I have some pretty exciting news! My boyfriend and I have adopted a cute little scruffer!
The search for a new addition to the family has been long lasting and far-reaching. We’ve applied to many rescues, but never had a lot of luck. In one case, a rescue turned us down because my current dog had never had a dental cleaning?
Either way, we found the perfect, allergy friendly companion last Friday.
After scouring the internet after our most recent letdown, I found a cute little image of a small terrier mix on the humane society’s website.
I knew this was exactly the kind of dog my boyfriend had been searching for. The description was even more encouraging, reading something along the lines of “Quiet cute guy. Likes to play hide and seek with the volunteers.”
Guess who else likes to play hide and seek, is calm, and is pretty picky? My dog, Sam!
I instantly told Darien we needed to head out to the Humane Society the next day to make sure we could investigate and potentially claim him before someone else came, but I didn’t show him a picture of Nigel at first.
Since we’d had such shaky luck, I didn’t want him to imprint on a dog that we would potentially not take home again. Later on, I gave in and showed him a picture.
… He imprinted.
Then later that night I had a dream about Nigel… and guess what? I imprinted.
The next morning I woke up early in a flurry of activity. I do what I always do and immediately began planning. Where would he sleep? What would he eat? What precautions do we need to take with my delightfully messy apartment? Do I have the right grooming blades for him? The list went on and on, until my boyfriend woke up to me in FULL FLEDGED planning mode, while he still had sleep in his eyes (sadly, this is not too uncommon. I am a morning person, he’s a night person).
A few seconds of comprehension occurred, we made a few jokes back and forth about our failed attempts to keep from imprinting, and then he joined in.
Skip forward to 12:30pm. Food is cleaned up. Sam is packed in the car, and we drive a short distance to the humane society. I wait for a few minutes, found Sam a spot in the shade (don’t worry it was an unusually Fall-like day), and tiptoed inside after some other potential adopters.
Immediately I was greeted by familiar faces from past lives, and one of them graciously showed me to Nigel’s cage where I promptly forgot all of my manners and stuck my fingers through the cage with excitement. Thankfully Nigel was everything his description said, and politely handled my infraction. I sent Darien this picture of Nigel as he rushed over from class.
Seeing how excited I was, and probably wishing to keep me from breaking too many rules, the familiar face let me take Nigel out to a courtyard to interact with him. He looked rough. Matts in his coat, scabs from various flea and tick infestations, and missing teeth. The familiar face told me Nigel was discovered by a staff member wandering the neighborhood. As far as anyone knew, he had at least been wandering for three days.
I’ve groomed a lot of rescues before, and used to volunteer at the same humane society… so I was somewhat acquainted with the roughness. It’s still so heartbreaking he ended up wandering while obviously such a sweet boy.
These pictures are from the first few minutes with Nigel.
Shortly after meeting him this way, he rolled over on his belly for rubs. Nigel clearly was calm as other dogs walked by, and clearly seemed amicable. I had a good feeling about Nigel and hoped Sam would like him too.
My boyfriend walked through the fence to the courtyard not long after these pictures, and his eyes filled with water. It was clear he loved Nigel as much as I did. I looked up at him and said: “he’s perfect… and I’m not just saying that.”
A few minutes and an application later, we were approved for adoption. Sam met Nigel in the courtyard with a volunteer to be introduced. Nigel and Sam seemed mostly uninterested, Sam more upset that he couldn’t clearly see me than with any tiny dog. Once the volunteers and staff members brought Sam out to me, he began to show interest in Nigel. There were no rude words exchanged, and they seemed to get along well.
I took Sam back to the car and took him home to make sure he had enough to drink and eat. My boyfriend stayed for the adoption procedures. At first, we thought we wouldn’t be able to take Nigel home until he was neutered, but the Humane Society allowed us to foster him until his official adoption date.
Pretty much as soon as he came home I went ahead and bathed and groomed him. A lot of people may debate this with me, but I am a huge fan of getting it over all in one step. That way he can remember the day and us positively, instead of the only experience for that day is taken from his run and groomed before bed.
During the entirety of the bath and groom, he was as sweet as can be. I was prepared for a much harder dog than the one we have. He is so sweet and kind. This is what he looked like after a bath, groom, and coconut oil treatment.
Nigel in the foreground, Samuel in the background.