Jack has a forever family.
Jack's new Mom is the veterinarian who neutered him and fell in love with him while he was in the doggie hospital. She says she doesn't know why she decided to adopt a little dog when she has been doing Lab rescue for years and has always had big dogs. The SPCA tell me that Jack won the "jack"pot with this family and is going to have a great life. In fact in two weeks he's going on vacation to Connecticut with the family and his Lab big brother.
With Jack gone, Russell spent his afternoon on display in the lap of Jackson (I think that was what his name was)
The poor puppy was shaking like a leaf when I picked him up, probably more from all the stimulation of so much activity around him than from the actual cold air. He is so different from his brother in that he is so incredibly skittish. He hates being around lots of strangers and barely tolerates Walt here at home, though he seems to love me.
Ashley says that she hasn't had a single inquiry about Russell, either by phone or by e-mail, through his page on PetFinder.com. The problem is that there is a litter of Lab/Golden Retriever puppies which are ready for adoption and these are the most popular puppies, so while she has lots and lots of inquiries about "Mia's puppies," poor little Russell has gone unnoticed.
I put him in the dog carrier to ride home from the park yesterday, figuring that he would feel safer there than he would sitting on the seat next to me. When we got home, I just brought the carrier into the house and opened the door and let him decide when he wanted to come out (which didn't take too long, once he realized he was "home.")
So now that Russell is an "only puppy," I'm starting a program to get him more open to having people other than myself around him. It was almost impossible to do with Jack here because Jack was such a dominant puppy that he wouldn't let Russell get any one-on-one attention.
I have cut up cheese into the teeniest possible cubes and I call Russell often throughout the day. He has to come and take the cheese from my hand. Now, he's not afraid of me, but he doesn't like to come up to anybody who is standing up. If I sit down, he's in my lap instantly, and his favorite place to sleep is draped across my shoulders, behind my neck (amazingly UNcomfortable for me!) But already he is getting used to come to me when I call him. And for the very first time he now jumps up against my knees when I'm working and begs to be picked up. Jack did that all the time, but Russell never did.
I'm also having Walt give him cheese whenever he comes into a room. He so much wants to pet Russell, but any attempt to touch him causes him to run away, so I'm hoping that as Walt gives him cheese every time, the puppy will start feeling less skittish around him. It's so funny that he will sit in Walt's lap, but only if Walt takes him out of my lap first. He doesn't want Walt to pick him up. But once in his lap, he's fine.
I'm wondering if these puppies were somehow abused, especially by a male, before they came to the SPCA. I've never actually asked Ashley what their story is.
There is placement at Petco on Saturday, as usual, but when I asked Ashley if she wanted Russell there she said no, that she would prefer to wait until he can stop shaking in public all the time before she puts him up for adoption, so it looks like this little guy and I have our work cut out for us in the next week or so.