Monday, November 27, 2006

Good Dog News!

Here's the latest dog news from Dancing Pig! We have 2 new dogs, both rescues from our local shelter, Roane County Animal Shelter in Spencer WV.

First up is our Budgth (we do iron age Celtic re-enactment and believe in superfluous letters whenever we can fit them in-- it's a very Gaelic way of spelling. We also have a Hemingway cat named Pthumbh). Budgth joined our family a month ago, on November 1st. She was listed on Petfinder as a Boston Terrier mix, and she looked spookily like our beloved Ani. Ani was our first little dog love, allegedly a JRT/Cocker Spaniel mix. We got Ani as a 4 week old puppy from a flea market parking lot last February and she lived with us for 7 wonderful, joy filled months. We loved her so much. Ani was hit by a car and killed instantly in late September. (see earlier blog entries below)

We found Budgth on Petfinder. She was at our local shelter. They do their best there, but it's a high kill shelter-- that's the reality of life in poor, rural communities. Too many animals, not enough money or motivation to get them spayed and neutered. I try not to be too judgmental-- it's hard to pay for your dog's elective surgery when you can't afford health care for yourself or your children (we're not gonnat go into the flat screen tvs and fancy ATVs parked in front of falling down derelict trailers with 5 scrawny dogs chained outside) (well, i said i TRY not to be judgmental-- in never said i achieved that state of grace very often)

Anyway, we went in to meet the Ani lookalike & fell instantly in love. While we were meeting her, i noticed a JRT mix in a cage off in a corner. His front leg was swollen at the 'elbow' and he was obviously in pain, but also obviously sweet and gentle and desperate for a home. We were leaving for a business trip in Florida in a week and would be gone for 2 weeks and he couldn't travel. And we still had our big dog, Barnaby to consider. Still, i couldn't walk away from him. So, i sponsored him: i paid for his vet visit, x-rays and antibiotics and pain meds and promised to stay in touch with them. We took a joy-full Budgth home and had two and half wonderful days with her and Barnaby. We came up with her name because a) she's totally a cuddle bug and b) she reminds us of the character on Crossing Jordan called Bug; like him, our girl is sweet and earnest and a bit undersized, dark skinned and a bit socially awkward, and that's all part of her charm. We figured the TV Bug wouldn't object to having a girl as a namesake.

Three nights later, my husband was walking Budgth on the leash while Barnaby was running free. Barnaby was hit by a truck that didn't even stop. It was an unbelievable loss for both of us. We took ourselves and Budgth down to Florida and sold pottery on the weekends and sat on the beach and cried during the week. Budgth was a wonderful comfort for both of us. She's an awesome being and such a cuddler. A very sweet girl. An awesome 'consolation' prize.

We came home to Hearth Hill on Thanksgiving Day. On Friday, we went over to the shelter and met our next new dog. His current name is Sage, though that might change. We're thinking maybe Feegle (after the MacNacFeegle aka the Wee Free Men of Terry Pratchett's books) or maybe Albert, after Burt from Sesame Steet (i wanted to change Budgth's name to Ernestine/Ernie so we'd have Burt and Ernie, but my husband isn't having it. He's insisting on keeping Budgth's name as is). Sage looks like a tall JRT mix. Someone docked his tail, but didn't bother to get him fixed. He's a really thirsty guy, he drinks water all the time. We think that his previous owners might have been fed up with his constantly peeing to mark his territory, and instead of getting him fixed, they just denied him access to water. It's a typical redneck solution. (opps, that's the judgmental side showing up again).

He was brought into the shelter as a stray in late October/early November, severely beaten up, either by coyotes or a pack of dogs. He was throughly worked over, bitten on his head, ears, back and chest. The bite on his front leg seems to have gone into his joint & gotten infected. His tongue has a hole in it that seems like it might be permant. Maybe we should get him a tongue stud! He's painfully skinny and a bit worried about new situations. But despite all of this, he's also gentle, loving and very desperate to cuddle. He's also a talker-- very vocal, lots of barks and singing, especially when he catches sight of our big orange cat. He's not quite yet acclimated to indoor living and our new tile floor-- so he sees the cat, starts yowling and tries to lunge for him, but inevitably he spins out on the tile floor and ends up slipping and skidding around, looking very put out by it all. If he weren't re-injuring his leg when this happens, it would be even funnier than we currently think it is.

Sage is also the smelliest dog i've ever met. I'm talking room clearing farts. I hope this is a side effect of the antibiotics, cause if it's not, we're gonna have to make some serious dietary changes. Phew! Even Darrell, who thinks a good ripping fart is the highlight of his day, even big D has been offended by the stink this guy produces!

So, that's the latest dog update from Dancing Pig. Come on out to the Open House this weekend or next and meet the new dogs. You can even vote for a new name for the broken up & very smelly JRT. Hope to see you then!

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