The Abraham Family’s Journey to Russia to Bring Home Their Daughter

January 29, 2010

Puppies (and a long story)

I would like to formally introduce our new puppies.

But first, I have to say that Lexi is the biggest animal-loving child I've ever known. She is my little helper when it comes to feeding, grooming, playing, and cleaning up after all our pets. She loves our cats too, but they don't always appreciate her hugs and kisses. The puppies, however, are both so playful and tons of fun. They are fast becoming best friends!

Weighing in at 3.0 pounds, this cute little guy is JoJo.
He is sweet, calm, and very snugly.

Weighing in at a whopping 3.5 pounds is Stroodles.
She is a week older and very energetic.
She tends to boss JoJo around at bit, but is just as sweet.

The boys decided on names right away and they stuck before I had a chance to make suggestions.

If you are a long time follower of this blog, you may be wondering where our beloved WookiEwok is these days.

Well, it's a long story, but he is living at my mom's house.

We got Wookie in May 2008 and he was the best dog in the world until Lexi came home in December. I was so busy looking for signs of attachment or orphanage issues with Lexi and making sure that Liam didn't have a hard time losing baby status that it never occurred to me that the "real" baby in our home (i.e. Wookie) was the one having trouble adjusting. He was very sweet with Lexi so that wasn't the problem.

We were gone for two weeks and came home with a baby that needed lots of attention. We rocked his world and didn't even know it.

What happened is that he went from being reliably house trained to deliberately pooing in the house. He was sneaky about it at first, but then it became outright defiance. His favorite spots were on the master bathroom rug (usually while I was showering) and the playroom carpet. Then, he started this thing where I would take him out the front door to do his business and as soon as I turned my head, he ran around to the back door, entered the house through the pet door, ran to the playroom carpet, proceeded to poo, and then came running back to find me looking all like "What, I didn't do anything wrong?" The little stinker.

Once I discovered what he was doing, I would only take him out with a lease. That didn't stop him. So we tried crating him most of the day and bringing him out hourly to go poo. He refused to relieve himself outside and would even poo inside his crate. This went on for over a month. Changing Lexi's poopy diapers were bad enough. I didn't need more poo to deal with and was ready to pull my hair out over the whole ordeal.

So I took him over to my mom's house last February for a little "respite" care. She had kept him for us while we were in Russia and going to her house was like a doggy vacation. I knew he would be happy and well cared for, but what I didn't count on was her stealing falling in love with him and not wanting to give him back. She still says he loves her best. Grrrrr. She certainly wouldn't have threatened to sue me for custody or anything. The boys begged me all Summer to bring Wookie home. It was hard to explain that it was not going to be so simple. They got to play with Wookie again at the pet show in the Robertson County fair. He even won Best of Show with Preston. The begging continued into the Fall and the first item on any of the kids' Christmas list was a new puppy (if not Wookie).

Then, in November, I ran into Wookie's breeders at a Chili Supper for Preston and Garrett's school. They told me that Wookie's mom and dad were expecting puppies any day and offered us the first pick of the litter. They also said the puppies should be ready by Christmas Eve. That's when I decided to surprise the kids. I must add that I offered to let my mom have 1st pick of the litter if she would give us back Wookie, but she didn't go for it.

A few days before Thanksgiving I took my mom, my sister, my nephew and nieces to pick out our newest family member. I really wanted a girl this time (not sure why). There were two litters to choose from. The other litter shared Wookie's dad too. The only girl out of two entire litters was a little black one. But I also adored the tiny little light cream one that was Wookie's brother. Oh, they were sooooooooooo cute and it was sooooooooooo hard to choose.

I mean seriously, look at those cute little faces.

And the puppies are pretty cute too! Ha Ha - couldn't resist!

So, I decided to get both!

It turns out (so far anyway) that my indecision was actually a very good thing. These two are best buddies. They sleep and play together and then sleep and play and sleep some more. They never whine or cry at night. They are both doing well with the house-training thing. They are awesome when the weather is nice. Not so much when it's cold and snowy.

In order to keep the Christmas surprise, my mom picked the puppies up for me on Christmas Eve and brought them over on Christmas morning. With all the excitement that day, Liam and Nolan still think Nana gave them the puppies for Christmas....and that's okay, it smooths over the whole "Nana took Wookie and won't give him back".

My blog friend, Jen, asked how we can handle puppies with five kids. The answer is it was kind of hard at first because they were very much like newborn babies. We had to teach Lexi to be gentle and how to hold and carry them. (She thought she could carry them around by the neck like she does with her baby dolls, but we didn't let her.) It took several days, but now she is great with them. We still watch her very closely with them. I'll be the first to admit that taking puppies outside fifty times day and night can be a real pain. BUT, they are worth all the trouble. The boys take turns on potty duty when they are home from school and, like I said earlier, Lexi is my biggest helper. She constantly reminds me to take them out and feed them. ;0) They sleep in a crate together at night and seem to really enjoy their home. We won't give them full run of the house until they are completely ready.

We all LOVE "Puppy Playtime!"


Jeanette said...

They are sooooo sweet! It's nice for dogs to have a buddy while all the humans are gone :)

Kristine said...

first of the header! your children are beautiful.

I think it is kind of funny that your Mom stole your dog. ;)

And I love that you got the two puppies. Animals are so important for children (at least that is what I think). They teach them so much about unconditional love and responsibility.

You are a wonderful Momma!


tammy said...

such cute puppies! i love the new picture at the top of your blog too.

Jackie said...

Oh my goodness they are so cute! Are thet Maltese puppies? I feel like we've had this conversation before... I had a maltese when I was a kid.

I love the new header too! And as a total aside... I love the photo of you and the puppy! You look beautiful!

Amy said...

LOVE the new "look" and header. Girl - you have some gorgeous kids!!

Love the story -- too funny! I had a similiar story: mom and I rescued a kitten shortly before I left for Russia - trip#2. Sunny was supposed to be T's kitten when we came home. Only when we came home - kitten didn't (they all stayed at mom's while I was gone!).

Pets are wonderful friends!!

Over-Caffeinated X 4 said...

They are totally adorable! Are they poodles? One time my grandmother stole my dog... well, she said she would give him back, but she made me feel so guilty about how lonely she was that I didn't have the heart. So you got a good thing, still get to see Wookie and two cute puppies in the process. :)

Anonymous said...

My, my, that is such a cute story. Wish it were all that simple. Yes, they are toy poodles. Since I rescue abused, lost and abandoned animals, I now have eight dogs, (some have gone to "Doggy Heaven",) and six cats, a 22 yr. old Cockateil, a Beta fish and feed a lonely ground hog and hundreds of beautiful wild birds including two species of Woodpeckers and many squirrels. I treat animals as beloved family members and once they come to my house, they rarely ever leave. All small children should be taught the responsibilities of caring for pets if they insist on having them. Wookie loves playing with all his family. Nana

Party Of Six said...

Oh Kim! I could hardly look at your blog without wanting to run out and get some puppies! They are sooo darn cute!!! AAWWWWW!!!

Heidi said...

Love the puppies. I would have had a hard time choosing too. I find children and dogs a blessing to raise together. Enjoy your family.

Troy and Rachel said...

What cuties! And I'm glad Wookie is still in the family - so many people love him - that's one lucky dog!!

I totally would have chosen both too!!

Amber said...

I have found your story such an inspiration. We are awaiting our court date to adopt our 13 mo old baby girl in Novo, Russia. Reading the stories of those "on the other side" makes the wait a little easier. Thanks for sharing!
Many Blessing,

Becky and Keith said...

They are so darn cute, Kim!! Love them! I love the story about your mom and that she is such an animal lover - I can see where you get it from! :-) Hope you guys are doing well!

Barb said...

They are really cute! What breed are they?

Joy said...

By the grin on her face you can tell just how much she loves those puppies! I'm a bad mom because Anna only has plastic dogs right now.