puppy mills

Nikki and Winston, the Pit Bull and Shiba-Enu Rescues (She Said, Part 5)

IMG_8994

“It’s a big decision.

Also, Winston was dying of pneumonia when we got him.  The vet said he was 2 days away from death.

I still recommend adopting before shopping, but I learned a lot about puppy mills, pet stores and when you meet a dog that is meant to be yours, it doesn’t matter where it comes from.”

Penny & Parker, the Pomeranians (part 2, she said)

“We got Penny from a pet store and she ended up costing us thousands of dollars in veterinary fees because she was so sick.  She had bad knees and all sorts of medical issues. Her knees cost $5,000.00.

I am grateful we had pet insurance, Petplan, they paid for everything.

Eventually, we decided Penny would be happier with another dog to play with.  We felt it would take some of the pressure off of us to constantly entertain her.

And it did.

She was happy then, but she’s happier now.”

Penny & Parker, the Pomeranians (Part 1, she said)

FullSizeRender

“We were asked to babysit a friend’s Pomeranian and my husband I fell madly in love with him.

His name was Prince and he was a very intelligent and personable dog.  He would look you in the eye and you really felt like he was trying to connect with you.

After that experience we decided we wanted a Pomeranian.

We didn’t know how to go about finding a dog.

We didn’t know about puppy mills and pets stores, and their connection.

We had no idea.”

Lola, the proud and independent Irish Setter (the spouse, part 4)

“That moment was about terror and relief.

We were so relieved to have her back after thinking the worst happened to her.

I have never had a relationship with a dog like I have with Lola.

I think that’s due to age and my time in life.

When I had Shannon I was young, building a career and starting and raising a family.

I am retired now and I spend every day with Lola and my partner.

She reads us, and we her.

We have an emotional understanding and I think it’s from proximity and time.

Your kids grow up and they have their own lives, but with a beloved dog, your time is always in the present.”

Lola, the proud and independent Irish Setter (the spouse said, part 3)

“I was looking for a dog like Shannon.

I found a kennel about 100 miles away from our house in Pennsylvania that had Irish Setters.

We walked into the fenced in puppy area and Lola jumped onto my partner and it was love at first sight.

The worst moment with Lola was during one of my partner’s college reunions at our farm in Pennsylvania.

We let Lola out in the front yard.

As the wine flowed, we forgot that she was out in the yard.

About 2 hours later we looked for her but she was nowhere to be found.

We spent hours searching the land, until we gave up after 4 hours, convinced she was dead.

Around 3 A.M., she just trotted out of the woods, looked at us as if to say, what’s wrong with you, I’m tired and going to bed.”

Lola, the proud and independent Irish Setter, (the spouse, part 2)

fullsizerender-97

“When we ran out of all the breeds he was interested in, I went online to look for Irish Setters, because my most magnificent dog of my entire life was an Irish Setter.

I got him when I went to college in the 1970’s and he went to class with me.

He was my constant companion.

When I was married and my kids came along he would stroll through the park with us and much to my ex-wife’s horror and pride, people would comment on how beautiful my dog was (as opposed to noticing my kids).

That was Shannon, named after Shannon Run Road in Lexington Kentucky.”

Lola, the proud and independent Irish Setter (he said, part 4)

“I always found my dogs before.

Lola was a handful.

The first trainer told us she was proud and independent.

He said, she basically didn’t know we existed.

Eventually, we trained her.

As long as she is not hunting squirrels or rabbits she is a good dog.

The best single moment was after we went away for vacation and came back to her.

She wagged her tail so hard that she fell over.

The one thing we wish for with Lola is that she would be more friendly or playful with other dogs.

But, she is wonderful with people.”

Lola, the proud and independent Irish Setter (he said, part 3)

“Eventually, after looking around online I suggested my spouse look for an Irish Setter.

There weren’t many breeders, but we found one in Lancaster, Pa.

It was a puppy mill of Irish Setters.

Lola stood up on me and made herself known.

We picked her up, and said, we want her.

Then we went into the unpleasant cashier’s office, paid a lot more than we expected to and got out of there.

Lola was my first purebred dog.”

Nikki & Winston (he said, part 2)

IMG_9007

“I had Nikki 2 years and she was queen bee of the house and then the dynamic of the house changed.

I met my girlfriend and Nikki fell in love with her, then I fell in love with her.

And then we got Winston and the family unit became complete (for now).

Winston was an impulse love at first sight dog.  And then he turned out to be a huge pain in the ass.

The first year of his life was difficult.

He was sick with pneumonia.  He was indoors for 5 months, so that stunted our ability to socialize him for a while.

At first Nikki didn’t know what to do with puppy Winston.  She looked at me as if to say, what did you do?

The first year, Nikki was intent on being an only child.

Eventually Winston wore her down and now they are the best of friends.

The best thing is having them both together.  It’s rewarding watching them complement each other.  Nikki has made Winston more affectionate and Winston has made Nikki more playful.

The worst thing is that we travel a lot and there is nothing worse than walking into an empty house.”

Nikki & Winston (she said, part 3)

IMG_8994

“The best moments have been seeing them get close and become best friends.

Nikki is a different dog since getting Winston.  She is more nurturing and social.

Winston is a friendly Shiba She has taught Nikki to play with and trust other dogs.

Winston was a difficult puppy because he couldn’t go outside for months due to his pneumonia.  He wasn’t well enough to get his shots.

He was a vengeful puppy.  He would look us in the eyes and pee on the floor in front of us.

They get into the trash together.

They are partners.

We love them and they are our fur-babies.”