Bianca found her new family and joined them on Sunday.
I have to say it was a huge relief for me. Of all of the dogs and puppies I’ve cared for as of late, she was the hardest…and I likely learned the most.
Previous to this I have had dogs that came from what is classified as puppy mills but they haven’t been as bad as where Bianca came from. She was 4 1/2 months old and hadn’t had any exposure to nature. Her life was a life of living in only a cage with zero exposure to the outdoors. So when she came, she had no idea what snow was. Then the snow melted and she had no idea what grass was. Then we had to go through a door and she had no idea what a door was. Then she hadn’t seen a step and didn’t know how to navigate that. Then cement. Everything was a new exposure and a new challenge. She hadn’t been outdoors so she didn’t even know why we were going outdoors.
Many pups come with little knowledge but most have a little exposure and most have a lot of confidence. Oftentimes, I would find Bianca on the ground on her belly refusing to move. Fear grabbed her and made it hard for her to move on.
I had written in an earlier post that she has a sight impairment in one of her eyes. I wouldn’t say she’s completely blind in it but she doesn’t see full strength.
She did a lot of running in circles and mostly because she didn’t even know that running in a straight line was an option. She did it because that’s all she ever knew. Poor girl. The running in circles lessened day by day as she was here but I had to be very careful as she truly was a tripping hazard.
I was sure Bianca would do best with a companion dog in her new home. She learned so much here from my other dogs. Below you see the pups out for a walk…
The walk was a bit of a challenge but we made it.
Over the time she has been here, daily Bianca improved and improved. I hoped that if I walked her with my dogs she might get a better idea of walking in a straight line rather than circling when she was walking individually on a leash. It was helpful.
She did a great job walking along my street but then we turned and walked on the sidewalk along the main road that goes through town. Bianca had trouble with that. The noise of the semis was scary and the traffic was a bit much. She ended up lying down and refused to move. I ended up having to carry her back to my street and then she walked home. Normally I would have coaxed her to walk home but it was too hard with the three dogs. Even though she wasn’t able to make it the whole way, she did a good job.
House training was a bit challenging. I ended up having to do a boot camp with her. I ended up having to put her out on a tie too. It was a lot of trial and error. Finally, I got her to go. It took about five days here before the two of us finally figured it out. Even then, it was a bit of a challenge.
She was super cuddly and full of kisses.
She had so much energy that at times, Izzy and Rosie, my own two dogs, would jump up on the couch to get some space away from Bianca. That’s saying a lot about Izzy because she still has lots of puppy in her!!
Bianca was a challenge for me and I made sure I was upfront as possible with her new family. I didn’t want them to go home with a new puppy expecting a typical 8-week-old puppy that catches on quickly. I said she is going to need extra patience when it comes to being exposed to new things…and to house training. I said she is so full of energy that she might need to be kenneled for a bit so everyone gets a breather.
Happily, I think they are the perfect family for her. They already have a cocker spaniel and he is two so he’s still got lots of puppiness to deal with Bianca’s unending energy. They had kids who were just overjoyed to meet her. The kids were 6 and 9 I think so perfect ages to be helpful in puppy training too.
It’s always a little bittersweet when I take the pen in the kitchen down as that means a pup went to its new home, but this time I was ready. I’ve had a string of fosters here and I was ready for a little break. It might only be for a few days or maybe only a week…but after having fosters that have overlapped, I’ve not had any breaks. I’m ready to be a two-dog family for a day or two. Over the last two months, I’ve had Mork and Mindy, Susie, Freckles, and Bianca. All except for Susie were puppies.
I’m sure before long I’ll have another rescue…and that’s totally okay but for now, I’m enjoying not worrying about when a dog was last outdoors or who has a vet appointment when or trying to get a reference to call back. There’s a lot of work to fostering, and even though I love it and want to continue to do it, a day or two without is really awesome too!!