Crazy Dog Woman

Call me a crazy dog woman but I’ve always loved dogs.

dogcollageI grew up with them and as a child I envisioned myself as the dog queen among our many dogs at home. It came to a point that we had 21 dogs at home. We had dogs of all shapes and sizes and they terrorized the neighborhood for a good 30 seconds every time we opened the gate and just ran back in as the car came in and the gate closed. They acted like a pack and I wanted to be their queen, then I wanted to be a vet until our vet had to put asleep one of our dogs and that kind of put me off.

When I moved to Manila, I never thought I missed having a dog or a pet but I did. I lived alone and was a work most of the time so it wasn’t practical. When I had my daughter, I got her a Shih Tzu and named him Ashley. Then Ashley had a puppy from one of the neighbor’s dog of the same breed and we named him Twirly. We loved both very much and leaving them behind was one of the most painful things I did when I had my annulment. Bea and had no space nor could we afford to have dogs when we initially moved out.

img_20150525_190610.jpgWe finally got Vader when everything settled but someone stole our baby. This depressed me for quite a while. It still pains me to see his pictures but we felt it was time for me to have a new baby puppy. We decided to get one from a breeder. Since we decided on a hypoallergenic dog, a Yorkie would be a good choice. My friend Myka who joins dog shows referred the breeder to us and I fell in love with the puppies. The best Yorkshire Terrier breeder in the country it seems. I didn’t know. I just wanted a new baby puppy to love.

No To Puppy Mills

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If you want to buy supplies, go ahead but just not the dogs.

We went to Tiendesitas to check out other dogs months ago and you would only head home feeling bad about the conditions the dogs (and other animals) are in. The Yorkies we looked at were tiny and if you ask them how old these were, they would quickly say 3 months. 3 months yet they couldn’t walk. They were belly crawling on the floor like 4 week olds. Tiny dogs sell and the minimum age for selling a puppy is at 3 months. It was also difficult to determine the actual size of the dogs as the parents aren’t there. Manhandled, scruffy with no parents. Poor doggies

lunacollageWe bought Luna the pomeranian at Tiendesitas and we brought home a puppy with Corona Virus and a lot of Tape Worms. So much tape worms that I felt like she was a piggy bank you could jiggle and worms come out. We spent twice as much for vet fees than what we spent to purchase her. The worst part was the scare of losing the puppy and my daughter already fell in love with her. I am just glad we brought her to the vet for a check-up as soon as we purchased her and was able to literally save her life. We bumped into a friend who bought a poodle on the same day and his puppy passed away 5 days after. Please don’t support these puppy mills – Tiendesitas, Cartimar and the like. They lie to your face about how the puppies are bred, age, condition and even the purity of the breed. Luna is a Pomeranian and we were told she was going to be a toy sized Pomeranian so we paid a premium for the small size. Well, we love her to bits and she’s such a cutie but there’s nothing toy about her size and weight.

Preparing For Our New Baby Puppy

I’ve been waiting for Porkie for a couple of months. The breeder sends us update pictures and she is just adorable. We’ve preparing our home for our new puppy too. We already have her designated area and bought her dog food (we asked the breeder), bed, food and water bowls, leash and collar, shampoo, and toys. We have mentally prepared ourselves for a week of sleepless nights and have cleaned up the crate for initial crate training. Introducing Porkie to Luna may be challenging. Since Vader disappeared, she has been enjoying the alpha dog and only child status. She is quite socialized but I’m sure a little jealousy would come in. We really have to make sure we don’t dote on the little one (Even if I do really want to).

Haay..I really just had to write all of this down because I’m so excited for our new baby, I could burst!

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Vader, Our Sith Puppy

I couldn’t post this earlier. It was too painful and I would end up crying.

Exactly 6 months ago, we lost our baby Vader. I was asleep in our room, our helper was in the bathroom and we both heard our front door open. I thought it was her, she thought it was me. I heard frantic barking from Luna the pomeranian and next thing I know, our helper barged into our room wrapped in a towel telling me frantically that Vader, our baby teacup poodle was gone. We ran to the building security and reported the loss and they started searching. We tried everything on the days that followed.

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Left his things outside so that he can find his way home.

We even contacted Mr.David Consunji who pleasantly and immediately helped us. My email must have been one of the most amusing he had received for the week but I am thankful they exerted all efforts. My letter (sensitive data deleted):

Dear Mr. Consunji,

We are residents of Tivoli Garden Residences. Yesterday (May 25) at around 8:30 a.m., our black poodle went out of our unit and into the hallway of the 39th floor. He was never found. I know we were remiss in having the door unlocked or even open but we are appealing to your kind heart to help us find our dog.

We have placed posters at the Iris Bldg., did door to door flyering at the building and have informed the security and asked for them to view the CCTV footage of the elevator. We feel that he might have entered it and went to another floor. We were informed that we do not have CCTV at the hallways yet as we are a new building. We have done everything and ended our search at midnight last night.

In fact, we have gone to social media and our call for help has been shared and reshared on Facebook. We are that desperate because Vader was family. We are all devastated.

You are our only hope to ask the security to take the matter seriously as we get mixed reports or they just say “makikita rin yan” or “nanakaw na yun”. We have not lost hope and will keep hoping that he is still within the compound.

I thank you in advance for even giving us the time to even read this email. I know this may be inconsequential for some but as my daughter said, Vader, our dog is family and we don’t give up on family.

Sincerely,

Zarah Hernaez- De Joya

I was sobbing for days. Vader our baby was truly our baby. He gave my family so much joy and love. He went with us almost everywhere and weekends were spent walking him at Bonifacio High Street. He had his own Twitter account: @sithpuppy and his own Instagram account. He was family and our hearts were broken.

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Vader Come Home

Some people may not understand how we had so much love for a dog, a pet, but this little guy made life so much brighter for our household.
He was stolen for sure. Who could have opened the door? How can a dog of 4 lbs. disappear at the top floor of a high rise condominium?
They say he was stolen because we never had him neutered and some dogs get stolen for breeding. We didn’t because we didn’t want to cause him any pain.

We kept searching for weeks. We even went to the pet markets – Cartimar, Tiendesitas, Arranque Market, ready to buy him back if we have to. He wasn’t there. We went through pet buy and sell sites hoping to see his picture. Friends and even celebrities posted our call for help.
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Heartfelt thanks to all those who helped us find him, Anne Curtis, Boyet Sison, Ellen Adarna and Ramon Bautista. Pet lovers all. People sent us leads but it wasn’t Vader. Every time someone sent us a message that they saw a lost dog or a black poodle, our hearts skipped a beat only to be crushed in disappointment and I would cry again. I cried and I still cry for my baby Vader, 6 months after he disappeared. The support was overwhelming. A man we didn’t know even painted his toe nails in solidarity with us and our search for Vader. This made us smile, God bless him.

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Black toe nails with paw prints.

We will never give up but we’ve come to accept that he might be in someone else’s home now. We just pray that they love our angel as much as we loved him. I can’t even call him a pet or dog, he was truly my baby. Vader was love.

A friend said one can never get over the loss. You just have to create space in your heart to love a new baby puppy.

The Impulse Buy Who Now Rules Our Home

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She cringes everytime she remembers that story. Haha.

<<  This was my daughter’s reaction when I told her that I posted about our Singapore disaster. Haha.

It’s Friday so I  just want to talk about our dog. I have unfortunately turned into “that woman with the dog”. The woman people try to avoid at parties because they just want to talk about their dog, show you cute pictures of their dog, tell you their latest dog adventures or worse yet, shove the dog at your face and say ” Touch him! He’s friendly!” I am the woman with the dog bag walking around the mall. Correction: walking proudly.

I used to scoff at that woman. I thought it was silly. I always have been an animal lover, a dog owner. Now I am the dreaded dog parent to Vader, a black teacup poodle a.k.a. The Impulse Buy Who Now Rules Our Home. We parents can be such suckers. “I want a pet!”, “My pet died!” *sad face* and we just give in and get some furry thing that just turns your life upside down.

You better learn how to take care of him, okay? A dog will teach you responsibility. He’s your dog.” Said every sucker of a parent. We know this hardly ever happens.

“The Impulse Buy Who Now Rules Our Home” needs as much attention as a baby. Sleepless nights? Check! Cleaning poop? Check! Feeding at 3 am?Check! Occupies bed space at night? Check! Limited places to visit for recreation? Check! Let’s just say that going to the cinema is a rare treat for us nowadays. What the heck did we get into?

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The child & dog as bestfriends utopian image. How heart warming.

He’s a child’s best friend, you rationalize. If he is, then what is your child’s bestfriend doing staring at you and wagging his tail while you’re butt naked in the shower?!

There’s a study that says that people are hardwired to respond to respond and love pets. Something about it being a response dating back hundreds of millions of years. A part of your brain called the amygdala (not Amidala) . You can read about it here: http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/hardwired-respond-animals-people-love-pets/story?id=14517339. Yes, you can blame your amygdala.

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Padme Amidala

So after the nth dog poop you have picked up and you realize your house is now in shambles and you have gotten immune to the dog smell of your home, you give in to the little ball of fluff prancing around obliterating what looks like your childhood stuffed toy (30 year old toy). “Maybe I can learn from Cesar Milan.” you say. I read in a book that you have to look the dog in the eye to discipline him, you think. And you did stare into its eyes..bad idea. His cuteness just overwhelms you and your amydala turns into Amidala dictating that you love the furry thing. Yes Queen Amygdala, I will turn into that woman with the dog. You are a slave forever to little “Impulse Buy Who Rules Our Home”. Eventually, it’s okay. Especially if he looks like this:

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Look into my eyes, human.

We love Vader. In our hearts, he’s the cutest bully in the world.