I was competing with Chance at an out of town agility trial. At the briefing, they announced over the loud speaker that there was a dog on site looking for a home. Several hours later I saw a flyer regarding the little dog and I decided I wanted to meet him.
A two ring indoor agility trial is amazingly loud and overwhelming to someone new to the sport - man or animal. Noise, crowds, confusion and lots of adrenaline. But nothing bothered this 8 pound 8 oz little guy. He loved ever person and every dog and thought the whole thing one great adventure. And he was determined he would cover every inch of the grounds on his own little feet.
To say he was adorable was an understatement. Handsome, perhaps not, but definitely adorable. And affectionate and bright and absolutely enchanting. When they told me I could take him home for a two week test drive, I was sold. I phoned home that evening after the trial was over for the day and received a "sure, bring him home if you want to". First thing the next morning I asked if he was still available, and finding out that was the case, I put in my claim. After the trial was over I loaded him into my van and started the 3 hour drive home.
What a little doll! He made not a sound in his crate the whole way home. He had met Chance at the trial, and introductions to Will, Jess and Lucy went exceedingly well. The gang thought he was terrific and all of them wanted to play. All of them except Chance that is. Within 30 seconds of letting the two of them off leash together for the first time, Chance had him flat on the ground and proceeded to tell him off in no uncertain terms for almost a minute. Little Ricky just laid there and one could almost imagine him saying, "Sure, got it, no problem." When Chance let him up, Ricky gave himself a good shake and followed about 3 feet behind Chance. Pack order had been established within the first 5 minutes home and all was well.
When my vet first saw him she exclaimed "What were you thinking?". I must admit she had a point. She had stood by me when I had two 75 pound Greyhounds, a 55 pound Pit mix, a 50 pound English Shepherd and a 45 pound Welsh Springer Spaniel. Although I had been slowly downsizing since then, I think she was shocked when I brought in a 9 month old 8 pound, 8 oz low rider. After a very thorough exam, she pronounced him in great shape and wished us well. And as I was leaving she said she could understand why I brought him home - he was definitely a keeper!
Lucy thinks Ricky is her own special gift and Jess plays with him endlessly when he gets the opportunity. Will has been known to wrestle with gusto and Chance has actually managed one play bow, although he changed his mind when Ricky wanted to take him up on it. Ricky was a good fit with the clan from the start. Now if he'll only outgrow his chewing phase soon . . . .
Ricky was one very lucky pup. He was literally a throw away who was taken in by agility handlers with very big hearts. They gave him his first shots, had him neutered, house trained him, crate trained him, car trained him and then after all this time, money and effort, looked for a good home for him. I was equally as fortunate when they approved my adopting him and let go of a little boy they had come to love.
The hook on this adoption was that they wanted him to go to an agility home. The fact that this little boy is absolutely fearless and has already freelanced a full height dog walk and a full height teeter, bodes well for his future. I think I can, I think I can, I think I can . . . .
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Last revised: 05/2010