The Phoenix Files: My Little Buddy

The Phoenix Files
My Little Buddy

As you may recall my telling you, my best friend (and human companion) works at the Humane Society. Just this week, a colleague asked her for some assistance in finding a new addition for their happy home. Currently, they have two cats and a dog.
Their dog is, I'm told, an Airdale/Rotti mix--probably about my size and she's about two years old. (Sounds really cute if you ask me! Just my type.) Anyway, my friend was so impressed by their approach to finding the perfect match. They really know their dog and have given this decision a lot of thought. Everyone's on board and it's definitely a family matter. Just the way it should be.
They say she (their dog) doesn't like dogs taller than she is. And, she prefers the company of males. They also readily admit that she would probably drive a mature dog crazy because she still has plenty of puppy in her. So, they're thinking a male dog (similar in personality to myself) in the 2-3 year range would be good--one that is not too small but also not too big--and the best part about is they want a shelter dog. Not a purebred, not a product of a puppy mill, not a pedigree with papers...but a dog like me. A mutt, to put it simply.
So, they have filled out a 'wish list,' completed an adoption questionnaire, met with an adoption counselor, had their application approved and will now just wait for the perfect match to come through the doors. It may take several visits until they find just the right addition to their home. They also have two children so it's really important that they select a dog that won't be too much for them to handle--or vice versa. With each visit to the shelter, they'll bring the kids and that cute Rotti minx I've been hearing so much about. Introducing a new dog to 'old' dog to ensure their compatibility is just as important as any other family introduction, maybe more so. But take it from me, a new addition can be a lot of fun.
Take my house for example. About three months ago, we welcomed another four-legged companion into our home. Just a smidgeon over a year old, this little guy is full of energy. In fact, one might say, (and I do), he's a little on the hyper side. But that's OK. I remember being that age.
But you know what, as the 'alpha male,' I must admit that I make quite a role model. New dogs tend to pick up on the traits and habits of the old dog (or 'established dog' as I like to say).
So here's me. I certainly don't mess in the house. I know my place and don't jump up on furniture. I don't beg. I don't steal. I clean my plate and am always at the ready with a well-timed bark to alert my family to the presence of a stranger on our doorstep. And now, this little guy does the same thing.
In fact, while I mean no disrespect to my canine cousins, he is actually quite the copy CAT. I fetch a stick; he gnaws on a twig. I drink from a little puddle of fresh rainwater and he does the same. The little guy really does look up to me--both literally and figuratively. It's like having a mini me!
And while I must admit that he was a bit of a pest initially and I was a tad worried that this new guy would somehow come between me and my best friend, it has actually worked out quite well. We go for more walks now (I think in part because the little guy doesn't have the impeccable blatter control that comes with age and size). I get little tastes of delectable puppy chow every now and then when I can sneak a mouthful and most importantly, I have a friend during the day. We chew on rawhide together, we play tug of war together, we keep an eye on happenings in the neighborhood together from our sentry posts at the windows, we nap together, and race to the door the minute we hear any member of our human family making their way home.
Life is good.

The Humane Society of Washington County exists to improve the quality of life for abused, neglected, and unwanted animals. 13011 Maugansville Road, Hagerstown, MD. 301-733-2060.