Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Starting over with 'firsts' :-)

Did you notice the new photo at the header of my blog?  :-)

For my readers who are new (meaning you have begun checking into my blog sometime during 2011), you may not know that our dog Kaya died a full year ago in early January 2011. I wrote about my loss a couple of times, but the first one was titled A Day of Firsts, as I wrote about the pain and what I found myself missing in a tribute to her.

It has taken a year, but we finally ready for another dog and are in process of adopting one who is currently living with another family. The name she is coming with is "B" :-) which apparently was shortened from Shelby, her first name, from the first family. We will be her third family, and her 'forever home'.

We may change her name, somehow, at some point, to what we are not sure. She is thought to be half Aussie and half Border Collie and approximately 5 years old.

As you can tell from her first snow portrait she is as cute as can be. She is as smart as they come, as fast and as fluid as the wind, and a jumper and a licker, wanting to be in your lap, at your feet, in your sight. She rips up the stairs and down again to find my husband (the soft touch in the family). :) The beauty of watching a fully-abled dog run and run and run and run is something I could watch (admittedly with a wee bit of envy) all day long.

Her current owners began bringing her over last week for short stays. Today we will be going for the gusto with her first overnight stay.

I picked her up this afternoon (her first time in my mini-van - bounding right up into the back like a gazelle). I never got around to removing Kaya's nose prints on the windows and now there is no need to bother doing that!  I drove right to the pet store to buy "B" her own chewing rope for our home (I didn't have the courage to take her in with me this time) and got back to the car 5 minutes later to see her sitting in the driver's seat (no biggie, Kaya used to do that).

However, I stood at the driver's side door, wondering what she would do when I opened the car door, which I did very very very carefully not knowing if she would bolt out of the door into the parking lot (it was probably not smart of me to not go right home first to observe her instincts and/or past training and/or fears).

Well, even opening the car door very carefully and forcefully easing myself into the car while I thought I was pushing her back, I realized quickly that she had the upper hand in this situation because she had leverage, being on that high seat with strong back legs!

My worst fear was that she would knock me down and then just charge into the parking lot, get hit, get lost, etc etc etc, all before the 'official adoption' papers were signed. As all of these thoughts were racing through my brain, I finally realized that she was doing none of this but instead had her two front legs completely wrapped around me while she was licking my face and licking my face and licking my face top to bottom, around and around and around! What a relief, except I was sopped, smelled like a dog, and I am not joking here, if I had had contacts in my eyes, they would have been long gone!

So I took a deep breath and kept pushing my way in, we both stumbled a bit as she figured out how to move backward, I moved up and in with this big furry dog in my chest with her legs still wrapped around my shoulders, as if we were mismatched dance partners learning new steps from a bad teacher, at least badly chosen music. Except I was laughing, mostly in relief, so thankful she was not in the parking lot. I was also laughing wondering what I looked like, what I smelled like, knowing I had planned on two more quick stops since we were in town before heading back to the farm. That greeting was a first I'll remember for a long time. :-)

We were told that "B" has separation issues. I see that! We'll work on them............. :-) She can feel secure with us.

(Photo: B - snow dog)
(Photo: B - frisbee dog)
(Photo: B - "Let's go slow-pokes!")
More dog updates to follow in 2012! We need to do serious 'boundary training' so she does not head to the hills with the first squirrel or ground hog or deer she sees when she is off-leash. In addition, we need serious and consistent training to help her realize that she is secure with us coming back as we just cannot take her with us to the farmers' markets and other times my husband and I need to be gone together. Finally, assuming that she is an Aussie/Border collie mix, she needs a 'job' to do to help use up her boundless energy, so we will enjoy identifying that and working with her on that. 

With all of this outside work with B, I can see less computer time in my future, although perhaps.... No!  I won't say it, I don't dare say it! I need my sleep. :-) I was going to say maybe I can get by on less sleep (but that did not work so well for me last summer), so instead maybe I can develop 'speed sleeping', whatever that might be. :-)

She does respond to "B", but all name suggestions are within limits and welcome for consideration. :-)

Cultivate your life - you are what you grow - inch by inch, row by row 
(and lick by lick!)

Diana Dyer, MS, RD


Elaine said...

I've been waiting for this post since last week. And yesterday I popped by your blog for a quick check and saw the header image so I knew it would be coming soon.

I still have a silly grin on my face -- what a great story about how B greeted you when you opened the car door. Sounds like mutual love.


Ali said...

Yay! It is so great to see photos of a happy dog bounding around the farm! I can't wait to hear more about your adventures with her, and of course to meet her in person! One suggestion for names would be a simple switch from the letter "B" to "Bee" (as in honey bee).

Kim R. said...

Where is the "like" button on this blog?? Like, like, like! Nothing like a happy dog to remind you of the joy in the simple things in life.

Cheryl said...

How about naming her "Honey" since she's so sweet.

Anonymous said...

New to your blog. Enjoying reading about your gardening/farming, passion for eating delicious, healthy foods, and your dogs. B looks like a dandy active companion, wishing you a great time getting to know each other.

Kateri said...

She is a beautiful dog! a dog like her will keep you young and active for sure. :)