So here’s the story I wanted to post last week, but couldn’t because of the jinx factor.
The jinx factor is what happens when I post about a dog’s adopters before they are actually adopted. Seems like the last few times I’ve done this (Whoopi was the latest), the adoption falls through. I was SUPER excited about Lucy’s family finding her, but didn’t want to jinx her, so I held back. Now that she’s happily in her new home with a family who love her, I can share the story I wrote last week and then never posted… Continue reading Adoption JuJu and Jinxes
Edith and the puppies are all doing well. I’m very proud to say Edith has put on some weight. She is still too skinny to be nursing 12 growing puppies, but she looks better. She’s an excellent mom, yet she’s also become quite independent. She spends portions of her days outside the box, relaxing on the floor (so far she is hesitant to use the Frank bed) or following me around the kitchen. When I sit with her on the Frank bed, she will lean in to me and close her eyes, and I swear she looks like she’s smiling. It’s the only time I truly see her relax. It’s been such a long journey for her to this place and she has so far to go, but I think she knows that she isn’t alone in this anymore.
She’s relaxing more about the puppies, now, too. For the first few days, whenever anyone new came in the kitchen, she would pile up the puppies in the corner and more or less sit on them like a mother bird. The puppies protested this treatment. Now, though, when someone new comes in the kitchen, if she is in the box she’ll glance my way, and if she is out of the box she’ll stick close to me, trusting my judgment as to whether her puppies are in danger.
Last night when the puppies were whining loudly as I changed the towels in the box, checked their collars, and weighed them, Gracie appeared on the other side of the gate that keeps her out of the kitchen. She barked and growled, possibly complaining about the noise the puppies were making. (They tend to squeal when I place them in the plastic bin on the scale.) Edith watched her, but said nothing.
On Saturday, I left Nick and Ian in charge of Edith and the puppies, and spent the day at the New Freedom Fest, volunteering at the OPH booth and also selling/signing my books. The weather was great and we got to talk to lots of potential volunteers, fosters, and adopters. We had two dogs with us – Mademoiselle and Shortcake who garnered lots of attention (but sadly, no adopters). They were troopers, and completely spent by lunchtime.
The New Freedom Fest includes a Pet Parade with prizes and we were asked to be one of the judges. Serious pressure, here, at least for me because all the dogs were the best and I love the kind of enthusiastic people who participate in events like a pet parade. Watching all the dogs (and one cat!) go by brought back memories of when my daughter won the “best overall” category in the pet parade with one of our chickens many years ago. She spent several afternoons ‘teaching’ the chicken to walk in a cat harness, but in the end she towed the chicken in a wagon. Only in a small town, I suppose.
One of my former fosters, OPH alum Chase (Okeriete) won the “cutest dog” category. He was dressed like a hotdog and led by his equally adorable big brother. Of course, they got our vote, but I was happy they got the other judges votes, too!
When I got home from my day away, Edith was happy to see me and the puppies, whose eyes and ears remain closed, didn’t much care or notice that I was home. They still resemble guinea pigs more than puppies, but they are getting stronger. They’re pulling themselves up more, wobbly and unsteady, but nearly standing. Some of their personalities are beginning to show. Zora is quite independent. I often find her sleeping solo.
Charlotte needs constant company and she likes to be the top dog. She generally casts about for a puppy pile and then climbs to the top.
Charlotte is the blond puppy with the blue collar
Harper is very attached to her mommy and has a lot to say (as does Virginia).
Hemingway is pretty chill at all times, generally lounging on his back with his legs splayed. (such a boy!) George, perhaps because she is the smallest, can move the fastest. She and Hemingway have a bond and are frequently snuggled together.
Beatrix is a tank and easily the biggest puppy. She also has a racing stripe on her belly.
Jane is a funny girl– very busy and social. She’s a darker blond than the other yellow pups with distinctive white markings. I’ve caught more than one picture of her with what looks like a very contented smile. Here she is with Eudora and Charlotte.
Every now and again they line up like piano keys to nurse and it creates a great visual effect: (The two prominent yellow pups are Louisa and Eudora – they’re quite the twinsies, although Eudora is one of the two runts and is a bit smaller and lighter than her sister.)
Six of the pups have adoption applications. On Saturday at the Fest, I spoke with several more people who are quite interested in a puppy. Maybe we can get them all adoption pending before their eyes even open! Of course, this doesn’t mean any of these people will adopt the pup they’ve chosen (or been assigned to), it only means they get first dibs. So, if you want dibs on any of these babes, I’d recommend that you get your application in pronto. There’s a cheat sheet at the end of this post to help you sort out the puppies on this blog and the Facebook group (which you should join if you need a puppy fix!)
One more thought (AND an opportunity!)–
I’m pretty sure that the Pennsylvania contingent of OPH is the smallest. While working the booth on Saturday, we agreed that we desperately need more volunteers and fosters. Two dogs, one of them Lucy, were unable to come to the event on Saturday for lack of a ride. We need people who are willing to pick up a dog from a foster’s home and bring it to/from an event. The more exposure the dogs get, the quicker they can find their forever homes. We also need volunteers to do things like reference checking (which can be done from home), taking pictures of dogs, visiting/spending time with dogs in boarding, and most especially organizing and staffing adoption events. If you’ve got any time to give—we could use YOU. To volunteer, go to the OPH website and sign up. I’d love to work with you to rescue more dogs!
NOTE: Several of you have asked about Edith’s expenses in terms of her heartworm treatment. Can I just say that you are the best people with the biggest hearts? I’m working with OPH and their heartworm coordinator to figure out a way to help you contribute to her treatment and at the same time help raise awareness of this horrible condition that is completely preventable and claims the lives of too many dogs. I’m hoping to be able to let you know soon how you can be involved, so stay tuned!
Where to begin? The cuteness? The adorable sounds? The AMAZING mama dog who has completely stolen my heart? So much to tell you!
We’ll start with the obvious. If you’ve joined the Another Good Dog Facebook page, you already know the 12 pups in my kitchen are addictively cute. I can spend WAY too much time just watching them ‘swim’ around the box.
Their eyes and ears haven’t opened yet and they can’t support their weight, so they swim around, much like seals on land or fat snakes with appendages.
Not much has gone as expected for the past few days. Okay, well, a few things. My husband took off for France. Ian won his soccer game, and Addie got the part she wanted in the school play (of course it wasn’t the part I expected she’d get as she’ll be Blackstache instead of Molly or any other part normally assigned a girl in Peter and the Starcatchers). The tomatoes continue to produce, as do the horses, and now that school has started pretty much no one puts their dishes in the dishwasher. Those things I expected and they happened. Yay, life behaving itself.
What hasn’t gone as expected is most everything having to do with our 50th foster dog.
I’d painted this lovely romantic picture in my mind of our 50th foster dog, Edith Wharton, giving birth to a handful of puppies in our kitchen as we all watched and were amazed by the miracle. What a great experience for our milestone foster. I was so ready.
I borrowed a really nice handbuilt whelping box from my neighbors (who at this point are probably beginning to wish they lived on a different road as I hit them up for pretty much every dog dilemma I have). We set it up in our kitchen and Nick ran to the hardware store and bought foam pipe insulators to cover the top edges so Edith wouldn’t rub her heavy belly on it when she climbed in. I set down a layer of soft things and puppy pads in preparation.
I looked through my calendar for the next week or so, making sure I could be home if necessary, already preparing my excuses (“Sorry, you’re on the own. Gotta go. There’s a dog giving birth in my kitchen…”)
I read about puppy whelping and even watched a few badly made YouTube videos of it actually happening. I gathered advice from my knowledgeable dog-breeder neighbor and made a list of the supplies I’d need. A box of some of those supplies arrived from OPH (thanks Gina!) and pretty soon I was ALL READY. Edith was due to arrive in less than 24 hours!
And then I checked my email.
Apparently Edith was not made aware of my preparations and my whelping box and she gave birth to the puppies at the shelter that morning.
Rooney finally went home with her new forever mom after a long wait. They met over a week ago and fell in love, but we had to wait for Rooney to finish her antibiotics and be 100% healthy so she could go home. Which she did on Friday. And we all miss her. My little brother will be very happy to know Rooney is in the Air Force now! Her mom is one of America’s finest.
Before she left, she, Lucy, and Obie had a fun week.
I just forced myself to stop playing with the puppy-doll and get back to my desk. Obie is VERY hard to resist. He loves to be held. I wish I’d kept my baby-sling because I’m positive he would be super happy snuggled in it accompanying me about my day. Being the lone puppy is not easy, even despite the bags of toys he received this weekend!
This morning I lunged him in the side yard with my longest leash. If you’re a horse person, you might be familiar with that term. It’s when the person stands still and a horse on a lungeline works in a circle around the person. Obie lunges very well, also. He zooms around and around and around. When he really gets going, he almost looks like a rabbit because his hind legs are reaching in front of his front legs at times.
Kind of like a wind-up toy, this burst of energy expels itself fairly quickly. When he’s finished, he’d like you to pick him up and carry him around, thank you. All day, would be his preference. Obie is pretty much THE best snuggler I’ve encountered. I think that’s remarkable considering he’s a puppy (and most puppies prefer to keep moving). But if you’ll just hold him against your heart with his head tucked under your chin, he’ll be content forever. Yup, definitely a puppy-doll. He’s great therapy for this mom who is missing her oldest kiddo who just left for his second year in college.
Rooney has found her forever family, but is hanging out with us an extra week to complete a course of antibiotics to hopefully clear up the secondary infection she developed after her UTI. No one minds because Rooney is a most gracious guest. Ever since the end of the pee wars, she has been a model foster dog. Continue reading Of Puppies and Pumpkins
I’ve had about enough of the pee wars. Unbeknownst to you, this quiet war has been waging in my kitchen for three days. I don’t know who started it. I don’t know how it will be ‘won,’ but I’ve had entirely enough of it.
So today I armed myself. I bought a doggie diaper. I’m not sure yet which dog will be wearing it, but I’ve decided to place blame on the dog who should know better, so here she is modeling it for you: