Saturday, March 31, 2012

How many is too many?

My daughter has a thing for collecting stray dogs...

Almost two years ago, there was Sandy, an Australian Cattle Dog, Terrier cross, who adopted my daughter.

Then there was Skyy, an Australian Shepherd, Blue Heeler cross, that my daughter brought home as a small puppy last fall.

This week, she brought home a young Pembroke Corgi female. She said she brought her home for me, because the dog was small. I told her we didn't need another dog...

She said she would find a home for the dog. Poor thing, the dog was terrified of everybody and everything. She growled at Skyy and ran from me. All she wanted to do was lay beside my daughter. Then I discovered that she was going potty in my spare bedroom. I had enough. I told my son to put her in the dog pen overnight. Next morning, the little dog was crouched at my front door, terrified. She must have worked her way through an opening in the gate. Obviously, she wasn't going to run away. She dashed into the house and lay at my daughter's closed bedroom door.

I told the kids that if she was going to stay until a home was found for her she would need to at least be potty trained. So that night, I tied a 20 foot leash around her neck and dragged her outside with Skyy snapped to the other end of the leash. Somehow she pulled free and raced to the front door on her tiny little legs. I went over, tied on the leash again. (I couldn't find a collar that fit her, some were too big and some were too small). Again, I dragged/ walked her out into the yard to a place where Skyy likes to go to the bathroom. Again, she pulled free and raced back to the front door. Over and over, we did this, but she did get better and better about walking with me until I finally figured out how to tie the lead tight enough around her neck that she couldn't pull free. This was a homemade nylon leash so it was quite slippery and wouldn't stay tight.

Finally, she peed outside. I immediately went over to her and praised her, rubbing her head and ears and telling her what a good girl she was, how proud of her I was. Then we went inside the house and I put her on my bed. My bed is very, very high so I knew she couldn't jump off. After a few hours of sleep, I heard her getting restless so we went outside again. And again, she pulled free and raced to the door. I went back and caught her again and we walked all over the yard, even to the arena to see Yalla! The dog was amazed at such a huge animal and wouldn't come near Yalla and I at the fence, even though Skyy was racing around and sniffing Yalla's nose. Yes, I again brought Skyy with us figuring she would help show this dog what was expected. Skyy had so much fun running circles around us and picking up sticks, etc. She's grown up now but she still loves to play. A few more times of dragging/walking the little dog back to the potty zone, she pooped. YAY! Again I praised her and we went back to bed.

In the morning, I gave strict orders to my son and daughter to WALK her often. My son didn't want to do anything with this dog; he was so against having a third dog. I told both my daughter and son that the dog's chances of being adopted were nil if she wasn't house broken. Besides, we might as well have fun with her until she did get adopted. I am happy to report that in the last two days, she has not had any accidents in the house, a great improvement over the first two days, where I was cleaning up wet areas and poop piles. Poor dog, my daughter and I had such a row over her bringing this dog home and the messes that I had to clean up that I think she (the dog) became terrified of me. My daughter told me that the Corgi pup, about six-eight months old, was called Boots, although she completely ignored the name. I don't know her history but I joked that she should be called Boot Scoots because she probably got kicked around for having accidents. I know, not funny. But, seriously, looking at the dog, Roxie, or Foxy Lady came to mind, not Boots.

This weekend, I had to go north to pick up my fleece order from the mill - a pending story/post ;) - and I decided on my way home from work last night, that my son and I could go up and spend the night with my mom Friday night and pick up the order on our way back to town today. My son had band practice at 3PM today and the mill was almost three hours away so we were going to have to get up at o:dark thirty to make it there and back in time. Or, I could go by myself, but I wanted company on the trip. The horses would only miss breakfast. Sandy and Skyy could go out in the dog run overnight. This is exactly what we did.

 We grabbed overnight bags and I found Skyy's old puppy collar which fit the little dog perfectly. It's amazing how much better one can find things when it's not the middle of the night. We loaded some things and the dog reluctantly came along. She seems to have a phobia of getting into cars. Maybe she's afraid of being taken and left somewhere new. We decided we could ask my mom if she wanted to take the dog.

Crazy that I am, I had been doing some research on Corgis and was getting intrigued by the little fox-faced dog.

 Corgis are:

  • The chosen dog of the English Royal family. The Queen has always owned several at a time. 
  • Very smart little dogs, #10 in train-ability and intelligence of all dog breeds.
  • The smallest of the working dog class, around 25 pounds when grown. They are cattle dogs and can often avoid getting kicked because of their very short legs.
  • Very loyal. They won't leave your side and want to be close to you all the time.
  • Prone to obesity. It is advised to never leave food down for them. (And we have just recently switched to the self feeding method for Skyy and Sandy).
  • Pembroke Corgis have bob tails and short haired coats with a fairy saddle marking on their back. It is said that the fairies harnessed and rode Corgis and left their markings. They come in five colors ranging from red, sable, fawn, red headed tricolor, and black headed tricolor. They also blow out their coats twice a year. Uh oh!
This weekend, my son bonded with the little dog, even to the point of naming her, Daphne. We went for a walk with her in the woods up at my cabin and were very pleased with how inquisitive she was and happy to stay near us. Sandy runs off and so does Skyy, although Skyy will usually come back when called.

I brought along my camera...

I like this last photo of my son and Daphne, don't you? She did surprisingly well over the rough terrain.

When we arrived home today, Daphne ran right over and lay down with my daughter who was sitting on the couch, hurting my son's new found feelings for the little dog. Now, he's not sure he wants to bother getting attached to my daughter's third dog. Life is certainly complicated. I'm not sure what will happen next. My daughter certainly doesn't need to have three dogs that she doesn't even take care of half of the time. Will we be looking to rehome the little dog or keep her? Only time will tell.


Cheryl Ann said...

Well, she sure is ADORABLE! We had 3 LARGE dogs...a German Shepherd, our son's Weimeraner, and my black lab. Our shepherd died in December, so now we only have two...I know how it is to have so many!

Dreaming said...

I think Corgi's are cute as can be, and Daphne is darling!
I agree, the picture of Daphne and your son is wonderful.
You are such a wonderful mom; to kids and dogs!

Shirley said...

I think if your son spends more time with Daphne and takes her everywhere he goes (within reason) she may bond to him. Especially if your daughter allows it to happen by not making a fuss over the dog when it's with your son.

Lori Skoog said...

I hope your family will keep her. She needs some security and wants to be near you and your family. Adorable too.

fernvalley01 said...

She sure is a cutie! hopefully her forever home is decided soon

achieve1dream said...

She's adorable! I love Corgis. In fact it's my second choice after the Papillon for my next dog lol. They are so smart. And yes they are very athletic and can go on some rigorous hikes. :) I hope she bonds with your son so he can have a dog!