If you have noticed a lapse in my blog posts lately things have been rather busy but all should be back to normal now (*knock on wood*). Though I would like to share a little of what has been keeping my family and I so busy!
We live in a rural part of Southern California, sadly people dump off dogs and cats in this area, thinking they will not get caught or somehow the animals can survive in the high desert (120 fahrenheit in the summer, 20 fahrenheit and below for the winter) without food or water. Many of these people do not spay and neuter their pets and dump the resulting baby and parent animals. Most die due to exposure and predators, the few that make it attack endangered wildlife and domestic animals. We have tried our best to rescue and find homes for the ones that cross our paths.
In August, after we had a party, I awoke the next day to the sound of a puppy crying nearby. In my sleepy mind I thought it was one of the neighbors pups. The noise continued and I asked my husband to look outside. He saw a thin adult dog in the front yard eating trash out of the cans. We went outside and saw two young puppies with the mother dog who ran away. We watched them go, sadly they were too frighten to wait for real dog food or water (we put food and water out for them later none the less). Then my husband noticed a small puppy jammed under a trash barrel, not moving but looking at us. I picked it up and it looked at me, wagging a small tail and put a tiny paw on my arm. It looked to be the smallest and was the most dehydrated out of the pups. Quickly we gave it water, it didn’t seem frightened of us at all. I gave her a bath to wash off the dirt and grime. All I had was adult dog food for our dog Luna but the wee thing ate it up. The puppy quickly fell asleep and I was able to take the photo above of her. My husband gave me a look and said “I guess we have another dog?” Yes indeed we did! Our older dog and our elderly cat (also rescues) didn’t seem to mind the puppy and went about things as per normal!
My mother watched the puppy while we went out and got her food and toys. When we got back she was so happy to have toys and wouldn’t stop cuddling with our feet. We decided to name her Amber, because of the colors of her fur. In the evening after finally having meals in her tiny tummy she passed bird seed! She had been eating bird seed out of desperation as a stray! We immediately made an appointment to go to vet to get her checked out and vaccinations.
Here is Amber after one week of eating well! She was up to 9 pounds and had her first round of shots. The veterinarian feels she was around 5-6 weeks when we found her and if we hadn’t taken her in she would have died from exposure or predators. Thankfully she had no worms or any other issues, she was rather fond of the vet and his staff! It is felt she is some sort of Labrador/Sheppard mix. 🙂
The mother dog and Amber’s siblings never came back for her. We do not know what happened to them but we keep an eye out none the less.
We are trying to work with her on her habit of snagging any food she finds, a typical behavior for a dog trying to survive as a stray. She quickly learned her name and simple commands.
As you can see in this photo Amber and Luna have become fast friends. Luna loves having a friend and they play all the time. In fact Luna is a real life saver for me, they can go outside and run the property with the puppy never leaving her side! It took some time for the puppy to sleep through the night but now she looks forward to resting with one of her toys and Luna next to her. She still seems to have dreams that upset her and make her cry but when she wakes up she becomes happy knowing we are near.
Amber with her first chew, giving the coffee table evil looks. The chew had slid under the table, which to her meant it stole her chew stick and wouldn’t give it back. She felt growling and jumping at it was the proper response. After I forced the coffee table to give it back she didn’t trust it all night. 😉
At first we had an issue with Amber finding it necessary to be underfoot. She has tripped pretty much everyone in the household, the little sneak! While we were still potty training her I slipped across a puddle on the tiles, doing the splits, slamming my right knee and skull into the floor. The second time while watering the plants I tripped over her, jumping backwards to avoid falling on her and landed flat on my back. Amber was fine but my previous spinal compression fractures didn’t like it.
After a while she calmed down, realizing we would not abandon her and she could lounge. This allowed me more freedom to work on my art projects and take photos of said work. Amber now “assists” me by staying under the table while I work on art projects in the kitchen. The dogs keep my feet warm and the cat steals one of the chairs. Here she is now at 19 pounds, only has one more set of shots to get and once old enough she will be spayed.
My mother introduced me to rescuing and caring for abandoned or hurt animals. Happily I have carried on that tradition with almost every animal in our household. I encourage others to do the same, while caring for a rescue can at times be a challenge, you are rescuing a future life long friend.
Wishing you all safe travels,
Until next time!