I had been living as an actor in New York City for 20 years and was
pretty much the designated 'dog sitter' due to the fact that I
didn't have the long term time to dedicate to a pet. Fortunately,
were plenty of friends in my life who trusted me to take care of
dogs while out of town, which really helped with the desire to own a
dog of my own. I was particularly fascinated with pugs for some
reason. I must admit that I was first attracted to the way they looked,
before I even became aware of the personality of the breed and had
sort of decided that if I were ever to have the opportunity to own a
dog, it would be a pug.
Then last summer, a friend of a friend was in need of a dog sitter
and lo and behold, her dog was a pug! Of course, I jumped at the
chance to dog-sit and by the time the owner came back, she had to
pry the dog out of my hands! I can't recall a dog ever making me
laugh as hard and as much as this pug. Boy, was I hooked. I began
around for people who knew of pug breeders and reading everything I
could about the breed and although ashamed to admit it, I even had
names picked out: Cornelius & Stella. I couldn't have just 'one'
Well, thanks to the internet, I stumbled on a Pug Rescue site and
that planted the seed of maybe adopting instead of buying. At this
point in time, my partner Michael & I had been throwing around the idea of
leaving New York City and heading back to his home territory of
Paducah, KY, getting an old house and renovating it. I, of course,
started searching the internet for pug rescues in the area and found
the Kentuckiana Pug Rescue. Fast forward six or seven months, we
arrived in Paducah, found a house and the first night that we got
the internet going I went to the Kentuckiana website and filled out
the online application. That was last November. We were then
interviewed at the house and put on the approval list. Not too much
happened until late December when I got an e-mail from Trudy at the
rescue asking me if I would be interested in adopting a 'senior' pug.
To tell you the truth, I had never really thought about it. (Which
is probably why they are so hard to adopt- no one else does either.)
I gave it some thought and discussed it with Michael and we both
decided it would actually be perfect! Not only would I be getting a
dog that was somewhat trained, but an older dog would be getting a
permanent home to spend the last years of her life.
I didn't even know what she looked like as there was no picture on
the website. The only information that I had was that she was a 12
year old Black pug named Dixie who was being mistreated due to the
fact that her owner had Alzheimer's. She was also kept outside all
of her life and she had arthritis and had to be on medication for
the rest of her life. I was to drive out to Elizabethtown, KY to
pick her up and boy, was I nervous! I just wanted us to like each
other. I felt like one of those people that 'Dateline' or '20/20'
follows to a foreign country when they adopt a little Asian or
Soviet child!! O.K., that may seem a bit outrageous, but remember
I'm an actor from New York City, I have a vivid imagination! When I
first saw her in the back of the car she came in, I knew everything
would be fine. I sat with Hope & Ginny (from the rescue) in Shoney's
for about 2 hours discussing everything we could about Dixie and
then it was time for them to hand her over to me. It was a pretty
emotional moment and it happened really fast. When I saw the look of
sadness on Ginny's face as she handed me Dixie, I knew that she was
a special dog and all would be fine.
Well, life has not been the same since little Dixie stepped into our
house and into our lives. She now runs the house and our lives and
we wouldn't have it any other way! It took her a few weeks to really
open up to us, but now that she has, let me tell you, we are
completely struck at what a sweet, gentle creature she is. Not to
mention, hilarious and the most spoiled dog in Paducah, KY!! I think
that she also snores louder than my father ever did! After taking
her to her new vet, we are also pleased to say that she is in
excellent health, thanks to Kentuckiana Pug rescue, and thanks to
one of Dixie's foster moms, Debbie, we also found out that she is
only 10 years old and will be turning 11 on the 31st of January!!
If anyone reading this knows of anyone who is thinking about getting
a dog, please mention the idea of adopting - and not just adopting a
puppy but maybe an older dog as well. They have so much love to give
and they need a permanent home to spend the last years of their
lives. If they have any doubt about adopting a 'senior' dog, they
should see our 'old lady' with arthritis jump up on her hind legs to
greet us every time we come home from work!
UPDATE 1/31/06 ~ Dixie has reached a milestone today. She is
13 years old! I had found her birth records in the papers that I had
received from the adoption. She is fantastic. She is doing so well.
Her vet said that he had never seen a pug half her age that looked
so good. She had a bout with some severe arthritis for about a week
right after Christmas, but has bounced back and is still not on the
rimidyl. The doctor still says she is doing great with the natural
msm powder. Here are some pics of her. Her brother gunther is doing
just as well. he is so funny and all he wants to do still is sit on
the couch and watch television! Him & I have both gained a few lbs.
so we are both on a diet. He is a true find and friend. Wen we come
in from outside they both wait until I say, "take your marks, get
set, go!" before they will move anywhere. We then race to the
kitchen to where the treats are. They are remarkable dogs. I still
can't believe that I've been fortunate to be their care taker for
these past few years. We are one happy family. You guys do great
work. Wishing you all the best.