The dog that we “met” last week has come to stay. Yes, now we have two bassets, and two is awesome. Loki is a year older than Odin, but oh so skinny. He is calm sweetness to Odin bullish persistence, and he loves being loved. They are a good pair. We are really paying attention, trying to understand him and best care for him. It is like trying to read a picture book where you don’t know the beginning of the story. So different from starting from a puppy with our first two bassets.
When I was a kid on the farm, we would get dogs dropped off at the end of our driveway. We kept them. When other family members didn’t want their dogs anymore, we took them. We had Brutus and Sam, Sport, Duke, Snoopy, Nikki, Bo and Mitzi. The only time we called the pound was for the pit bull with the infected eye. They all were treated as outdoor farm dogs; loved but not coddled, cared for but not worried over. Bones more than dog treats, and a dog house insulated with hay bales in the winter. They were always just around, but would happily come with us for walks on the bush trails along the fields. Just farm dogs.
And now, having raised two healthy, happy (house) hounds from puppy, I find myself in the unusual position of having to undo someone else’s lack of care. That lack is something of which I cannot understand the why and the how. It hurts my heart; but from now on, for this little pup, things will be better. It is a process, one that I am looking forward to seeing the results of. I’m hopeful that those little ribs and every single nub of spine disappear into a good sack of basset, trusting that good food, good play, and lots of love will fill out that little basset belly. Until little Loki isn’t so little anymore!