Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Chapter Two

The ink is drying on Miss Tulip's, a.k.a "Rubi Lite's," adoption paperwork. Working with thee past few months have been . . . exhilarating. And frustrating. And joyous. And emotionally exhausting. And totally worth it.

So pretty much just like owning a reactive dog, except that when she flipped out, someone else was holding the leash. Usually.

Which is actually a big difference, really.

Being reactive is verra serious business.
Photo by Paige

I like Tulip's new family a lot. They don't have pit bull experience, but that doesn't mean they're bad dog owners. Neither do they have reactive dog experience, but that doesn't mean they can't handle a reactive dog. (Not a surprise - most people who've had a reactive dog tend not to want another one. Don't ask me, I don't get it, but you can probably tell that from the fact that I recently adopted my third reactive dog). I've found many rescues that will turn someone down for not having breed experience or training experience for a particular problem. Heck, my own parents were turned down for an American Bulldog for not having a fenced in yard.

I don't really care about that stuff. Each family is unique, and all having individual assets and disadvantages. It may be helpful to have breed or reactive dog experience, but I know people who have had pit bulls for twenty years that I wouldn't trust to dog-sit a stuffie. What I like to see more than anything else is an open mind and determination to succeed.

Tulip is determined to succeed. She needs a family who can keep up with her. 

Tulip's new family have that in spades. They didn't flinch when I suggested that it may take up to a year before Tulip really settled into their home (that's my long term estimate for reactive dogs - most dogs don't take that long). They devoured all the education I brought them. They're ready to jump right in to class on Sunday. They're excited to go shopping for new Tulip supplies. What really great family doesn't love new dog gear?

So the prep work's been done, the papers have been signed, nothing left to do but pray, right?

Case management for the rescue is a new role for me, and as I type that, I realize that I've already been doing it for about a year. But we don't just sign the papers and say good luck. This isn't the end of Tulip and mine's relationship. I'll still be here to help trouble shoot for her new family, and to make sure that Tulip continues to get every advantage she can in life. I've gotten rather attached to Tulip this year - I mean, she's so much like Rubi, how could I not? So the rescue and I, her fosters, and all her "aunties" and "uncles" will continue to play guardian angel as long as she needs us.

Knowing Tulip, I'm sure the next chapter in her life will be interesting . . .

Tulip, like Rubi, is many things - but never boring.
Photo by Paige.

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