Life has been a little cuckoo pants since returning from Mexico. And for the most part I can sum it up with one word: Work! I'm not complaining, I love having work. When you work for yourself and your business relies almost entirely on people's disposable income and the economy was rocky for a few years, well, having too much work is a very good problem! But it also keeps me from doing things like blogging, hanging out with friends, going out to dinner, going to the grocery store, in general, leaving the house. I don't leave the house much. But again, it's a good problem.
So, what's the super smart thing to do when you are so busy that you can't buy groceries? Uh, go get a mangy pit bull puppy from the shelter of course!
Enter Peaches Honeyblossom.
Let me back up a little. After we lost Delta I felt a real need to get a foster dog. I don't know if I can exactly articulate why I felt this. I thought it would be a good way to honor her but maybe it was as simple as just distracting myself. I don't know. But I started hinting to Tom. And by hint I mean sending him emails with photos of dogs at the shelter with the caption "can we get this dog?". He didn't bite on the first two I sent him. Dog one: a four year old, pure bred, male poodle. aka a dog that would get adopted lickty split. Dog two: a tiny, female, one year old Bichon Frisee/Yorkie mix (maybe!). aka a dog that would get adopted even lickty splicktier than dog one.
Then I sent dog three: a four month old, female pit bull with the worst case of mange I have ever seen (and that is saying a lot). So in terms of what is hard to adopt, pit bulls, chows, and black labs are right up there. I know, black labs? But it's true. Don't know what it is but people just pass them right by. So anyway, add in the puppy thing, that is, uh, time consuming, and the little matter of the demodex mange which will probably take about four months to clear up - medicated baths twice a week, antibiotics for weeks, daily dose of meds to kill the mangey mites...we are talking loooooong term foster.
This is the one that makes Tom go down to the shelter on his lunch
break and back to pick her up that evening. And you know what? I
couldn't be happier.
She was a heartbreak wrapped in a
hairless, scabby, pink, stinky, puppy package. And on top of the awful mange
she had a sunburn to rival any South Padre spring breaker! She was a
sight! I barely wanted to touch her for fear her skin would come off in
my hands. And the smell, well, I'm gonna avoid that descriptive. I
wish the people who let this happen to this poor little girl could be
prosecuted. But she was picked up as a stray so we don't know who let
this happen. But what I do know is that Tom and I will do everything we
can to make sure that where she came from is a distant memory.
We've been doing this rescue/foster
thing for almost 13 years now and I'll be honest, sometimes it's made
me not like people very much. Just this week I learned of four senior
dogs that were dumped at the shelter for a variety of reasons, but one
was "It's old. We are getting a puppy". Makes me feel sick to my
stomach. I've seen dogs with acid burns, I've seen dogs tied and left
in abandoned yards for weeks with no food or water, I've seen dogs with
limbs hanging off and owners who said they were waiting for him to die,
I've seen puppies hung from fence pickets to train dogs to fight, I've
seen abandoned litters of puppies whose mom died because she had been
over bred so there would be more puppies to sell, I have seen all of
these things first hand and it has made me jaded...
But then along came Peaches and on a whim we decided to create a Facebook page for her.
It was just a silly thing at first, Tom and I being silly. But then
people started "liking" her. A lot of people. They were commenting on
her photos and sending sweet, caring messages and well wishes. It might
not seem like much, but for me, when a lot of what I see is awful side
of dog welfare, the little things mean a lot. And then
people started donating money to her care and then sending her care
packages and gift certificates, and setting up dates to come meet her,
not necessarily to adopt her, but just to meet her. Just to hug her and
play with her. There have been
multiple times where I have just sat and cried over the kindness these
people have shown to this little hairless pit bull, a breed that tends
to polarize people. It has been truly amazing. We've been posting her
progress on her Facebook page and it's remarkable to
watch. When you see them every day you just don't notice the changes as
much, but when you are chronicling it for other people you pay more
attention. You can see from the photos I've posted here how great the
change has been. And it's been less than a month.