Sandy, 12 year old yellow female
February 21, 2017
As I spend longer with my foster family, I’ve discovered a few things about myself that I thought I should share with you. First of all, I don’t really need to have two half hour walks a day, I’m quite happy with several very short ones, or maybe one adventurous one, at a park or field nearby, where I will chase the trails of other dog smells and rush about for as long as you keep me there! On some days I’m very reluctant to go very far at all. Foster mom used to try and encourage me to go a mile or two every day, but now she seems to realize that I’m an old lady and I don’t need to push myself.
The other thing is my first family keep giving me lots of daft nicknames! It started off with the teenage son calling me “Sandy McPandy Wandy”. That quickly caught on, and now often I am just McPandy. That’s actually one of my most sensible nicknames. I also get called the Fluff Monster, Flopsy Mopsy, Snuzzler (something to do with my snuggliness and soft snoring], and pretty much almost anything else that they can think of… I don’t mind it, it’s just nice to have people around to share my space with.
There’s a photo attached of a new behavior that I displayed today; it’s me resting my head right next to my food bowl. As I said before, it’s a magic food bowl that automatically has a treat in it if I do a lap around the inside of the house. Today I thought I would try and figure out what happens during my lap, and maybe save myself all that effort. Unfortunately it didn’t quite work and no treats materialized. You can’t blame a gal for trying. It really is quite the mystery.
That’s all for now, but if you know of anybody that might be looking for a snuggly wuggly, dogger wogger, that answers to the name of Popsi Wopsie, please encourage them to look on the Brookline Labrador Retriever Rescue website. I’ll be listed under the name of Sandy!
January 25, 2017
I thought I should share with you a little about my philosophies for life.
As I can’t see, I do not know what the physical dimensions of the world around me are like. Therefore I assume two things: that the world is flat, and that there are no obstacles. Given these assumptions, when I find myself somewhere new, I pick up my head, and set off at a brisk pace. However, sometimes my assumptions are proved wrong, and I bump into something, trip over something, or stumble down something. When this happens I accept it, gather myself together, and carry on pretty much as before, assuming that the REST of the world is flat and has no obstacles. Now places that I have been many times before, and for prolonged periods, like my foster house, are special cases. These places are exceptions to the rule, and the assumptions do not hold. Therefore I move more slowly, and try to avoid the areas where I bump into things most often. Admittedly I do get confused, and often end up bumping into things anyway, in which case I accept it, gather myself together, and carry on!
I do OK with my “the world is flat” assumption, but I think that may be helped by my guide humans. When I do encounter significant exceptions to this assumption, I always have a guide human to stop me making a catastrophic mistake. Sometimes my guide humans want me to leap out of the door from the van, and I know from extending my nose and my paws as low as I can that there is no floor anywhere close. It takes quite a lot of courage, but after a few seconds I trust them and leap out anyway. So far, so good – I have always found a floor and landed safely on my feet.
Another philosophy I have is to take whatever comes. So sometimes I get to go on long walks in flat, open spaces, and I make the most of that. Sometimes I get the house to myself for several hours, and that’s great too. Sometimes a human will be in the house with me, and if they let me I will settle in the same room as them, but if they don’t, I will find somewhere that suits me on my own. I love being petted, and will gladly stay still for hours while you lavish attention on me, but if you are busy, I will lick my paws, snooze a little, and maybe wander around the house in case my magic bowl has another delicious morsel in it. If it does, that’s great, if not, it’s no big deal, I will check it again later.
Currently I am on the look out (so to speak) for a new guide human. So if you think you might know someone, get them to check out my details on the Brookline Labrador Retriever Rescue website. All for, now, the sun has come out, and I am off to lie in it!
January 17, 2017
I have a magic food bowl! Often when I do a lap around the house – from the place where all the food stuff happens, past the music making corner, down the thin room, through the carpeted room, and back into the food producing place -THERE IS SOMETHING ELSE IN MY BOWL! It’s just a little something, but it’s always yummy. It has made me do a lot more loops, and I’m spending a lot less time sleeping in the same spot and am getting much quicker at getting up and getting going. Foster Mum has been sneaking some stuff into my breakfast and dinner too – there are little slightly sticky and soft bits that she says are antibiotics, as well as different tasting crunchy bits, that are supposed to help my joints feel better. I am feeling pretty good, although sleeping is still pretty much my favorite activity. I especially like belly rubs while sleeping!
I have met a few new people since my last blog. I like all of them. I like new people most – and I sometimes jump up and down to show them how excited I am. Jumping is quite out of character for me. Generally I am a low intensity, laid back, old girl. I do not hurry, and do not mind waiting a long time. One thing that does speed me up a bit is the smell of other dogs. I can go pretty fast when I catch a scent, as I would really like to meet the other dogs. So far I have not managed to meet and greet them properly. I get a bit worried because I cannot see where they are or what they are doing, and get over-zealous about making sure they know not to hurt me. I am also less laid back when I am given peanut butter. I have figured out how to extract it from this strangely shaped rubbery cone. It is a noisy process, but fun, and delicious! Usually I am very good at sharing, but not when it comes to peanut butter!
When there are lots of people in the carpeted room together I like to lie in the middle of the room. I know that sooner or later at least one of them will join me on the floor, rub my belly, and scratch my ears and butt. Sometimes they use me as a pillow. Sometimes they stick their feet under me and use me as a slipper. They did get me to go up the couch once, but I got off again, as soon as they provided a step so I could figure out where the floor was.
So, life here is comfortable and pleasant. It does not feel like my forever home though. I would love a family that is in less of a hurry, people who enjoy walking slowly and people who have visitors would be nice. I do not need lots of company, but it’s great when there are people around for a few hours a day, and best of all when there a few people gathered together. If this sounds anything like you, or someone you know, you should find out more about me from the Brookline Labrador Retriever Rescue website.
Just off to do another loop and check my magic bowl…
Yours truly, Sandy
Note from foster mum:
Sandy is nothing like any of the other foster dogs we have had. She is very easy, asks very little, is very self sufficient, tolerant, and endearing. My 16 -year-old son who is usually somewhat impatient and critical, said he thinks he probably likes Sandy the most out of all the dogs we have helped. He is so impressed with her ability to make the best of any situation, for example when she keeps walking into the walls, she just redirects her shoulders and tries again. Rather like a roomba! Sandy is a peaceful soul and helps to calm down our high energy household.
December 31, 2016
I have spent the last month settling in to my latest foster home. I was having some problems relating to the other dogs at the previous places – I really like other dogs, but as I am blind I have to make sure they know not to try anything. I am the only non-human resident now, which is working out really well. I like all people, and I love visitors coming to the house.
I am very easy going, and undemanding. I love being outside and exploring the world with my nose. If I get the chance to move fast – in a field for example – I can be quite spritely. If there are obstacles, such as walls, trees, mailboxes, I need my guide human to stop me bumping into them. If I do bump into things I don’t make a fuss, I just figure out how to get around them and move on. Age has taught me not to sweat the small stuff.
When I am at home I am content to snooze close to my people, or on their feet, and will frequently angle for belly rubs. The fur on my belly, back, legs and head is really thick and teddy-bear like. I get around the house just fine, and I can do single steps, and can even get into and out of my people’s van with a little help, but I have no desire to climb. I will not get on the couch or the bed, or try and go upstairs to the kids’ rooms. If you want to snuggle, you can come down to me! At night I usually sleep in an alcove near the ground floor bedroom, but I can sleep pretty much anywhere. I do not use a doggy bed, a rug or some carpet suits me fine. I rarely bark, and can go 12 hours overnight without needing to go out. All I need is some gentle company, some fresh air and time to stretch my legs and smell the “flowers”, some good food and a few belly rubs. With those things in place I am a peaceful, contented, loveable lady.
From Sandy’s foster mom: Sandy came to Brookline when her owner went into a nursing home as a result of a fall. Poor Sandy was home alone for a few weeks until Brookline came to the rescue. The change of events was hard on both the owner and Sandy, and her person was very concerned about what would happen to 11 year old Sandy. As described above, Sandy is a sweet girl who deserves a forever home to spend the rest of her days. Blind for years, she doesn’t let that define or deter her, but it does make it hard for her to be with other dogs. Do you have room in your heart and home for this lovely gal? Please contact autumndynell