I was inspired by Adrianne’s delightful post to note on my blog that we got a second dog back in March!
It all began when I came down with Puppy Fever last spring. I love our dog Charlie, but for some reason I got it into my head that I wanted to go through the experience of adopting a new pet. Apparently I wanted to hear the pitter-patter of a new animal pooping on the carpet. And I thought Charlie seemed lonely. He wanted a friend!
So I started looking around on the website of the Wake County SPCA, and it was there that I saw ‘Pajamas’, a forlorn, Dalmatian-looking white dog with grey spots. The description read something like this:
HI! MY NAME IS PAJAMAS! I’M A THREE YEAR OLD DALMATIAN/AMERICAN BULLDOG MIX. I’VE HAD A PRETTY HARD LIFE, AND I’M LOOKING FOR A FAMILY THAT CAN GIVE ME LOTS OF TENDER LOVING CARE. I THINK A HOUSEHOLD THAT ALREADY HAS A DOG WILL BE A GOOD MATCH FOR ME AND REALLY HELP ME COME OUT OF MY SHELL.
That’s too bad, I thought. Pajamas looks cute, but we’re looking for a younger, smaller dog. Still, when we dropped by the SPCA one Saturday a week or so later, “just to look”, (which I’m pretty sure is how most people end up adopting new pets) I saw Pajamas in one of the holding pens, sleeping curled up tightly around another dog. The sight warmed my heart.
“Want to look at Pajamas?” I said to Brian. “I saw her on the website.”
When a shy, sad Pajamas was brought into the room to meet us, though, I was unimpressed. She was not a puppy. She was not a smaller dog, either, like I wanted.
Instead she was bony, and she had recently had puppies, so she had those big knobbly dog nipples drooping off her ribcage. (Apparently the Wake County SPCA went down and rescued her from a SC shelter after pictures of her looking extremely emaciated were spotted online, for which we are eternally grateful. Her story up to that point remains a mystery.)
Sad to say, my initial response upon meeting Pajamas was, “Hmm, I’m not sure about this…”
And then I looked over at Brian. He had an enormous, beatific smile on his face and had opened his arms wide to enfold Pajamas.
“Hello, sweetheart,” he said tenderly.
“Oh, man,” I realized. “We’re going home with Pajamas.”
We named her Sophie.
Other nicknames we have since invented for her include Loaf, The Monster, and White Devil.
Here are things that Sophie likes: jumping up on the bed and drooping her jowls over my face first thing in the morning, snorting and huffing around and making hilarious noises, standing utterly still and fixing me with a thousand-yard stare when I’m trying to call her, and being flatulent when we have company.
She has a goofy sense of humor and is a big clown, leaping around with abandon and throwing herself into hilarious antics whenever possible. She’s the perfect compliment to Charlie’s slightly quieter, more subtle nature, and she follows him everywhere like a delighted little sister, which is pretty much what she is.
She’s also incredibly soft, like a teddy bear, and beautiful, with big brown eyes and a graceful gait. She has perfect white toenails and little pink footpads and little white eyelashes and a droopy mouth like a sad melting shovel. Passers-by stare and smile at her; little children say, “Look at the dalmatian!” She is also impressively flexible and can curl up into a tiny, spotted ball.
Sometimes she’ll lie on the floor with her enormous, curtain-like jowls drooped over her front paws, like a muffin top. Then I say, “Whatcha doing, Sophie? Are you making muffins?”
Once Charlie realized she was here to stay, he began warming up to her. Now they frolic and play together, and sometimes he licks her face when he thinks no one is looking.
Anyway, those are the dogs. Having 2 dogs is definitely twice as much work as having just one. But I’m so glad we found Sophie. She feels like part of the family.