For those of you who have been keeping up with my experience with my adopted dog, “Birdy” you already know I have no experience with dogs or for that matter any living creature. I have never owned a pet and have no idea what I’m doing! I hate the smell of a dog, the fur shedding but all in all I’ve come to love the mutt.
I adopted “Birdy” back in September 2012 from my local Humane Society. They said she was a Chihuahua Mix and now I am certain she is a Jack Russell with a good bit of Chihuahua genes in her. I’m beginning to think that is a dangerous mix! They refer to this breed as Jack Chi and if you Google that name you will find a lot of information, all the pros and cons of owning one of these, ummm, mutts and I can promise you “Birdy” displays the behaviors of both breeds and more! Her name was given to her by the Humane Society and I decided to keep it. I’ve had a lot of people ask, “Where in the world did you come up with that name?”.
Ok, to be fair to Birdy, she did come from an abusive, previous owner and was found wandering the streets and considered a stray. The little dog has been through a lot. I suspect by the time I got her she was very close to being euthanized. I was told three different people said they would return to the Humane Society and adopt her but they were never heard from again.
When I brought her home it took a while to earn her trust. I could tell she had been trained and I was often surprised at how smart she was. Right away though the fight for who was going to be “leader of the pack” began. Now keep in mind not only do we have a Jack Russell full of energy who would “fly” instead of “run”, “bounce” instead of “jump” (well that too) and from the Chihuahua she has those big bulging eyes that seem to be filled with all kinds of emotions but worse they can tear up with a hurt or sad look. She has big ears that stand straight up and a overbite that gives her the appearance of a lop-sided grin. If she REALLY likes you she will often wink an eye and smile at you from cheek to cheek! I swear this is the truth folks!
On Christmas Eve she was hospitalized for five days with Parvo and only had a slim chance of survival. With the expertise of five Vets she survived and then again, God crossed mine and Birdy’s paths for a reason and he wasn’t about to let her go just yet. She is doing great now gaining weight with that incredible energy having return. Currently she is being checked for liver and gall bladder problems but I feel good all will be well.
Okay, lets shorten this story down a bit and get to “Birdy’s” deep dark ugly secret. If you have a weak stomach you might want to stop reading.
I had the day off from work yesterday so when Bird came whining to me wanting to go out we went for the outdoors. While I watched her do her business from a distance, she backed up, scratched the grass in the opposite direction of the poop (that was a bit unusual) and then began to graze on some clover near the poop (or at least that is what I thought). A few hours later, same routine, only this time while I’m standing at the door waiting for her, she is just a few feet away. She goes in circles (normal pattern, no problem), stops and out pops the poop and now I’m waiting for her to do the usual “walk away and scratch the grass towards her droppings.” Well guess what, she sniffs (she’s always been a bit “nosy”) the stuff and I suppose she liked what she smelled and decided to have a snack! I’m standing their like an idiot with my jaw hanging and speechless for a few seconds …….then I turn into a madman, literally, the only thing I wasn’t doing was foaming from the mouth! I yelled at her to “leave it”, “stop” and a few other choice words while she looks up licking her chops (it was taking all my reserves not to throw-up) and comes running up to me. As I ranted and raved at her, she went flat on her stomach crawling away. Once inside I roughly combed her down and gave her a bath, scrubbing her down, still trying not to lose my temper (I was more shocked than angry). After a good wash (like that was going to make a difference) I dried her off and then without being told she went to her safe house (carrier) cowering down for the night. I called my sister and tell her I was ready to kill Birdy (just kidding folks, I would not harm that little dog for the world) and thank God I never allowed her to lick my face or anywhere near my mouth. My sis knows me well as does my neighbor Ian who I texted while he is on a camping trip. Neither seemed surprised and said they have seen dogs do this before and it was like, “Calm down Bubba, it’s not the end of the world.” It took all I had to look Birdy in the eyes and feed her breakfast before we headed off to the Vet for her blood test. When I saw the Vet Tech I think I was on the edge of a breakdown as I retold my story. Again, neither she nor the Vet seemed surprised. The Vet calmly said, “No problem. I’ve got something you can put in her food that should take care of it.” With Birdy lying beside me, with her head on my lap, she looks up and gives me that lop-sided grin of hers!
As I type this Bird and I are back on good terms and I watch her like a hawk when she has to do her “business”. Her behaviors have been fairly normal as she sniffs and walks away. I got to thinking, “what does a dog do most often? Why they lick their bottoms to clean it” so if Birdy took a hankering to have a snack, well maybe I should forgive her. One things for sure, there is no way I will ever let her lick my face. If she burps I hope she will do it far from me!
3/03/2012 – Postscript Update: I did a bit of research on the internet and someone suggested mixing a bit of spinach in your dog’s food. Just before taking Birdy to the Vet I mixed about a teaspoon of canned spinach in her dog food and as expected she wolfed it down…..Birdy will eat anything…hummm, well I guess that has already been proven. Good news, I have been using 1/4 of a packet per day of a white powder like substance the Vet gave me called “For-bid”, mixed in Birdy’s food. Ever since I gave her the spinach and now the “For-bid”, she will run in her circle, poop, scratch the grass toward it and lo and behold she doesn’t even take a sniff but runs from it as fast as her paws will allow I’m hoping I caught her “dirty little secret” before it became a habit!