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October is Breast Cancer
13 October 2005
Sheila has a new buddy. Ashley wrote:
Katey, a small terrier mix, needs a foster home. She loves to play with big dogs, so I think she will be a good fit for Sheila. What do you think?
I checked her out on the SPCA PetFinder web site
The initial meeting, the first couple of seconds, weren't all that great, but we rushed both dogs out to the back yard. It was instantly apparent that this was a great fit. The two of them took off across the yard, chasing each other. They are the same age, and Katey has apparently lived with bigger dogs before because she is not at all intimidated by Sheila's big paws and will match her tooth for tooth. They played keep-away with toys, they found what used to be a stuffed animal and is now just an empty shell and they played tug-of-war, they played mouth wrestling.
It was so fun to watch Sheila using the rug on the patio as a springboard to toss herself into the grass, with Katey in hot pursuit. I was trying to videotape and follow these two racing bodies and they'd fake me out--they'd disappear behind a tree and then suddenly instead of being where I thought they'd come out, they'd show up behind me.
This is the perfect kind of match for Sheila.
Of course there are adjustments. Katey makes me remember that each dog comes with his or her own quirks and that you need to be on top of things.
For example, I saw her take my slipper and run outside with it. When I went to chase her and got outside, I found two other shoes (one from each of two pair) on the grass. Fortunately, she seemed to only like to carry them outside (I was afraid my 20 year old Birkinstocks were chewed up, but they were not). I also had to trick her to get her to come to me with the slipper. But it was a reminder that I need to get my shoes off the floor.
(Walt came downstairs this morning and put his shoes down on the floor before he put them on his feet and instantly there was a shoe heading out the back door.)
We tried working with her on the dog door, but she's not too comfortable with that yet. Last night we found a big puddle on the Pergo. Ashley had said that she was "the most housebroken dog" they ever had, but later I realized that, though I'd left the back door open, Walt had closed the screen door to keep out the bugs, so she couldn't get outside. (Fortunately Walt happened to step in the puddle. I don't know what would have happened to the Pergo if it had sat there all night.)
It also took her awhile to adjust to Walt. I don't know if she has had problems with men, or if it was because she barked a lot when he came riding up on his bike, already protecting her place, or if he just looked weird in his bike helmet--or a combination of all three. But she is the first dog who has growled and bared her teeth and not stopped right away. But I held her in my lap and he brought her a handful of kibble and she decided he was OK.
So Katey is here at least for this week. It was wonderful last night. After her dinner is Sheila's most annoying time of the night, but it's when she must play. She and Kimba wrestle under my feet and Kimba barking her high pitched bark for the better part of half an hour or more. However, with Katey here, all that energy was put into chasing Katey around the yard and playing tug of war. It was great. Not a single bark at all, and when they finished, they were both exhausted and went to sleep.
Katey isn't quite as demanding of lap time as Pepper was, but she likes to sleep curled up in the crook of my arm, her butt on the arm of the recliner. But she was ok with sleeping by herself when it came time for the long nighttime sleep.
She's still a little bit skittish when someone goes to pet her, but that's understandable. I could tell she was settling in when I got up this morning and found her tail going a mile a minute and her being a real "wiggle butt."
* * *
Hmmm...another puddle on the Pergo--and the doors were open so she
could get out. This could be a problem...
PHOTO OF THE DAY