Friday, March 6, 2009

Our New Addition

We got a new puppy yesterday! She's a 10-month old blond long-haired chihuahua named Honey. I'm fairly certain she's not a purebred, and not a clue what she might be mixed with, but she is an absolute love of a puppy! Why a new puppy, you might ask. Well, allow me to elaborate ;)

My girls have basically grown up with dogs. I had a Gordon Setter before they were born, and quickly realized it was either the BIG dog who loved to JUMP up on you or the tiny little toddlers...I chose the toddlers! So the dog was given to a very nice lady who had a ranch outside Phoenix (where we were living at the time) and presumably lived a happy life out there running and romping with a couple of other dogs and assorted other animals. Shortly thereafter, we just happened by the Humane Society and decided to "look" at what they had for adoption so we could "think about it." Yeah, so it didn't exactly work out that way - we left with adoption papers for 2, yes 2, doberman/rottweiler pups. They weren't old enough yet for us to take them home, we had to wait about a month. Very sad story about those pups - someone just dropped a litter of 8 pups at the door and walked away! Ugh I can't believe the way some people treat animals! The girls were about 3-4 years old then and picked out the puppies they wanted. Of course, they couldn't agree even back then, and that's how we ended up with two hehe. We had those doggies for 10 years and loved them dearly but they were more than a handful. One was predominately Doberman and very active - she needed lots of space to run and play. The other one was more Rottweiler (bulkier) and very lazy LOL. My backyard is a center cul-de-sac lot so probably measures out at about 1/2 acre - plenty of room for two big dogs. Ah, but they need more than a backyard to get the proper exercise. When I got sick, it became increasingly difficult for me to take care of them properly and they were too much for the girls to handle alone. I finally had to make the very difficult and heart-wrenching decision to give them up. I surrendered them to a Doberman Rescue Center since they were older dogs and had a slim chance of being adopted out of the Humane Society. And given the fact they were litter mates and spent their entire lives together, I really wanted them to stay together.

Now the girls had other pets along the way. We did the whole rodent thing, more than once - hamsters, guinea pigs that multiplied like spring rabbits - also our fair share of fish, salamanders, and newts. Enough! The dying off of small animals occurs on a fairly regular basis and is heart-breaking every time. The guinea pigs were the worst - they lived an average of 4 years (probably because they kept having so many babies they wore themselves out!) and every time it was a horrible scenario with the girls. Britni had an especially difficult time letting go of her pets and with the passing of each little pig a piece of heart went with it. So what did I do - I gave away her dog! Of course, I had talked to her at length before doing so, and she assured me she completely understood why we needed to do it, how much better it was for the dogs to be somewhere they would be properly cared for, yada yada yada. Well, just a week ago it occurred to me that this was probably the real start of her slide into depression. She loved that dog more than life itself. Yes, I got another dog right away but it was a rescue from a puppy mill and we'll never really know what mistreatments he suffered through there. He's a little Corgi/Chihuahua mix and I thought he would be a great lap dog for Britni and give her something to focus her love on and lessen the pain of having her beloved Twinkle sent away. Wrong again! Britni loves this little dog (Eddie) to pieces but he's never warmed up to her and doesn't let her love up on him. What to do, what to do. Enter my my cousin, the OR Scrub Nurse.....

Cousin has had a MinPin for about 7 years and thought now that she was a fully licensed nurse and working 12-hour shifts it would be nice for her little gal to have a playmate to keep her company. By coincidence, her sis meets a couple who have a puppy they need to give away (they're living in their car with the mom dog and the puppy!!). Cousin takes one look and snaps her up - she'll be the perfect companion for the sweet little doggie she has at home. Uh, not so much. The one at home is dominant and jealous. After several months of trying to help the dogs adjust to each other, it's obvious it just isn't going to work. About this time I'm realizing my precious Britni is needing something special and "losing" her Twinkle made her literally lose her twinkle. Finally, I think I got it right! When Britni got home from school yesterday and saw Honey and I told her that Honey was for her, she scooped her up and said "Thank you Mommy, I love you Mommy, I'm so happy!" That kid grinned from ear to ear all night, didn't hide out in her bedroom cave AT ALL the entire evening, and was genuinely happier than I've seen her in many months.

My camera battery was dead last night, of course, but I'll get pics today and post them a bit later. The one here of Honey I snapped earlier today, but to see the real joy in my baby girl's face you'll have to wait a little while - check back in a couple hours and experience the profound effect 6 pounds of puppy has had on my daughter! My heart is bursting with happiness and I dare say, so is Britni's!!

Love & Blessings,

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