Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Puppy Love

"Ooo, you make me live. 

I'm happy, happy at home. 

You're my best friend"


You all know little Rocky, but who is his floppy-eared friend you ask? Well, we adopted Shirley about one month ago from the lovely folks at Critter Cavalry via Pet Finder. Adoption is always the way to go, no exceptions. Remember, there are countless animals out there that people throw away, abuse, neglect, and are unwanted by people who mistreat them. With that being said, why create a demand for more and more animals to be bred and born? Doesn't make sense now does it?

Shirley-girl joins our household of another dog (the Rockster you see pictured with her), a cat, and an iguana. I don't think she had any idea what she was in for! Ha! Royal treatment! You can call this residence an animal playground of sorts, doggy spa, with treats galore, toys everywhere (and I do mean everywhere all over the entire house!), comfy and cozy animal beds in every room of the house, puppy proofed place so puppy gets full range, big back yard, playmates, lots of attention, lots of love-hugs-kisses, and much much more! Sound like an infomercial much?

Positive reinforcement taught this smart puppy of less than 4 months to use the bathroom outside. WeeWee pads are also available indoors for convenience, but she has trained us, her humans, to know when to open the door so she can frolic outside whenever she fancies so. She is extremely smart! Shirley also loves the snow...Rocky, not so much a fan of snow.

I am just so happy to be able to give this special pup a second chance. I am happy to be able to spoil her, because she deserves it! All these rescues deserve nothing but the best because they have been thru a lot, even if they are only just puppies. They are being adopted out for a reason. I am especially happy that Shirley has found a friend in Rocky, and vice versa. I haven't seen Rocky play and snuggle with another dog like this since Sammy passed away a couple winters ago. Her passing really devastated the whole family, and the change in Rocky was noticeable. I love that Shirley brings out the puppy side in Rocky again. He took a liking to her very quickly, almost like he thinks she is a mini Sammy or something, almost like they knew each other forever. The friendship was instant. The first night she was here, we all piled in the car and took them to the puppy store. They both sat on my lap in the passenger seat. Anyone who truly knows Rocky, will understand how rare it is that he allows anyone else near me while he is spending time with me, but he has no problem sharing. Remarkable.

                            (you can see, what I call, Rocky's angel wings - the white fur that resembles    
                                                                             wings. Shirley has light "angel wings" fur growing in now also. Guess it means our puppies are angels)

Here is Shirley pulling Rocky across the living room in a sort of "ride" as he sat there. I couldn't believe my eyes at first, but then again it is Shirley. She likes to find the craziest ways to play. She also does this biting thing on Rocky, it is like a gentle bite with only the front of her teeth, and he moves from side to side as if he is getting a massage or a scratch. They do get on each other's nerves occasionally, but it wouldn't be true friendship if they didn't. As you can see, they like to spend time together.

I really love watching Shirley grow also. We know she will be a big girl when she is fully grown. When she first got here she was the same size as Rocky and every day she becomes bigger and bigger. The home feels complete now. Shirley was in our plan, we just didn't know it until one month ago. 

I would like people to realize that although I am extremely positive in my outlook on life, puppies are A LOT of work. Don't by any means take this as 'run out and get yourself into a situation you are not prepared for, and end up neglecting, or worse, to a poor rescue animal'. I truly believe that caring for another, whether it is an animal or a child, takes someone who is patient, kind, prepared, and committed to the lifelong responsibility. If you do not think you can handle it, don't. I see too many people who rescue or obtain animals, then chain them up outside, pen them up, and do not properly care and stimulate them. Puppies are full of energy and it is a constant job for people with the patience and drive to teach them. A puppy is a baby, don't forget. Remind yourself when it is tearing up the house, it does not know better, you have to teach it and be kind about it. Positive reinforcement is the best and most effective method, not to mention the kindest. Ignore negative behaviors or give a firm "No!" in a dissaproving tone, and praise/ reward for positive behaviors. Also the use of repetition and teaching words to animals is very important. It teaches them to understand you and keeps them safe. Most important words will teach an animal to stay or come to you. Just like you would teach a child, to keep them safe from harm. Having an animal companion is a blessing, and I would love to see all the abandoned animals rescued and in proper homes, proper is the keyword. And for now, the Dirty Vegan is signing off.

1 comment:

  1. Just saw a picture of your adorable furbabies! And I had to ask you if you knew what type of mix Shirley is?! I adopted my little Quinn from Critter Calvary last August and they look so much alike! The rescue found Quinn and her siblings abandoned with no mom or dad so they have no idea what breed(s) she may be. Just curious if you knew about Shirley's breed!