Saturday, January 16, 2010

EFM: Everybody’s Favorite Mutt

Okay, so by now, you’ve been introduced to two of the major characters in this blog—myself and my wife. The third most important character is Tiffy, our dog since Labor Day 2007.

Sadly, I’ve been informed that Tiffy technically does not qualify for EFM status, so she cannot technically be everybody’s favorite mutt, but I’m maintaining the right to call her that anyway until I think of something better for her than member of household (MOH; the H will probably be for “hound,” but I haven’t really given this much thought, yet).

Anyway, here is Tiffy’s brief story. She is what we call a “trial baby;” something to test our nurturing ability before we take that plunge and cause some irreparable harm to a person. And while still a living creature, we hedged our bets further by rescuing her from a shelter, so at the very least, even if we turned out to be bad owners, we were probably still an upgrade.

As it is, the shelter had little information on her providing mere “guestimations” for her age (we’re calling her birthday March 1, 2006) and her breed mix. They maintained she was some sort of cocker spaniel mix. Then our vet let us to believe she is an Australian shepherd mix. And I had a woman on the street suggest she is a leonberger mix with some sort of shepherd, perhaps, which after researching leonbergers, the appearance and some of the behavior seems similar, but she is about 100 pounds lighter than a pure bred. If she is a leonberger mix, I hope for the mother’s sake that she was the leonberger and not the father.

She is a good dog that lies around most of the day and doesn’t get into things she is not supposed unless we really tempt fate and leave something out for an extended period of time. She has never bitten at a person, though she has a few dogs in the neighborhood she doesn’t seem to particularly like. Typically, she keeps to herself and hardly acknowledges the existence of other people outside of Natalie and me and a select few she has welcomed in the pack.

She favors women to men; she definitely favors Natalie over me, and all of the other “pack” members are women. And she is uncomfortably cautious around people of darker skin.

Tiffy (by the way, that was the name she had when we adopted her) was probably the most disappointed to learn of our Hermosillo post because she has thick, black fur. She finds northern Virginia summers unbearably hot, so I pity what Mexico will do to her. Other than the “winter” months, she will have to be shaved the whole time we are there.

On the plus side, however, Mexico does not have any sort of bordering rules, which is another reason why we were ambivalent toward the Mexican posts. I just hope she has enough sense to leave the rattlesnakes alone.

That is about all I will share for now, though I’m sure she will appear again in this blog, so I just wanted to get the introductions out of the way.

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