Living small has its advantages. Obviously, space to do things is not one of them. Neither is storage space. There isn’t enough room to swing a cat in here, but the cats can go on missions of mass destruction. They do too. We are now confining them at night so at least we can sleep without the sounds of crashing things awakening us.
And our two dogs…they still hate each other and we don’t trust them in the same proximity. It’s still a case of rotating pooches. There just isn’t much room to rotate them!
So what do we do?
We expand! Not our home space, of course. That would be somewhat logical. No, we expand our residents inside of our confined space by finding a stray chihuahua that has had no sign of a searching owner.
Sucker me kept picturing a dead chihuahua we found on the side of the road early the day after Christmas, and the knowledge that the little dog didn’t live in our neighborhood made the sight even sadder. It was highly probable that someone had dumped the poor little guy on Christmas evening on our country lane. Even a dog deserves better than that.
Not that we could afford to be charitable and adopt another dog. We really can’t. We have two dogs and two cats and that’s about four more pets than we can actually afford to have. Now we can say its five more.
I couldn’t just chase the dog away, even though we were out of town visiting relatives, our own pair of dogs in tow. (The cats stayed home–they don’t travel well.) He was covered with ticks, skinny enough his ribs were showing, dirty, and probably packing around an entire flock of fleas (the South is home to 90% of the world’s fleas, I swear!) After a day of his hanging around, sneaking drinks of water from out dogs’ water bowls, and hoping for something left behind that was edible…I caved in first.
I kept seeing that pathetic dead chihuahua the day after Christmas in my mind.
So, he had to have a name of some kind…and since “Finding Nemo” was playing on the television…guess what he got dubbed.
Only he’s not striped, and we didn’t find Nemo…he found us.
A cat carrier became a Nemo carrier. A cheap collar was purchased. We had food…compared to Red Dog & Sissy, this one can’t eat much! He had a bath, increasing his aromatic appeal, and decreasing his crop of fleas. The ticks were removed. He promptly attached himself to GM, who just so happens to be a huge lover of chihuahuas.
Funny how that works, Big Foot and Little Dog…
Nemo could actually sleep in GM’s size 14 shoes.
Not that Nemo is purebred, or at least not very well pure-bred. He’s rather large, probably about 7 lbs. He has crooked front legs, a very long body, a coat that while it is “short” it’s pretty long in the short department. His ears are very pointed, rather than the large radars of a typical chihuahua with their rounded tips. His head is fairly large too, and while its very “chihuahua-ish” its still…not quite right, and definitely not an “apple head.”
Size wise, my granddog is a chihuahua too, and while she is a purebred, she’s not a good example of the breed either, being also excessively long bodied and on the large size. Nemo is about the same size but his head is noticeably larger beside her.
Nemo is a pale tan and cream colored little boy, and of course, he’s also not neutered. Since Red Dog is also not spayed…there could be some issues, although I doubt those issues would ever result in puppies!
Nemo is also very possessive of his newly adopted daddy. Of his food. Of his crate.
Sharing with other dogs does not seem to be on his personal agenda. He seems to get along fine with Sissy, who normally hates all other dogs, but with Red Dog, it’s a case of let’s-growl-and-chase-her-away-from-Daddy. That may not fly well, although in general she ignores all toy dogs completely unless they decide to push it by actually attacking her. She’s huge compared to them–they are a single bite to her. She’s never hurt another dog except for Sissy, and that took repeated attacks before actual injury occurred…but it still makes me nervous!
We’ll have to work on those issues of his–the food aggression, the possessiveness, the whole bit. I’m hoping that it is mostly caused by being the new kid on the block, and being half starved when food was presented.
But we’ll also have to make room in the budget. He will need his own things, we’ll have to figure out his space, and we weren’t prepared for another dog, chihuahua or not. Common sense says we should have just walked off. But…my desire for sound sleep…or at least natural insomnia rather than guilt-ridden images of a dead little dog…won the little beastie a small portion of our small living quarters.
One thing about dogs…they love us, no matter where we live, and their love doesn’t fade when our home is even something as modest as a cardboard box stashed under a bridge. They are happy to share our most meager of meals too. I know our dogs would be content if we all dined upon a dish of cornmeal mush each evening. We might not be very healthy…but we’d still be able to bask in that knowledge that we are loved.
The price we pay for unfaltering devotion and love is really pretty small, when we consider how much enjoyment we get from our “man’s best friends.” That’s what I tell myself as I carefully put back money for the annual veterinarian visit…and flea prevention…and the 101 other things that they need.