Another flash-foster: Pocket Petunia!

Those who read our other blog know that Snickerdoodle’s rescue, Love-A-Bull, has agreed to take in nine survivors of cruelty from three dog fighting operations on the east coast. And those of you who follow us on Facebook  got a little peek at an itty bitty teensy tiny pit bull type dog snuggled up in our crate over the weekend.

But most folks probably hadn’t put the two together, since we’ve been so very cryptic with our hints.

So without further delay, we are proud to introduce Pocket Petunia!

This pocket pet is so little that the beautiful Sirius Republic collar we had picked out for her — Barton Springs — couldn’t even be adjusted to fit! But at 26 pounds fully grown, Petunia does NOT let her tiny stature limit the size of her giant personality and heart full of love.

When she arrived by caravan from Dolly’s Foundation in Florida on Saturday afternoon, she was a quivery little thing. Wouldn’t walk on a leash, wouldn’t make eye contact, certainly didn’t want to play.

But a few hours later she had sniffed every square millimeter of our fenced yard and transformed into a little jumping bean. We haven’t had such a playful dog in the house since Chick was a kid!

Petunia couldn’t get enough of our flirt pole, wanting to play until she was positively pooped. Even just following us around the house and yard seemed to make her little feet dance. It’s like she knew that after a long journey, she’s finally safe.

Unfortunately, we just couldn’t provide the environment that little Petunia needs to flourish. Chick is easily annoyed by puppy-like energy and the Doodlebug is on strict rest due to his heartworm treatment. We agreed to take Petunia in for a few days because the rescue was in a pinch, but once we got her home we knew she couldn’t stay more than a couple of nights. Some dogs do well immediately with a crate-and-rotate routine, while others don’t. Petunia didn’t.

She dealt with the stress of isolation by eliminating in her crate and making a big ol’ mess every time she was left in there, and howling and growling every time our dogs passed by the room with her crate. We suspected that it wasn’t aggression she was displaying, just extreme frustration and fear of being isolated — or so we hoped. Understandable for a dog who had probably lived her whole life in a small enclosure and had just gotten her first taste of freedom.

After a long weekend of moving the crate outside six times a day for a thorough scrubbing and what felt like loads and loads of laundry on the “sterilize” cycle, we were exhausted. Just as we were about to throw in the towel and beg for relief, a miracle happened — we were contacted by the most remarkable woman, looking to foster a dog just like Petunia.

Cautiously, I talked her through all of the great things about her. Then, I slowly unraveled the challenges — “dirty dog syndrome,” some potential dog-reactivity, fear of anything new. I held my breath. “I would be honored to take her,” the angel said. Only it wasn’t an angel. It was a real live superhero– Petunia’s new foster mama.

Stay tuned for a Monday update on how Petunia is faring in her new foster home . . .

27 responses

  1. Your conversation sounds like one I had with one of the greyhounds I had through. You know all the reasons you’d have a greyhound? Sammy wasn’t any of them!

    Sammy chewed stuff up, he dug holes, in jumped on people, he’d bark when left alone. He was a wild child! I told a potential adopter all these ‘bad things’, and she said, “He sounds great. My current greyhound’s a bit quiet for me.”

    ! Sometimes the right people come at just the right time, don’t they!

  2. OMG, total Maisie mini-me!!! Maisie even has those exact same bumpy spots with whiskers coming out of ’em. crazy! so if we had a class picture oined up by size, we’d now have Havi – Maisie – Petunia! 🙂

  3. Pocket Petunia is a cutie. And totally understandable that she’s going to have some issues while adjusting to her new life. So happy she was rescued; that you helped the rescue in a pinch; and found Petunia a foster mama who will give her the love and attention (and patience) that she needs. Looking forward to hearing more.

  4. Wonderful news that a capable individual stepped up to the task. Petunia is so beautiful! I’ve found fostering to be a mixed bag, but it’s always a labor of love — some dogs are more labor, others are all love 🙂

  5. Petunia is absolutely adorable! I’m going to post your blog on my rescue fb page – Daisy’s Place Retriever Rescue – in the hopes that it will inspire others to open their hearts and homes to a dog in need! Keep up the great work – big tail wags and sloppy kisses from all the Daisy Dogs! many blessings, Melissa

  6. Now that is an itty pittie! Poor girl definitely needed to be center of attention while she learns about dog life. I bet Chick and the Dude aren’t overly sad to see her go- they’re past the age of puppy sitting. Parker and Skye are still young enough that they tolerate puppy antics, but only for so long.

    Good luck Petunia!

  7. This is an awesome post, because its absolutely true. Even with the best intentions, sometimes fosters just aren’t the right fit for their foster home. I used to be so embarrassed about it, but it is what it is.

    Yay that someone else was willing and ready for her. She’s so cute!!!

  8. YAY! happy for little petunia. who would have thought a fully grown pit bull could be 10 pounds smaller than my little cocker spaniel (ok well he’s a fatty but still)?

  9. She is beautiful. I hope she does well in her new foster home. It’s inspiring to hear about the transformation she made in such a short time when she was able to explore the yard and play.

  10. I agree with every comment about this post, but I want to add that you called Chick & Dude “your dogs.” Is the Dude going to be a foster fail? 🙂

  11. What a cutie, I hope her new foster mum makes her feel more secure and she can go on to love and be loved by a wonderful family.

    Lots of the Staffy type dogs are waiting for homes in the UK too and it’s a shame so many of them end up in the wrong hands to start with.

  12. Please keep us posted – I once adopted a dog from a very similar situation – after a few weeks of absolute love for this dog she became a very different dog. She stopped shaking and hiding every time someone came to close to her and started embracing and accepting the love of her new family. She became fiercely protective of her new family. Unfortunately, she only survived 5 yrs with me as she passed away from cancer. To this day she was the love of my life!

  13. Pingback: Helping a Petunia bloom « Love and a Six-Foot Leash

  14. Pingback: Pocket Petunia’s big adventure! « Love and a Six-Foot Leash

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