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Sunday, April 29, 2007


April is a very big month in our household for a number of reasons. Two of them are 7- and 8-years old. April 20 was Virginia's 7th Gotcha Day and today, April 29, is Tinker's 3rd Gotcha Day. For those of you unfamiliar with the phrase, "Gotcha Day", it is the anniversary of when you adopt your rescue dog.Virginia was a birthday present for Caron back in 2000. It’s really hard to top a present once you’ve gotten, "the best birthday present ever". Tinker came along in 2004 when we were looking for a pal who would help Virginia with her separation anxiety. Tinker's zaniness has been the perfect complement to Virginia's laid back (except when left alone) style.

He is the Yin to her Yang.

Virginia was very timid when we first got her, especially with other dogs.She was shy with people, but quicker to warm up to them than she was with her own species.

Tinker, on the other hand, was Mr. Happy-Go-Lucky right from the start.If he were a person (which is not to say there aren't times when we could swear he is), he would be the type to go up to anyone, introduce himself, ask how the wife and kids are, and say, "Damn glad to meet you!".

Virginia is a model citizen in the car. She chews a treat-filled marrow bone, and then nods off for the duration of the ride. Tinker chews his treat-filled marrow bone for about 2 seconds, then will squeak, whine, squeal, and chirp like a bird. You might say he's not fond of being in the car. He gets all excited about the prospect of getting in the car, but the actual being in the car is not so hot.

On the other hand, Virginia does not like being left alone in the house. She will bark, sometimes constantly, until we get home. Her separation anxiety hasn't gotten worse with time, but hasn't gotten a whole lot better either. She will go for stretches where she is not bad if we are out for the same time period on a regular basis (she’ll get used to a 9-5 work routine), but then she'll stress if we go out at another time.

Tinker is perfectly fine if left alone.It's a rare occasion where one would be left without the other.If we leave for a short period of time, Tinker is not crated, but the stairs are gated off since he is not allowed to do them since his back injury. For longer periods of time, Tinker is crated and the gates are left down so Virginia can have free reign.

The first rule of the household for Tinker, without question, is whatever Virginia is doing, he wants to be doing, too. Tinker follows her around, sometimes being the bratty little brother (endlessly licking her mouth, ears, face, nose, etc.), but mostly he just wants to be near her. When we first got Tink, both dogs slept in their own doggy beds. But Tinker began to crawl into Virginia’s bed to snuggle with her. Eventually we bought them a bed that's probably big enough for a Golden Retriever. And even though there is plenty of room in the bed, there are many winter nights when we have to move Tinker, because he has basically laid down right on top of her (Mr. No Personal Space).

Having a second dog definitely took some getting used to. It's not simply a matter of doing everything times two. I was even concerned that Virginia would be receiving less attention (we definitely project our own feelings on dogs sometimes) with another dog around. I couldn't have been more wrong.

Now it’s difficult to remember the time before Tinker came along.Now we have two times the entertainment, fun, nuttiness, and general Beagle kookiness. We wouldn’t have it any other way.



Blogger snoutbeagle said...

I definitely enjoyed and now relate to your "Gotcha" post. My husband and I, a year-and-a-half after adopting our beloved beagle, Diesel, have just adopted another beagle ... Marvin's Gotcha Day is just over 2 weeks ago. We're still going through the two-beagle adjustment period (walks with two super-sniffers is a challenge!) and are looking forward to the day where we can say without doubt "we wouldn't have it any other way". Our blogger address is snoutbeagle.blogspot.com. I still need to update it with Marvin's arrival. Thank you for your words of encouragement!

June 25, 2007 at 10:45:00 AM EDT  

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