Thursday, November 3, 2011

Sassy's Story

Pet's name: Sassy
Adopted by: Albia, Tiffany, and Logan Steers
From: Sylacauga Animal Rescue Foundation, Sylacauga, Ala.

Tiffany sent the adoption story of Sassy, who often appears in her blog, The Cranky Queen

On December 18, 2007, I was approached at a local salon by one of the volunteers from the local animal shelter, Sylacauga Animal Rescue Foundation. She knew that we had two Chihuahuas and loved little dogs. She told me there was a black-and-white Chi and an eight-year-old white poodle mix that needed to be adopted or taken in as a foster dog.

I knew my parents were travelling from Louisiana for the Christmas holidays and asked if I could come see the dogs after Christmas. She indicated that the poodle had not eaten in over two weeks (since she was dropped off at the facility) and felt this was an emergency situation. My son, then 13 years old, begged for us to at least go take a look at the dogs.

The following morning (December 19, 2007), prior to may parents' arrival, we visited the animal shelter. Hovering in the corner of the stall was a pitiful-looking white dog shaking and trembling. However, the black-and-white Chihuahua was bouncing up and down like, "take me, take me!"

The volunteer opened the gate to the little fenced kennel and the Chi immediately ran out with my son chasing after him. I walked over to the corner of the kennel, crouched down beside this little white dog, and gently petted her. After I realized that she was not going to bite me, I picked her up. She was uncomfortable in the way I was holding her and immediately straddled my waist like a small baby would do, then briefly licked my cheek! That was it; I knew that this little dog needed to come home with us that day.

The information that was given to me at the shelter included that this poodle mix was brought to the shelter by its male owner. He stated that she was a family pet and was eight years old. His wife had recently had a baby and was experiencing some "post-baby blues." The dog also did not like his owners holding the infant and would jump up in their laps. They were afraid that the dog may hurt the baby. The dog's given name was Sassy.

We introduced Sassy to our two Chihuahuas, Dixie Belle and Ruby Fawn (then one and three years old). They sniffed her and went on their merry way. No growling, no fighting, no barking. Sassy made her "home" under the coffee table. She was dirty and matted, so I did bathe her. My parents arrived and I found she was comfortable with them. She still remained subdued and preferred lying under the table. She did sleep with us (along with the other two dogs.)

After Christmas, a trip to the vet revealed that she was actually about eight years old. The vet said that she had been spayed and her teeth were in good shape. She had one developing cataract in one eye. The vet did find that at one time, she had a dislocated hip that may pop out of place on occasion. We felt that she may have been caught up in a slamming door, because she always hesitated before entering or exiting through a doorway. The vet felt that she was a poodle-bichon mix.

I took her to the local groomer, where they told me that she behaved very well during grooming, and obviously had probably experienced routine grooming in the past due to her good behavior.

The animal shelter did list her on their website for adoption and posted her picture on the bulletin board at the shelter. Six months later, we adopted Sassy, with her official name as Sassafrass Steers!

To make a long story short, our smallest Chihuahua, Ruby, had been diagnosed with Cushing's Disease at eight months of age and was predicted not to live past two years old. After Sassy came, Ruby had a playmate. Ruby is now over five years old. The vet thinks that Sassy was Ruby's guardian angel. She played with her when our other, much fatter Chi did not!

Sassy with Dixie Belle and Ruby Fawn

Since Sassy has come to live with us, she has learned to walk on a leash. She loves to ride in the car. She has learned to play with stuffed toys like our Chihuahuas do. (At first she was not sure about tug-of-war with toys.) She often mimics what the Chis do. She still does not like small children.

She will be 12 years old in December 2011. She has become much more lethargic in the past months. The vet feels that dementia or depression has set in. She no longer sleeps with us, but prefers to sleep in her own little bed. Her cataracts have worsened. Warts are appearing under her fur. We continue to give her the love that we always have, knowing that at her age, each day is precious.

If you adopted a pet from a shelter or rescue group and you'd like to share his or her story, please email me. I'd love to hear from you!

1 comment:

  1. I absolutely adore adopters like you. Sassy is so lucky to have found you, and vice versa.


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