Is that the sweetest little face, or what?! Meet Mr. Scrumpy, the newest member of our family. A few months ago I was looking for a puppy that would be a good companion for Silly. There were dogs we could have chosen, but in the end, we chose to search for a puppy.
There was one other contender for the coveted spot of becoming Silly’s companion, and that was a 6-month-old great Dane. However, I couldn’t make the long trip to northern Vermont to meet this mammoth canine because Silly is a bit neurotic when going for car rides. She never quite calms down and car rides cause her a great deal of stress. If we need to, we will take her in the car, but the incessant whining and high pitch squeals drive us all right up the wall.
So the search continued, until one day a woman posted that she had puppies coming the end of April and that they would be a Corgi mix. I said to myself with a half-cocked pirate smile, “Corgi mix, eh! Mixed with what?” So I contact the woman and she said the puppies would be a corgi chihuahua mix. I started cracking up because in my mind’s eye, anchored into the deepest parts of my brain were images of the most preciously awkward ugly dog in the world.
I talked with Dom about it and he cracked a half-cocked pirate smile too, and I knew we were destined to have a homely dog. When we met Silly, I thought she was an ugly dog, but I think Mr. Scrumpy will have her beat!
Then the puppies were born, and I had to choose between 7 puppies. How do you choose? They were all so ugly and alien-like.
We knew we wanted a boy, and we knew that Simmi wanted a white dog, so that’s how we made our choice. The boy in the middle would be Mr. Scrumpy.
Look at that silly looking alien face! We melted at the sight of him. We sent our deposit and then got photos of him as he grew.
At 5 weeks old, his mother ran out of milk with so many puppies to feed. He was started on solids, and by the next week, they contacted me to ask if we wanted to come get him early. We weren’t supposed to get him until the end of June.
We said yes, and I traveled to New York state to get him on Father’s Day.
This tiny creature has captured our hearts. He’s smart already, well on his way to being house trained, and enjoys being held and cuddled.
We haven’t formally introduced him to Silly yet. He barely weighs a pound and she towers over him with 30 pounds of full excitement. Mr. Scrumpy doesn’t yet know to be a dog, and to Silly, he is some sort of weird animal that doesn’t speak her language. He isn’t even interested in knowing her, so of course, she was way too excited.
At no time are they ever allowed to be together without one of them in a crate. That will change as she mellows out to his presence, and she has, but I’m taking baby steps. I want the experience to be a good one, and for her to fully accept him.
When Silly first saw Mr. Scrumpy she kept barking and making quick jerking movements towards the front of her crate. She does the same thing to squirrels and bugs, and I wanted her to be in a calm and submissive state before introducing them without the crate.
We’re getting there! I was able to bring Scrumpy out on the deck where Silly was leashed and sat between them as she calmly approached me for assurance and love. Reinforcing her good behavior has gone a very long way in getting Scrumpy acclimated to our family dynamic.
I don’t foresee allowing them to be introduced without a crate for at least another week. If it’s wise for other animals to be separated before introducing them to a flock or herd, then it’s good enough for dogs too. If Scrumpy was a year old, that would be a different story, because he would already know the rules of being a dog.
Anyway, I want the bonding to go smoothly. At night they sleep right next to one another. Silly can smell Scrumpy, listen to his whimpering and crying at night, and is getting used to him walking around outside her crate or outside on the deck.
Both dogs are on grain free dog food. If they were on regular food, we wouldn’t be able to have dogs at all. We figured out that Simmi isn’t allergic to dogs if they are on a grain free dog food. Any dog that is on regular food, however, causes her to sneeze and we need to give her Benadryl.
The first two days Scrumpy was with us, Simmi needed Benadryl, but as of this morning, she hasn’t needed it at all. The same happened with Silly when she came to live with us.
Scrumpy is one hungry little puppy, and he was able to find his bag of food and started whimpering for more. Does his little belly in the above photo look like he could possibly fit any more food in there? Haha
Just for a point of reference, Dom’s boots are bigger than Mr. Scrumpy!
We look forward to seeing him grow into the cutest/ugliest dog in the world and have many adventures with Silly.