Lynus was one of a pair of brothers we fostered from 1.5 weeks old. His mother had to be euthanized because she attacked someone who got too close to her puppies. Unfortunately, as a stray, biting someone in Florida is a death sentence. These little guys were so tiny and frail when they came to us, combined with their mother’s fate, the whole situation was seriously heart wrenching. It galvanized our resolve to make sure these puppies had happy and healthy lives.
My most vivid memories of the first 2 weeks with these guys are of the ridiculously small amount of sleep we got and how happy I was the first time I got them to poop!
When we first started feeding them I did a ton of research on how to bottle feed puppies correctly. I became something of an expert on the whole process. One of the most important aspects of raising bottle babies is to make sure that the urinate and defecate after every feeding. To accomplish this goal requires rubbing their genital regions with a warm, soft, clothe in order to stimulate them into going. Puppies that young do not have the proper muscle tone to go on their own–this is why you see mama dogs licking the butts of their youngsters after they nurse–
Well these two little fellas absolutely refused to poo after their feedings. For the first 4 days they only had 1 bowel movement between them, courtesy of Charlie brown. I was so stressed out about the fact that they were eating so much and not going that I slept an hour tops for those first few days. I would spend hours upon hours with the warm clothe, until around the 5th day I decided it was time to take some more drastic measures. I looked up how to give a puppy a warm water enema and proceeded to subject both of these little guys to that indignity.
Thankfully the enemas worked and both puppies had some serious bowel movements. I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy and relieved about poop before in my life. It happened at 3:30am and I was so excited that I woke up K2 doing a “thank the heavens they pooped” dance. She said “Good, you are insane” and went back to bed!
Fast forward to the beginning of this week. K2 tells me that the lady that adopted Lynus emailed the rescue with some concerns regarding his energy and lack of training. Keep in mind that this guy is only 5 months old. Of course he is energetic and still has a lot to learn. Regardless, we told the adopter to come to the adoption event that was scheduled for the weekend to go over a training schedule.
As the saying goes, the best plans laid plans of mice and men often go awry. I was woke this morning to find K2 getting ready to go out the door–at 8am on a Saturday morning–, she informed me that the lady had called about Lynus and she was no longer willing to do the training with him! O….M….G. We do our best to vet potential adopters to make sure they understand the responsibilities that are involved with adopting a dog. Apparently this one slipped through the cracks. But that is niether here nor there, the important thing is that my baby boy is back with his foster family! (and handsome as ever, I might add)
I find it funny that every time a pup is returned for bad behavior, it never fails that within a few hours they have been socialized with my crew, gone through a bit of basic clicker training, ran around in the yard, and they behave like perfect angels. My Lynus is no different. In all fairness he is still a puppy so he is rambunctious, wants to play all the time, and doesn’t know all the rules yet. But, again, he is still a puppy, that’s all to be expected.
I can’t say that I’m not happy though. Lynus and Charlie were our first bottle babies. I feel so proud to see how happy and healthy he is now. It makes all those sleepless nights, the constant worrying, feedings every 4 hours, and the seriously gross enemas, all worth it in the end. I can’t wait for him to find his (real) forever home!