I Love My Little Yapper

We already had 2 dogs; a Maltese Cross and an Australian Silky Terrier. But I didn't feel like they were mine, and after I voiced this complaint to my mum, she agreed she'd get me my 'own' dog.

A visit to the RSPCA later and we hadn't found anything very suitable. Then we went to one of the pet shops in town and saw a truly flat area of fur lying in one of the cages by the window. I peered in at the mystery animal that was fast asleep, and my mum chatted to the owner of the store. It was a female dog, a Pomeranian. I only knew of the breed from The Nanny. Other than that, I was pretty clueless as to what a Pom was like...

She looked pretty much perfect though. Cute and just TINY! She had dark, fluffy hair and adorably inquisitive features.

I decided to call her Minnie, because she reminded me of Minnie Mouse.

I'd been with not only my mum, but my sister at the time, and on the way home they were going to go to rent some videos. I couldn't believe they'd want to when we had this amazing little animal we could go home and watch! I was always mesmerized having baby animals in the house. My dog Tiny (Australian Silky Terrier) was a little older than the other animals, but I had loved his puppyhood. We had been 'siblings' in a way (I was seven when we brought him home. He was seven weeks!) Then there was Sophie, the Maltese Cross. She wasn't very old herself, and I'd thoroughly enjoyed her puppyhood. We had brought home a kitten Molly at around the same time we had Sophie, so they grew up together as 'siblings', always eating, sleeping and playing together.

As my mum and sister went in to rent some videos, I stayed outside the video shop with Minnie. I remember sitting her down and talking to her. She was just so little and cute, I felt so lucky to have a little dog like her. I was mostly impressed by the questioning look she wore on her face, at everything around her. She was more like a human trapped in a dog's body.

As I recall, we went home after that, and Minnie met the other 'kids.' She was extremely hyper and tried to play with Molly. We were careful watching Sophie, who could have a temper, as could Tiny but he was so used to us bringing animals home by now, he might as well have just rolled his eyes.

There was something on TV I was only half-watching later, as Minnie fell asleep on my lap. I couldn't believe how close to me she was acting already.

Something we often did with our pets when they were little is take them outside for a bit of a walk and take some photos of them exploring the five acres of land (it was less casual than now, where I just have a digital camera. Back then we were relying on my mum's old camera).

There are photos I have to this day where Minnie is walking around the dam, exploring and hardly able to see over the long grass. We threw stones in the water so that she'd stare out at it as we clicked away at her cuteness.

I encouraged Minnie to snuggle up in my bed, but she'd always prefer sitting at the bottom of it. Molly had used to sleep with me, and still did sometimes, sharing with Minnie.

It happened suddenly then; Minnie started to grow. I thought Pom's were supposed to be very little (and VERY fluffy, from the pictures I'd seen) but Minnie soon looked more like a miniature Samoyed (though not white, of course). She had-- as I liked to call it-- a 'skunk line' on her back too, a black line that wen along her spine, but as she grew, it started to spread out, and soon she was a reddy brown rather than the deep chocolate she'd been as a pup, though not only that, she had streaks of what almost looked like blonde! (I used to always want her hair colour. People would say how amazing it would look on a human. Sometime this year I finally dyed it that colour, and people would giggle over the fact that our hair was the same colour.)

Being on five acres, Minnie got into plenty of trouble. Learning off Tiny and Sophie, she was barking at everything in sight in no time (plus, there's the... Pom gene, I guess). We took her to puppyschool, which she basically failed (she would spend all her time barking at all the other dogs and their owners. It was rather embarrassing to endure, and after asking the trainer if we had any hope of fixing the behaviour, he said that honestly, it didn't look good), and after venturing into a patch of long grass by the dam one day, I witnessed her yelping and quickly running out towards me. We thought maybe she'd just stepped on something sharp, but as her back legs started shaking, it was apparent to us what was happening to her: she had been bitten by a snake.

It wasn't the first time it had happened to one of our animals, but given she was still fairly small at this point, we were scared. We hurried her to the vet, (or our 'second home', as we often joked) and they confirmed she'd been bitten. We had to leave her there until she was in the clear. I'll never forget her face once she was placed into one of the cages, though what I remember even more vividly is the big yellow blanket she sat on.

I was pretty confident she'd be okay, oddly enough, but when my mum shed some tears and said, "she could die!" I started to panic. I tried to imagine my life without that little bundle of mischief and hated even having to imagine. How could something so small become apart of your life so quickly?

It's strange, now that I think of it, that we killed time afterwards by going to rent some more videos. I'm only just realising now, how ironic that is, given that's the exact place we went after first buying Minnie.

We went back to the vet later that day, she she was fine. I was relieved, though I knew if we hadn't have rushed her as quickly as we had, she could have died. The shaking of her legs had been the poision spreading, we knew. What disgusted me to think about was the fact that one of my friends' dads who my mum sometimes talked to had said if their cat was bitten, he wouldn't be forking out money to save it, and they'd just let it die. My pets were my family. Thankfully, my mum had always felt the same way and I knew she'd never sacrifice any of them just to save money.

Minnie had more trauma as a puppy though, as one day when a dog came over from next door (a Blue Heeler that had attacked both Tiny and Sophie before) and grabbed her by the neck. It was lucky I had felt like going and sitting in the backyard for no apparent reason that day, because I watched as it wen up to her and started attacking.

I ran towards the scene, bawling my eyes out as I witnessed Minnie trying to head to the safety of the dam (where she often swam and had fun), only to be followed by this big bully of a dog that latched onto her, shaking it (as was it's instinct), as it would have done until she was dead. When I reached the scene, the dog ran away, back to it's own place. As my mum later pointed out, I was only lucky it didn't try and attack me.

Speaking of my mum, she had appeared by then, obviously hearing the comotion, and was the first to pick up Minnie-- who had been shaking pitifully in the shallow water.

I cried as we hurried back to the house, wishing it was me who was holding Minnie. My mum checked Minnie was all right first (I'm fairly certain she drew a little blood, but most of it was just the shock she was in from being grabbed by the neck and shaken), then rang the next door neighbours and started screaming at them. She told them what had happened, and how upset I was (I was hugging Minnie and crying), then ended the call by saying she had to tend to her upset daughter now. We ended up taking her to the vet, just to make sure she was okay. She was free of any bad injuries, but it left a scar on her to a degree, because now whenever she sees a dog walking by, she'll go off her head at it, as if she has to prepare herself for it to attack her. I hadn't always made this connection, because she'd been a little yapper before then, but she's visibly worse when she sees another dog.

(hahaha oh the hilarity, she just started barking when I finished that paragraph. XD )

Anyway, Minnie's been through a lot over the years, but we've never let anything tramautic like that happen to her ever again. She may have long legs now and a tough attitude, but she's still a little dog I'd give anything to protect. Unfortunately over the years at that five acre property I no longer live at, Sophie died. The two had come to be best friends, so saying goodbye was hard. She had only been four years old, which now just sounds so young to go. She had some very good times with us though; from splashing around in the dam, to exploring with Tiny and Minnie.

When Sophie was still alive though, we brought Chica the Chihuahua into the family. Minnie's reaction was priceless. She crawled up onto my lap and stared at Chica as if she'd never seen anything quite like it. She wasn't going nuts barking like she normally did, she was just staring in absolute astonishment (and maybe a hint of fear, given she'd gone to me for protection). Everyone quickly accepted the shy little Chica though, and Minnie took her under her wing as she did everyone, licking her eyes when she felt like they needed a clean (she's even tried this on me before!), huddling together for a nap... all that stuff.

After Sophie's death, we brought Hallie, a Japanese Chin into the family. Hallie is alike Sophie is so many ways, to the point where I've considered she IS Sophie, reincarnated.

Hallie and Minnie are best friends, always playing with one another by playfully nipping each other's faces and sharing toys (Minnie may bark a lot, but she's never bitten anyone. She saves that for playfighting with her friends, haha).

My parents split up just awhile ago, so unfortunately Tiny and Molly were seperated from the others. They get to visit each other frequently though, and Minnie and Tiny in particular are always so happy to see each other. I think maybe because out of all the dogs, they've known each other the longest and also, they both love to explore and bark at things together-- even if Tiny is getting old now, and is partially deaf. Come to think of it, he'll be 13 this year! And Minnie, she'll be 9, which I can't believe. I don't think of her as old, even though she's gotten some white on her-- under her chin and through some of her tail hair in particular (though on her tail, it looks more blonde than anything.)

I heard that at least a few times Poms have lived til 19 (or maybe just one, I'm not sure). If there's another ten years spend with her, I'm fine with that, even though she's slowly making us all deaf with her barking. Though amazingly, she does a lot of things that I tell her to do-- like dropping a mysterious item she's found outside and decided to chew on, or obeying right away when I gently tell her to come inside.

That questioning look isn't there as much anymore either, so I figure she must have worked life out by now.

 

PICTURES:


Minnie sitting on the washing, lol.


Happy. =]

 

If anyone actually read all this, I applaud you!

FateCantDecide FateCantDecide
22-25, F
1 Response Mar 4, 2009

It depresses the hell out of me to think she died 4 months after I wrote this..........