Jan. 11Poppy and we have been giving some serious thought to the sort of forever home he’d like, where the people will love him as much as he’ll love them. His typing isn’t great, so I’ll tell you what we’ve chatted about so far.
Poppy wants a home where he won’t have to be alone for too many hours at a time, because he loves to be with people and he likes to know where you are if he can’t be curled up right next to you. He promises he won’t ever chew up your shoes or your furniture if he’s alone for a while, but sometimes when he feels bored, he might tear up his squeaky toy, so he hopes his forever people won’t mind if that happens once in a while.
Since he usually feels kind of shy and submissive, he thinks he might like to have a canine companion, not too bossy, who would do things like greet visitors first and give Poppy confidence if any scary things happened, at least for a while until he gets used to you and his new home. Although Poppy loves children because they’re the right height for giving pets, he doesn’t think he should live with little kids who fall down easily, because sometimes when he runs, all he can think about is what he’s heading toward and not what’s in the way.
If something is in his way when he’s in a hurry, Poppy will leap over it-- benches and flower pots—or swerve around chairs and between table legs. He also does a funny hop backwards if he comes fast and sits too close in front of you. We’ve promised to take him to a friend’s agility course so he can try it out, when the weather is a little better. Poppy likes to run outside with our dogs, and he stays right with us when he’s off lead. He knows his name and comes to a whistle, and usually sits square right in front of whoever called him. He knows “sit”, “wait”, “come” and “go lie down.”
Poppy doesn’t like to think about the “before” time, because he’s very happy now and he says that’s all that matters. But sometimes he does certain things, which people would call behaviors, that make us think he might have had some training. So he wants to live with someone who’ll take him to dog school with them, so that you and and he’ll be able understand each other clearly and he’ll know exactly what you want him to do.
Although we love Poppy, he’s not the number one dog in our home, and he definitely wants to be number one in somebody’s heart. Maybe yours?
Poppy has been heartworm tested and on preventative, neutered, up to date on shots, microchipped, and on flea/tick preventative.
Poppy is being fostered in west central Indiana. For more information, please email Chris at Come Bye Rescue or go to Poppy's at page at www.comebyebcrescue.petfinder.org
Poppy had a super weekend! He’s met a number of holiday guests joyfully, tail gaily wagging. Also, his recall in our fenced yard has been sharpening, and yesterday he was allowed out on a long line with our dogs in the unfenced front yard. He ran and played and frolicked, and evey time we called him, he sailed back to us in a clean sit.
So late this afternoon we set out to a favorite locale, a county park in a wooded area where dogs can run off lead. We first let Pop out on the long lead, and he again came back every time we called. So we unsnapped the lead and let him run with our dogs. What a great time he had, galloping, stretching his long legs, scenting all the wild smells, always glancing back to keep us in sight. We were so proud of him!
All three are now napping in the family room, their twitching legs dreamily re-enacting their afternoon adventure.
Poppy has made wonderful progress, gaining manners and common sense. This tells us that Poppy will need an active home with an active family who will welcome him both on long hikes and curling up together for a snooze.
Nov. 22Poppy Re-discovers Toys!
One of the joys of fostering is watching a dog who’s had a run of bad luck with people slowly regain his spirit and resume the little joys in life, like toys. Poppy will content himself with a peanut-butter filled bone to gnaw, but the sight of a stuffed toy turns him into a fiend. He demolishes the outer covering of the unlucky critter and shreds the stuffing into little cotton balls that drift to the corners of every room in the house. Wearied of picking up this ongoing harvest of debris, I had stashed all the squeaky toys out of reach. But Poppy is relentless in his search for squeakies to shred; he even nosed open a closet door where a bag of pillow stuffing had been stashed, dragged it out, and pulled it apart—the mother lode!
Finally I relented and set out to get some sacrificial toys for Poppy. Of course the resident BCs would feel slighted if they weren’t also presented with a new toy, even though they care little for shredding once the squeaker is extracted. At the local Goodwill store, I found a big purple Barney, a medium Tony the Tiger, and a little floppy giraffe. The resident BCs nosed the tiger and the giraffe but soon lost interest. But Poppy was in heaven, his head held high as he strutted around the house, his mouth stuffed full of purple dragon. By the end of the day, Poppy had herded Barney, Tony, and the giraffe safely into his crate, where he rested like a proud shepherd guarding his cottony flock.
Hi, Poppy here! Sorry to have been out of touch for so long! My foster Mom says it’s taken me a little longer than most foster dogs to regain my bearings—I didn’t know I’d lost them but I’m glad they’re back.
I’ve been having fun just hanging out with the Border Collies who live here—Mom says it’s doing me good to just chill. At first the other dogs said my manners were too rough to be around them. But I’m feeling much calmer now than I did when I was on the road, not as restless, and I don’t crash into furniture in the house or run from room to room (well, sometimes, but not all the time :-) So now when everybody’s relaxing in the family room after dinner, I get to stretch out on a pillow with them—it feels really good.
I remembered a game I used to play, too. Mom and Dad brought a plastic disc thing outside and showed it to me and then started to wave it around and throw it to each other. I like to chase things so I ran after it, and after a while I picked it up off the ground. When I did that, M&D got all excited and said what a good dog I was! So I started bringing it back to them so they’d throw it again. We all had fun! A couple weeks later they took me to a big park where there were a bunch of BCs all playing catch-the-disc—they called it frisbee. When Mom took my leash off, I ran right out with the rest of the dogs who were waiting to chase after the frisbee. There were a lot of dogs, though, and I felt kind of shy, so I just ran along with them and had some fun herding a pretty little female. She only wanted to watch the frisbee and didn’t notice me moving along behind her. It was great to be out with all those happy dogs. My M&D say they’re going to take me for a herding test—if that means I get to see some sheep, I can’t wait.
I went to see the vet today. She’s very nice and gentle so I wasn’t scared of her. She said I’m very healthy and have a great personality. I heard Mom and the Doc talking about removing my dew claws because my legs don’t move right with those things hanging off. If that’s what makes my legs sore when I run, I’ll sure be glad when they’re gone.
Well, that’s about it for now-- I’m heading outside to check some noisy machine that makes the leaves whirl around in every direction—looks like it might be fun to chase. I’ll let you know how what a herding test is, as soon as I find out.
How this friendly fellow lost his home must be a sad story, because he has some training and is very eager for attention. He was found running with another BC whose manners weren't as polished and learned a couple bad habits. But Poppy is amazingly willing and responsive, and he's learning not to crowd people or jump up for attention. Other things he already knows: he quickly identified a couple of 'quiet spots' in our house where he settles by himself, he has a spit polish 'sit,' and he knows to 'wait' until he's released to go through a door or out of the car.
Poppy is an adult male Border Collie/English Shepherd. Poppy is about 4 years old, an eager companion who can clear a coffee table with a wag of his tail. He's about 21' at the shoulder and weighs about 50 lbs. He's generally housetrained, as long as he can get out regularly. He crates easily and rests there until released. He walks well on lead and loves jaunts around the neighborhood and car rides. Don't let his age fool you. Poppy is no couch potato but rather a fine companion-level dog.