Category Archives: puppies

I Got A New Puppy. The End.

(Cooper–a Morkie puppy)

If you’ve ever had a new puppy, you know what I’m talking about. The end of life before puppy (BP) breaks loose. In this case, his name is Cooper, so it’s BC. Has a biblical ring to it, but his whole name is Special Agent Dale Cooper from the eccentric FBI agent in Twin Peaks. Daughter Elise got me into the show. Back to Puppy Cooper. Oh my gosh, what a week it’s been. First, we had the never-ending car ride there and back (back was twice as long) to get the little guy on Sunday. Cooper is from South Carolina. We live in Virginia. Traffic was bad. Toward the end, I was singing the lyrics to the Sloop John B (Beach Boys), especially this bit:

‘Let me go home
Why don’t they let me go home
This is the worst trip I’ve ever been on.’

We finally made it home, and Cooper has a nice puppy playpen setup instead of a crate. I call it base camp, and it has his bed, toys, water, pee pad.. He tolerates it pretty well, except for those incensed occasions when he doesn’t. The family all love him and have descended in adoring droves. But after everyone leaves, he looks around to ask ‘where did they all go?’ Yep. He’s a tad spoiled.

I badly needed a little friend after my dear Sadie died of congestive heart failure about the time Cooper was born. He just turned nine weeks old. He’s already touchingly devoted to me, and declares in every way possible, that I am his person. At the moment, he’s also a chewy little dog who wants the run of the house but isn’t housebroken yet. Plus, as often happens to pups with the stress of moving to a new home, he got an upset tummy. This has resulted in a lot of extra cleanups, worry, phone calls to the vet, and a trip to the clinic. He’s now on a special diet, probiotics, and medication. So far–knock wood–he’s better today. Cooper is a Morkie–a Yorkie Maltese mix, but more Yorkie than Maltese. These pups are especially prone to tummy upset.

I’ve lined the couch with bedding so he can play up and down the length of it while I’m on my laptop–during those occasions when he’s not trying to eat it. And he loves to sit with me, which is good, because that will be his job. Sadie has passed the torch to this tiny boy. I still miss her terribly. Part of me always will. But I am glad for my new buddy, despite all the work of a new puppy.

Welcome little Cooper. You are finding your place in my heart.


This touching story is contributed by Toni Sweeney~for more on her work please visit:

His name was Whitey McRowdie. His parents were Conan and Amber. His mom was 42 in People Years (6 in Doggie Reckoning), his pop a mere pup of 14 (2 years). He was a toy poodle and the best friend I ever had.

At birth, he had the biggest strike in the Animal Kingdom against him–prematurity. The vet determined that Amber’s tiniest pup was two weeks premature, that she’d had two litters, in fact. When the first litter reached gestational maturity and was ready to be born, he was forced to come along for the ride whether he wanted to or not.

He certainly wasn’t much to look at–a body the size and width of my middle finger, with a rat-like pink tail and paws to fit on the head of a corsage pin…a concave scoop where his stomach should have been…a head resembling a baby bird’s with bulging sightless eyes. Fighting weight: two ounces on a postage meter. If I’d had a stamp, I could’ve shipped him anywhere!
“Ain’t no way this li’l critter’s gonna live!”

I was determined he would, Amber seemed determined he wouldn’t. The instinct to cull the unfit made her push him out of the warm little nest. I pushed him back in, fitting him between his bigger, happily-nursing siblings. The next day, the vet gave me a syringe and tube, showed me how to put it down the pup’s throat and inject formula directly into his tummy.

“If you can keep him alive a week, he might live.”

For the next two weeks, I performed that arduous task, every two hours, day and night, placing him on a heating pad to keep his body temperature constant.

At the end of that time, he graduated from 6 ounces of formula every two hours to 12 ounces, supplemented with very watery pablum, strained egg yolk mixed with formula, and applejuice. By now, Whitey had a new name. There’s a scene in Ghost Busters where the three men hunt for the little green slime ghost and one of them says, “Ugly little spud, isn’t he?” That was the pup–an ugly little spud. So Spud he became.

He continued to grow, I continued to be surrogate mother. At four weeks, he was the size he should’ve been at birth, weighing 8 ounces. His sisters weighed 2 pounds. They liked to play “Spud-ball”–tossing him around. Guess who he ran to when they got too rough? As far as Spud was concerned, I was Mama, and he just happened to have been born with 4 feet instead of two!

We celebrated milestones, such as the day he got his first tooth–at six months. Did an IQ test for dogs we saw on PBS. Spud rated as having the intelligence of a two-year-old human. He understood 24 words. I think I have more baby pictures of Spud than I do of my own son who informed me he was jealous. I told him to imagine Spud was the baby brother he’d always wanted.

It was around this time that the vet finally decided perhaps he wasn’t going to die after all….

…and he didn’t…

…not for 14 years. The day we lost Spud was the day our entire family was devastated. After such a dramatic start and living for so long, he was as dear to us as any human member. He was my constant companion, my Little Buddy, my Baby, the family member who called the shots, the one who decided the Gentleman Caller was going to be permitted to stay.

Who says animals can’t feel, can’t love, can’t experience emotion? Anyone who’s had a beloved pet knows better. Anyone who’s had a beloved pet will echo me when I say (to paraphrase slightly):

“Spuddy , I’m glad I knew ye!”