Wednesday, August 23, 2006

A flashback

I've been cleaning up e-mails and old stuff on my old computer. I came across a copy of a message board post I made in April of 2004, when SEGA was looking for stories about adopting "bounces"--dogs that get turned in to the kennel after a brief time in an adopter's home:
I never had dogs growing up. I thought long and hard about adopting a dog and was trying to figure out what breed would fit in well with my lifestyle. My neighbor has an Australian shepherd so one thing I knew for certain was that I didn't want a dog that "needed a job."

Then I saw the Animal Planet episode about the greyhound named "Go." (It's the episode with Maggie McCurry.) I started reading up about greyhounds and decided that was the breed for me.

I didn't know of any adoption groups in the Atlanta area, but I got one of those "Clipper" flyers in the mail. At the top of one page was an ad for electric fences. The bottom half of the page was an ad for Adopt-A-Greyhound Atlanta. So I called Carl and made an appointment.

When I got there, there were two females I was looking at. (Too many of the others were barking--a no-no for a condo-dwelling dog!) One was a light fawn named Calypso Pretty, the other was a black 4-year-old named Oreo--a bounce. Oreo's coat was still in good shape, and the idea of a dog that already was used to a home appealed to me as a first-time dog-owner. So Oreo won me mostly on her looks, and partly because I figured the behavioral kinks were already worked out. (It doesn't seem to have occurred to me that she might have been returned because of a problem that I should be worried about. The story was that she was owned by an older couple whose son looked after her, then the son moved out of state and the couple couldn't cope.)

Oreo has turned out to be a prima donna. And a mama's girl. And a delight, with smiles and helicopter-tail-wags for her favorite people.

In looking for a group that had activities I could take Oreo to, I found SEGA. And because Oreo was so well-behaved at home from the beginning, she gave me the confidence to take on fosters who hadn't lived in a home. And because Oreo was so easy to handle--and most of the fosters were, too--I didn't hesitate to adopt a second dog. (See, Oreo? It's your own fault that you've got to share with Sam.)

These days, Oreo is too often in diva-mode, and isn't well-behaved around other females; this means she's missing some outings that Sam gets to go on. But she still meets us eagerly (even frantically) at the door ("Where have you been? Do you know how worried I was, relying on *him* to protect you?"). She wakes me in the morning with kisses if she thinks I'm sleeping too late. When she wakes up from a nap, she comes over and lays her head in my lap for kisses and cuddles (which she just did while I was typing this message).

The people that let Oreo get away don't know what a gem they lost. But I do. And finders, keepers...

...losers, weepers.

No comments: