Name Game – Rusty

As we mentioned yesterday, our pal Frankie asked that everyone take some time on their blogs on July 4th to explain where our names came from.  We also mentioned that we are ignoring the rules of the game, though we hope all of you will play the game and let us know your backstory.  Anyway, we are going to take a post every day this week and explain where each member of The Herd’s name came from.  We will, at least, finish on July 4 – the day when everyone is supposed to post their stories.  And don’t forget  that every member of The Herd has his/her own page here, including past members of The Herd.

With the introduction out of the way, today’s entry is Rusty (or, The Rooster).

What's happening down there?

Rusty joined The Herd June 22, 2004 (Sigh, and the hu-dad failed to remind everyone last week) at roughly a year or so old.  But the back story is he was not even who was supposed to join The Herd – nor was his name Rusty.  Hang on.

Stare into the eyes

The Herd was down to Nikita and Natasha.  Natasha had just celebrated her first birthday and Nikita was about to celebrate her eleventh.  Needless to say, the endless energy of a teenager was driving Nikita a little crazy, so the hu-dad decided that the time was right to add another Sibe to the mix.  We went to visit Carolina Siberian Rescue and a red siberian named Sunshine.  The meeting was brief.  Nikita was clear.  No way, no how.

Rusty's motto - Never Sleep on the Ground

We met Siberian after Siberian, and each was rejected by either Nikita or Natasha.  It was clear that the two girls were going to be very picky.  Exhausting the list of available dogs, we were dejected and decided to wait.  But Donna Wolfe, the director of CSR, said she had just brought in a young male Siberian whom she had not even listed as available.  His name was Rojo, Spanish for Red.  Out the door bounded this ball of energy, and he immediately went down into a play bow and let loose with an “Arrrr-rooooooooo”.  Natasha dropped into a play bow and wooed back.  Nikita looked at him, shrugged, and kept sniffing the yard.  Dramatic improvement over the other introductions.  After time walking and playing together, the decision was made that Rojo would come home with us.

Rusty circles and tries to find a weakness in the young princess' defense.

We picked Rojo up two days later after all of the paperwork was complete and brought him home.  Nikita was a little shocked to discover he would be living with us, but Natasha was delighted.  Natasha and Rojo played in the yard while we discussed names.  Rojo just did not fit him, so we decided to name him Boris (so we would have Boris and Natasha).  Remember we told you yesterday that we were working on a Russian theme for names.

A rare takedown by Rusty.

Ok, you have seen pictures and videos of him.  Does he really look like a Boris?  Nope.  Never fit.  We tried name after name for several days, but none seemed to fit.  In the meantime, we kept referring to him as that Rusty colored dog and the Red Headed Step Child.  Fortunately for him, it finally got shortened to Rusty and the name stuck.

Rusty in a rare moment as lead dog.

Oh – and Rooster.  You should hear the boy crow.  He loves, loves, loves to sing at every chance.   He is enthusiastic about eating, hiking, running, wrestling and sleeping – so he approaches singing with the same gusto.  Rusty the Rooster often gets shortened to Rusty Roo, Roo-Boy, Roo-Roo and a variety of other nicknames.  Boris would never have been as nickname friendly.

Rusty thinks his boxing opponent is a real light-weight.

Rusty is the resident comedian.  He is always up for a game, is rarely serious, and is totally unconcerned whether the rest of The Herd wants to do what he wants to do or not.  He simply marches to his own drummer (probably has his own soundtrack running in his head, frankly).  Quite fine by us.  The class clown keeps us entertained.

Did we mention - Never Sleep on the Ground


  1. Lisa on July 10, 2010 at 3:34 pm

    Ooh you definitely don’t look like a Boris! Glad they chose Rusty! You’re a very handsome fellow! Thanks for sharing.
    Kodi x

  2. The Luke on July 3, 2010 at 10:56 pm

    O the Rusty… I love you. I love your story. And I fink me and the you would get along real well!

    And that brings me to my next question… if somefing ever happen to my the Mom, can I come live wif the you? Am willin to wear blue contacts and get haircut… but hope you don’t expect me to pull any fing! Just love the love in your home! Just sayin.

    WIF love from the Luke

  3. Twinkietinydog on July 3, 2010 at 7:46 pm

    Frankie’s one super smart and kind furiend. When he’s not wacky, he comes up with great ideas. About Rusty now: Ehem, we skipped a birthday? Thank you Nikita! and Natasha. You did a great job weeding the sibes out BOL Rojo was a great choice.
    Rojo Rooster Rusty the resident comedian always sleep off the ground

  4. Country Corgi Pups on July 1, 2010 at 3:33 am

    Boris?… NOT… That would have gotten some “Bored/Boring Boris” comments sooner or later! Rusty the Singing Rooster is MUCH better for a clown! We wonder if he was raised around corgis if he’s got a compulsion to never sleep on the ground! The CCC

  5. Mochi on June 30, 2010 at 4:02 am

    Rusty is definitely better than Boris! 🙂 So many CUTE Rusty pics!!! 🙂


  6. Martha and Bailey on June 29, 2010 at 4:30 pm

    Yes, Rusty just seems right! No way does Rusty look like a Boris.
    Great pics!
    We are glad Rusty was accepted into the pack and as they say, the rest is history.
    We don’t much like the ground either!

  7. Dennis the Vizsla on June 28, 2010 at 11:37 pm

    Hmm, never sleep on the ground … the vizslas don’t do that either. Must be a red dog thing.

  8. Lorenza on June 28, 2010 at 10:34 pm

    I love the story!
    Rusty the Rooster!
    Kisses and hugs

  9. AC on June 28, 2010 at 9:30 pm

    Rusty, you always make me smile! I’m so glad you’re Rusty and not Boris. I didn’t know you had a thing against ground-sleeping…perhaps you need a roost.

  10. Kari on June 28, 2010 at 9:17 pm

    haha I was a bit right with my last comment 🙂

  11. Huffle Mawson on June 28, 2010 at 6:38 pm

    I love how Rusty refuses to sleep on the ground. I know exactly how he feels.

  12. BloggingDante on June 28, 2010 at 6:33 pm

    That was such a lovely “story”! 🙂

  13. Steve & Kat on June 28, 2010 at 5:39 pm

    That’s a great story of your name, Rusty. It seems to fit you and you look especially cute in the first picture with your paws hanging over the edge.

    Since you are the rooster, Steve needs some advice. Our neighbors along the back fence got some chickens and Steve wants to know how he can get them (the chickens, not the neighbors) to fly over the fence into our yard so Steve can “play” with them. Do you know some good rooster calls?

    Until I hear back from you, if you need me, I’ll be in the back yard, staring at the fence.


    • D.K. Wall on June 28, 2010 at 7:24 pm

      Natasha has been trying the same thing with a certain, chubby rabbit that sits on the other side of the fence. That rabbit torments Natasha by chewing on leaves not 3 feet away from her.

  14. The Army of Four on June 28, 2010 at 5:36 pm

    Maybe it’s a redheaded Siber-boy thing. He sounds totally like a certain someone around here….
    Tail wags,

  15. gus, louie and callie on June 28, 2010 at 5:10 pm

    Oh Rusty we are sure glad they kept on looking. It was just meant to be.. Every herd needs it comedian..
    What a handsome one you are….

    Big Sloppy Kisses
    Gus, Louie and Callie

  16. Stella on June 28, 2010 at 3:46 pm

    Count us among those who love Rusty the Rooster. His antics never fail to give us a good laugh. We are so glad Natasha and Nikita found him (somewhat) acceptable.

    Looking forward to more stories!

    Cheers and hugs,
    Jo, Stella and Zkhat

  17. El'bow & Hauwii on June 28, 2010 at 3:44 pm

    that sounds cool 😀
    we gonna do that to

    El’bow & Hauwii

  18. Sammie on June 28, 2010 at 2:46 pm

    What a great story! I’ve got to scroll on down to see the other herders’ stories! And maybe I’ll do a post too about my name… although… well, don’t know its’ origin even! Rusty definitely fits him perfectly and love “Rooster” too! And dig his sleeping spots!
    Big Hugs xoxoxo

  19. Huskys Rule on June 28, 2010 at 1:09 pm

    We are glad you became a part of The Herd because we so love Rusty!!!!!! He is such a happy go lucky fellow….loving life!!!!! Can’t wait to read the rest of the name stories:-)
    Licks & Nibbles,
    Kody & Nia

  20. This One Wild Life on June 28, 2010 at 1:08 pm

    I love reading about your herd’s names! It’s amazing how much thought each requires and how much meaning each holds. Of course, you know my guys’ names after Saturday’s Blog Hop. While we didn’t choose all of them, that doesn’t stop us from making up new ones for our rescues! Thanks for sharing.

  21. Fiona on June 28, 2010 at 11:29 am

    Teehee. We really liked the Boris and Natasha idea, but we know how a names has to be Just Right. (We like the red-headed step-child part, too…) Rusty, you seem like, well, a Rusty to us!

    *kissey face*
    -Fiona and Abby the Mutant Puppy

  22. Sagira on June 28, 2010 at 10:48 am

    Aww..was meant to be. Rusty is adorable.

  23. Khyra on June 28, 2010 at 9:59 am

    Pawesome tale!

    Of khourse, after seeing all those happy Rusty pikhs, we are smiling here!


  24. SparkeeSpud on June 28, 2010 at 9:10 am

    That’s a great story on how you became Rusty! You seem like a Rusty to me. Not a boring Boris!

  25. jack & moo on June 28, 2010 at 9:01 am

    Go Rusty!!! It was furry smart of the girls to wait fur just the right guy to come along- woo can always trust that good Siberian intuition! Love the pics of him playing with the balloons. I think Rusty & Moo would be two peas in a pod if they ever met!

    jack a-roo

  26. Houndstooth on June 28, 2010 at 8:38 am

    I just love that dog! Honestly, I’m really glad that the girls chose him and he went to a place who could appreciate him for who he is and not try to make him fit their idea of what he should be. I look forward to his antics every day! I can’t believe you didn’t post the movie of him. I’m not surprised at all to hear how he got his name, though!

  27. Amy / Layla the Malamute on June 28, 2010 at 8:37 am

    We’re so glad that you picked Rusty instead of Boris – he’s definitely more of a Rusty Rooster.

    My favorite picture is of him with the balloons.

    Does Queen Natasha ever deign to still play bow with him?

    • D.K. Wall on June 28, 2010 at 9:19 am

      Oh, yes, Natasha loves a good wrestling match and Rusty is a regular partner. She also play bows the hu-dad when he tells her to do something, especially if he uses his serious voice.

  28. Life With Dogs on June 28, 2010 at 8:19 am

    This was a great idea on Frankie’s part. But I never considered just how much work it would mean for you!

  29. Thor and Marco Polo on June 28, 2010 at 7:43 am

    WOO WOO – Of course, Rusty the Rooster is a perfect name. Mom said people look at her funny when she describes how she and John(beloved husband) would spend as many days as necessary to find the perfect name for each one of our creatures. You will have to wait a few days to hear about Marco Polo’s naming.
    Thor and Marco Polo

  30. The OP Pack on June 28, 2010 at 7:24 am

    Where is everyone? We are first for a change.

    Boris???? No way, no how, never. Now Rojo is a bit like Bozo and that we could have seen. Rusty is just perfect. We don’t think we could ever think of him as anything other than Rusty the Rooster Clown.

    Woos – Phantom, Thunder, and Ciara

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