Saturday, January 14, 2012

Year 1, Part 1

We are approaching Thumper's first Gotcha Day.  Since this blog is supposed to be about the life of rescue dogs, I've decided to dedicate the next few posts to our first year with Thumper.  You'll read his story - how he came to us, the challenges he brought, and how we made it through Year 1 with Thumper.

Here we go.....

The first time I saw the dog we would name Thumper, I was walking out of Petsmart with Lightning.  We had stopped there to buy training treats for agility class.  I usually went to Petsmart only when it wasn't adoption day, but this day, I screwed up.  As I was walking out, volunteers were walking in with their foster dogs.  

I'm a sucker for dogs.  Any dog, but especially those in need.  I know this about myself, and I was determined that my next dog would be a full blooded Border Collie, so I could pursue my dream of competing in dog agility.  My husband, on the other hand, was determined that our next dog would be a Golden Retriever, so he would have a big furry lovable affection obedient teddy bear again.  Another dog of questionable parentage was not in the plan (Lightning's mixed breed weirdness is still vivid in both our memories...but that's a different blog entry entirely).  Keeping all this in mind, I was trying to get out of there before seeing the poor animals.  

It didn't work.  I was almost out the door when one dog caught my eye.  He was walked in by his foster dad.  He walked very well on a leash.  He was a about a 50 lb dog but he looked young, like an overgrown puppy.  He walked with downcast eyes and would only hesitantly look around him.  I stopped and watched.  The escort walked the dog in and placed him in a crate.  The dog sat down.  He wasn't looking around like most of the other dogs were, but he didn't show signs of stress either.  No panting, whining, cowering, or pawing at the cage.  He just sat there.  I walked over to look closer.  I talked to him and tried to pet him through the cage.  He was very reserved and was hesitant to look at me or in any way respond.  But Lightning was there, and they sniffed noses.  He was friendlier with dogs than with people.  He looked a lot like a Golden Retriever, but he was very skinny, and his coat and skin was not in the best of condition, so it was really hard to tell.  Regardless of breed, this dog was getting to me.     

I was not about to impulsively adopt this dog.  Especially since my hubby and I each had different pure-bred plans for our next dog.  I did note the rescue organization's name and got their phone number.  Then Lightning and I left and went about our day.

I told my husband about the dog.  That dog weighed on my mind all day that day.  And the next day.  And the next.  Eventually my husband called the agency and found out about the dog (without me knowing, of course).  He had been found before Christmas, wandering around with another dog.  The dog's owner hadn't come forward in the month since he had been found.  He was underweight but generally healthy and had just been neutered.  He was housebroken and kennel trained.  He was possibly a Golden Retriever.  The hubby was sold and set up an appointment to see him (without me knowing, of course).  We were going that night, after he got off work.  I'm not clairvoyant, but I could have told you when I got that phone call:  We were adopting a dog that night.    

NEXT INSTALLMENT:  Our First REAL Meeting and Pictures



  1. What a great start to Thumpers story!

  2. I can't wait for the next instalment!

  3. Hi Y'all!

    What a sweet and wonderful story! We'll be back; can't wait!

    Y'all come by now,
    Hawk aka BrownDog

  4. Part 1 is beautiful. Looking forward to the rest of the story.

  5. Some souls just grab your heart strings and you can't get them out of your mind. It sounds like you and Thumper were destined to cross each other's path. We are anxiously waiting for part 2.

    Nina, Msyhks, Sasha, Betsy, Lucy, Phoebe and Lily