Sebastianos (Greek) – Venerable, to be revered
Sebastian and I met completely by “accident” on the night of Dec 23rd 2004. A few of my employees had not shown up for work that day so I was stuck working over 12 hours. I was out on a final delivery that happened to be to a pet supply store, doubling as a kind of animal shelter. At the time I wanted another dog to keep my mixed breed girl Tori company, so I asked about their dogs. Expecting to be taken into the room where I had seen a bunch of them in crates, they instead led me back outside in the cold to a corner of the property. There I met my beloved Sebastian for the first time – alone, chained up, cold, skinny, covered in fleas and with a terrible case of ear mites.
He looked so incredibly down and depressed and clearly longing for attention. As I was asking questions, I began to pet him. At that point, he leaned gently into me and rested his head on my leg - and I had no more questions. I knew all I needed to know.
The next morning when I came to rescue him
I couldn’t take him right then because it was very late and I was still working. So, I picked him up the next morning, Christmas Eve, and brought him in from the cold and loneliness – just before it began to rain. As he and Tori met, instantly his whole demeanor changed. Although she was a bit wary and it took her a while to adjust, he was crazy for her immediately. Eventually she too came around, but he practically worshipped her until she died almost two years later. As for he and I, well, I had never experienced such an interesting animal. He followed me everywhere, insisted on physically touching me in some way at all times, had more energy than I have ever seen in a dog and had the habit of “singing” when he wanted something. If Tori had a toy he wanted, he would politely wait, but would whine-sing non-stop. If he wanted to play or lay next to me and I did not respond immediately, he would start singing again.
Along with other very unique behaviors, I was quite wide-eyed and unsure about what I was dealing with. I decided to Google “Doberman” and that is when everything changed. What I had considered to be bizarre quirks resulting from his abandonment or possible mistreatment, turned out to be traits of the most incredible breed in the world. I remember spending several hours that first night, reading and learning all of these fascinating things about the Doberman – the history, the mindset, the design and purpose of the breed. In addition, I began to change my routines and priorities to meet his needs appropriately. What had already been the most rapid bonding I had ever experienced with any dog, grew into an immense respect as well. That night, in honor of my new amazing dog and the Doberman breed itself, I named him “Sebastian”. Needless to say, nothing has been the same since, and I will always have a Doberman in my life as long as I live.
Sebastian found me that night. I tend not to believe in “accidents” and my experience with him has solidified that. Our bond is like none I have ever had with any other animal and his affection and devotion still keep me in awe to this day. He is short for a Doberman male but still carries himself with the pride, protective courage and strength befitting his regal heritage. I thank God for him all the time and do all I can to give him back the boundless joy and endless love that he has brought to our home.
Shorty – standing “tall” and on alert
Later this year, as a result of my experience with Sebastian and his influence, I am looking to start a local chapter of Dobermans United and hopefully expand to a nationwide and/or worldwide network of chapters. In the 100th anniversary of the Doberman in the United States, I have a very strong desire to help educate the public about the breed in general but to also help in the fight against breed specific legislation, puppy mills and irresponsible ownership.
Thank you DT members for being such an awesome group and for voting for Bear and Sebastian in this first ever DT election. We look forward to many years with this great community and to doing all we can for the breed and for those who love them.
Long live the Doberman!!!.