Now and then someone will ask me, how did you learn so much about dogs? What I want to say is, I hardly know anything, I’m just an amateur. But I don’t want to discourage the questioner. So instead I tell them I ask a lot of questions of people who own or work with dogs and do lots of googling. In addition, I try to keep an open mind. Our ideas about dogs – how their minds work, how best to train and care for them, keep them happy and content – continue to change so it’s important to keep reading and listening. Some ideas and methods developed from them are best forgotten.* As in all areas of my life, I try to make the best decisions I can with the information I have at the time. When I make mistakes, I try to learn from them and move on. Lingering regret and forgiving myself are what I struggle with the most.
Savannah and her puppies have given me many opportunities to learn. The puppies and Savannah are listed on Petfinder as small dogs. Nearly all my previous fosters have been medium or large dogs. As a result, their potential adopters have had different experiences. Instead of having mostly owned Labrador Retrievers and other large and medium sized dogs, the folks visiting Savannah’s puppies have mostly owned small dogs. One visitor noticed Cesar’s bi-color eyes and said that Dachshunds sometimes have that trait. Then another noted all the Merle/dapple coats and said that also was a Dachshund trait:
picture from: http://puppytoob.com/doggy-tips/coat-patterns-dapple-dachschund/
Having never seen a dachshund puppy before, I had no idea the resemblance many of Savannah’s puppies have to that breed.
And then Saturday, a third visitor told me she suspected Savannah was part Wire Haired Dachshund based on her appearance and personality. She described her Dachshund as devoted to her people but aloof to others, mostly indifferent to other dogs and calm for a small dog, not apt to bark or behave anxiously as some do – zen is the term she used. This is just as I would describe Savannah! With this new information, I updated Savannah and her puppies’ Petfinder pages in hopes that Dachshund enthusiasts would find them in searches.
With my trip to Florida and Alana’s vacation, we haven’t yet found homes for all the puppies. Mother Jones, Lucy Parsons and Eugene Debs still need adopters. And of course Savannah needs a home too. I’m not worried as they are all darlings. But new visual material always helps so when I let the puppies outside for a romp today I took some new video.
If this one doesn’t get us a few applications I’m hanging up my hat:
Even though the 70 degree weather days appear to be behind us, I try to let the puppies outside everyday (until the shivering begins). Yesterday’s rain made that impossible. As a result, today they seemed extra energetic:
The puppies aren’t the only ones who enjoy racing around:
The puppies are eight weeks old today. It’s possible that most if not all of them will be adopted and in their new homes by this time next Monday. Fingers crossed everyone.
*An example, based on a flawed study of captive, unrelated wolves, people believed for many years – some still do – that wolf and dog communities are hierarchical , i.e. there alpha wolves/dogs, beta wolves/dogs but studies of wild wolves showed they naturally live in family groupings. This new knowledge completely changed the philosophy of dog training from one of dominance and submission to that of positive behavior.