To know her, is to love her.
It’s been quite a few weeks since I have posted a blog, for that I apologize. It’s been a little hectic in our personal lives. But today, at a day past the two month mark since we’ve had Carina, it’s time to update you on her progress and share more about her, for her true personality is really beginning to shine.
So here we are, 8 weeks and 1 day into our foster adventure with Carina. She has made it through her pre-treatment (a month of oral antibiotics). Then on November 28th she went in for her first set of heartworm shots. We were hoping she’d only need 2 injections of these painful shots, but unfortunately the vet felt she will need a second set. So in a few weeks she will go in for another set of shots. She is handling the treatment quite well so far. With the help of the Plankton Fund from Friends of the Cleveland Kennel, she's on her way to health. Fingers crossed the second set goes just as well. She also is being treated for allergic bronchitis. So this little sweetie cannot be feeling well, but she certainly doesn’t show it! Kisses and a wagging tail all day long!
So now that you are updated on her medical progress, here is the cute, fun stuff. I now officially label Carina a “Velcro dog”. Her humans are her everything. She can’t stand being alone. At your side she will always be!! (Even after given a bath which she does not like). She hates the hair dryer even more!! Twice now after a bath I’ve tried (on low, warm setting), to dry her off with the blow dryer. Denied. She gets a scrunched up look on her face and wants to attack! Same goes for the vacuum. Those two items are her nemeses!
Carina’s favorite toy is her wishbone shaped chew bone and she has recently learned how to use a “treat ball”. It was fun watching her learn what it does and how to do it. Within about 15minutes she was a pro! Nudging with her nose, rolling it around everywhere and obviously loving the trail of treats it left behind!
When it comes to her meals, she will HOP for food. We keep her activity very limited but when she sees that food bowl heading down to her eating area, she hops and hops and hops! She is even more excited now that I have added coconut oil to her meals. I’m a firm believer in coconut oil for dogs. I’ve seen it help our dog Tilly in many ways. Wasn’t sure If Carina would take to it, but she loves it!! What she doesn’t not like are pretzels, ice cubes OR French fries! I can’t believe she doesn’t like French fries!
I want to highlight that Carina is a very good listener. She does well with the command “sit” (even though sometimes she lays instead of sitting), she is surprisingly very good at the “stay” command. I was surprised since she hates being more than 2 feet away from our side! The crate is still a work in progress. She just really hates to be left alone. Some VERY interesting noises have come out of her while inside that crate. Deep, low grunts. Along with those noise there is some howling. She has done a few times in the backyard. It leads me to believe she has some hound in her! I’m no DNA kit but I’ve heard hound dogs. And Carina releases noises that sound just like a good ol hound dog! Plus the droopy eyes. If I were to take a guess, I would say Carina is a pointer/hound/pit mix. (Just my guess after watching her mannerisms and personality).
One last thing about sweet Carina. She is a very attentive dog. Watches EVERYTHING you do. Even if she is napping and you make a slight movement or sound, she will pick her head up for a swift 5 seconds (just to see what you’re doing), then her head goes right back down and back to sleep. Little things like that I find so cute!
So that’s all I have for you now. I hope you enjoyed learning a bit more about her personality and her funny ways. She has her head resting on my leg now and asking for nap time. I can’t resist! If I don’t write before, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!!
DON'T FOR GET TO DONATE TO HELP DOGS LIKE CARINA! https://forgetmenotanimalrescue.networkforgood.com/projects/21499-giving-tuesday-2017
(I apologize for the delay in my 3rd blog. Due to some health issues, it has taken me longer to write, but I’m back along with some Carina news!)
On Thursday, October 27th, Carina started her first dose of antibiotics! There is a process to getting rid of heartworms. Carina is in the pre-treatment phase, which is the administration of doxycycline. This thirty day treatment of antibiotics weakens and sterilizes the adult heartworms, so they are no longer able to reproduce anymore. It won’t be long until she begins the second phase of her treatment!
Since the last time I wrote, we have learned, enjoyed and fell even more in love with Carina. The best part of fostering (besides saving a life), is learning who the dog REALLY is, outside the kennel environment. Learning their true personality.
Carina is a “zoomie” master. When we first let her out in the morning, she runs around the yard happy as can be. And it’s usually with her favorite toy, a ball with a rope attached. (Disclaimer: Carina’s activity level does not need to be restricted until the next phase of treatment). She has learned very quickly that after her potty breaks or outside playtime is over, she knows to stand and wait by the backdoor to get her paws cleaned off. She catches onto routines VERY quickly. I am proud to say that she is now fully trained to go potty outside (no more accidents in the crate) and those potty breaks happen pretty much the same time every day. So her tummy is now on the same schedule every day!
We have come to find she knows the command “sit”, well, sort of. She lays down when we say “sit” we find it very amusing. She also knows the command “drop it” and listens very well.
A week or so ago I took Carina for a little adventure in the park. It was a beautiful day out. The leaves were bright and the air was warm. It was a great day for her. She loved smelling all the scents and watching what the other park goers were doing. She had a small curiosity for the water, but not much. After some investigating, we ended up on a large rock overlooking a small river of water, both of us wrapped in the sunlight. Just her and I. Is it weird to say I felt our bond growing?
After our trip in the park we went and got some ice cream. And you bet she loved that! (Of course we got a cup to go for her foster sissy, Tilly).
- Carina’s personality, canine to human, is so playful and loving. She loves to nibble your ears and engulf you in kisses! There is nothing she loves more than to be snuggled next to her human. Currently I am in the hospital and am really missing her and our dog Tilly. The two of them just pour out so much affectionate, I think I’m going through withdrawal!!!
Carina is truly an amazing dog. Still some training to do, but she is a smart pup. She will get there in time and with dedication. Many people are involved with getting Carina on the right track. This sweet girl is loved from the top of her nose to the end of her tail. And because of that, her confidence is building and her trust in humans is being restored. Carina is making great progress, she is loved beyond measure.
(This blog is just a short and sweet update on this beautiful, loving girl. More to come! Carina’s adventures are just beginning!!
In just a little over 24 hours, our latest addition to our family will be here! When I say “our family” that consists of me, my husband (Mathew) and our 5yr old fur babe, Tilly.
Before you follow along on our journey with Carina, I thought it’d be best if I introduced myself. How I got involved with the volunteering and ending up with Carina! Quite honestly, it’s a case of “meant to be”
(Mathew, Me and Tilly)
So as you may already know, my name is Katie. I’m 33 years old. I have been married 4 ½ years to Mathew and my deep love for Pit Bull type breeds really began when I first laid eyes on Tilly. Our family lost a very special 4 legged family member named Chip. We don’t know for sure what breed of dog he was, but we knew he had some sort of Pit breed in him. So after he passed and we were ready to adopt another dog, along came Tilly. At the time I had little knowledge about the breed. She was listed as an “American Staffordshire Terrier”. But it was her resemblance to Chip that drew me to her. She was ours a couple weeks later.
As my bond with Tilly grew, so did my love for the Pit Bull. (Of course I am using that as a blanket term that covers many bully breeds). I began to research and learn more and more about this beautiful, strong breed. Tilly’s personality definitely fit the description of a pit bull. Affectionate, extremely smart and stubborn! As I continued to learn about her I began becoming more attracted to Pit Bull stories, the Facebook Pit Bull groups. I began following these pages regularly. Two of these pages were the Facebook pages “Cleveland Pitties” and “City Dogs Cleveland”. I was always sharing their posts along with positive stories on Pit Bulls, and without even realizing, advocating for the breed.
It was around early July when I received a friend request from one of the page admins for “Cleveland PItties” (CP). I don’t normally accept friend requests from random people but saw she was from CP and I accepted her request. Upon talking with her, I learned that CP was a networking page for “City Dogs Cleveland” and that they could use some help creating collages of the dogs that are from City Dogs. I was beyond excited to start helping them. I jumped on board pretty quickly and started busting out picture collages like it was my job. I honestly took it as seriously as a job!
A few weeks after “joining the team” it was time for one of my regular hospital stays. These are a normal part of my life now. I am in the hospital about every2-4 months for treatment for a disease called Cystic Fibrosis (It is an inherited life-threatening disorder that damages mainly the lungs and digestive system). You may or may have noticed that earlier in my intro I did not divulge what I do for a living. And this is why. Because of Cystic Fibrosis (CF) and the many other health issues that have stemmed from CF. I eventually had to quit my job of 8 years in the medical field. One of the hardest decisions I’ve had to make for I took a lot of pride in my work. After a few years not working, I began to lose a lot of self-worth. As my health issues have begun to get worse I’ve became pretty housebound. Between pain, fatigue and just not feeling well, home is where you can find me most days. So during my most recent hospital stay, I devoted a lot of time to Cleveland Pitties. I had a lot of time on my hands, as you can imagine, being in the hospital for almost a month. My volunteering with Cleveland Pitties, led me to become involved with City Dogs Cleveland. I was able to come home from my hospital stay a week or so before the next “New Volunteer Orientation” for City Dogs Cleveland. I was so happy to be able to attend this orientation because that was the first stepping stone to becoming an official volunteer.
Shortly after that orientation meeting, I was at the kennel doing one of the programs they offer which is passing out Kong’s to the dogs at the shelter. There is a very precise routine in this line of volunteering and I love it. As I became more active as a volunteer for CITY DOGS CLEVELAND, my passion for these dogs grew even more.
And here is where Carina enters the picture. The situation for heartworm positive Carina was becoming more and more dire. This beautiful, sweet girl needed a foster and badly. It never really crossed my mind to become a foster parent seeing as we had Tilly, who can be quite “dog selective” so when filling out my CITY DOGS CLEVELAND volunteer form, I never even checked off as being interested in being a foster.
One night while posting on my personal FB page the desperate need Carina needed for a foster, the stirring in my heart to be that foster was so overwhelmingly strong. I knew in my heart, we were meant to do this. The decision to foster Carina was made quite quickly between my husband and me. Fortunately “Forget Me Not Animal Rescue” was willing to pull Carina from CITY DOGS CLEVELAND as a foster if both my husband and I were serious about taking on this responsibility. And we were.
So here we are, a day away from picking up Carina and becoming her foster parents. Have you ever heard the saying “Who rescued who?” when it comes to a rescue animal? Well this saying couldn’t possibly hold any more truth for me. Becoming a volunteer and dedicating my time to these dogs has truly saved me mentally. I was at the point of feeling so trapped in my own body. My mind wanted to do so much but my body just doesn’t allow it. These dogs have given back my sense of self-worth. Before becoming involved with “Cleveland Pitties” and “CITY DOGS CLEVELAND” I began questioning, what is my purpose now? Surely there must be some place for me in this world. I’m so happy to say, that the dogs have given me the answer to that question that has been bothering me for so long.
Fostering is a brand new endeavor for both Mathew and I. We are excited and nervous at the same time. It’s a whole new ball game for us! But we are ready. Ready to learn. Ready to love and ready to share this experience with you all. This blog will keep you updated on the progress of Carina as well as hopefully an informative tool for you to learn about this whole process. So stay tuned. Our adventure begins on Saturday! I will be keeping you posted!