I want to dedicate this post to Apache who we had to transition to the Rainbow Bridge on April 27, 2017.
On July 4, 2008, Apache was born. We were stationed in Washington and found the ad by the breeder in the local paper. My daughter had been born earlier in 2008 and we had Paris (a black lab age 10) and Cherokee (a german shepherd age 1 year). Paris had decided she did not want to play anymore so Cherokee was devastated. So we went to the breeder and put our money down. We believe in rescue and we had rescued both Paris and Cherokee. But because our daughter was so little, my husband asked that we get a puppy from a breeder (we had checked shelters and there were none) so we knew the history of the dog (and yes I know this does not guarantee anything but it was a better chance of knowing the past than a shelter dog).
The breeder told us that she never thought the puppies would be born on the 4th of July. She had to go out of town and left her husband in charge pretty certain nothing would happen. She had us name them H names (even tho we were not going to breed him or use him for papers). It was for her records. So we had decided on Apache (we name our dogs Native American tribe names because we love the Native American culture and history). We had to add something H in front of it so we came up with Howling Wolf Apache. We did not believe the parvo shot was appropriate for puppies age 8 wks and below. So the breeder agreed that we could bring him home before she gave it to the other puppies.
As we drove away, he howled so loudly and so sadly as he was the first to leave the litter. I had never thought of it from a dog’s perspective (especially the mother as her puppies are one by one taken away from her) before. I felt bad for him as I held him tight all the way home. He bonded right away with Cherokee (I think because she was like his mother). He even got Paris to play once in awhile with him. He loved our daughter. He would sit or lay by her on the floor, on the couch or just wherever she was. He followed her around (mostly me because she was too little to walk yet).
It was fun watching him grow. I had gotten Cherokee in Aug 2007 but I was really sick both the first three months with morning sickness and the last three months of morning sickness with my daughter so I don’t remember much of her growing (except we did a lot of tennis ball throwing-she loved her tennis balls). He had an easy going personality and was very lovable. We had some issues when he was young that fast moving kids made him nervous but we consulted an animal communicator to find out what we could do for him. She told us that fast movement made him nervous and especially kids because he felt he needed to slow them down to make them safe. So we just made sure that if we did have him around kids that we did not let him get overstimulated. We explained to people that fast movement made him nervous and if they did not understand that, we did not hang around them.
We lived on base in Washington so there were plenty of places to take the dogs hiking in the woods away from people. We put a rain guard on our daughter’s stroller (and I got a high terrain stroller for all the walks) and started walking her since she was a day old. That is one place I wish we still lived (or had a place like that near where we live now). The memories from there are the water and the woods, the hikes and the swimming for the dogs.
(to be continued in the next post)