Life with Jasmine and Juliet, Our Rescued Dachshunds

Random notes on our experience with our two rescued miniature dachshunds

It Has Only Taken Eight Years

Okay, maybe 7.75 years. Jasmine has finally started bonding with Tom.

Jasmine

Jasmine hangin’ out with Dad

It has been a long time coming. I started a new business last year. That left both Jasmine and Juliet to spend all day every day with Tom. And slowly…ever so slowly…he has been winning her over.

Jasmine enjoying "Tom Time"

Jasmine enjoying “Tom Time”

Just of late, she has been going to him every morning for some love and scratchies. She politely takes her bits of apple from me and then moves on over to snuggle with him.

While I’m a tad bit jealous–she has always been MY dog–I’m so happy that she’s finally overcome her fear and has bonded with Tom. And, happily, Juliet has bonded more fully with me.

We’re finally one big, happy family. It has only taken eight years. That’s 56 years to you and me! 🙂

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Jasmine’s Six-Year Anniversary

Six years. I cannot believe that on Monday, Jasmine will have been with us for six years.

Looking back on what we’ve gone through–and how far we’ve come–I can happily say that we have a healthy, spunky, fun-loving, waggy-tailed dog. She greets each morning with romps and jumps for joy. She can’t wait for the major activities of the day, either “go to work” or “studio time.” To “go for rides,” even after almost two months on the road, is still an exciting and joyous pleasure.

What we have here, ladies and gents, is just a happy dog. Not a puppy mill breeder. Not damaged goods. Yes, she’s still shy in new circumstances and with new people. But she’ll get over that fear and take a treat from your hand. She no longer resembles that mess of quivers and shakes that we brought home from her foster home. Her shiny coat, her expressive face, her begging for yet another treat, her barking at Tom to go “get me” when I’m pulling into the garage…she’s just a goofy pup.

That’s what I wanted for her, what I wanted to give her. And looking down at her as she snoozes away, I know that I have given her all the love she deserves–and more.

Happy Anniversary Jasmine. You’ve given us so much more that we could have ever imagined, and we thank the stars that you came into our lives.

Jasmine

What a beauty!

Jasmine

Road dog!

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Happy 3rd Anniversary, Jasmine

July 15 is Jasmine’s 3rd anniversary with us. These days, I can’t imagine life without her. To celebrate her being a part of our family, here are 10 Things I Love About Jasmine.

  1. Woofts. I love when Jasmine woofts at me when she wants something. When she wants attention, she lets out one loud bark. Just one. But when she wants something (a bone, usually), she woofts. That little puff of air makes a lovely sound.
  2. Hooves of Thunder. When Jasmine runs, she sounds like a herd of bison. That’s a pretty spectacular feat for a 11-pound dog. When I get home, I can hear her running across the family room (it’s directly over the garage). Her excitement makes me smile.
  3. Wrestle Wrestle Wrestle. Every morning, Jasmine and I play a game of Wrestle Wrestle Wrestle. Actually, it’s a game of “give Jasmine some love” but I never tire of it. Jasmine hides under the bed, I ask her if she wants to Wrestle Wrestle Wrestle, and she comes running. It’s a great way to start the day.
  4. Constant Companion. This pup is always by my side. I am never lonely–or alone.
  5. Chair Mate. Jasmine loves to sit with me on the recliner. It’s especially nice during the winter, but it gets a little rough in 90+ degree weather.
  6. Waggedy Tail. It took Jasmine a long time to learn how to wag her tail. She now wags it all the time. Seeing that waggedy tail always makes my heart smile. I helped make that tail go from being forever tucked under her to swinging with the breeze.
  7. Have You Been a Good Girl? It’s the nightly ritual. I ask Jasmine this question, and she begins to jump for joy. She knows the answer. The answer is yes. And we all know that good girls get…a bone! Bone! Bone! (Imagine a leap of joy for every time I say “bone!”)
  8. Rompy Dog. Jasmine loves to romp in our back yard. She bounces like Tigger in the tall grass, ears flapping and tail tall. Oh, it’s so cute.
  9. Baby Talk. I love how Jasmine turns even the biggest macho guy into mush, complete with baby talk. “What a good puppy you are…yes you are!”
  10. Burrowing Dog. Jasmine, in true Dachshund fashion, has learned to love burrowing. No blanket is sacred. Especially ones printed with puppies and fire hydrants.

Okay. That’s 10. I could go on and on. Instead, to honor my beautiful pup, here’s a link to a fabulous article on Petfinder that’s near and dear to both our hearts:

10 Reasons Not to Buy Puppy From a Pet Store

Remember, EVERY pet store puppy comes from a puppy mill. NO reputable breeder would sell to a pet store. So please please please get a dog from the shelter or a reputable breeder.
Happy Anniversary, Jasmine. We love you.

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The Packing Game

Jasmine is enjoying packing the house.

I’ve generally been down on the floor filling and taping boxes, sorting through items…generally on doggie level.  Jasmine has been climbing all over me–over my calves when I’ve been kneeling, in my lap when I’ve been sitting, and nose to nose when I’ve been bending over.  She’s been doing the “pounce and run,” the “pup-squeak” (she sits right in front of me, pushes off her front paws with her butt still on the ground in a little front hop and squeaks), and the “stealth sniff” all day.

She’s making the drudgery of packing a little fun…she never ceases to make me smile or laugh as I’m grinding through all the stuff we’ve accumulated over the last dozen years of cohabitation and all the crap treasures we brought with us when we moved in together.  She’s my shadow, and I love having her with me–even when she’s getting into things she shouldn’t.  When I look at that little funny face, when she rolls around in front of me demanding a tummy rub…oh, packing isn’t so bad when you have a pal to share the burden.

Doggie love is wonderful.  🙂

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10 Things I Love About Jasmine

One of my favorite Dachshund-focused blogs is Who’s Your Dachshund, a co-op of 10 bloggers writing about their favorite wee members of their families.  One of the bloggers wrote about how he loves the Frito’s corn chip smell of his Dachshund (although he’d rather not have his couch smell like Frito’s).  It made me think of the many little things I love about Jasmine.  Here are 10 (and there will be more) in no particular order:

  1. Snoring. Totally un-ladylike, she snores louder than my husband.  I’ve read that small dogs tend to do this due to their shorter snouts.  I think it’s adorable.
  2. Pillow fluffer. She loves to fluff her pillows and blankets before lying down.  She uses her mouth and paws to move them around until they are JUST so.  My princess!
  3. “Hooves of Thunder.” You would think that such a small dog could never make such a noise, but when she runs down the hallway, you would think that she weighs about 30 pounds.  The Par-Rump Par-Rump Par-rump of her feet and the Jingle-Jangle-Jingle of her collar tags makes it clear that she’s happily on her way.
  4. “Frito Feet.” I too love the smell of her corn-chip feet.  One of the dogs from my childhood also had corn-chip feet.  I wonder now if he had a little Dachshund in him.
  5. “Snaggle Tooth.” Her upper lip often gets caught and you can see bits of her teeth.  It gives her face a slightly silly look, especially when she tilts her head sideways.  We call it “Snaggle Tooth.”  I love it!
  6. Pure joy. Jasmine shows pure joy and exuberance when you utter the word “Bone” or her favorite activity “Go For Rides.”  She jumps, wags her tail furiously and just exudes this joy that’s fully contagious.
  7. No lonely bathroom trips. Jasmine insists on joining me in the bathroom.  Otherwise, she sits outside the door and scratches on it to be let in and whines.  She now makes sure to destroy something if she’s left on the “outside.”  No lonely bathroom trips for me.
  8. Bounce. She loves the smell of Bounce fabric softener.  My bathroom rug has turned into the “ultimate” scratch-and-sniff pad.
  9. Turtle. She loves to climb under her pillows and buck and spin them all when they’re on her back.  We call it playing “Turtle.”  She has particularly taken to this game with her pillow in the car.  It’s fun to watch–but not when I’m driving.
  10. Back seat driver. Speaking of driving, she stands on her hind legs and puts her front paws on the back of the driver seat and tries to sniff my ear.  It’s almost like she’s trying to tell me where to turn.  It’s very cute.
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Love and Defiance

I had a two-day conference this past weekend, so I stayed at a friend’s house near the venue to avoid driving hours to and from each day.  Of course, that meant leaving Jasmine alone with hubby for a couple of days and a night.  Jasmine was not thrilled with sole cohabitation with my husband, and she showed her displeasure by peeing on the carpet while he was out at the hardware store.

He had taken her out before leaving, so he knew it wasn’t because of her “needing” to go…it was a clear message that she was NOT happy to be with him.  She sulked all weekend.  She refused to eat on Saturday night, and ate just a little of her breakfast on Sunday morning.  When it was time to go to bed, she went into the bedroom to make sure HE was in bed, and then came trotting out to her pillow in the living room.  She spent the night there rather than in the bedroom in her soft, cozy bed with the hand-crocheted blanket (no, I didn’t crochet it FOR her…she claimed it as her own).

When I got home on Sunday afternoon, she was joyous.  She wagged her tail, jumped in my lap, licked my face, and did everything to let me know that she missed me and was glad that I was home.  My husband looked at me happily and told me that he was SO glad that she loves me so much…that I’m her PERSON and she’s MY dog.  Having her come through such a bad experience to be able to bond with me so closely–even with the knowledge that she won’t build that kind of bond with him–makes him happy.  She treated him like he was an axe murderer (you should see the looks of mistrust she gives to him), and all he cared about was the fact that she could feel and express joy.

That’s just the kind of guy he is.  Jasmine and I are really lucky.

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A Year With Jasmine

I can’t believe it has already been a year since Jasmine came to us.  I can’t express how much love she’s brought into our lives and how much she means to us.  We are truly lucky to have such a funny, beautiful and sweet creature as a part of our family.

I think back on the year we’ve had, and I really marvel at what Jasmine has accomplished.  When we first got her, she was afraid of everything–stairs, carpet, tile floors, leashes, asphalt (yes, asphalt), and us.  Today, she is a pampered little dog that is happiest at my feet or on my lap.  She revels in scratchies behind the ear and is finally becoming accustomed to the outside world (as long as she’s in the safety of my arms or lap).  She’s sweet, gentle and funny.  She plays with toys on her own accord.  She is an avid fan of treats and doesn’t hesitate to perform her behaviors if there’s a Simon and Huey’s soft bite at stake.

But most of all, I marvel in the trust she bestows upon me.  She is my constant companion, my loving and devoted friend.  If I’m in another room, she comes looking for me.  If I go out, she’s by the door when I return.  She lays by my bedside at night, and she wakes me with a wagging tail and happy face in the morning.

I cannot tell you how rewarding this journey of rescuing and loving this little dog has been.  I knew we’d love any dog that came into our lives, but I didn’t quite understand what a deep impact this dog would have on us and how much she would become an integral member of our family.  I think the struggles we’ve faced have made her all the more precious, and all our lives are infinitely better for her being with us.

Thanks for a wonderful year, Jasmine.  We love you.

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Little Snuggler

Jasmine isn’t much of a burrower, but she is a snuggler. I was on the floor watching television the other day when Jasmine came up to me. She generally likes to climb on and over me when I’m on the floor, but this time, she wedged her body in between my arm and my torso, put her head on my shoulder and snuggled against me. After letting out a big sigh, she dozed off and started to snore. Of course, the sandman must have sprinkled both of us with magic dust because before I knew it, an hour had passed. I moved a little and woke her up. She yawned, stretched, and promptly snuggled back in and went to sleep.

Jasmine also likes to snuggle up in my lap. One of the best things about having a little dog is the “lap dog” benefits. Every morning, I sit on the floor, and Jasmine jumps in my lap to be brushed. Afterwards, she turns around and curls up into a little ball and goes to sleep in my lap. Warm, happy and comfortable, she simply puts her love and trust in me. Few things are better than this.

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Happy Puppy

I took an art class this past weekend which kept me out of the house for 10 hours each day. It was a really great class and I had a lot of fun.

What was even more fun was coming home. Jasmine spent both days hanging with my husband. They did a little more bonding–a good thing–but when I arrived, Jasmine was a joyful pup. She was jumping around, madly wagging her tail and “smiling.” My husband hasn’t had the chance to see much of this side of her since she tends to just eye him suspiciously with her shoulders hunched and her head down, and I was glad that he got a chance to see her in her happy mood.

He watched her frolicking around and looked at me and said, “Wow.” He went on to talk about how glad he was to see her so happy, and that it was remarkable since she came from such a horrible place.

Jasmine was a puppy mill breeder dog. Last week, Oprah aired a show on the blight of puppy mills. Lisa Ling went out with the head of the Main Line Animal Rescue organization with a hidden camera to a number of puppy mills in the Pennsylvania area. The conditions are horrible, the dogs live a miserable existence, and it’s all perfectly legal.

It breaks my heart to see what Jasmine has been through, but when I look at her now…well, I’m so happy that we made the decision to take in a rescued dog. No, she’ll probably never be a totally “normal” dog. But she will give us love and always be loved. And regardless of what she has been through in the past, Jasmine is a happy puppy. Watching her bask in the sun streaming through the window yesterday afternoon, wiggling her little butt here and there to “regulate” the amount of sun hitting her body, I know that we’ve given her the life and love she deserves and the wagging tail and smiling face are just little indicators of how far she’s come.

Jasmine enjoys the afternoon sun

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Post-Vacation Bliss

We arrived home this morning and promptly picked Jasmine up from our friends’ home.  We rang the bell, and the resident pooch greeted us at the door.  Jasmine was nowhere to be seen–that is, until she appeared at the end of the hall.  I called her name.  What did she do?  She ran away!

I walked down the hall to the kitchen/family room and Jasmine once again appeared.  I called her name and she nervously came over.  She squatted down when I tried to pet her.  I think she was glad to see me, but so very confused.   I sat on the floor, and she finally climbed on my lap and licked my face.  And when I put her in the car on her travel pillow, she sank in and just sighed.  She snuggled in and closed her eyes.  She was on her way HOME.

Apparently, Jasmine had asserted herself a bit when she was visiting and upset the resident cats.   Jasmine doesn’t seem to pay any attention to cats, but she likes cat beds as well as the resident dog’s bed.  She kind of usurped her host animals’ comfy spots and upset the cats to the tune of aromatic protests around the house.   Unfortunately, the jealousy that the cats have shown (the other dog has been fine) has precluded Jasmine from becoming an overnight guest in the future.  I understand–keeping another person’s dog is a lot of work, and if  it upsets your animals and your household to the tune of significant “payback”…well, it’s always okay to say no.  So, we’ll have to find another place for Jasmine to stay when we next go away.

Regardless, I’m so grateful for our friends’ generosity.  Having her in a safe, loving environment made it so much easier for me to enjoy our vacation.  I’m happy, relaxed and oh so rejuvenated.  And Jasmine, she’s a bit better socialized and less skittish.  We all did well (except for that darn cat).

Jasmine is laying at my feet on her poofy pink pillow, digesting a nice meal.  Her little snores are music to my ears.  It’s so good to be home.

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