I hope these posts don't come off like I'm sniveling and whining; it just seems like so much change in a short time, so much needing to be done, and time just barreling along at a break neck pace, it's been hard to keep up.
My folks moving has been a massive disrupter, of course more so for them than anyone else involved, but it is extremely difficult to watch them go through all this. We've recently had a lot of extended family upheaval, which creates even more stress. Then, in the middle of it all, one of my Mom's best friends that she's known clear back from her high school days, passed away somewhat unexpectedly.
Never married and no children, Bob's little dog was his “kid” and best pal. After everyone initially got over the shock of his passing, first thoughts went to “where is Ginger”? My Mom called Bobby's neighbor, and found out that Ginger had been taken to the animal shelter that morning, after he had gone to check on Bobby after not seeing him for 2 days and finding him passed away in the house. Bob had a lot of family in our area, but none of them apparently were able to take the pup, and the neighbor was not equipped to take in an un-potty trained adult dog.
So, here is my poor Mom, in the midst of this chaotic move, heartbroken about losing her friend, and now distraught about the welfare of this little dog. Lucky for her she has the biggest dope in the county on speed dial. About an hour after she called, I was trekking out to the animal shelter on my lunch break to pick up a dog I'd never laid eyes on before. To keep “just for a minute” til everything calmed down, and Bob's family could iron out everything that needed to be done, and decide who would take her.
That was 2 weeks ago, and guess where the little shorty pants is…………hard to guess, right?
Poor little thing was devastated after being locked in the house for 2 days with her person that was her everything, and I think a dog must certainly know when someone has passed. Then to be swept out of her quiet, sheltered environment and taken to the Pound filled with people, dogs, cats and other animals that she had never seen before. She hadn't had food or water for 2 days, and even with coaxing, refused to eat. She was absolutely petrified when I picked her up about 3 hours after she had been dropped at the shelter. I had to go straight back to work, so she then had to be with yet another person she didn't know, in a building where big noisy garbage trucks, construction vehicles, and cars banged across scales all afternoon. She was so depressed, she paid no attention to anything.
I was worried about how to introduce her to Declan and Piper, since she had always been an only doggy. I did some Cesar Milan research, and he suggests taking all the dogs (separately) to a neutral area, then a family member walking out with the established dogs, followed at a distance by a family member leading the new dog. Walk at a brisk clip til they are a little tired, and gradually let the new dog catch up with the established dogs, and keep on walking. When everyone (people included) are a bit bushed, slow down and let everyone mingle and sniff, get acquainted. That worked really well, so Bruce and I continued on with the walk and eventually headed for home. Cesar suggests the established dogs enter their home first, followed by the people, and the new dog welcomed in last. It worked terrifically, and they are all fast friends. I wish I could call this the happy ending, but you all know about Murphy's Law.
She wants to eat my old antique cat.
This is not acceptable.
It has always been Angel's choice to live on the front porch as soon as warm weather permits. She loves her blankets to snuggle up on, and also to sleep in Rooti's igloo dog house (that is stuffed full of blankets) that is in the front yard. She can come in thru the doggy door whenever she wants, but chooses to live on the front porch. I feed and water her on the porch late spring thru early autumn, and when the nights start getting nippy, she moves back into the house, and close to the woodstove. I have never had a dog that didn't like my cats. In the first few days we had a small run-in, and then a big tussle when Angel came into the back yard and the dog saw her before we did. Not good. We are fortunate in that Angel is separated from all the other critters for now. We are working on it a tiny step at a time. A training collar has been purchased. But I have never seen such a tough, determined little dog. I hope we can all get over this hurdle. It could be a deal breaker if we can't. My 18 1/2 year-old cat that I have had since she was 1 day old certainly takes priority. But we are all very attached to Miss Ginger already, so that really complicates things.
She has adjusted amazingly well. Mom said Bobby told her Ginger is 5 years old, but another friend says he thinks she is 7. The lifestyle she had with Bobby is about polar opposite of what she has with us. Here she is a dog. Dogs like being dogs! She has probably done more in the last 2 weeks than she'd done in the whole year prior. We go for walks (which she loves!), car rides, road trips out to the old farm, and now to the new mini farm, to work in the mornings (the whole lot of us, we're really living the “pack” life), she sleeps in a crate in our room at night which is going terrifically, she's eating really well, and is enthusiastically playing with Declan and Piper. Knock on wood, she has not had a potty accident in the house. That is saying something for gal her age who was formerly not potty trained. Doggy doors are a great invention! She bonded quickly and strongly to me, which also surprised me since she'd lived her entire life with a solitary man. I've not gotten a lot of pics of her, but here are a few.
She likes lap naps, but I think it's because she's still a little insecure.
Sunbathing at work is another pastime. I was very worried about having 3 dogs at the little scale house, but they are all so good, and just nap away the morning for the most part. Then they stay home after lunch.
She loves to play with the hose. I guess that was a favorite form of amusement at her other house. Mom said many a time when she was talking to Bobby on the phone, he'd have to put the phone down for a minute and go outside to turn the hose on for her because she'd get very sassy and vocal and would give him no peace until he turned it on.
Well, I needed a 3rd dog like I needed a hole in the head, but she is fitting in like a piece in the puzzle I didn't know we were missing. If we can just get over the hump with the kitty issue, I think it will be all good. It's funny how things work out – Bobby is the person we bought the cabin from, and now we have his little dog who used to spend time up there when she was a puppy. Now she can go up there again, and I'm sure that would make Bobby very happy to know that we're doing the very best we can with his little house in the mountains, and his very best pal Ginger.