This week my pups went from “on hold” to “available for adoption.” Of course, they can’t go home for 2 more weeks, but this is the beginning of the end for me.
The hardest part was writing up a little “blurb” on each for the website. They are all cute. They are all wonderful. They are all the best one. I would keep every single one of them. Truly. But we aren’t running a dog farm, here, despite what the cats tell the neighbors.
How do I write nine different descriptions of these little butterballs I’ve come to love, despite the enormous amounts of poop produced hourly?
Not easy. Because, take Peggy. Is she shy? That makes her sound less attractive. She’s careful, is what I wrote. When the other pups rush me each time I enter their pen, she hangs back. Is she scared, or is she just smart? She knows I will get to her. She knows that after I have greeted all the others who simply can’t wait as she can, I’ll reach for her. And I’ll pick her up and snuggle her under my chin, away from the flailing mob beneath.
What kind of dogs these pups become, will mostly be determined by their adopters. They need love, that’s the easy part, because who doesn’t love a puppy? But they also need careful, consistent training. And boundaries. And good food fed regularly. And plenty of exercise, socialization, snuggles.
Every one of them could be the best dog ever. All it takes is lots and lots and lots of time and intentional training.
Nick petitioned to keep Lafayette – tossing out names like Target, Targette (French pronunciation), Spot, Spanky, the list goes on. He is a great pup. He has a wonderful sense of humor and could easily be voted most popular in the puppy yearbook. I entertained the idea through one bottle of wine on a gorgeous evening, but later decided, that, no, I don’t have time for a puppy. And if I’ve learned anything from my sweet dog, Gracie, it’s that I am not a good puppy trainer. No puppies in my near future. Maybe once the kids are launched (and don’t come back).
So, let me take a shot at differentiating these nine glorious bundles of happy –
First, there is Alexander Hamilton. He is sturdy – wide, strong, solid, chunky. And gorgeous – can’t you just picture him with a barrel under his chin trekking up the mountain? He’s a little suspicious of strangers and tends to let the other puppies charge in first. He is a first-class wrestler, though, and claims his space, toys, and share of the food.
Next, Eliza Hamilton. Now this girl is clever and conniving and ready to take on the world. But first, she would like you to hold her all the time, all day, every day. Why would you want to pay attention to any of those other peasants below? We weighed everybody this week in preparation for the latest round of wormings (Oh yes! Puppies most often come with a side of worms!), and she continues to be the lightest pup – but not the smallest. And certainly not the smallest personality! (that’s her in the center of the pile in the top picture)
After that, you of course will notice Lafayette. He’s easy to pick out. His adorable eye patch and speckled ears will make him a star for the camera. I imagine him in the hands of a skilled trainer booking gigs for not only Target, but Little Rascals remakes. Only half-kidding, here. Great pup – even tempered, sweet, and always seems to be laughing, or maybe I think he’s laughing because he gets the hiccups so often.
Next up, Theodosia. She is the tiniest, but she is mighty. When the pups first arrived, she was clearly the runt. Mom Schulyer only has eight teats and there are nine puppies, so it was easy to figure out who wasn’t getting her share. But once the dog food started happening, she began to fill out and gain energy day by day. And now she doesn’t let her short stature hold her back. When the other puppies crowd her out, she simply jumps on top of them and crowd surfs her way to me. Determined, this one.
Hercules Mulligan is Ian’s favorite and is the spitting image of his mother. He has the same markings – white slash on the back of his neck, white bib, white mittens on each paw. He is the largest puppy, too, with fur that is soft and fluffy, a little longer than the rest. He’s a solid guy – holds his own, but is never pushy. And wow, those eyes – he’s a heartbreaker, for sure.
John Laurens is the fourth boy in the bunch. He’s all black except a faint sliver of white running up his chest. He loves me most. Even when the other puppies have given up and realize I’ve not come in the room to see them, but to water the plants and tinker with new seeds (my baby plant operation shares the room), he does not waver. He holds his post, watching my every move, waiting for me to cave. Which I always do. He’s a wonderful teddy bear and gives the best snuggles. He will make a great best friend.
Who’s left? Oh, how could I possible forget Angelica? She would never allow it. She is very good at finding her way to the front of the line. She is the most vocal pup with sad, pleading eyes that are pretty much irresistible. And that pink nose? Crazy cute. Angelica is on the larger size for the girls. She’s fun and friendly and well-liked in the puppy pen. I’d give her Most Likely to Succeed in the yearbook.
Maria (pronounced Mariah) is my puppy. If I was keeping a puppy. Which I am not. She has the short, short hair of a hound dog and beautiful markings. One brown sock and one white sock in front, plus a crooked stripe up her face. She will be a gorgeous dog, no two ways about it. She is solidly built, too, weighing in as the heaviest pup, although Hercules stands taller. She is not a pushy girl, but holds her own wrestling with the boys (and Theo).
And last, always, is Peggy. She is a sweet, sweet soul. She is not an over-the-top puppy, but she is paying attention. Her curious face is always watching the doings of the other pups. She and Alex have a special bond and wrestle, play, and snuggle together frequently. Set up against him, she seems tiny and she is indeed the next to smallest pup after Theo, whom she resembles in coloring. They both look like their dad. I’ll track down his picture soon and share it on the blog for those of you thinking seriously about adopting one of these babes.
Here’s the bottom line in picking one of these puppies, or any puppy – the kind of dog you end up with is 90% on you. Take this commitment seriously. These precious babes deserve that much. If you’re serious and want to know how to adopt these loves (or another good dog who needs a forever home) – click here.