Monday, October 19, 2009

A quick update on Mr. Stray

Yep, he's still here. I finally got a phone call today from someone who saw one of my signs. She was looking for a long-haired poodle and miniature pinscher mix. (That is a popular hybrid here, commonly referred to as a Pinnypoo. Seriously.) She clearly wasn't looking for my stray, although I had a tough time getting her off the phone. I wasn't sure whether she was desperate to find her dog or to socialize.

The more I get to know my little pal, the more puzzled I am about his origins. He has definitely known life as a lap dog--likes cushy furniture, treats and cuddling. He is flawlessly housebroken. But he's also quite independent (has run off twice), has not been neutered, and has some marks of a rough life. The tips of both ears are slightly ragged from fighting, and his teeth are not only worn with age, but a couple of them are broken--maybe from fighting, or maybe he's been hit by someone.

In any case, it looks as if he's pretty well landed with me. I haven't taken him to the vet, but I'll have to do it soon. I'm not at all sure I can afford him over the long haul, but he's got to be cared for as long as he's here. One happy note is that Nio seems to be deciding he looks more like a playmate, less like dinner. At least this won't end in bloodshed.


sisty said...

Neuter him! Then he will be yours without any worries. He sounds delightful.

BitterGrace said...

Oh, I'm definitely going to go ahead and neuter him. That needs to be done no matter where he winds up. It might discourage the wandering, too, but I'm not counting on that.

jmcleod76 said...

Would I be incorrect if I guessed that you are now starting to look at him appraisingly, trying on names in your head, at least, if not out loud?

Maybe your Little Dude is just smarter and more resourceful than you initially gave him credit for. Perhaps he's been on his own for quite a while, fighting for survival and catching his food. Feists are good squirrel catchers, and I'm guessing there's been no shortage of those around.

Or maybe he's had two owners in his life (not counting you) - one who neglected him and one who coddled him. Or maybe just one owner who loved him, but didn't really know how to take care of a dog the right way. The neutering doesn't surprise me. Despite all of the awareness campaigns and vets recommending it, lots of people just don't do it. Someone had owned my Dewey for two years before I got him. She clearly loved him, even to the point of spoiling in many repects, but she never bothered to get him neutered, either. And she never leash trained him. Just trusted him to stay by her side. That may work OK in some places, but not only is it illegal in the city, it's also dangerous. To this day, Dewey has to wear a Halti because he hates his leash. He's only 20 pounds, but walking him without a Halti feels like dragging an angry polar bear.

BitterGrace said...

I'd like to meet Dewey--he sounds like quite a character. You're probably right about LD having multiple owners (and I use that term loosely.) The one element that has really baffled me from the beginning was that radio collar, which had a dead battery but seemed pretty new. Invisible fences are not cheap, and the whole concept is at odds with the local dog care customs. It may be that the collar was bestowed on him by some well-meaning sucker like myself; i.e., someone who "rescued" him after he'd already become homeless. Then he decided to move on.

You're also right that I am becoming more committed to him. The fact that he got away and came back twice makes me think he likes it here pretty well. He's getting along with the other dogs, and playing with him seems good for them.

The acid test is going to be the trip to the vet. If he has heartworms, I'll have a difficult decision to make.

jmcleod76 said...

Meet Dewey, the brainless wonder.

What he lacks in smarts, he makes up for in loyalty and charm.

BitterGrace said...

Don't sell Dewey short--he's a doggy scientist, trying to make sense of his world.

ScentScelf said...


Oh, you are getting in it, aren't you. However this plays out, I am glad your paths crossed.

Meanwhile, I cross my fingers for no heartworm.