A Puppy and a Puppy-sized Dog

Big weekend here. Four out of five puppies took off for their forever homes.

It was fun to see the happy faces – especially the kids. Puppy adopters are my favorite people because they are always bubbling over with excitement. I mean, who isn’t over-the-moon happy to be taking home an adorable puppy? I’m sure some of that happy might wear off after a few days of cleaning up poo on the carpet, but for that 30 minutes or so when they are here meeting their puppy and signing the papers and taking pictures, they are THE happiest. And that’s fun to see.

Makes me smile now just thinking about it. I loved watching Sneezewort (now Cooper) jumping all over his new boys and Snap Dragon (now Rocky) giving his new mom a face bath. The grins on the faces of Foxglove’s (now Teddy) new mommy and daddy practically split their faces and seeing the dreams come true for one teenager when she snuggled Begonia (now Calypso) simply made my day.

 

 

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(I picked a really sad face pic for this just so you’d say, “awe…..”)

And that leaves Pigweed alone. It was a long, tough night for that little girl. We’ve learned she can bay like a hound when she is VERY sad. She goes home to her VERY excited forever family on Friday. This morning Ian said, “Next time we do puppies, can you make sure they ALL go home on the same day.”

Yuppers. That would be ideal.

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I had tried to head off this predicament by claiming a very small foster dog. Chuggy Alabaster (and who can resist a name like that?) arrived on Saturday afternoon. He’s a pug/Chihuahua cross and weighs a little less than Pigweed, my smallest puppy.  He’s got a smashed in, turn up nose which is a perfect combo of the two breeds, plus a mini-Superman build – svelte waist and broad chest. He’s about a year old and has lots of small dog energy. The perfect playmate, right?

In small doses, he and Pigweed are truly enjoying each other. The problem is Chuggy is not a puppy. After two thousand laps around the kitchen island and several hundred tackles, he’s done. So he just sits down in protest. Pigweed, being a mere 8 weeks old and having only ever experienced the nonstop rough housing of her siblings, doesn’t know how to take a hint. She has yet to be schooled in dog to unrelated dog etiquette, but I’m guessing Chuggy will take care of that this week.

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Chuggy must wonder how he ended up in this looney bin. Between the puppy that just won’t quit and the snarly, socially awkward girl dog who won’t give him the time of day, he’s more than a little confused. Luckily, he’s a pretty easy going guy. Thank heavens, because I’ve heard small dogs can get testy. He has yet to snap at anyone. He dodges the mean girl dog and humors the HAPPY puppy, but what he most wants is to snuggle in my lap. He might be the best lap dog I’ve ever encountered. I really need more than one lap. Three laps this week. But then again, that might look pretty unsightly. Hopefully, his forever lap will come to claim him soon.

Chuggy’s got a pretty sad story. One of the ones that makes me angry and grateful. He had a home until a few months ago. Then his owner surrendered him when he developed mange. Dogs are not disposable. Who doesn’t get that? Maybe I’m more than sensitive to this one because written on his owner surrender form is “alopecia.” My youngest son has alopecia areata, an autoimmune condition that causes him to be bald (since he was four). Maybe the owner had other reasons besides her puppy losing his hair, but it just hit me in the heart to see that diagnosis written on the form of a puppy being thrown away.

At any rate, I’m grateful for the shelter who took him in, treated his mange, and three months later has sent him northward with OPH. The only evidence of his mange is some scarring on his ears and a baby soft coat that is brand new.

I don’t have a lot of experience with small dogs. I can see the appeal – they’re much easier to clean up after. They don’t eat much. If they don’t listen, you can just pick them up and move them where you need them to be. They fit so nicely on and are so happy in your lap. But I have to say….

I need more DOG in my dog. There’s something about a big dog – just the substance of them- that I can appreciate. I promised my protesting teen daughter that we’d foster some small dogs – preferably purse-sized, but I don’t know how well I can keep that promise. Chuggy’s pretty cool and he’s awesome with Pigweed, whereas a large dog might accidentally hurt her, but I think I’m going to stick with the big dogs, or at least the bigger dogs for the most part.

After all, I’m the one picking up the poop around here so I think that makes it my call. And besides I don’t have enough laps to go around.

Speaking of big dogs and lap dogs – how about this one of my favorite coonhound on the planet? Former foster Carla comforting one of her people who just had wisdom teeth removed.lap dog carla

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Cara Sue Achterberg

I am a writer, blogger, and occasional cowgirl who lives on a hillside farm in Southern York County, PA. You can find information about my books and all my writing adventures on my website CaraWrites.com.

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