Sunday, September 30, 2012

Introducing Dottie Braun!

Regular readers of the blog know that a week and a half ago the Braun family lost it's beloved "Big Dog" Snuggles after fourteen years of sweet, loyal, goofy companionship.  After debating whether or not it was appropriate to get another dog, a wise financial decision to add another pet, and if we were all emotionally ready to bring a new personality into the mix, Ling our fourteen-year-old Chow/Fox mix made the decision for us.

Since Snuggles' passing Ling had been moping around.  She had been the alpha dog in a pack of four dogs for most of her life and in the last year the other three members of the pack, Maggie, Odie and of course, Snuggles had passed on.  So poor Ling just seemed to be a little lost.  She clearly needed someone to boss around and impart her sage canine wisdom to.  Also, it just seemed a fitting tribute to Snuggles, who had been a rescued dog, to give another little shelter dog a home.

My initial reaction was to look up the animal shelter in our home county of Mariposa, which is the most rural county in our fair state of California, and adopt a dog that would love life on a 100 acre spread with other dogs and cats to play with and a steady stream of visitors who would gladly give him or her a belly rub.  So I typed in the url for the animal shelter to view the animals currently awaiting adoption.  There was just one...a rooster.  Okay, so much for that idea.  And by the way, who abandons a rooster?

The school year was starting so I had to head back down the mountain to Los Angeles for the work week.  A couple of days later I got an e-mail from my mom who had been looking at the shelter animals in neighboring Merced County and came across this little face:


Her name was Dottie...which was my Grandma Dorothy's nickname. It seemed like a sign.  And she kind of looked like my Grandma Dorothy's dog Tiny Tim who she had back in the 1920s in Chicago.

I am not sure why Tiny Time looks like he only
has three legs in this photo...I was assured he
had all four.  

I called from LA, Mom called from up at the ranch and after a few days we heard back from the volunteer at the shelter, Wendy, who told us she was still available, had been born to a Chihuahua mom and a Miniature Doberman Pincher dad at the shelter and all of her family had already been adopted.  They were hoping to find her a home before winter because she is so tiny and gets cold so easily that she needs a forever home with a fireplace and nice people who will make her sweaters.  We said that we could do that.  

The next morning my Mom called me on my way to work at the university and said that they had gotten her and that she didn't quite look like the puppy in the picture anymore...she said to think more along the lines of Dobby the house elf from the Harry Potter movies.  


So far Dottie has been a member of the Braun family for about four days and has settled into a routine of sleeping under the covers in the bed, trying to engage Harriett the cat to play with her, running up and down the driveway to the house and jumping onto my Dad's face when he is sleeping and engaging in a licks and kisses-attack.  

Regal, no?

She weighs about eight pounds, has a rat tail, bat ears, little deer feet and the nose of a chocolate lab.  As mentioned previously, she is a Chihuahua and Miniature Doberman Pincher mix, or as my friend Chase has said, she's a Chipincher.  

So far she seems to be fitting in quite nicely and Ling is attempting to teach her everything she knows...except how to take baths.  That hasn't quite been communicated yet...but it's a work in progress.

My mom is giving Dottie a thorough ear cleaning.

She looks strangely like a hippo to me here.

Now she is channeling her inner seal.

Dottie is just the sweetest, kindest, most trusting little doglet you could ask for which can only be a credit to the volunteers at the Merced County Animal Shelter.  They foster the animals and provide them with love and safe place to live until they can find "forever" homes.  I would strongly encourage anyone out there who might stumble across this blog post to check them out and consider getting your next four-legged family member from the good people at the Merced SPCA.

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