Tuesday, May 2, 2017

I Flew The Coop

I had been obsessively searching Petfinder for weeks.

Hours.  I mean, to the point where I was probably spending more time scrolling mostly aimlessly at dogs I had no intention of adopting than doing much of anything else.  Addicted, maybe.

I had spoken with breeders, met and inquired about available 8-week olds, and honestly.. it didn't feel right.  Bawling and thinking about how Marge was going to hate me if I made an 8-week old come live with her outweighed any ounce of joy that I had about the thought of bringing home a second dog.  (Nothing against breeders at ALL, so please don't take it that way.  I just couldn't bring home an infant this time around.)

I finally mustered up the courage to submit an application for a Cattle Dog named Luke available through a rescue in NJ.  We met him, and I was lukewarm on him (no pun intended), but after literally two weeks of having the application open and filled out on my computer, I decided that I'd at least give a meet and greet between this dog and Marge a shot.

It wasn't meant to be.  The day I submitted my application, Luke was adopted.  And honestly, it was OK.  It wasn't the right dog for me, and I was trying too hard in my brain to think about why it was good and why it would work.

Still, I think the experience lit a fire under my butt because I knew I couldn't hem and haw and expect dogs to still be available several weeks later after no action from me.

The following day, I again went on Petfinder, keeping my search radius so large that I wound up looking at dogs three hours away in Connecticut.

I saw this.

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I said out loud, "What the [expletive] is THAT?!"  He was so cute.  A 7-month old Cattle Dog with a perfect description.

I submitted an application later that night.  That was a Sunday.

I e-mailed 24 hours later looking for a follow up. 

By Thursday, I was on the phone with the rescue coordinator setting up my 3-hour roadtrip with Marge and Louie to meet this little guy.

Fast forward to Saturday.  Six minutes from the foster's house - after a 3-hour drive in my new Ford Escape - I pulled in to a baseball field parking lot and bawled.  Why did I need another dog?  Marge is still young, still active in agility and picking up speed in obedience and Rally.  Would a new dog thwart our plans?

I went in to that foster's house thinking that there was no way I was coming home with another dog.  Not a chance.  This dog would have to be perfect, and I'd have to have basically no reservations about his behavior around Marge.

The rescue group deferred to me on how we'd do introductions.  I opted for a parallel walk with NO sniffing or interaction at first, gradually letting them get closer and get their sniffs in. It went fine.

After walking quite a bit, we turned them loose in a yard.  There was no more avoiding it.  If it didn't work now, it wouldn't work ever. 

One snark from Marge, then play bows, and then she ran around the foster's yard with this puppy like I haven't seen her do in years.

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We signed our papers, loaded two dogs in the car and started on our traffic-filled voyage home.

Fast forward a few weeks, after the new-dog equivalent of some kind of weird postpartum depression equivalent on my part (Marge never really had an adjustment period, other than maybe spending a little more time on her couch chair), and I finally introduced Red to the world.

After a lot of digging and a little stalking on the internet, long story short, Red was an approximately 7 month old Beagle/Cattle Dog mix from Mississippi whose owners sent him to the shelter after they were unable to curb his bad behavior around poultry.

Rescue put him on a transport truck to Connecticut, which is when I found his profile and decided I had to have him.

You'd think a leash may have helped with the whole eating birds thing, but hey.. I got an awesome dog out of the whole deal.

So, without further ado.. this is Northbound Flew The Coop, and he's part of our story now, too.

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But don't let that angelic face fool you.  This guy is a wild child.  He is well behaved in the house, amazing with Marge, and a blast while training.. but he's still got a lot to learn about life in the city.  Very different than training a fearful dog. Stay tuned for some training posts about him, particularly as I navigate an 8-week online mentorship with a trainer/behaviorist who I hold in VERY high regard.


Champion of My Heart May 3, 2017 at 10:10 AM  

Red is such a sweet puppy. I'm so glad that you found him and took the chance.

Cyndi and Stumpy May 3, 2017 at 3:24 PM  

Oh! What fun! If you thought marge was a handful, let me tell you about ACDs. Maybe the beagle will mellow him some.

Those spots are called naughty spots for a reason. Just sayin...

Thanks for the back story, looking forward to more!

Extra cookies for Marge!!!

The Ladies of Beaglebratz Manor May 15, 2017 at 2:51 AM  

Mom Kim here kind of late or early Monday. I am a dogmom of two Beagles and I will tell you now so you know what to expect - many Beagles do NOT mellow at least until they are seniors and even then it comes s-l-o-w. One of the Beagles I recently added(5/1) is an almost 9 month old PUPPY - has not had a whole lot of training altho is housebroke really well. Tries so hard to get my 10+ senior to play but she doesn't want to at all. They are starting to spend more time together sniffing out the yard tho.

Anyway, when I first saw your little one he did kind of remind me of my little one(Miss Maizie) - she also has the "naughty" spots on her legs altho with Beagles it is called ticking. And I just noticed that her eyes are almost like Red's. We have something in common as well - I had also completed and submitted an adoption application on a pup from a rescue only to find out there had already been one approved that same day! That adopter waited a couple of days to finalize the pup's adoption so while I waited to hear what the outcome would be - I found out about Miss Maizie from a fellow blogger - Miss Maizie needed to be rehomed and I was looking for another Beagle. And yes - she is a wild child too - I have niknamed her Ker-azy Maizie. She is a tennis ball fanatic (not often seen a whole lot in Beagles) and loves to "harvest" her own sticks from my over-grown Forsythia bush as well as run down a Frisbee. I am really looking forward to working with this little girl. And yes, she is full-blooded Beagle (pics on my blog)

Ok - so that is more than enough for now - I am now following your blog as I am really interested in learning what you do with your wild child.

Sue May 29, 2017 at 11:25 AM  

As the mom of two spotty dogs, Beagle Doxy mixes, I can assure you that you won't get bored. Naughty spots is a great description.

Diana June 14, 2017 at 7:17 PM  

Oh he is very cute. Love the name too!!

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