Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The Good

A few people have offered to foster Bandit. I am extremely appreciative of this! Before pulling Bandit from the shelter, I had already committed to fostering a paralyzed puppy named Popeye, who arrives on July 31. To care for 2 special needs dogs as well as my other dogs while juggling (or trying to) a full-time job, I think may be a case of biting off more than I can chew. To have another place where Bandit can receive the care he needs, even for just a week at a time, would greatly help. But I wouldn't want anyone to rush into it, and I think there are circumstances that everyone needs to be aware of before making this commitment, whether it be short or long term.

First, the GOOD.

I know there is a part of Bandit that I still haven't seen, a part that would love to wrestle with the other dogs, run around the back yard in abandonment, and who knows what else if not for his injury and subsequent confinement. I do look forward to the day when he is fully recovered and can finally move about freely as any dog should be able to. Seven and a half weeks feel like a long long way.

The good about Bandit I think (and hope) is obvious. He's been easy going with everybody he's met, every stranger, every dog. Except for when I saw him at the shelter, he seems to have taken every new situation in stride. The car rides have been no big deal, the vet hospital was no big deal, even the horrid cone he had to wear was quickly accepted, as well as the cervical collar he sports now (it keeps him from bending his neck so he can't lick his sutures, but doesn't bang around like the cone collar). He just has a wonderful temperament.

Bandit is an incredibly devoted dog as well. The girl who brought him to the shelter said he was a german shepherd/husky mix. I don't know too much about huskies but my first 2 dogs ever, Jasper & Samson, were german shepherds, and there are facets to Bandit that remind me so much of them. His loyalty for one. Wherever I go, he wants to go too. Even around the house, he's always looking to see which way I'm going and making sure I'm close.

I also get the impression that Bandit is very smart. I can't honestly say why I think this (and believe me, it's not every dog that I think is smart), the little things I guess. The shelter said his name was Juno and he seemed to respond to it the few times I used it. But in less than a day, he recognized "Bandit" as well.

And he is a goofball. He likes to put his front legs on my lap when I'm sitting on the floor, burrow his head under my arm. It's funny to watch him stick his head deep down into the toy bin filled with toys and then emerge with one toy as if he were bobbing for apples.

Often times, as I work on my computer, I have Bandit confined behind my desk with me. The first few times I had to grab something from the other room, I saw him put his front 2 paws up on my chair, which about gave me a heart attack (no jumping, running, or playing, the vet said!). I corrected him for that, and while I still wouldn't trust him behind on my desk for extended periods, when I have to leave the room just for a few minutes, he now peeks his head under the desk to watch me.

Sometimes Harry, a previous foster who I'm now dogsitting, peeks his head under the desk from the other side to see what's going on with Bandit.

And they play tug of war and steal each other's toys.

For the most part, Bandit is an extremely good dog, well-socialized and with an even temperament. He's not hyper, not mouthy, not a nuisance barker. He loves to cuddle, listens well, and is just plain sweet. But he has a dark side to him too. More to come as I gather my evidence! In the meantime, enjoy this new video:

BTW, we have now surpassed the $1,000 point and have raised $1,040 of Bandit's $4,093 surgery bill! Thank you everyone!