The Rat Packs is back together again, minus Blackie. MamaBrown was the last addition and although initially very thin and afraid, she has responded well to the kennel and is eating her meals. She looks much better than when she first came and has been vaccinated and rejoined the boys and Cara in their stalls.
Cara was initially upset with a newcomer as she being the only Top Girl with Patches and Junior, she did not appreciate another female. She has since accepted MamaBrown in HER pack. We are beginning to see that Cara was not just devoted to her puppies, she is very defensive of the dogs she has become attached with and those she love. In the short time she has been with Patches and Junior, she has come to treat them as her own and would growl at the other dogs who bark or snarl at her precious boys. What a wonderful mummy dog she is. She makes up for the Packs' inadequacies as MamaBrown is much too sweet for that, Patches, much too goofy and Junior, well Junior is just a growing pup still looking for his roots and finding his way.
Then we have MamaBrown, well what is there to say about her that we have not said before. If there was an everyone's sweetheart, it would be her. She listens, she obeys, she doesn't bark, she doesn't quarrel. She doesn't try to escape and if the door of the kennel is open and all the dogs run out, she would still be sitting there, waiting, because we haven't called her yet. She is the ever peacemaker and the perpetual teacher's pet. A gentle soul that needs no reprimands, no cross word. Why anyone would give up such a sweet, loving and obedient dog like that, we can never understand.
Help us realise the dream for them. Isn't there someone out there looking for trustworthy and loving companians in their life? We can guarantee that these will be good and committed ones. We can vouch for their loyalty and love.
who remains isolated, at large and still running, this time with her puppies as last we saw her, she was no longer pregnant so have given birth. We still cannot find her nest nor do we know where and what time she comes for her food. All we can do is go faithfully to the area we know she usually hangs around, morning, afternoon, evenings and nights and hope to see her waiting for us. Some of you may think, wow, that is a lot of effort for a dog. Yes we agree, it is but Blackie is precious to us. It is worth the wait, just to see her walk slowly towards us and enjoy the sight of her eating, which is not often. There are a few of us who take turns, weekdays and weekends to feed Blackie as she, to us, is the most pathetic and saddest of all the dogs, Rat Pack included. She deserves the highest sympathy and understanding.
She was the original Seletar Stray from Day One, when she hung out with her sister - born in a drain and left behind as their mother was caught and put down. The two little black pups, sisters all alone, looking out for each other and always looking for food, rummaging through rubbish heaps and overturning dustbins. We remember the days when Blackie and her sister would visit one of the feeder at her work place and wait patiently for their food, at the same time every day. They were intelligent and seemed to understand the timing well. The sister became familiar and would come near and allowed to be touched but Blackie never really caught on that 'touching' scene and was always standing isolated, looking from the background far away, much like now. It was a sad day when we saw only Blackie alone, waiting in the distance for us to feed her. Her friendly little sister was caught too and her life was ended just like their mother. Can anyone blame Blackie for being so afraid of people? She has seen horrors only we can imagine. One by one of her loved ones have been caught as they trusted and became friendly. In Blackie's mind, being friends is not a good thing as having friends meant death. And so it has been hard for her to make friends even among the dogs.
In the end, Blackie is alone, just as she was before, every dog that she has loved is gone - or not quite as she now has her pups to nurse. But we are worried for her pups and what will happen to them. They are still very young but eventually they will be old enough to run around and will be discovered. This whole area have been slated for re-development and already many places that we once could access have been sealed. Even the feeders working around here might have to move as their companies relocate starting from the latter half of 2009.
Again, we start off with Mission Number One, where is Blackie and how do we catch her. Will she survive even if we can put her in a kennel? With her history of how badly humans have treated every friend she knows, Blackie has a tenancy to starve because she doesn't trust. Who can blame her - Trust can be a dirty word. What will we do even if we find her pups? Where will we put them? We currently do not have a place for them and even if we do, will we be able to find people to adopt them. Already we have so many on our plate.
When and if we do see her, she usually eats a lot, more than her usual - gulping down 3 to 4 cans and lots of kibbles. We give her whatever she wants as we know she needs to sustain herself so that her puppies can survive. We wish we can pack food for her to bring back to them but canned food and kibble are hard for her to carry so lately we have taken to giving her portable food - buns and sausages and she has caught on very quickly. For stuff that she can carry in her mouth, she would disappear with them and come back for more. We know it is food for her puppies. There was one time when one of our feeders reportedly threw quite a lot of buns for Blackie and she kept picking and picking till there were more buns than she could carry - she dropped more than she picked. It was as if she wanted to carry all in one go as if afraid they would be gone by the time she came back, but with only a mouth, it isn't easy. We wish then that we had hands for her. But she disappeared and kept coming back stuffing her face full with buns for her pups. What a lovely gesture and so tearfully heartbreaking as well. For one we are sad at the situation she is in although we can see her and feed her, on the other we are helpless as we can't do more, and the next we are happy we can feed her. Mixed feelings cloud our minds each time see her. Her survival is a grim reminder that we must do something for her and quickly too as time is running out.
The other evening on a dark day, some of the feeders managed to quietly trail her when she was carrying food back to her nest. Up to a point from the darkness, when Blackie appeared and growled and snarled at them. We must be near her nest. Who can imagine that our sweet, quiet, extremely and very fearful, timid and distanced Blackie growling? Blackie who would not come near us when we have food no matter how hungry, who would wait till we stand at least 5 metres before she would venture near. Blackie who is afraid of the crows who swop down to eat her food. Blackie who at the slightest gesture would run fleet footedly. We did not expect our timid meek lamb to turn into a snarling lion. Again, this is a mother's devotion. Like Cara, Blackie is single mindedly standing guard over her puppies, and no matter what happens, we know she will not leave them. Just as she would rather starve than come near us for food, she would sacrifice her life for the safety of her pups.
Blackie, the nearest we can ever get to her so far.
She eats but not in peace, she gulps her food hurriedly,
Always watchful, looking around,
Food is survival, no time to enjoy.
Eat fast so she can run, to return to her pups
And we know the danger is very real. If her pups get caught, Blackie might stay to defend them and in turn be endangered. It will be the ultimate sacrifice for we all know how fast Blackie can run, and at the slightest gesture too which explains how she has managed to survive for so long in this area, but we know she won't. She will probably choose to stay with her pups for their sake, just as Cara did, and that is when we think we will lose our precious dog.
For now, Sweet Blackie, it is ok, It is all right. We won't go where you don't want us to. We will just be there faithfully for you, with food, with buns, with sausages and hard boiled eggs and paos - stuff that you can carry so that you together with your pups can survive. We will give you milk so you can be strong and we know how strange you found milk was but you did enjoy the milk, didn't you.
We remember the first time our feeder gave her milk, Blackie was curious. She had never smelt this in her entire life. She stood there sniffing and shuffling the bowl for a long time, hestitant on whether to lick, drink or bite. And when she started drinking it, there was an almost bemused look on her face as she enjoyed the taste of what we call an ordinary bowl of milk but it was not ordinary to her, it was luxurious, divine food almost Ambrosia. Poor sweet deprived Blackie. Yes, we will continue to nourish her as she deserves it, it is her time. Let it be her chance for a good life.
And after that... well we will leave it to God to help us decide what we can and should do next. With no no idea how to catch her and no plans where she should go and when to catch her (as she is nursing, and her pups need her for now), we don’t know what we will do next. All we can do is to go back to our fundamentals and feed them.
Feed them so they can be strong enough to survive. Feed them so they can run when people come to catch them. Feed them so that they can defend themselves. Feed them for another day.... if there is another day.
As the New Year approaches, we do not have resolutions for those made are usually broken. Rather we have hopes and we have dreams. Our hopes and dreams are for good homes for our rescued Pack and rescue for 'lost' Blackie.
May 2009 be a Wonderful year for you and your family. Inspite of the world's economic troubles, remember, you still have your loved loves to treasure and to treasure you. Love the ones that you have.
HAPPY NEW YEAR.
Remember our little runt, ‘lionheart’ Sheppy boy otherwise popularly known with his sister as the infamous “Temple pups”? He has recently been adopted by a family living in a house with a patio who also have a wire coat Jack Russell, Jimmy. Our Shep, the charismatic sweetheart have always generated interest with his charming good looks and pointy ears. When we first asked other rehomers to blog his adoption, we received comments also from them on his cute looks. He remains as he always was, goofy, licky and active when we visited him at his new place last week. Yes, he still remembers us and yes, he is still the same-o, same-o, licky, slobbering little poster boy – still as kaypo and as greedy. Shep has since been renamed Lucky and here is Ming’s story ………
Baby Shep, when we first met him,
Brave little LionHeart, protecting his sisters,
charming looks, trademark muzzle and pointy ears
On the first day, when Lucky arrived with Lady (his sister) to our house for a viewing, my mother and I who were the only ones home at that time, was initially shocked as to see they are actually big dogs. We currently have a 2 year old male wire coat Jack Russell (adopted as a pup) and had expected to see them around that size especially since they were puppies. But we were both happy as Lucky and Lady were very well behaved and Jimmy our JRT enjoyed playing with Lucky.
After discussing with my family, we decided that we would adopt Lucky as he would be a good new family member and a great companion for Jimmy. Two weeks later, Lucky came to visit us again, with his sister. After leaving Lucky with us, it was sad to see Lady leaving alone but we were unable to take in another dog as we already have two. That night, Lucky was very sad. He kept sitting in front of the gate, whining and crying. I think he missed his sister, his rescuers and fosterers who have looked after him since his rescue from the wild. It took a long time to comfort him and I was worried that he would not be able to stop crying. My father took him into the living room as we were afraid he might try to escape through the gate as he is still quite small. I sent out sms and emails to the fosterers of what was happening and reassured by them that eventually, Lucky will stop crying when we pay more attention to him.
Looks to die for with eyes that melt
photo as taken by his fosterer, S, before the adoption
As days went by, Lucky has adapted well to my place and very quickly too. Jimmy, after his initial love with Lucky doesn't like him as much as he used to, in part I think it is most probably Jimmy is jealous of Lucky especially since Lucky is a puppy and a lot of focus and attention has been on him. It gets worse when my Mum calls out to Lucky as Jimmy considers Mum to be his first love. Jimmy will snarl and try to bite Lucky and we have to separate the two. This is more obvious during feeding time so we tie up Lucky as he eats quicker than Jimmy and tries to eat Jimmy's food. The good thing about Lucky is, he is very well tempered he doesn’t retaliate, and he doesn't mind how Jimmy treats him or bullies him and still carries on playing with him. I think when Lucky gets older and not so playful, Jimmy and him will eventually sort out their hierarchy.
Lucky as he appears now,
Mature but still as good looking,
those eyes and those trademark black muzzle and pointy ears
Lucky has grown tall too, and thin as he is a teenager and his activeness burns up all his fats, no matter how much he eats (his share and Jimmy's too). But in time, we are sure he will grow his muscles and become well built as he grows into an adult. My family and I are very happy with our new family member - Lucky...but if he can master the art of toileting, it will be perfect. HAha ...
Lucky goofing around with his brother Jimmy
May they grow to be bosom buddies to the very end
Last piece of advise to all..... Don’t buy pets, adopt instead and after you adopt don't abandon them. You have to experience how sad they will be when you leave them .. Just like when I adopted Lucky he cried the whole night.....they are your best and loyal friends.... (written by Ming, dated December 16, 2008).
Lucky, stray dog no more,
Kennel dog no more
Now part of a family
He will have a wonderful Christmas and New Year
We thank all those involved in the fostering of Lucky before his adoption - W and S for their love to this little dog. For giving him a chance at living with a family and in turn getting him ready for the ultimate rehoming. The fact that you have visited him after his adoption and enquired endlessly about his welfare has show how much devotion you have for him. If Lucky could say thank you, he would. Instead he will reward you with his licks and jumps. We are sure he will not forget the pleasure and joy he had while he was living with you and the wonderful personality and temperament he has now, is attributed by your love and touch.
Thank you Ming and your family for giving Lucky a forever, loving and committed home. He will return your gesture with his love and loyalty, that much we can guarantee.