Monday, March 31, 2008

The New New Deg

Pepe just did not appreciate the Chesapeake Bay Retriever mix Brandy (aka: Brownie) that we picked up from North Hempstead Animal Shelter, and who could blame him. Brandy was intimidating to say the least, and besides that she took a few nips at our little darling Pepe. It was only in play. The thing was all she wanted to do was play without giving Pepe a break, and some of that play included playful biting. Had she grabbed him just once on the head and shaken hgim, well I am afraid, we were all afraid that would have been it for Pepe. We would have kept her and trained her, that would have been easy enough to do within a week or two, and she was already learning within only the 4 days we had her, but she was just too rambunctious for Pepe. She probably weighed in at about 45 to 50 pounds. Pepe is 6 pounds. She was just too much woman for him.

That all done with, Linda was in the dumps. She and Celina went to look at some other dogs and found a nice Atlas Terrier. I saw it too and thought it looked very nice, but I got conflicting stories in the puppy shop where we found it up for adoption. In the end we decided it sounded like a problem waiting to explode and we held off. Then yesterday Linda, Brendan and I were back at the ASPCA pound in Manhattan. Nothing there that strike dour fancy except for a nice Beagle, but that was spoken for already. What next, hmm. Well a nice young lady volunteer at the ASPCA suggested we try the NY City Shelter on 110th Street. We drove up there with some trepidation. Two weeks ago while at the ASPCA someone had told us the NYC Shelter was not too nice, and things there were uncoordinated. What the heck, we went anyway.

Well when we got there we had to wait a bit before someone acknowledged our presence, not too long though or I would have walked away. When we told them we were there to see a dog, they said go right in and buzzed us into the holding area. No guide or anything like that. We immediately saw they had only 2 smaller dogs on the first floor, and we wanted a smaller dog this time. No more monsters like that Chesapeake Bay Retriever mix. We decided to take a look at a mix, they called it a Shepard mix; but what they did not say was that it was probably an Australian Mix, or an Australian Cattle Dog mix - or maybe a combo of both. Well at least not until later, and it did not matter to me as long as it was not a Pit Bull mix. You can own one, but Pit Bulls are not for me. This dog, white and black and tan, was very jumpy, but being smaller and weighing at my guess about 25 pounds, that was not a problem. She seemed well behaved on the leash, and made pee only when taken out of her cage and brought outside the building. That last was a strong plus in her favor.

We asked some more about her and all we were told was that her previous owner/adopter had brought her back to the shelter, and told the workers he fund her as a stray. They said they knew the previous owner was lying because they had the dog micro-chipped, and had the owner's name in there files. That made me wonder what could be wrong with Mimi. To get more info I was told to go to the front counter where they could pull up her info on the computer. I went, signed in the book, and waited, and waited and waited. Finally they called me and said they had no other info except that she was on hold! Egads - on hold - then why had they said she was available. Well it turns out she had been on hold to do a show at a church or something like that, and they forgot to take her off of hold. So she was good to go, if we wanted her. After seeing her though, we decided to look at a couple of Chihuahuas they had hidden away upstairs. We saw one, a female that looked nice, but was supposed to be nippy None of that for me, and Linda agreed, so did Brendan. He had thought that Mimi, the first dog we looked at was a nice one. We all agreed. I could not wait to get downstairs to adopt Mimi. We went back down to adopt her, and I had to sign in the book again. This time we waited and waited again, but not too long, as they helped other customers. I filled out the paperwork, had my references checked (I guess they checked), then paid $75 plus gave a $10 donation. Then I was asked if I wanted a goody bag, to which I said yes. I was also asked if we needed a leash, which we did, but we didn't want to buy on because we had spares at home, so the nice lady helping us got out a temporary leash for us. She gave me the goody bag, and said the dog would be out soon, and again we waited. The dog was out in about 15 minutes or so, and we were ready to skedaddle, or so we thought. Then we were told we had to wait again, to get some medication for kennel cough from the vet. Aargh - kennel cough! They said not to worry it was just a precautionary preventative since she had been in the kennel. We waited another 20 minutes for the pills, but I took advantage of it and took her for a walk outside. She made a poop outside, and again she got praises and petting for her good behavior.

The ride home was pleasant. Brendan drove, as he had also done on the way in. Linda sat up front, probably only because I jumped into the back seat before she had a chance, and of course Mimi was in the back with me. She was pretty calm throughout the whole trip. She stood a while, sat a longer while, and laid down even longer. She must have been in a car before, she behaved like a well trained dog. We got her home without accident, let her loose in the yard, and she went bonkers. Well not really bonkers, but I can tell you she is fast. She rocketed around the backyard like she had energy built up that wanted to take off to the moon. Then she peed in the yard. What a good dog. We brought her inside and Brendan suggested naming her Rocket. Our older mutt is named Sprocket, and Mimi reminded us all of Sprocket in her younger days when we called her Sprocket the Rocket because of how she ran and jumped when ever off the leash and allowed to play. We thought about it briefly but decided to keep the name Mimi. Celina came over, and she too liked her almost instantly. They played and bonded for a while, and I can just see Celina taking Mimi for long walks and runs to keep her fit (what a good daughter). later on Celina and Linda took Pepe and Mimi for a long walk. I spent some quality time with Sprocket on a shorter walk, and Brendan washed the Toyota (what a good son).

Mimi got along decently with Pepe and he with her (did I forget to mention that Pepe had come to the shelter with us). They remained on fairly good terms with only a few growls and snaps from Pepe once home. I think only a few because although Mimi backed off almost every time Pepe showed curled lips, she went at him twice and gave it right back to him both of those times. I think it made him think twice about bullying her as he had tried with Brandy. A for Sprocket, she showed a lot on interest in Mimi. I think more than she had shown in brandy. They even played awhile in the backyard, and being that Sprocket is 18-20 years old, play does not come as easily for her as it once did, but there she was right at it with Mimi.

Mimi was an angel throughout the night. We put her in a crate, but she started whining about 15 minutes or so after she was crated. I went up, took her out, and she headed for the door. She needed outside where she promptly took a pisser. This despite the fact that she had just done so for my wife 15 or 20 minutes earlier. What a good girl. Then it was back inside where she spent the night asleep without incident, well except for 2:30 Am when I woke up and let the degs out. Sprocket does not do so good overnight any more, so I needed to let her out to prevent an accident. Mimi went and she did her thing again outside, but my bet is she would have slept all night had I not awakened the. By the way, where was she sleeping when I woke them up - in her crate, but I had not put her back in there earlier. I had left the door open, and she just went in there on her own. I like this dog.

This morning I woke up and she was on the floor next to me. I took her out in the back, she did what she had to do, and again she convinced me we have a very good newer new deg on our hands. Right now she is lying on the floor behind me as I type. By the way, since we got her home, all that jumping, well almost all of it has disappeared. When she does it, we tell her no, and she stops.Not bad. She just got up and headed to her crate. As for me, I have to get up and head to the office. Later for you.

All the best,
Glenn B