Bringing home a Rescue Pup with the added hurdle of him being blind.
I have been adding to this post on and off for a year, the photos are a selection of my favourites – hopefully it’s not too disjointed, 💚
We fostered Amos because we fell in love with him and his kind (slightly hooligan like) nature, I was worried about the kind of life he would have due to him being blind and how he would cope in the outside world, ultimately I didn’t want him to have a boring life of being wrapped in cotton wool and not getting to experience adventure, or only being taken on boring walks, because of a bug at the dogs home he was unable to be walked before we fostered him, so he spent 4 months not experiencing any kind of adventures and I didn’t want that to be the rest of his life.
Billy is a sucker for any puppy – so for him and Amos it was love at first sight 😍
Since being with us he is getting much braver in the outside world, walks are still scary but manageable with the support of Toby and the occasional woof at noises he doesn’t like.
He’s mapped the downstairs of our house and can navigate with minimal bumping from room to room. He has also worked out how to get on and off the sofa – but does it with extreme flair and a dramatic twist.
The things we (Human folk) have learnt in the last year:
– If you leave shoes out, they get fallen over, or half eaten chews placed inside them
– Walking in a straight line is for losers
– Bins are scary
– Water bowls spill all by themselves sometimes ….. It’s spooky.
– There is a moat around the sofa that can only be sensed by puppies that can’t see
– Teething puppies are hard work
– Kong / Chew toys are life
– Puppies have hard heads
– Toilet training is a barrel of laughs
– Sometimes beds explode
– Sometimes toys explode
– Sometimes socks make a magical escape attempt from the washing and into the garden
– Being head butted by a big ginger puppy is a painful but regular occurrence
– The garden is a secret treasure trove and although we can see where Amos has hidden his treasure – he cannot so we honour the secret code and pretend we too cannot see the items.
The things Toby has learnt:
– Personal space is a thing of the past
– Puppies are annoying
– Sharing the sofa isn’t as bad as initially assumed
– Puppy teeth are sharp – and not enjoyable when nibbling your leg.
– Amos likes to body bump when walking which is all fun except that he is heavier than me and occasionally sends me flying!
– Puppies are SLOW and walks take FOREVER
– I’m a GOOD BOY & Amos is a GOOD BOY (but not as good as me …..)
– Apparently weeing and pooping outside is a big deal! Humans have a party with pup every time he poops / pees outside
– If I walk really slowly, my tags don’t make noise and the puppy cannot find me or follow me!
– I have to be very LOUD if I want Amos to play with me or he doesn’t get the game
– I like to put my feet/legs in his big staffy mouth (I like to live dangerously what can I say?!)
– Every time Amos gets a treat I get a treat – its very exciting
– I still get to have my one on one time with Momma – Which I LOVE
– Adventures with Amos aren’t as long as I would like but he is a puppy who is still growing so I make allowances
– Adventures without Amos are FUN!
– Amos doesn’t like it when I go off my lead, he can’t find me so I have to stay close to him to make him feel better
– Amos although initially annoying has grown on me and now he’s my best friend (secretly I’m rather fond of him)
What Amos has learnt:
– Food is LIFE
– Walking is a good time to test how nimble your new carers are by rapidly cutting in front of them so they almost fall down!
– Bins smell good but are ultimately scary
– Sitting means FOOD
– Toby is patient with me but gets annoyed when I am being a ‘giddy kipper’
– I am a GOOD BOY
– Food is LIFE
– Bird noises are weird
– Toby does NOT like it when I sit on him – he’s a grumpy old man apparently
– Toby sometimes magically disappears and I try to play with thin air ….
– Motorbikes sounds aren’t nice and scare me
– Food is LIFE
– Sausages are delicious
– Carrots are not
– Food is LIFE
– Training is fun – it means lots of food and fuss
– The garden is a GOOD hiding place, sometimes I hide half a turkey leg or beef pipe out there and no one can ever find it, I also store the socks I have rescued and some of Toby’s toys out there
– Pate is delicious, especially when smothered on my Licki Mat
– Bicycles are the root of all EVIL – they make an unnatural noise that I just cannot get on board with
– Humans aren’t a fan of being head-butted too often
– Toby is my best friend
– Food is LIFE
Life post Amos – 5 months later
We are still learning – every day literally is a school day!
Amos has grown (A LOT) in the time we have had him not only in height and weight but in confidence and bravery.
He has GREAT days and he has bad days, we just accept the bad days, its hard being a puppy, its even harder being a blind puppy.
Amos has grown in confidence but that sometimes means that his reactions to things he isn’t sure of can be loud and dramatic – he’s still learning and is slowly but surely getting there.
He is such a happy dog, he is always really eager to please and has made the connection between humans and an endless supply of food and cuddles.
He completely rocked puppy class and was an actual star! He has now also completed his Bronze Kennel Club Citizen classes and passed the assessment and moved through to the next class.
He has experienced so much in the time he has been with us:
– He’s learnt all about walking in the hills and climbing up rocky paths using Toby’s tail as a navigational tool
– He has learnt that a car journey usually means he is going some where fun
– He has (sort of) learnt to play Frisbee with Toby – he never wins and Toby always beats him to the Frisbee
– Been on a boat (was also Toby’s first experience in a boat – they acted as moral support for one another)
– Had his first off-lead experience in a big field – it was a blast! He rolled in bird poop and ran in circles and wrestled to his hearts content with Toby.
– First ever bath (he STANK)
– First Test (Bronze Kennel Club Good Citizen)
– First Holiday (http://norfolkbythesea.com/index.html)
– Tried lots of weird and wacky food – his favourite of which is Chicken Hearts, Lamb Ribs, Beef Pipes and Turkey Legs
– Had a bi-lateral enucleation
– Looked like a horror movie extra for a few weeks
– Eaten a few beds / magically exploded a few beds
– Likes to bite big circular holes into each corner of his blankets
– First trip to Snowdonia National Park
– Visited the lovely folk at PAPYRUS office so he could become an unofficial mascot with Toby (https://papyrus-uk.org/)
– Accompanied Toby to the Theatre, met the cast of Beauty and the Beast at the Brindley Theatre and experienced a little segment of stage life!
– Developed a deep love for Hairy Cows Ears
– Developed a deep hatred for actual Cows
Toby has dealt with the giant ginger disruption to his life so much better than we anticipated – he has taken Amos under his wing and when we go somewhere new always helps Amos locate the water bowl (as he did when Amos first came home with us)
Toby is enjoying his role as little big brother, he also enjoys the occasions of peace and quiet when Amos is sleeping or he is having time alone with me or Billy.
Life post Amos – 11 Months Later:
Life in the Wonder Dog household is now in our new reality.
We are STILL learning, seriously – EVERYDAY is a school day.
The boys have the ultimate bro-mance on the go, Toby seems to have worked out that Amos is a fantastic snuggle buddy/ hot water bottle, so is more than happy to spend his evenings curled up with his big ginger spoon on the Sofa.
Toby has been amazing at adapting and getting used to Amos living with us, for a dog who was never snuggly with other dogs and always liked his own space to how he and Amos interact is just heart-warming.
They have their own way of communicating with each other, obviously Amos cannot read Body Language so he and Toby make lots of noises etc. to interact and play with one another.
Amos is currently working towards his Gold Kennel Club Good Citizen, he has done his Silver Classes and will eventually be taking the test.
Today is our Ginger Hurricane anniversary, its mad to think that we have had Amos in our lives for a year!