Friday, August 7

Our new addition...

We have an announcement to make. We're adding a new member to our family.... last tuesday.

How overdone is that joke?

Monday night, after an unsuccessful visit to the Sandy shelter, Brit let me go down to the one we've been frequenting in Lindon by myself to see if there was anything worthwhile, with the caution that I'd better not be bringing someone home. That turned out to be harder than I thought when I met this girl.

I wasn't sure about her at first when she got really overexcited at the prospect of getting out of her kennel. I was afraid she'd be too high-energy, but I kept coming back to her pretty face. So I tried it anyway. And she had a complete and startling transformation. From jumping up at the door to get out, she turned into a perfectly calm leash walker and a sweet, mellow, affectionate girl. I fell head over heels in love. I hogged her for an hour until the shelter was closed to adoptions, just so nobody else would steal her, and dragged Brit back there the moment his class ended on Tuesday. He grudgingly fell in love with her, too. He says he wanted a more manly dog, but she won him over in the end (even though she kept stepping on his shoe!). So we took her home! The shelter guesses she's between 1 and 3 years old, and a mix of chocolate lab and aussie.

Let me tell you how completely wonderful this dog is:
  • She is a perfectly calm walking companion. I go running with her in the mornings, and I have to keep checking to make sure she's still there, since it doesn't feel like there's anything on the end of my leash.
  • She's amazingly smart. She picks up commands and intentions very quickly. She knows sit, is quickly learning Down, and she picks up quickly when she's not allowed in a room, even with her separation anxiety telling her to follow us EVERYWHERE.
  • She is very cuddly and affectionate, and loves people. Even out meeting kids, she doesn't get overexcited and jump on or lick them, she just sits quietly while they pet her and love on her (and then tries to follow them home).
  • She has a very low energy level in the house, and an appropriately fun energy level when we're out. When we're sitting quietly, she's sitting or sleeping near us, never whining or looking for something to do. When we're running, she's keeping up happily, and obviously loving every minute. (When I took her out to potty this morning, she got super excited when she thought we were gonna go running again and tried to immediately go to the car. I think she was confused when I didn't let her in.)
This is her favorite thing to do in the house, really. As long as she's in the same room as us, she is content.
  • She's perfectly calm around our cat. Not that Whiskey has made many appearances since Tuesday... but she will slink around the edges of the room, and come up to investigate the new addition. Usually the dog ignores her, but one time there was a bit of a chasing incident (they are, after all, cats and dogs) so we're just keeping the dog on the leash in the house for the time being.
There's just a few things I'm worried about right now, mostly regarding her getting settled. She's still not eating much, if anything. She had a whole 2 cups of food after I left for work last night, which was an amazing accomplishment for her. She's not interested in any treats but chicken and Natural Balance dog rolls, rarely drinks, and won't play with any of her toys. I'm attributing it to nerves from being in a new situation, and hoping it goes away.

We're pretty sure she has separation anxiety as well. She follows us everywhere around the house (and outside, for that matter), and doesn't want to go out into our fenced backyard without us. We have to force her out if she does, and then she just sits by the door. Her first night home she was perfectly quiet in her crate alone in the basement, but the second night we brought her crate into our room when she started whining and I started stressing, and last night Brit kept her in there in case she needed to go out after actually eating something for the first time. In fact, we've really never had to leave her alone. Brit's home while I'm at work, and while he's at school, I take the dog running with my friend in Orem. It's nice that we can spend so much time with her, but we really need to start putting her by herself for a few minutes at a time so she gets used to it!

She still doesn't have a name (obviously, as I've been calling her The Dog this whole time). Our current top contenders are Chess, or River. Bodi was recently eliminated because I seem to be the only one who likes it, but I think it fits her best. Bella also fits her well, but I worry that people will get the wrong idea. Any suggestions? I'm going to put up a poll in the sidebar. Vote on my dog's name!

I love my puppy!!!


Kristina P. said...

She's so cute! We would love to get a dog. First we need to get a house with a yard.

I really like the name Chess.

Que and Brittany are Adopting! said...

Oooooohhhh! I love her- she is CUTE!

Julianne said...

Well, congratulations on the newest addition to the family. We don't really want a dog, but if we ever do get one, it will be a pound dog. Definitely.

Did they give you any other history on her? Maybe that would tell you why she has separation anxiety...but it can't be very comforting for any dog to be in a kennel all day, and then the lights turned off at night with no human interaction all night long. Poor thing.

I think I prefer Chess as the name. If my opinion counts for anything.

And, YEAH for a running companion! That means that you're still running...are the shoes much better now?

Bekah and Kyle said...

Congratulations on your new addition!! She's a beauty!! :-) I wish we lived closer so we could have a doggy play date!

Kari said...

Jen! She is super cute! I vote Bella... just because I like the name.

Mary said...

She is sooooo cute!!! I voted for Bella too, just because she seems like such a sweet girl :o)
Congrats on the new addition!

heather said...

Yay you guys that's awesome!! I'm so happy you found a dog!! She seems to fit in just right! As for the name ... I'll think about it and definitely cast a vote! :)