Yes, beware of the cabin fever setting in with this cold weather. Imagine being stuck inside a small two bedroom house with seven dogs. Yikes! Hard to imagine, but I am living the life here.
All my dogs love to prowl around outside. Every morning we go for our potty walk around the yard. Little Patrick just waits for this morning ritual. I clean up poop piles while the dogs sniff around to see what has gone through the yard at night. Don’t think anything is traveling through the yard in this cold, and I do not do well on the potty walk with my two legs and arthritic knee, so our walks have been short. The dogs don’t really want to stay out in the cold anyway. One bright side of this, the poop piles sit nicely on the top of the crusty snow for easy clean up! Of course, some require chipping loose.
So back inside we come to get warm. The dogs run to the fireplace to warm up, but after awhile they are antsy to be doing something. Keeping them entertained is not an easy task, and they follow me from room to room. Since I too am suffering from cabin fever, this does get annoying at times.
Then the dogs decide to play amongst themselves. Well, that always seems to get noisy and rowdy. Then someone gets angry and it becomes growly, so I must put a stop to that fun.
Most of my dogs are older, so they do nap a lot, which does help, but they are all healthy and want to go outside. So whoever posted on Facebook the Agenda for the Day, you hit it on the head. Multiply that times seven, and that is my life right now! Why they can’t all go out together is beyond me, but they do not. One or two will go out, come back in and then another one or two will want out. I am trying to figure out if they are just playing me, as I give them a treat each time they come in. Do you think they have discussed this amongst themselves and decided if everyone goes out separately, they can acquire more treats from mom? Personally, I think they did.
As I deal with my animals not wanting to stay outside in this weather, I often worry about those that have no choice. They have been left outside by their owners or have no home to go to. That really hurts me to think about, so I am happy as I watch my dogs come back in the house for their treats. At least they can get in out of the cold.
So let me tell you about my dogs. First there is Daisy, a beagle doxie mix. She just turned 13 years old at the end of January. I have had her since she was 8 weeks old. She has been a feisty little trouble maker since day one. It has been 13 years, and I still do not want to take in another puppy. Adult dogs only for me. Daisy is the love of my life, but has become grumpy in her old age. I guess just like her mother.
Then there is Dixie, she is around 12 years old. She is actually Daisy’s dog as I wanted a playmate for Daisy when she was still young. Dixie is a rescue dog that I adopted. She was maybe 4-6 months old when I brought her home. The people said a beagle mix, but I think not. The people also told me she had kennel cough, but when I took her to the vet, they said Parvo. Dixie had to go into quarantine, and they had to sterilize the office. Thank goodness Dixie was older and healthy. She made it through with no problems. She has been healthy and a wonderful friend ever since.
Now comes Patrick. Patrick was left tied to a truck cap with no food or water. He was left with a girl by her brother, and she was angry because he quit bringing food, so she quit feeding him. Oh people, do we ever consider that this is a living loving being? I am thankful for some friends that took him away from there. In my eyes, Patrick was a lab mix boy, and I was going to find him a new home. I took Patrick to the vet, and she says “Oh—a pit bull” Well, that was almost 10 years ago, and what did I know about pit bulls back then. I knew I was afraid of them. Because Patrick is a mix, and not real muscular, he really does not look too much like a pit bull, but I felt that I could not find him a new home since he was a pit bull mix. So Patrick ended up staying with me. I tell you, he is the sweetest dang dog. If I knew then what I know now, I would have gladly let him go to any family.
So here I was with my three dogs. I already thought that three dogs was just too many. Two is all anyone should have as house pets. Boy did things change in my life.
I then moved out of a housing development onto 5 acres of property.
Once again I started thinking Daisy needed a playmate her size since Dixie grew into a 44 lb girl and she and Patrick had each other to run and play with. I can confirm; be careful what you wish for. I did search around on Petfinder for a bit for a small, 13” beagle-ish dog, but decided, three dogs was definitely enough. Well, go figure, someone had a young beagle tied to her porch with a note that read “My name is Copper. Please take care of me or I will be shot.” These people did take Copper in but he was a high energy little guy. When he chewed the wires to the husband’s computer, he said Copper had to go. He was on his way to the dog pound, so I said ok. He could come here. I have to say that Copper has lived up to his reputation. He is loud, he is energetic, and he is nosey. He was such a handful, I felt no one else would put up with his antics, so yep, Copper stayed here. Now that was around 7 years ago, and he has not mellowed much with age.
A few years go by, and I became connected with Rose’s Rescue. Probably not the smartest move to start fostering dogs, but for a few years, all went quite well. If Patrick and Copper had come to me while I was with the rescue group, I would have put them up for adoption, but by this time, they were part of my family.
Hanging out with people that have lots of dogs, and rescue dogs, taking in one more little dog seemed ok, so along came Shiloh. Shiloh was a senior beagle mix at the dog pound. He was rescued by some ladies, but they could not keep him. He looked so much like my little Daisy, I just had to take him in. I have never regretted taking him in. My only regret is I do not have more room to take in senior dogs. They are just so special. Shiloh is now around 14 years old.
Happily, we fostered dogs for Rose’s Rescue. My dogs were all so good with me bringing in new dogs. Copper would get a little depressed when they would get adopted as he was always the one that would play with them. Dogs of various shapes, sizes, and ages passed through our home.
Then came Little Patrick. Yep, what are the chances I would end up with a foster dog named Patrick? So he is designated Little Patrick and I just call him Little. Little Patrick was a 6 year old Corgi mix dumped at the dog pound by his owners. He had some injury to his hind quarters and he had heart worm. Rose’s Rescue took him in, got the heart worm taken care of, and he actually was adopted. But I got a call one morning at 4:00 am from the family. Their son was in a very bad car accident. They had to go to Virginia. They needed someone to take Patrick. So Little Patrick came here. Little Patrick is cute as can be, but he is a special needs dog. He did get adopted a second time, but was returned again, so now he resides with me. Little Patrick used to be a sweet timid little guy that never left my side. Now after a year here with me, he is a spoiled little guy that thinks he can do as he pleases. It is good to see him prowl around outside with the other dogs. He actually runs, something he did not do before, so I know he is feeling good.
And so comes Star. Oh, Sweet Star. She spent so many months in the dog pound. She was going kennel crazy. She is a hound mix and loves to be outside. Her problem is, she does not get along well with other dogs. People meet her and fall in love with her, but most have other dogs. Star does get along with my dogs now, but it did not start out that way. I was just determined. She would have had to go back to the dog pound if I could not handle her. I know she would not have made it out of there alive.
Star is still up for adoption with Rose’s Rescue, but she needs a special home, so until the right home comes along, she waits. With people, Star is a love. I have taken her to meet senior citizens and people with disabilities and she is a wonder. Take her to meet a new dog, and she reacts quite differently. She just so needs people of her own. I am praying there is someone out there for her soon. She deserves so much more.
So there are my seven dogs! Angels – they are not. Lovers – they are. They have pretty much taken over my life, but I decided when I took them in, I would stand by them to the end. On these cold winter days, I watch them go in and out, tussle with each other in the living room, follow me from room to room. I do love them all very much. I do not recommend to anyone having seven dogs, but it certainly has made my life interesting. I am sure the neighbors think I am nuts, but who cares. I know they have all come into my life for a reason and seven has always been my lucky number, so why fight it?
I do have to admit, the one thing that truly does my heart good and puts a smile on my face is to watch my dogs run and play in the yard. I am thankful I have a yard big enough for them to run. I just watch them run and I smile. Life is good when I see them happy and being just dogs!
If you are interested in adopting, fostering, donating, or volunteering , please contact Rose’s Rescue! They have plenty of opportunities for you to get involved, not all of which require full time commitments!