Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The Runt

There have been several break-ins in our neighborhood. Such a sad thing. We heard that folks with "big dogs" aren't being hit though. This got Eric and I thinking about the possibility of adding a pup to our pack. Our Akita/Husky, Kilo, has made it very clear that she isn't okay with another grown dog joining our pack--she's too aggressive to them. But a puppy...she can train a puppy who's boss from the beginning. I started watching Craig's List for possibilities. A dog that wouldn't get too big, but would be big enough to intimidate would-be intruders.

On Saturday I thought we had found the perfect puppy possibility! Beautiful big fluffy balls of part-shepherd/part-lab were staring back at me from my computer screen. Score! PERFECT! We call the owners and they say they have one left--a little girl that was the most docile of the group. Off Eric and I went to check out our potential puppy.

We get to the other side of town and see these folks sitting outside. They are holding this little guinea-pig size scrawny puppy. I figured they must have more than one litter. Nope. Turns out that someone had just come and adopted the little girl we came to see. But this guy....this guy was the runt. Whew, no kidding about that! They hadn't told us about him, figuring we wouldn't have been interested.

We started looking at this red puppy with a bit of brindle, and a few white patches. He's maybe 1 pound. He is 10 weeks old, and not even 1/3 the size of his litter mates. Both mom and pop dogs were on site and are definitely shepherd-mix and lab-mix. How did THIS puppy come from them?! This puppy looks to be at least partially blind...he walks all wonky because he was sat on by a litter mate...he is said to "poop sideways," and he has no bottom teeth at 10 weeks old! How could we say no to that?!

We told the owners we'd take the pup and the mom-owner started crying. She is just a gentle gal who took in this pregnant street dog. She'd loved that puppy for weeks trying to keep it alive, and was glad he would have "a stay at home mom." So funny. She was so happy that she gave us his new pet carrier, all of his toys, puppy pads, and about a month's worth of food.

When we got in the car Eric said he was waiting for me to give him "the signal"--the one that I was to give if I didn't want the puppy, so that he could be the bad guy. LOL! He's such a pathetic little creature (the puppy, not Eric)! He just needs some love and attention, right?! I hope so. He's not exactly going to be the big watch dog we were planning for! I doubt he'll ever intimidate anybody. I wonder if he'll even ever get to be 10 pounds! ??? I'll tell you one thing though...he's completely squirmed himself into my heart.

What's interesting is that the 4 days he's been in our home he seems to be blossoming. He's been held just about 24 hours a day. We've got our own sort of puppy "kangaroo care" going on! Taevy decided to do a "research project" on runt puppies and has created "The Runt Puppy Care Book" for us to follow. =-) In the last four days he's gone from sleeping all the time, to walking short distances. He's eating like a champ. He's starting to play. And he's sprouted 4 teeth on the bottom of his mouth!

We're hoping Jake will make it. With all of his differences, we figure he was definitely meant to be a Gillispie. =-) {pics in the next post}


Heather A. 8:48 PM  

Ok, seriously, it made ME cry when I heard you picked the little, differetly abled runt that noone else wanted. Had it BEEN my puppy that I'd have nursed along. . . . You're lucky you got out of there intact!

Robin Dodd Photography 10:48 PM  


mommajeane 7:24 AM  

I love this story... you sound just like us... your husband is just like mine with a soft heart. I guess that is why we have been able to adopt so many children.

A. Gillispie 8:29 PM  

Heather, you are such a softy! Jeane, thanks for the comment! Your family's testimony really blesses me!

We went to the vet for "little man" today. She said his eyes actually look okay (yea!). He has tape worms so we took care of that. He's going bald and we aren't sure why, but there were no living things in the flaking skin (whew). The doc thinks he's probably got brain damage and may never be able to run around like other dogs, but we can deal with that. She said he might be about 15 pounds.

We had to go to wal-mart right after the vet--no time to drop the pup off at home--so I put him in my (not very big) purse! Nobody even noticed him in there. =-)