Alvin & Me …. Our First 200 Days together

On Tuesday, January 19th, 2010, I adopted a puppy by the name of Alvin from SCARS (Second Chance Animal Rescue Society).

This is our story……

DAY 1

Possible dog adoption on the horizon.  Amanda found this little dog named Alvin on the SCARS website. He is a Cocker Spaniel mix.  Black and white.  Very cute.  His foster family invited us to go and meet Alvin.  The whole family is going tonight.  We are very excited.  In the afternoon, I ran out to The Bone & Biscuit (which is a local pet food store) to grab some toys, and things that I thought were necessary for a puppy.

We drove after supper to meet Alvin.  Oh my gosh!  Despite having a rough start he was doing well in his temporary new surroundings.  These folks were incredible.  A representative from SCARS was there, as well.  We visited, and got to know Alvin, a little.  After much discussion ….. I decided to adopt Alvin.  How could I not?  So after signing the papers, going through his medication(s) and other instructions we were on our way.  The ride home was interesting.  Alvin drooled the whole way.  He must have been terrified, not knowing what was going on.  After all, he had just settled in with the other people, and now these guys were carting him off.  To where?  When we got back to my house, the kids came in, and helped give Alvin his medication, and then I was on my own.  Much like having a baby.  Except when I had Amanda – I actually had help.  This time I was ALONE….. exciting and scary.   Time for bed.

Welcome Alvin Charlie Lewis.  I had thought of changing his name to Charlie but decided that Alvin suited him best.

Alvin's Foster Parents ..... he was so loved there......

 

Alvin getting to know his "new" family....

DAY 2

Let’s just say that sleep was not the reason we went to bed last night.  Poor Alvin.  I was like a new parent as I lay there watching his belly go up and down.  I swear there were times when he was not breathing.  What a long night. We were up at 7:00 this morning.  Have to get into some kind of a routine.  First thing on the list.  But before the list goes into effect … fed Alvin and then figuring I had a few minutes before he would need to go outside to the bathroom …. he had an accident.  Lucky for me when he pooped he missed the hall carpet.  Whew.  Lesson learned.  Take him out right after he eats.  After breakfast we played “fetch” or at least our version of the game.  He did pretty good.  Later that morning I was on “cat” patrol as I was pet sitting for one of my neighbours.  As,  I left the house Alvin looked out the living room window watching me walk away.   I could hear him crying.  So I quickly went over and took care of Aussie, the cat.  When I arrived home Alvin was crying at the door.  When I opened the door Alvin ran out.  He ran down the steps and I quickly followed.  As he drew nearer to the street, my heart was in my stomach as I feared the worst.  Of course, I do know that no matter the situation, one should always think good thoughts.  Just as he was about to hit the street – I swooped down and grabbed him up in my arms.  Whew.  Thank goodness.  This all happened in about 10 seconds.

DAY 3

Up at 6:45 a.m. – peed

7:00 a.m. – food and medication (pill and ear drops)

7:15 a.m. – peed

8:00 a.m. – pooped

9:00 a.m. – peed

9:30 a.m. – pill, food, pooped and peed

10:30 a.m. – peed

12:00 Noon – ear drops, food

12:30 p.m. – peed

2:30 p.m. – food and peed

4:00 p.m. – peed

4:30 p.m. – food, peed and pooped

6:00 p.m. – pooped

Amanda, Steven and the puppies came over for supper and a visit.  I am grateful that they live nearby.  The puppies all get along quite well.

7:00 p.m. – food, salve on neck, ear drops and peed

9:30 p.m. – food, pill, pooped and peed

BED

DAY 4

Up about twenty minutes earlier than yesterday.  Alvin is playing.  So cute.  Thought that I would get back into writing as he plays with his toys.  I join in every few minutes.  He is a lively little guy.  The kids gave Alvin a toothbrush last night. Guess, that is a hint.  But good oral hygiene is just as important for dogs as it is for we, humans.  He scratched at the bathroom door, a sign to go out.  My little poop machine.  Teaching him to “sit”.  It will be good once he is back to 100% healthy.  He has a tendency to “bite” and grab things when he wants to play before getting the toy.  But he is learning.  Have to work on the door – coming and going.  Played fetch, definitely working on his playing techniques.  This morning had to cook some fish for Aussie next door.  Alvin just watches out the window when I leave the house and cries until I return.

Learning to schedule my “life” around Alvin’s.  Between the medication, pooping and peeing and eating six or seven times each day and playing …. doing laundry and eating is about all I get done.  BUSY.

Alvin with his toys & the blue blanket was a gift from his foster parents.

DAY 5

Up at 7:00 a.m. this morning.  He started out last night wanting to sleep with me on the bed but ended up on the floor.  Probably a good thing as I do not want him to roll off the bed during the night.  I have a little bed made for him in the corner by the dresser close to my bed.  So he can see me.  He, being Alvin likes to play.  I am grateful that he is a friendly loving little guy.  He just wants to play now.  I need to eat.  Have to shovel the sidewalk and look after Aussie, the cat.

DAY 6

Yesterday was fun.  He was in a nippy biting mood.  When he wants to play, he nips/bites my pants, slippers or whatever he is close to.  Perhaps, I am giving him the wrong signals.  Like for instance just a few minutes ago as I was sitting writing, I told him to go get his toys – then it started.  So okay only mention toys when time to play.  He always has his eyes on me.  Last night, I was watching the last twenty minutes of a movie, and he went over to the stairs (which was 10 p.m.) and waited; telling me “time for bed.”  He wanted to go up.  So we did.  Whose the pack leader !  LOL.  Guess not me.  Regarding the pulling (biting) – lots of suggestions: firm “no” (doesn’t work), gently cupping his mouth and saying stop,  (sometimes).  My cousin who has two dogs suggested that I stand with arms crossed with my back to him and do not say anything or move until he behaves.  Then pat his head or his body.  She says it shows who is the pack leader.  He just went into the living room and picked up his penguin, and is playing by himself.  (okay, he just bit me).  I tried the pack leader stance and it worked, yay.  Thank you.  Okay.

DAY 7

Another good sleep.  Alvin is eating the new wet food, and really likes it.  Although he seems to like everything.  Have to figure out “play” time although The Dog Whisperer says they should exercise (walk) and do not require play.  He definitely needs to walk but I want to wait and see what the vet says on Thursday.  Alvin is happy naturally but when he wants my attention he resorts to nipping.  More snow last night so will be shovelling today.  Tomorrow is my last day of cat sitting duties.  I think Alvin will be better about the biting once he gets out for some exercise.  Warm today.

DAY 8

Another good sleep.  Alvin has his night and early morning routine down pat.  My friend Len (neighbour on Rochdale Blvd in Regina) had hip surgery yesterday.  His wife had called to tell me that he had fallen.  I hope that everything went well.  Still enveloped in a blanket of darkness at this time of day (7:39 a.m.).  Last night helped push one of my neighbours as he got stuck in the ruts on our street.  Oh my gosh, Alvin still biting.  He is driving me to the edge with this non-stop biting.  How do I stop him?  Amanda, Steven and the puppies are coming tonight for supper.  Time to start planning Amanda’s 30th Birthday party.  Our first birthday celebration since she moved to Edmonton back in 2002.

DAY 9

Yay, another beautiful morning.  Up at 7:30 a.m. – Alvin peed, then ate and then pooped.  How strange to be recording the bathroom habits of a dog – my dog.  He is playing by himself for the moment.  The street is busy with school buses.  We have many children in this neighbourhood.  Alvin is playing good this morning.  Playing with his new toy from the kids.  So great to be able to sit and write.  I have missed this writing practice.  Starting to get lighter out earlier each day.   Tomorrow is VET day.  I hope they they will give him the vaccination, micro-chip and book him for the neutering.  I am grateful that I am able to help rescue a doggie and give him a good home.

DAY 10

Good morning, being the pack leader so am waiting for a few minutes before giving Alvin his food (not going over well).  Dished and put on the counter.  Nice morning outside.  Up earlier this morning about 6:30 a.m..  Made myself some oatmeal first and had a couple swallows of water & lemon juice before setting down his food.  He turned around at one point to look at me (what was he thinking?).  Consistency.  Try to be that, more times than not.  Guess he is finished.  He eats well.  Very rambunctious this morning – played tug-of-war and fetch for about 15 minutes.  Today is VET day.  Hopefully being neutered will settle him down a bit.  Beautiful weather for January.

DAY 11

Another beautiful morning here in Edmonton, thank you.  I am grateful for this weather.  Alvin is doing great.  We had his first Vet visit yesterday.  Was an interesting adventure, albeit scary.  His ears are okay and he had blood work done to check for anaemia etc.  One major concern is that there is irreparable damage done to his main artery (throat area).  Usually they take blood from there as is less painful but in Alvin’s case they had to take the sample from his leg.  He is playing with one of his toys as I am writing this…  The Doctor said results would be back in a couple of days and that he would call me.  The sky is becoming bright.  Alvin did great but poor little guy threw up (thankfully on a blanket) in the car on way home after his “ordeal”.  Elton had to go the Vet this same day.  I hope that Alvin’s results come back good so that he can get vaccinated, micro-chipped and neutered.   They have to put him under anaesthesia to perform the neutering so they would do the vaccination and micro-chip at the same time.  The Doctor also told me that Alvin could suffer from seizures and could have behavioural problems as a result of his injuries.  I should explain as best I know …..  when he was found …. Alvin had a hair elastic around his neck and around one of his ears.  No idea of how long it was on for but he had a bad infection so it must have been quite some time.  The elastic did some irreversible damage.  I cannot imagine how he suffered.  But that was a long time ago and he is happy now….

Alvin at home.....

The story continues……..

 

3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Janice
    Feb 15, 2011 @ 23:47:13

    I love the new look of your page. I am so glad you and Alvin found each other, you seem to be a good match!

    Reply

    • mynewlifeat51
      Feb 16, 2011 @ 19:00:40

      Hey Cousin, thank you. Amanda did a great job of the header/banner. Yes, I am very blessed to have Alvin in my life. He is a great companion. Always have a story. He is the Gayle to my Oprah. I love that line.

      Reply

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