Saturday, April 28, 2007

Who chose who?

What sort of a question is that I ask? It's quite clear that I found master and mistress on the streets in Spain, and they are now very LUCKY.

There aren't many stray Brits wandering around here that get picked up by a fine (Spanish speaking) dog like me. Oh no.

Mistress still wants to ask. She doesn't really mean "Who chose who?" or if she does, she also means, if you didn't get to choose your humans - why did they choose you?

Simple really, she says.

So here are her examples. (Yawn, it's my blog, it's not fair, off to sulk. I would rather write about lying in the sun, or on the sofa, or under the table. Or.....CATS!!)

Dog number one. Ben. Adopted/rescued so many years ago that mistress is not prepared to confess. A black Labrador puppy from a Blue Cross Home in the UK.

Mistress had come from a doggy home (Boxers and a Rhodesian Ridgeback). Not a cat home though. Master came from a doggy home too. Small mongrels. And some cats. Hmmmm. Yummmmmm. I don't mean they lived in dog rescue homes, I mean they grew up with dogs.

Apparently this Ben actually had pedigree papers. He and his sister were the runts of the litter, so they got discarded - that's what master and mistress were told. But they could get the pedigree papers if they gave a larger donation to the shelter.

I don't think they knew what they were looking for. A dog, preferably a puppy to give a home to. They weren't into showing dogs so the papers didn't matter. There were some nice tiny puppy Dobermans or Rottweilers at the kennels too but they were too young to leave, and master and mistress wanted to take a dog home with them.

So they took Ben. The kennels people wanted them to take his sister. These days they would have done, but it was their first dog together and they thought best to start with one. (Not necessarily true.....) And master thought the dog was a nice assertive puppy. In fact these days they would actually go for older dogs because no-one ever wants them. They just don't look so cute.....

I guess they were part-way down the rescue road. Mistress so wanted a rescue dog, but had been used to big pedigree dogs. So in the end getting a pedigree albeit without papers was probably similar to going to a breed-specific rescue society.

Next dog. Paddy. The one dog who always listened to mistress and not master. Not that mistress was going to take him. For some reason they had decided another companion was in order, so they went up to the local rescue shelter (master and mistress had moved house and area by then) which was pretty grotty.

Mistress saw this cute little puppy lying at the back of one of the kennels with big eyes. "No, we're not having that one," said master. "We'll have this nice barky one here. He so wants to leave these horrid kennels."

Mistress looked at him. He was pretty mis-shapen. (The dog, not master, although.....) He was barking a lot. Anyway - she was still being a bit pretentious - he was black like the labrador. So they would look cool together. And he looked slightly like a labrador. In fact on his papers he was a labrador cross. Either crossed with a setter, or possibly a cocker spaniel. He was six months old or so, and he was apparently an ok dog, but his owners didn't want him. They never do.

He was called Ludo. Mistress didn't think that suited him. She was convinced he was part Irish setter cross because he had beautiful feathers on the back of his legs (she had always wanted a setter, along with every other dog in the world). He had red bits on his chest (they went very white many years later). So they called him Paddy (Irish setter - yes?). Although she did think later they should have called him Rags, or Ragamuffin, or Bag of Rags. The right names always come later.

And then there was Prince. Another house move, another rescue centre - this time in a city. There were at least two in the same city in fact, and master and mistress went to both of them. Absolutely full of unwanted dogs - bursting at the seams. Big dogs, little dogs, puppies. You name it. And people going there on a Sunday afternoon for a wander round with their children to look at the nice doggies (not to home them - just to look at the nice doggies in cages). Mistress came away from the second one in tears.

They went back to the first one. Master had always fancied a German Shepherd, (and there were lots), but they obviously needed one who was able to get on with other dogs. They still had Ben and Paddy, who were ageing happily and not barking quite as much.

When they walked into the kennels, Prince barked LOUDLY. They walked all the way round and he barked again. And then they left. But they ended up with him - because he was another barky dog who said "PICK ME - please?". I think there was a bit of desperation in that bark and I will write Prince's story later 'cos we were good pals.

Oh, for the record - Ben reached nine or ten, Paddy was 15 or 16, and Prince died last year aged around 13. I think.

So. Mistress is trying to make my blog serious, and it is meant to be about sunshine, and Spain, and strawberries (and a little bit about cats).

To those of you humans who have not been found by your dogs (like I found mine!!), what made you choose your dogs? Did they bark a lot (like Paddy and Prince)? Did you go for a breed within a rescue home (like Ben and Prince) or just a funny dog like Paddy?

Or did you get your dogs from a breed-specific rescue centre?

If you buy from a breeder, and you have read all the way down this rescued dog saga (which I would be surprised about) - what do you choose and why?

And finally - if you have ever rescued a dog and then decide to buy one - why do you do that?

I think mistress needs to lighten up and go grab a glass of wine on pawty weekend. But hey, we'd both be interested in any responses. Ruff, Pipps and Serious Mistress. (Master definitely needs to come back soon!!!!)


macgoogle said...

Hi Pippa and Kate,
Nice to chat with you briefly at the pawty. Maybe we will catch up again soon. The reason my hoomans chose me had nothing to do with them, really. They wanted a guard dog and a loving companion and they wanted to rescue a dog in need. I chose them because from the look of the Dad, I could tell he was going to be a great Dad and lots of fun (he's a bit crazy - I love it) and from the look of the Mum, she was going to cave in easily and give me treats (he he he) but overall I could see that I would be so loved if I went with them. And I am. I LOOOOOVE MY HOOMANS!

Love and Licks,
Texas (and his humans).

Dachsies Rule said...


Mom started by getting Roxie from a breeder because that was all she knew. Aunt Bec heard about Dachshund Rescue so Mom went there and got Sammy. She started fostering and she got Andy and ended up adopting him. She picked Roxie because she had dark eyes and nose. She picked Sammy because his coat is dark red. She says she was just blessed to get Andy.

Megan said...

We've never had a dog from a breeder (yet). At least not as adults, both of us had family dogs that were pedigrees when we were kids.

I just can't bring myself to buy a pup from a breeder when there are so many unwanted dogs out there.

All of ours have kind of ended up here by (happy) accident.

I guess mostly we chose them, but they did have say in the matter!