A Puppy Named Leo

Leo – Born 12/10/2018
Leo 4 weeks old

Oh…my…gosh! Just look at that face:)

This is Leo, an adorable Pitt bull we chose to rescue. We like the breed. When raised right they are no more harmful than any other breed. Unfortunately for Leo, his owner refused to keep him with his mom longer than three weeks, so I’m his new mom, and believe me, raising this infant pup is entirely new territory for me.

Born on December 10, 2018, Leo weighed in at 3.5 lbs when we brought him home at 3 weeks-old. Today is January 17, 2019, and as Leo moves into 6 weeks-old, he weighs 8.8 lbs. That’s a lot of formula and TLC.

Leo is thriving. He is a hearty little guy who has the needle sharp teeth of an alligator. His whole world, in fact, consists of teeth first exploration, which sometimes occurs in the dark, early morning hours. Truly a test of patience and stamina. Unless you’ve experienced yourself, I can’t tell you how much it hurts to have a puppy clamp down on one’s hand and then rag it back and forth. Yikes!

Presently, it’s a little embarrassing to have visitors stop in because our floors look like a puppy pad crossword puzzle. I also told my husband, since it’s hard to watch Leo every moment, we may consider finally buying new furniture after a year of puppy teething. Honestly, we were thinking of eventually purchasing new furniture anyway, so this just expedites the matter.

We have 3 other dogs: Buddy is a 13 year-old American Pitt bull; Gizmo is a 7 year-old Yorkie-Poodle mix — we’re thinking the poodle was NOT a miniature, and Mia is a 5-ish year-old Labrador/German Shepherd mix. Each has their own unique rescue story, but none at the moment are loving Leo. Not yet. Seriously, who wants to be chewed on?

As it is, Gizmo’s tail is low to the ground so I have to look out for him — often having to catch up with him to disengage those pesky teeth that so far seems only to connect with Gizmo’s long fur there.

Buddy aims for higher ground. When trouble looms, he hops up on my bed or on the sofa, depending where I am. (My office is in my bedroom).

It may be maternal instinct, but Mia gets closest of all and sniffs Leo. She even runs to see what’s going on if the pup yelps for any reason, but she won’t let him touch her without a low warning growl. Sometimes she stands a few feet away with a stern stare as if sensing his imminent approach, which he must clearly understand because with that look he changes his mind and turns his attention elsewhere. It’s fascinating to observe, and I’m hoping Mia will be the one to teach him good manners among the pack.

As for the guy who got rid of 8 puppies as fast as he could, after irresponsibly letting his female dog have 32 puppies in 2018, he gave her up, too, and the new owner has already got her spayed. Hallelujah!

Leo at 10 months old

A Horse named Jack Daniels

Jack Daniels – May 9, 2018

Today’s not a great day. Not for me, anyway. Soon the Veterinarian will arrive and assist the last of my horses to a better place where there is no more pain and suffering.

Sending my animals off to heaven is one of the hardest things I have to do. If it wasn’t, I’d have no business bringing them into my life. But I’m glad to have known every one of the many I have loved and cared for over the years, and I’m honored to have been loved by them — always heart-broken to let them go.

Today Jack Daniels and I spent the early morning hours together beneath the trees. He’s almost 30-years-old and suffers from arthritis that came from working hard on a ranch for most of his life. When they were finished with him, I was lucky to adopt him and we meandered many easy trails together for the next twelve years. His last year was spent with no demands but to be a horse hanging out and grazing among other senior horses who loved his company. I’m glad I could give him that.

Farewell, sweet boy.

Jack Daniels