So in yesterday’s post, I asked which dog people who most want to pet if they came across them on the street, and counterproductive to my post, everyone unanimously chose Snoopy.
Not that I blame them – Snoopy is pretty pettable. He is a good snuggler and a good kisser and he loves everyone. Maybe not as much as he loves food, but almost.
Snoopy was my first dog.
I thought I knew what I was doing, and I was ready for a dog…. doesn’t everybody?
And wow, was I ever wrong.
Luckily, I had some help. I had just graduated college and was living with my grandparents for the summer while I interned at a zoo. My grandparents had dogs before but had not gotten a new one since their last dog died. I really, really wanted a dog. I had volunteered at the shelter walking dogs all through college and I knew foster homes were important, so I asked my grandma if I could foster a dog. I would take care of it, but it would benefit from having someone at home all day while I was at work. Bless my grandma, she can’t say no.
So I went to orientation at the shelter and asked the volunteer coordinator what kind of dog I could foster when I knew I only had about three months in the city for my internship. He suggested a heartworm dog, because they had to be out of the shelter for about two months while they went through heartworm treatment.
Snoopy’s shelter photos.
I didn’t know anything about heartworm or the treatment it entailed, but I was all for helping out. After talking to my grandma, who was used to small dogs (Westies) I asked them to give me the smallest heartworm dog they had. So they suggested the “Boston Terrier/Beagle mix” Snoopy. He was one of about 30 dogs they seized from a hoarder, many of which had heartworm. I showed the pictures of him to my grandparents and they agreed he looked cute and small.
The first time I met him, he blew out of the kennel right past me without even a second glance. The laughing volunteer coordinator handed me his leash and asked me if I wanted to give him a bath before he left, because he kind of stunk. He dragged me through the halls to the outdoor runs (he knew exactly where he was going) and once in one of the runs proceeded to pee on everything and totally ignore me.
On the ride home after a semi-successful attempt at a bath, he bopped around the car and licked the air vents.
We went straight to the pet store so I could get some supplies. The shelter staff told me they just fed whatever food was donated so I could pick up whatever I wanted for him. I’m embarrassed to admit this but I had no clue about dog food and looked at the labels and picked up something I remembered seeing on TV… I will not name names but let’s just say I wouldn’t let me dogs in the same building as an open bag of this food anymore.
A week later I dropped him off for his heartworm treatment at the vet, and sat home reading horror stories on the internet about dogs dying from heartworm treatment. I did not know it was so dangerous! Of course, when I went to pick him up, the vet tech told me DO NOT READ THE INTERNET. He was pitiful though. Heartworm treatment is difficult on a dog and he slept and moped for about a week.
For the six weeks after that it was a learning experience for all of us. I got lucky with Snoopy, I’ll tell you that! This is getting a bit long so I guess you’ll have to wait for the next installment of how Snoopy came to be mine…