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Monday, August 20, 2007

What dog is this? (The Beginning)

As many of you have counseled me, I must concentrate on the good memories so as not to drown in my grief. In times of stillness, my thoughts return to the first time I met Watson. I first saw him on the Beagles of New England States (BONES) rescue web site (pictured here). He seemed very much an elder statesman.... there was something about him that I instantly liked.

Since Rich had never owned a dog before, I requested from BONES that we get an older dog who was more of a couch potato. Watson seemed to fit the bill; so, after passing a home visit and then a phone interview, I spoke with the foster mom. She kindly offered to drive him here so that we could see him in what may be his new home. The meeting was January 19th, 2005.
Judging from the photo, I went to the pet store and got a bunch of dog toys for his visit. When they arrived, we went outside to greet them. What we saw emerge from the car was a skinny, old beagle with some basset mix-in. He was so very mellow and came into the house as if he had always lived here. After some pizza for lunch and alot of crying on her part, his foster mother left a few hours later without him. Watson was home.

Once the excitement subsided, I took a closer look at him. He was an odd duck. He wouldn't sit; his only modes were stand and lay down. (We would later find out that his lack of sitting was due to infected anal sacks - ouch!) He was found wandering the streets with another dog, both showing signs of abuse and neglect. There were scars on his ears from fights with other dogs, as well as permanent partial paralysis on the left side of his face because of too many hits from his right-handed owner.
From the hygiene perspective, Watson's teeth had never seen a toothbrush in 9 or 10 years! He had no interest in any of his new toys due to the condition of his badly rotted teeth. And his coat was matted despite a bath from his foster mom. "What did I get us into??," I asked myself several times that day. But there was still something I really liked about him. I'd have to work with him to teach him how to be a real dog, but at least it would be an adventure.

In the first few weeks, there were some mistakes on his part. He was learning the ropes of eating like a gentleman and learning how to tell us when he had to go out for a wee.
However, when it came to sleeping spots, he would sometimes get confused and would often sleep in the cat's very small cuddle bed (at left). Sparky, our cat at the time, was also very mellow and didn't mind finding a stinky dog in his bed every once in a while.

In fact, as time passed, Sparky and Watson would share a bed. I have many photos of them together in the dog bed. They were like 2 Tetris blocks that were constantly trying to fit together. No matter where I would move that bed, they would follow it like zombies and both try to lay on it at the same time.


Graham & Prince said...

The poor little love - it sounds like he was in a bit of a state when you took him in. He looks damned cute in the Christmas photograph though!

Jasmine, BamBam & Eski said...

these ppl are just irresponsible aren't they! poor little watson - but he's lucky to have met you, Linda.

the picture of him cuddled in Sparky's bed is really cute. and to see them get along well and sleep together is great!

Anonymous said...

Poor Watson. I know there is very little anyone can say or do to make you feel better so soon after saying goodbye to your little buddy. In time, you'll be able to laugh and smile when you think of him.

Graham, Prince & Tilly said...

Hiya Linda, I'm sorry - I didn't mean to pressure you into blogging! Just post as, when and if you feel like it....

Anyway, I hope you're doing OK. It's a terrible time, and I know how lost you might feel at the moment.

Take care,

Graham, Prince & Tilly xxx