”
It could have been a rat’s nest or gopher hole the young terriers were working. Any keeper of hoof-stock would praise those pups for doing what they were bred to do! Bunnies are cute but to young terriers, a pest is a pest and to anyone that keeps a garden, bunnies are pests of the first order!
My first Bull Terrier, a lovely white bitch from Winkie Mackay-Smith, came bouncing in to the living room one evening. Performing like Lassie with a case of the mumps, she did the “hurry up, c’mere, quick, now, hurry, trouble!” scene.
Laughing, I got up to see what she wanted. She scrambled ahead of me, rounded the corner into the kitchen on two legs and then, tail quivering, muscles taunt, she “pointed” the counter top. “What?” I said, looking at some crumbs which from her short perspective, she couldn’t see.
"Yes, yes, right there, can’t you see it?” she barked, bouncing her front up and down in frustration. I looked again. Nothing on fire, the toaster was just sitting there next to a cold coffee pot. Cutting board. Loaf of bread. A tea cup that should have been in the sink.
“What is it?” I asked. Mighty Mouth (yes, that was her name) rapped a short, emphatic bark that translated to “Damn!” As I turned back to have a last look at nothing, I heard a rustle. Hmmm. I glanced down at my Bull Terrier. Head cocked, nose and ears blushing with excitement, eyes flashing – she wasn't kidding.
“Bill????? Come in here” I called.
She glanced back over her shoulder. Knew exactly what I’d said. Her ears twitched backwards when he, sighing, got up from the sofa. I heard her think “Hurry Bill!”
He couldn’t see anything either. Me and the dog insisted we’d heard a noise and grinning, he admitted her nose was probably keener than our hearing. I hoisted her up so she could see as Bill reached over to move the coffee pot, cup, and toaster to one side. Wait! There was that scurrying, rustling sound again!
Mighty Mouth whining, quivering, staring intently at empty space. (Bull Terriers tend to do that) Bill jiggled the pot. Nothing. Tapped the toaster. There! Just a glimpse but I nearly dropped her as she struggled to get at whatever it was!
I set her on the floor as Bill unplugged the toaster. He set it down on the floor and for a moment there was dead silence. Then, whiskers twitching, there appeared in the toast slot, a mouse’s nose. The Bull Terrier was enraptured. Frozen. I cast a furtive glance at Bill. He rolled his eyes. Ever so cautiously, the tiny mouse poked its head higher to have a look around. Seeing no movement, (the three of us were mesmerized) it eased a teeeeny bit higher.
Whhoosh! It happened so fast that had I not seen her swallow, we would’ve thought it got away. She gulped a second time and the “lump” midway down her throat went on down. She gave a double whirly-spin and tail wagging furiously, looked hopefully up at the counter.
Let me see. Was that Easter or Christmas???
Memory fails me. But Ch. Banbury Mighty Mouth O’BJ is forever preserved in my heart. She was the white “tumor” that seemed attached to my Akita bitch’s neck for the first few months. She was the garbage disposal that regularly regurgitated screws, nuts, cigarette tin foil, pebbles, coins, and on special occasions, presented us with things like the missing car key. She entertained neighborhood children and our staff. She was a laugh a minute when she got tipsy on the beer the plumbers gave her during an office party.
She was my constant companion. My lap dog, back before female Bull Terriers became 70 pound wonders. She once stayed next to me in bed, fasting, utterly still for over 48 hours when I was too sick to get up.
She taught me what a real terrier can be and should be. Oh, how we miss her!
Re-print Courtesy of Terrah-Te-rah the Terrier Magazine 4/2000
artwork by Joan Ronalder