Troutbirder

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Friday, January 6, 2012

Rin Tin Tin & Baron

I grew up in the big city (St. Paul). My mom had asthma. Dogs and cats were not an option so goldfish, parakeets, frogs and turtles proved to be my only pets. Still, my father often spoke of the beloved German Shepherd he had as a pet in the early 20's. That breed had become the most popular dog in America in that era. World War I had brought them notoriety and super movie star Rin Tin Tin popularized them around the world. Heres some "glamour" pictures of the most famous dog in the world. (Yes, Lassie fans.... it's true)
When I moved to rural Minnesota and took up flyfishing and upland game hunting, I fulfilled my lifelong dream of owning a dog. There was a golden retriever/German Shorthair cross, and then two Chesapeake Bay retrievers. When a bad knee finally ended my hunting pursuits, I went without a dog for a while. I missed having them around and thought hard on getting a companion/guard dog in my retirement. A skeptical wife took some convincing that a German Shepherd was the answer. His name is Baron. And now a somewhat elderly boy, me, can romp thru the woods following trails, seeking out birds, wildlife and new adventures......
Naturally, visiting the local library, the following book caught my eye. It was Susan Orleans biography of Rin Tin Tin. Rin Tin Tin was more than a famous German Shepherd. He embodied the core paradoxes of the American ideal: He was a loner who was also a faithful companion, a brave fighter who was also vulnerable. I was astonished to learn from this delightful book that he has existed for eleven generations over a century. By chronicling his amazing ups and downs, Susan Orlean has produced a hugely entertaining and unforgettable reading experience."
Ann Patchett, author of State of Wonder and Bel Canto writes "Not only does Susan Orlean give us a fascinating and big-hearted account of all the many incarnations of Rin Tin Tin, she shows us the ever-changing role of American dogs in times of war and peace. This book is for anyone who has ever had a dog or loved a dog or watched a dog on television or thought their dog could be a movie star. In short— everyone . "
Here's a clip from one of Baron's favorite movie roles.... Dog of the North


14 comments:

L. D. Burgus said...

Enjoyed your blog today. Your dog is a beauty and he looks like a really close friend.

Loree Huebner said...

Your dog looked like a wolf standing back on the trail! He's gorgeous!

One of the best dogs I ever knew was my sister's German Shepherd named Willie. She had him in the 1980's. He was smart, protective, and loving. Just a beautiful animal.

Rae said...

Great post. I remember Rin Tin Tin from years ago. I love the GSD breed. My uncles raised them and I fell in love with them as a child. Baron is a handsome dog.

Arkansas Patti said...

Baron is quite impressive. He must be a grand companion. I have had a few Shepherds and they are amazingly loyal and devoted plus they give one a feeling of security.
Will check out Rin Tin Tin.

Montanagirl said...

Nice post! I remember the TV program Rin Tin Tin.

Shady Gardener said...

Of course I remember Rin-tin-tin... and Lassie!!

Your photo of the two of you (Mr and Mrs T) is a great one! Glad things seem to be going well. And, yes, I'm sure it's all due to your exemplary nursing ability! :-)

Grayquill said...

I watched alot of Rin Tin Tin...
Good Stuff.

PC said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
PC said...

Loved the video clip. That's one handsome dog!

Nezzy said...

What a beautiful dog Baron is.

I can almost hear that Rin Tin Tin music now. I never missed an episode when I was just a little farm chicklett.

God bless ya and ya'll have a wonderful weekend!!! :o)

Zoomie said...

My rescued dog is, according to my vet, likely half Shepherd. She is, without a doubt, the best dog I have ever had. Thanks for visiting my blog and happy retirement to you and your lovely wife!

Janie said...

I'm a sucker for any dog story. I want to read this one.

warriormom said...

I heard a book review on NPR Weekend Edition the end of September and have been eagerly awaiting your review ever since! My brothers lived and breathed Rin Tin Tin. You have quite the leading dog ~ great clip! (I'm so glad to hear the good report for Barb.)

EcoRover said...

What a great story, especially with your personal tie to it. Baron should be VERY proud.