Now What? (New Relationship, Part 4)

As we walked inside the Shelter, our worker, Amy, explained their process and proceeded to tell us that two dogs matched the information we had filled out on the application. One was female–a Pug-Beagle mix and the other was a male beagle. She said both were thought to be between three and four years old. 

Wm said that he wanted us to meet the female first.

The procedure for meeting potential pets had changed, and Amy told us that we would have to separate and that the dog could only meet us one at a time—without Loki. Wm suggested that I be the first to interact with the potential matches. So, I sat in a chair at the table and waited for Amy to bring the female around.


Wm had a direct view toward the hallway to where Amy was bringing out the pup. Before I saw her, I heard him sigh, and “Awwww” came out of his mouth. At that moment, although she was still sight-unseen, I knew we would be taking her home.

As she rounded the corner with Amy, and I saw the UGLIEST dog I’d ever seen!! She was stout. Her face was smashed-in and wrinkled. Her tail was in a curlicue. She wasn’t fluffy! She was tan. Sigh!! She was in no way what I’d envisioned as a new addition to our home. 

Amy brought her to me. I tried to engage with her. But Olive kept going back to Amy. Amy told me that Olive had been adopted and just returned to the Center that morning. The “parents” explained that they didn’t know a dog would be that much work and that they just didn’t have the time for her.

Amy then handed me the leash and walked over to Wm so I could, again, try to see if Olive and I were a match. I even sat on the floor and tried to engage her. My attempts were futile, at best.


Then Wm and I traded places. I sat with Loki, assuring him that he was our “good boy” as Wm sat with Olive. She was more responsive to him than she had been to me, getting in his lap and licking him. Soon, Wm got up and asked Amy if we could take Loki and Olive outside to see how they were together.  


I held Olive’s leash as we made our way to the side door. We went to the fenced-in grassy area and allowed the dogs to meet. Loki sniffed Olive, and Olive sniffed back. 

Then, she promptly took a dump. They ignored each other. The upside was that neither bared teeth nor acted aggressively toward the other.  We walked around for five minutes or so. Wm then said, “Let’s take her home.” For me, that was a forgone conclusion due to Wm’s reaction when he first saw her.


We went back in, with both dogs, and filled out more paperwork. We got copies of Olive’s veterinary records, microchip information, and adoption paperwork. Olive’s previous owners had gotten her a pink collar and leash and a dog bed that were given to us as well.


A downpour had started just after we had gotten back inside the building. 

Wm handed me the keys to the car and asked me to open the door and get Loki inside. He would then carry Olive to the car and get her in the backseat with Loki and me.

As he hurried to the car, Wm looked like a linebacker running with a ball under his arm. Quickly, he placed Olive beside me and got in. The dogs didn’t interact with each other—Olive sat on my left, and Loki was on the right.


We had discussed renaming our new dog when we applied for Daffodil, the Weimaraner. Previously, I’d named almost every one of my dogs after alcoholic beverages: Kahlua, Chardonnay, Guinness, Corona, etc., and Wm quickly put the kibosh on that idea. He was adamant that we make the new name similar to the current one.  


As we drove home, I said to Wm and Loki, “We’re going to call her Livi.” 

I reasoned that it’s close to Olive and was cutely alliterative with Loki. Wm and Loki agreed. I looked down at her smashed in face, and told her that her name was Livi now.  


We pulled in the driveway, and I leashed Livi. Loki ran into the house, and Livi gingerly entered and began sniffing everything. I took her on a walk-through, as I had done with Loki months before. She was still withdrawn but seemed interested in everything.

I quickly took them into the backyard. I unleashed Livi to see what she would do. She went over practically every inch of the yard, enjoying the new smells.


So far, so good, Wm and I agreed. Livi had very little interest in the toys scattered around the living room, so she slept most of the afternoon. She got up only for me to take Loki and her to the backyard.

Around seven, we made dog dinner. It was dog food, rice, carrots, and a little ground turkey. When I sat her bowl down, she ate like she’d hadn’t eaten in a year!! Loki usually nibbles on his, walks away, nibbles some more until he finally finishes. He quickly learned that walking away during dinner time was not a good idea. Livi had quickly gobbled her dinner down and lunged at Loki’s and began eating his. 

Loki turned around, snarled at her, and pushed his dish toward the wall with his paws. Livi barked as Loki finished his dinner. She didn’t seem to understand the word “NO!” I sighed as Wm just laughed at the situation.


Finally, it was bedtime. Wm had put Livi’s dog bed at the foot of our bed beside Loki’s. As Wm showered, I attempted to wrangle the “Tank,” as we dubbed her, into her bed, and get her to stay. She barked. And barked. But she stayed in her bed, temporarily. When she stopped yipping, I heard her small gait walking around. Up I got and got her back in bed. More barking.

This pattern repeated itself at least five more times before Wm came into the room. “Awwww, they are so cute in their beds.”, he said. Then he asked me how I’d gotten her in bed. I sighed. She had exhausted me, but I knew that I had to be consistent in following up with my commands.

She barked for almost another hour when we finally turned off the lights. She began to snore so loudly that I thought a motorcycle had gotten into our room.  

We slept. Finally.


Published by Kjohnson

I'm a retired teacher and writer. I love to cook, bake, remodel, and play with my soulful dogs, Loki and Livi

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