Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Meet Scrappy!

I found Scrappy through the Internet at an animal shelter that is quite a ways away from my home, but fairly close to my office, so I decided to inquire about him to see if I could visit him at the shelter one day over my lunch break when I am in the office. It was then that I found out that he was recovering from bladder stone surgery in a foster home, and the foster parents were thinking of adopting him. However, because I showed an interest, they agreed to let me adopt him if things worked out.

Scrappy is an interesting dog. He's got a Dachshund head and a Pug body, but without the curly tail.

The foster parents returned him to the shelter so that I could see him. I immediately knew he was the dog for me: Older, smaller, short-haired, quiet, sweet, cute, adorable, and likes to sit in laps.

However, he seemed a bit subdued like he wasn't feeling well. We turned him over and saw that his incision was red and swollen. So, the animal control officer took him to the vet while I went home empty-handed, but promising to return the next week. His vet visit checked out okay. The vet said that the redness and swelling was normal after surgery, that Scrappy wasn't showing any signs of pain and he didn't have an elevated temperature. So, I agreed to adopt him on Wednesday, after he had another week to heal and recover.

I had a doctor's appointment up in the city and was supposed to call the animal control officer when I was done to give her an idea of when I'd arrive on Wednesday. On the way to the doctor's office, I saw that I was almost out of gas, and I pulled into my regular gas station where I have never had to wait in line. However, on this day there was a long line and a long wait, so I had to turn around and leave. I just hoped I could get where I needed to go without running out of gas.

Once out of the doctor's office, I picked up my cell phone to call the animal control officer, and my phone started beeping because the battery was dying. I hoped I could just have a few seconds to spit out that I was on my way. However, she put me on hold, and my battery instantly died. Ugh. This was quite literally the first time my cell phone battery died in the past four years that I've owned this phone. Between that and the freak traffic jam at the gas station, I was beginning to get superstitious, thinking perhaps this adoption was not meant to be.

I decided to just race up the mountain and across the state border to try to get there before she left for her lunch break. Cops were crawling all over the place. I've never seen so many speed traps. So, I had to keep within the speed limit and just trust that I would reach the shelter before it closed.

I was supposed to stop at my office to drop off some equipment, but there was no time, so I skipped it and went straight to the shelter. When I walked in, the shelter office was jam-packed with people and puppies. They had found a stray Australian Shepard that had about nine puppies and people were flocking in to claim theirs. Scrappy was sitting in a cage under the desk growling and barking at all these puppies and people. I thought, "Oh no! I'm adopting a barker. I hope he doesn't bark at everything that moves when I get him home."

The animal control officer informed me that if I was the person who called who she put on hold, she completely forgot about me and apologized. I explained that my cell phone battery died, so I wasn't on the line for long. Pretty funny.

Then she informed me of something that wasn't so funny and made me question this adoption further. She said she had to take Scrappy to the hospital on Saturday, because he had blood in his urine. The medication he was on after his surgery was the wrong kind, so the doctor corrected it and now he's on the mend, but I will have to give him his medication over the next few weeks. I'll also have to bring him back to California for his follow up appointment and get him his rabies vaccination and tag once he's off the medication. Sigh. That's what I was trying to avoid by leaving him at the shelter another week while he finished up his vet appointments and medications. I have so little time to be taking on added responsibilities. That's why I chose an older dog. I don't have the time to potty train a puppy.

Well, considering that the doctor just had to put me on some new medication and gave me several assignments to monitor my health, it looks like I'll just have to make time for the both of us. Scrappy and I are a couple of old farts who are out of shape and need special care.

I signed the adoption papers and there was a long, teary farewell from the people who work at the shelter. Scrappy had been their front office dog since June and they had become attached to him. They gave me a cat bed to keep him in on the long ride home. It had cat hair all over it, which I am allergic to. My doctor had just told me not to take anything with decongestant in it, or my blood pressure could reach epic proportions and I'm already at risk of a stroke or heart attack. I knew I'd have to take something after being given a cat bed covered in cat hair.

Scrappy sat quietly in that cat bed as I drove to the office to drop off the equipment, then drove to a gas station to fill up the tank. He was so good and patient. I expected him to be vomiting from car sickness around all those curves all the way down the mountain, but it didn't phase him.

I got him home and Midge had an excited barking fit, but didn't attack him. They treated each other with respect. I told Midge that I brought him home for her. Now she has a doggy buddy. She's quite pleased. but she's still checking the dog house for her dear departed friend Monty.

Scrappy promptly ran around the house investigating every room. I thought it was cute until he started spraying to mark his territory. The dog is neutered, but I guess he still has that need to spray. I promptly kicked him outside where he sprayed every square inch of the fence line. Once he got that out of his system, he settled down and went to sleep.

He's only had one barking fit since he's been home, and that was because the barking pack of dogs across the street got going about something. Once he saw it was nothing important, he quieted down.

I put his pill in his dog food and he actually ate it. I didn't have to shove it down his throat. So, all the things I was worried about were things I really didn't need to worry about. He's been greeting everyone who walks in the door in a friendly manner, so I think he's adopted us as much as we have adopted him. He won't let me out of his sight. Each time I get up to walk into another room, he follows. I try to sneak away quietly when he's sleeping, but he instantly wakes and follows me.

I carried him outside to meet the horses, and he was a bit intimidated as they snuffed at him with their large snouts. He struggled a little in my arms to get away from them. I kissed the horses on their muzzles to show him that they are okay and they don't bite.

He's already taking on the role of guarding the house and he's only been here a few hours. We left the front door open with the screen door closed, and a truck drove up the street and honked. Scrappy ran to the screen door and growled.

We know that Scrappy was his original name, because he has a microchip. The animal shelter tried to contact Scrappy's owner at least four times and got no response. I like calling him Scraps, but no one else in my family likes the name. My son calls him Frankenstein because Scrappy has stitches. Midge just calls him Ruff.


fernvalley01 said...

Congratulations! He is a cute fellow.Glad you found the right dog for you, your family and Midge

Katharine Swan said...

He looks like a cutie! I hope it works out!

Paint Girl said...

Congrats on the new addition to your family! Scrappy is a cutie and I am so happy it is working out for you.
I give you kudos for adopting an older dog. When I volunteered at a no kill shelter, all the young dogs were adopted and the older dogs were there for a long time. It made me so sad to see the older dogs there still waiting for their forever homes.

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Awwwww!He looks right at home. I think you're right. He's adopted you as much as you've adopted him. I hope his arrival smooths out once he's completed the meds and vet visits, and you guys can strat enjoying one another. And hopefully he's done spraying. ugh! I hate when male dogs do that!

He looks like Buster to me...not a Scrappy.
Or maybe a Shadow. Since he is black and is always shadowing you it fits him perfectly.

Congrats! I can't wait to read more posts about this handsome little doggie.


Breathe said...

Glad you are able to give an older dog a home, Scrappy looks like he's settling nicely.

Hopefully he and Midge find joy with each other. How old is he?

Jeni said...

He is adorable NM!!! He's very lucky that you found him. Most older dogs never get adopted for some reason. He does look doxie with those short little legs and head... Just adorable =)

Mrs Mom said...

What a cute lil man Scrappy is! Sounds like he is going to fit in wonderfully for both you AND Midge.

And please NuzMuz, take care of yourself. Lots of people out here care about you ;)

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

Scrappy is 10 years old. Hopefully, he'll live to be 16.

Fantastyk Voyager said...

He's a cute little guy. I hope he works out for you.

Grey Horse Matters said...

Scrappy is adorable and looks like a sweet guy. Hope you all have a great time together. It's funny that your son calls him Frankenstein because that's what my son called his rescue dog (who looks a lot like Scrappy). They called him Frankenstein because he looked like he was a bunch of different breeds rolled into one. He's since morphed into Frankie which is cuter. Good luck.

Cheryl Ann said...

Awww...he sure is CUTE!

Anonymous said...

He looks and sounds darn near perfect. Thanks fo homing an older guy!

Lulu said...

Congrats! He is adorable and you get a BIG KUDOS for adopting an older dog! Many people only want puppies....

Sydney_bitless said...

congrats on the new dog. Hes cute.

duffylou said...

Good for you to adopt an older dog! He will appreciate you so much more. Many happy years together.

Mikey said...

Oh my goodness he's adorable!!! I LOVE that you adopted an older dog. So much better than going thru the puppy stages, and you give an old guy a great home for his final years.
I wonder if his previous owner died or something? That's so strange that he's microchipped and the owners are unreachable. Poor old guy!
But he's got a good place to be now :) What a great post :)

JennyB said...

When I ran my rescue I had limited space and since people don't normally adopt older dogs I had to pass on taking in seniors. It always broke my heart though to know that so many of these sweet dogs would probably never know the joy of a loving home of their own again simply because of their age. God bless you for giving this adorable little sweetheart a place to call home in his last years!

~~ JennyB, Horsefeathers

Reddunappy said...

He reminds me so much of a dog we had when I was a kid, Petey, LOL.

Stephanie said...

Congratulations on your new family member! What a perfect guy he is and oh sooooo cute :)