Gotcha Day…1 year later

Today marks one year since I adopted Auggie from the rescue group who was fostering him after he was dropped off at a shelter in Dallas. I still can’t imagine that someone would ditch him, and sometimes wish I could have had him from a puppy, but this year has sure been a sweet one. I’m not sure if I rescued him, or he rescued me; I think it’s a little of both.  In case you’re new here, you can read Auggie’s adoption story here. My Mom and I took a road trip to suburb of Dallas to pick him up and I was a little nervous to make sure he adjusted well and was going to be healthy before I shared that I had adopted him.  So, we spent the first couple of weeks at home with only a couple of people knowing he was here and praying that he would be a fit. This pic was from July 4th 2016, I was grateful for a long weekend after I brought him home.

 The week after I brought him home, we were back to the 4G for a visit and the littles got to meet him.  Our neighbor snapped this picture when I brought Auggie out after we had been swimming. I think this was about 5 or 7 days since I brought him home and he was definitely attached to me. He is very loyal and also protective of me.  

When I felt like we were “out of the woods” and he was fitting right in, I let my friends know about him on my Facebook and Instagram with a little “peek a boo” post… 

I don’t really think he’s changed much since I got him, but looking back at pictures over a year, I can definitely see he has. His eyes show tons of expression and he is such a smiling and happy dog!  He LOVES visitors and doesn’t care to abide by any personal space boundaries.

He still stays pretty near to me in the house, often under the table if I’m working, with his toys or taking a snooze. He naps sometimes on the couch, but often lays right at the foot of the couch on the floor for a nap.  He stays on my bed while I’m getting ready in the morning, but then hops to his crate when I’m getting ready to leave.  He has mastered my morning routine and knows the last things I do before leaving the house.

Auggie LOVES toys and this little santa-saurus is his very favorite. I can’t even begin to count how many times I’ve thrown that toy for him to play fetch, but it is definitely been thousands of times.  Even though that’s his favorite and always nearby, he often digs all the toys out of his box and gives them equal play time. It regularly looks like a toddler lives here.

I know with little kids you never know when the last time is that they will do something and for about 11 of the last 12 months every time I was in the shower Auggie would come stick his nose around the shower curtain. I guess he wanted to make sure I hadn’t vanished through a secret door. I know adopted dogs are different and some friends say theirs are always in proximity, differently from a dog they’ve raised from a puppy. In the last few weeks he’s quit doing this, so I’m hoping he’s less anxious about me being out of sight. Eventually I want him to be able to stay out of his crate during the day when I’m gone to work, but he’s not quite there yet. 

The very best part of Auggie’s day is a walk outside. Since I can’t see his face on a walk, I don’t know his exact expression, but daily on the trail I see people smile at him as they pass walking, jogging or on their bikes. The biggest lesson we’ve worked on this year is trail etiquette, and not barking at other dogs when you pass and not pulling constantly on the leash. There was one day that a man stopped by us and made a comment to me about him asking if I’ve seen a dog training show on TV. Auggie started barking immediately, I said “yes” and kept walking to settle him down. The man turned back around and said something else to me, to the effect of him walking and doing what I asked, not barking and pulling leash. But really…without me even asking he was doing exactly what I wanted him to: barking at a weirdo stranger on the trail who I didn’t want to have a conversation with! #gooddog

We typically do 3 miles a couple of days a week and 1.5 miles most other days. In May I worked with him on jogging and Auggie can jog our entire long route with me.  Lately it’s too hot for 3 mile jog, so if we do jog, it’s only part of the route and then walk the rest. Post walk most days looks a lot like this!  

Getting to go in the car is definitely a favorite, and Auggie knows when I’m packing up his house that he’s getting to go.  Sometimes I just ask him “do you want to go for a ride” and he races to the back door. I only take him on errands I can do without having to get out of the car because it’s too hot here to ever leave him in the car. For about the  first 6 months anytime we were in the car he was riding shotgun like a boss and never laid down in the seat. But, he’s started to lay down now and rest sometimes on a road trip, and especially if we’re on the way home from the 4G and the littles have been there too. 

Auggie LOVES outside so much!  Next up on our training list is learning to consistently come when I call him and to be able to have some free running time when we’re out at the 4G.  He has gotten out the door a couple of times and takes off running all over the pasture, which makes me super nervous. Not having a fenced in area to practice in makes this training a little tricky, but with some treats and repetition, he will get it soon!

This year has flown, and it’s safe to say he’s a mama’s boy and I’m still a crazy dog-mom, but I’m ok with both of those.  I will never forget talking to my Papa about my Barney and his dog Sassy. He was home with just Sassy after my Grandma passed and told me “they sure do bring a lot of company to you”, and Papa was right. Auggie’s a lot of company to me and filled up the empty that was here after losing Barney.

So here’s to a day of celebrating “gotcha day”…with treats, toys, a walk and lots of nap time!

It’s pretty safe to say he’s fully adjusted to being here….

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