Rescue Me.

WMRidingShotgun

Walter Riding Shotgun

If you follow this blog, you know I have been in a really lousy mood lately. I’ve been pondering mortality.  The loss of a hard working dog and a sweet old horse has got me feeling particularly cold and dark this winter.

I’m usually pretty good at picking myself up, but this time it’s a lot to lift. I started doing that thing that sad people do late at night on the internet- I started cruising dog rescue websites.  I have a confession, I’m attracted to a certain body type.  And yes, I like being herded.

Adopting a rescue dog is a strange combination of online dating and an arranged marriage. You pick a picture and profile of someone you like, but it isn’t up to you. There’s an application with references, and you list your past relationships and how they ended. And who you live with now, and how they feel would feel about a new pack member. The dog’s rescue acts as a protective mother/matchmaker.

There was a very irresistible old corgi matron with a chunk out of an ear and only one eye in Kansas. She had a list of ailments a mile long, and a cocky tilt to her head- she was a pirate corgi with a certain grace. Adopting older dogs has big rewards, but it wasn’t right for me this time.

Finally I saw him. He was in Wyoming. He and his brother were living like frat boys with a suburban family with young kids. Too much barking, too much partying, too much detention in the crate- it was a vicious circle. The brothers went to rescue, truly from too much love, with broken hearts on all sides. And the Matchmaker already had my application.

Road Trip! My friend, Linda and I headed north, fueled by caffeine and dog passion. We pulled into the Applebee’s in Cheyenne and there he was, acting contrite and nervous, showing a little too much belly and trying way too hard to please. There’s an argument that neither the Corgi Boy or I are all that discerning, but whatever. It was love at first sight.

In the car on the way home the Corgi Boy changed his name to Walter. Since deciding to become a contributing member of society, an alias was in order. A few treats and some sweet talk and it was Walter, Walter, Walter.

Walter is working with me in the truck now. He’s making new dog friends. There’s a claw mark on an ear, the curiosity about the cats is answered. Walter is exhausted. Relentlessly herding me is a full-time job, but he’s lost track of a few humans lately and he’s not about to take his eyes off me.

His bad habits? We don’t notice Walter barking so much. He frequently makes a deep quacking noise, the Dude Rancher does a good impression of it. And Walter lets out a yodel over the prairie when inspired. Not much barking though.

He’s developing a taste for beet pulp. Yes, it’s horse feed, and in frigid weather, I soak a bucket of it in the bathtub. Yesterday I heard a noise; he managed to lob himself over the edge of the tub and landed high centered over the top of the bucket. His feet were too short, he was stuck wiggling. In his defense, he showed not one shred of guilt as I lifted him off. He’s settling in just fine.

WMSleepingShotgun

Walter Sleeping Shotgun

I know that he’s herding me close partly because he misses his family in Wyoming. I think he knows I’m missing family, too. It’s like this in midlife, we’re all adjusting to change and loss.

Dog rescue is a lot like horse rescue. They come in all ages, purebreds and mixed breeds. Some were not cared for and some are given up with great reluctance. Each one is an individual life with a unique story. Each one is willing to rescue you, you just have to ask.

Anna Blake, Infinity Farm.

Wyoming Dachshund and Corgi Rescue

Corgi Connection of Kansas Rescue.

Ruby Ranch Horse Rescue.

20 comments on “Rescue Me.

  1. Thank you for cheering up my day, lovely to read…….

  2. briarcroft says:

    Yahoo!! You’s got yourself a little furry hobbit too!!

  3. LisaT says:

    We’ve had 5 rescued Cockers over the last 12 yrs. All adults and each one has their own quirks. They all have their own story of how they came to rescue and I love telling them because I know I’m their last story and name. When they look up at me with sleepy eyes, I can see that they know. They know they now have a forever home. Love your story. <3

  4. Linda P says:

    Walter, Walter, Walter…he is a blog superstar now

  5. How WONDERFUL !!!!!!!!! I am so happy for you and Walter ! Kismet…

  6. Sandra Murray says:

    Many years ago, both a much loved dog and two equally loved horses died within a few months of each other. Like you, I could not pull myself out of a blue funk. Fortunately, I bred Cairn Terriers, and one of my bitches was due to be bred. Two months later, the always miraculous birth of a litter of five Cairn puppies snapped me out of the funk. For another two months, these puppies charmed and delighted our family until they left for their new homes. There’s nothing like new life to love and care for to snap us back into a healthy emotional/mental balance with life in its proper perspective again.

  7. MonaKarel says:

    What a little charmer! The downside of all the joy we have from our animals is the pain when they can’t be with us forever. Sending happy vibes your direction!

  8. Tammy Abramovitz says:

    WALTER! WALTER! WALTER! I’m going to make a road trip down to hug your sweet neck! I do love me some Corgi!!!! This is wonderful news Anna! So happy for you and the dude rancher!

  9. Bring it, Tammy. I am serving up some cattle dog, corgi, and a side of old goats.

  10. Wonderful news :-D Walter’s gorgeous!

  11. Sherri Hanke says:

    Oh Anna — I’m so happy for your new addition. Maybe I need to get a Walter. You know, to replace the male no longer with us.

  12. Beautiful post, beautiful Walter. So glad you found each other. Laughed out loud at the image of his unrepentant self flailing on too tall of a bucket of beet pulp. My kind of soul. ;)

  13. A blog like this is so heartwarming. My aging pups make the next step of looking for new companions very real. Although I am not ready to do so just yet, I realize that searching for new dogs late at night is in my not too distant future. Your story reminds me of hope, love, and forever friendship. And navigating beet pulp.

    • I always feel on that continuum of aging pups to fresh pups and back again. We are blessed to outlive them, it just doesn’t always feel that way. Thanks for commenting.

  14. Patti Kuche says:

    Walter looks as though he would cheer up the darkest winter! Look fwd to hearing more adventures!

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