Let Sleeping Dogs Lie

Today we will entertain a question from one of our littlest fans! Her name is Lilly, and she is the most endearing and precocious two-year-old, whose mama runs the touching blog, The Sweeter Side of Mommyhood.

Apparently, Miss Lilly was fascinated by the pictures of our pooches. Her lingering question… where do all of the puppies sleep at night? I realized that perhaps some of our (bigger) readers, might have some of the same questions.

Tonka’s preferred sleeping location

Perhaps we should begin with where our two perma-dogs, Tonka & Gaige, are supposed to sleep… in their Tempur-pedic (yes, don’t judge!) beds at the foot of our own. But, more often than not, I awaken in the middle of the night to two LARGE dogs laying on top of my legs, stomach, head, etc. Until recently, I blamed the two little scoundrels for their disobedience. Little did I know, that Foster Dad (previously Mr. No-Dogs-in-the-House) felt guilty, and was inviting them into the bed! What a sneak sap!

And Gaige’s preferred sleeping position…

As far as Miss Georgia, oftentimes the most obedient of my FOUR (hehe)… we have chosen to have her sleep in her kennel, which is in her own room. This was in an effort to: 1) Keep all three dogs safe when unsupervised overnight, since we haven’t yet completed their introductions

and…

2) Make her more adaptable to most families that might choose to adopt her. While Georgia is used to sleeping on her own, and happy to be in her kennel, I am confident that she would adapt quite well to being allowed to sleep with her people.

My favorite picture of Gia, to date

Thank you to Miss Lilly for the great question… anything else out there that our readers are just dying to know about Miss Georgia, or the rest of the five?!

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend! I would say, full of lots of playtime and walks, but Georgia told me tell you that she hopes your weekend is full of lots of cuddles and naps! I know her’s will be. 😉

{She is cuddled up on the bed beside me, with the cat, as we speak!}

If you think you might know someone who would be interested in adopting our sweet girl Georgia, please share her story! Any questions about Georgia or the adoption process can be directed to me (Stephanie!) at sel1490@gmail.com.

This Old Dog Learns New Tricks

I have to start by saying, thank you SO MUCH to all of you that commented and emailed your advice to us. It is much appreciated! We will be taking all of your tips and suggestions to heart. It is so nice to know that we have many friends and supporters as we face new challenges with fostering. All of us blogging fosters are a little community… know that we are happy to repay the favor anytime you need support!

I try to keep this space very organized and methodical… much like I try to maintain my life! But my world is feeling very topsy-turvy disorganized right about now, so this particular post may be much the same. I apologize in advance!

Gia wrestling with Foster Dad. Her signature move? The Kiss of Death

Have I mentioned lately the fabulousness that is Foster Dad?! He really is the most supportive husband I could ask for… he is my perfect life partner. While I was working yesterday, he was on afternoon doggie walk duty. Which, can be a bit hectic, given that we are still doing some pooch rotating, rather than releasing the hounds all together. Not only that, but while playing with Miss Gia outside, my notoriously terrible multi-tasker was also pooper scooping. For a dog-loving Foster Mama, does it get much hotter than that?! Some of you out there know what I’m talking about… and the rest probably think I’m crazy.

Best friends

Anyways, what may sound like a silly story turned into an opportunity for us to learn more about Georgia girl. As Foster Dad was wielding the shovel with skill, he leaned down to give Gia some lovin’… and she proceeded to melt down onto the ground into a terrified, shivering puddle. 😦 Poor baby. She adores her Foster Dad, at least as much as she does me. They share a special bond, so the fact that with a shovel in hand, she didn’t trust him, made J feel terrible. As soon as the tool was down on the ground, she came back up to him wiggle-waggling, but it just reminded us that you will learn new things about your pup’s past everyday. This is why it is so important to approach their training process with sensitivity and understanding, as well as a willingness to adapt your methods as you learn more about your dog. Every dog is different, every dog’s past is different, and maintaining flexibility in your approach will ensure that you provide your dog with a secure foundation for their future. While we have long ago made the decision to only employ training methods of positive-reinforcement, Georgia still deals with issues from her past that create lingering fear and distrust. We will embrace this knowledge as an opportunity to increase her confidence and security in her relationships with us.

He knows the way to this girl’s heart

Not to get too philosophical here, but isn’t that a great way to approach life in general? Whether two or four-legged, we never know what challenges others have faced or are currently facing. If we kept in mind that everyone has their own battles to fight and insecurities to face, perhaps we would not be so quick to make their paths more difficult. We should all be so busy pursuing the improvement of our own journeys, that we have no time to judge the actions of others. Jonathan and I approach our marriage with the philosophy that if both spouses are consistently putting their partner’s desires first, everyones’ needs are met; but what if we brought that theory to all of the relationships in our lives? We would all feel constantly empowered and embraced. To me, that is what life is all about: doing what I can to improve the happiness and experiences of those around me.

“Let the refining and improving of your own life, keep you so busy that you have little time to criticize others.” — H. Jackson Brown Jr.

{Okay, sorry… end soap box.}

You should all know that our brain-storming idea of sharing one of Georgia’s only flaws, actually may have worked! We have a family that sounds pretty darn ideal who is very interested in our baby doll Gia. Fingers crossed that it works out… so far they seem like a match made in heaven! It would be great to have Georgia in her forever home in time for the holidays. We will keep you posted.

If you think you might know someone who would be interested in adopting our sweet girl Georgia, please share her story! Any questions about Georgia or the adoption process can be directed to me (Stephanie!) at sel1490@gmail.com.

Must Love Dogs

We have all heard the urban legend of the stunningly ideal ‘catch’ of a woman; beauty, brains, compassion, ambition, all in one package (no, I’m not describing myself!) This woman may complain that sometimes she is not approached by men, because they are intimidated by her perfection.

You are pawsitively beautiful.

After talking with Foster Dad, we think that this just might be what is going on with our precious little Georgia girl as she searches for her forever family. The dating world can be daunting, and while she has had a few casual suitors, there have been no potential matches that Foster Dad could entertain for devoted interest. That is to say, they must not have had the purest of intentions with our little lady. Or, maybe it is just that she has so many fabulous qualities, that they assume she will be scooped up by another family?

So, let’s break the illusion; while we know Georgia would make someone a fabulous four-legged family member, she is not perfect! There, we said it. And we would love your help as we improve her obedience training in order to make her even more adoptable!

When Georgia is comfortable in her environment, she is a very relaxed and low-key dog. However, when introduced to new situations or new people, she gets nervous. One way she displays this behavior is by jumping up on people when she meets them. She is full of love and kisses, but a large pit bull jumping up at someone with their mouth wide open is not everyone’s idea of a great first date!

We would like to enroll Georgia in some obedience classes in order to increase her confidence, which we think will go a long way towards helping her with this issue. But, we want to know; what challenges have you faced when training your dogs, foster or otherwise? Maybe you’ve had the same issue, or maybe it is a different one. How did you overcome it? We’d love to hear your thoughts on this issue we are facing with Miss Gia.

 

If you think you might know someone who would be interested in adopting our sweet girl Georgia, please share her story! Any questions about Georgia or the adoption process can be directed to me (Stephanie!) at sel1490@gmail.com.

Georgia: The Ultimate Snugglebuddy

If you have been following our blog for very long at all, it is no secret that Georgia is a pretty low-maintenance dog. She does not have a very high requirement for exercise, and is happy to just follow you around at a leisurely pace, whether inside or out. While she has made a great jogging partner for me, and can be prompted for a rough afternoon romp, she is not a dog that you will need to find time to exercise in order to keep her mellow. Because of that, we think that Georgia would make a great addition to a busy family, or perhaps an animal-loving college student with a full plate.

While we can assure you that in many areas, Georgia is quite content to ‘go with the flow,’ there is one category that is an essential fulfillment; Georgia needs her human to engage in regular cuddle time. See the photographic evidence below…

Settling for a non-human cuddling companion

Don’t worry, no gender discrimination here!

That look of adoration…

I would include more from last night’s cuddle session… but unfortunately I made a horrible wardrobe choice that was not evident to me until reviewing the photos. Apparently my snowflake pajama pants are not as adorable as I had originally thought, and therefore they cannot be internet appropriate… for the sake of my reputation, people. I am dedicated to finding Georgia a home, but there are some things any self-respecting woman just wouldn’t do. So here are a few, sans-snowflakes. (But not sans-pants!)

 

 

 

 

*Please excuse the poor quality of the iPhone photos!*

If you think you might know someone who would be interested in adopting our sweet girl Georgia, please share her story! Any questions about Georgia or the adoption process can be directed to me (Stephanie!) at sel1490@gmail.com.

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: Lions & Tigers & Pitties… Oh my!

“Roarrrr! Do you think they will really believe that I’m a lion, Mom?”

“Hey look! These ears are just like my real ones… always going in two different directions.”

 

“Trick or treat! … You’re laughing at me, aren’t you?”

Single Red Female Seeks Loving Family

Well, it’s only taken us about 24 hours, but we found Georgia’s single flaw. It has us very concerned for her future in these difficult social times… and we just aren’t sure what to do about it.

It became very clear during the presidential debate last night, that our little Georgia peach has very little political interest or ambition. In fact, it could be argued that she doesn’t even care about the outcome of the election! While Foster Dad watched the debates intently, adding his opinion for every point, Georgia did a little bit of this…

And some of this….

and a whole lot of that…

While Foster Dad was a little bit disappointed in her lack of political interest, I loved the fact that she was so eager to relax in our home. She is the type of dog that would be happy to lay at your feet while you watch the evening news, or cuddle on the couch if you are feeling under the weather. Really, what more could you ask for?

Georgia is obviously house-broken. She waits patiently to walk through doors behind you, and knows how to sit, stay, lay down, and come. She waits to eat her meals until she has been given the proper cue. During our dinner last night, she layed patiently on the rug without begging. She walks well on the leash, and will even run alongside you when jogging! Most importantly, Georgia has been friendly with everyone that she has met. Including these two guys, who are so very special to us!

As predicted, Georgia is fabulous with children! She does lots of tail wagging and licking, but is also just as content to lay down beside them while they play. Our nephews enjoyed having her nearby. It was wonderful to see them all so happy together. I think she would do best in a family with some children around their age or perhaps older, that could truly enjoy all that a large dog has to offer.

If you think you might know someone that would be interested in adopting our sweet girl Georgia, please share her story! Any questions about Georgia or the adoption process can be directed to me at sel1490@gmail.com.

Trouble…

Oh folks… we are in BIG trouble. If you in any way have felt the calling to foster a dog, but just aren’t sure the timing is right for you… well then you had better stop reading now. Because Miss Georgia is in the house, and she’s about to show us all how this finding a forever home thing is done!

I picked up Georgia yesterday in the State College area. She snoozed quietly in the back during the entire ride. When we finally arrived, she gracefully explored the outdoor area, and then came inside to do some sniffing around. I took her back to her ‘room’ and she made herself right at home… playing with the toys, lounging on her bed, and sipping from her water bowl.

Foster Dad left work early to come meet our little house guest. I was concerned that she had not been subjected to men much, and might be fearful of him. She instantly put my worries to rest by licking him from head to foot! She became immediately attached to J, following him everywhere and refusing to leave his side. They played and cuddled, and it almost seemed as though I would be losing my foster project! Just kidding, but they really did love each other instantly.

Mid yawn

Tummy rubs are her favorite

Georgia had a brief encounter with our nephew, JJ, yesterday as well. While we did not want to put either of them in a stressful position by introducing her to a pre-schooler on her first day here, from a short distance, it was immediately evident that Miss Georgia has a love for kids. She sat patiently, with a wiggle-waggling tail and booty, while JJ stood nearby. She seemed so sad that she was not allowed to snuggle up to him for some cuddle-time!

Georgia slept quietly through the night in her crate, and seems to be entirely house-broken. She walks well on a leash… although her body size would suggest otherwise, she doesn’t pull much or get overly excited to go outdoors. She seems to have no issues with guarding her food, bed or toys. While she is curious and aware that there are other dogs in the house, she is not overly concerned with their presence. If you recall, we will be doing the two week de-stress period with her, before we introduce her to Tonka & Gaige.

Georgia seems just as happy to snooze the day away as she is to play outside. She really is just the most happy go lucky dog that I’ve met.

Professional napper

We plan to work on some obedience training with her, but Georgia seems to have some of the basics down! Don’t tell her I said this, but she will also be going on a little bit of a diet, to help her be at her best to find a home.

We are realistic in knowing that we will most likely face challenges with Georgia, but have been so impressed with her behavior thus far. She seems like the type of dog that will integrate seamlessly into most any loving home. Someone is going to be SO lucky to have her join their family.

Black Dog Fall

Ahhhhh. I wish you could smell our home through scent receptors on the computer right now. I advise that you RUN to Bath & Body Works and scoop up as many of these candles as you can. My mom gifted one to me this weekend, and it just might be my favorite present ever. Our house reeks of fall, in the most glorious of ways! Autumn is absolutely my most anticipated time of year. Growing up in my family, our holiday philosophy authorizes festivities to start essentially as soon as the calendar month begins with the letter ‘S’. Today is officially October, which means that we’re almost to November, and therefore it’s practically already December. No, I don’t want to rush through these months and start putting up the Christmas tree today. (Um, hello, have any of you been to Wally World recently?! Ridic!) BUT yes, I do cherish every second of these cozy days. I want to jump in a pile of leaves, wear tall boots & flannel shirts, sip hot apple cider, attend fall festivals, carve pumpkins, curl up in front of the fire place with a good book and thick wool blanket… all simultaneously, of course. (By the way, we don’t even have a fireplace. So sad.)

The very BEST way to spend a weekend!

My boys of fall

In true fall fashion, we are adding some color to our world tomorrow! I will be making the trek towards the State College area (PA fall central!) to pick up our little red-headed Georgia doll. We are looking so forward to our adventures with her.

We will spend tonight embarking on a fall walk… our last as a family of four! We plan to have some quality time with our pups tonight, to hopefully make the transition a bit easier for them. Tonka & Gaige will be sacrificing some time with us over the next two weeks, while we keep the dogs separate during Georgia’s transition. However, we hope are confident that this will help to ensure that the evolution to a 3-dog household is a seamless one.

We’d rather be jumping in the leaves too, Mom

Keep us in your thoughts, please! We may need some good vibes sent our way. In the mean time, enjoy all that this season has to offer with your pooches.