Sunday, November 28, 2010

Bodhi Celebrates One Year in His Furever Home

Today is exactly a year since Foster Mom Donna brought Bodhi (fka Bodacious/Bodie) into our lives.  We changed the spelling of his name to Bodhi, which means “awakening” or “enlightenment”, and he has certainly transformed our lives in the past year.  He really is the center of our little family, and he brings us joy and laughs every single day.

In the past year we’ve traveled with him to TX and AZ by plane and WV and SC by car (not to mention all the rides around town!)  Our parents are constantly asking when Bodhi is coming to visit (oh, and we can come too, if we want...)!  Bodhi does great on the plane in his little carrier under the seat, except for a few weeks ago when we had a jail break!  He nosed the zipper open and took off down the aisle.  Luckily some fellow passengers helped to grab him and get him back in his carrier right away.  Bodhi enjoyed Arizona, but he was pretty confused by the fact that there wasn’t any grass to go on.  He would go out to the yard, look around and then sit down and whine, clearly saying, “I don’t know what trick you’re trying to pull on me, but I’m not allowed to pee here!”  Once we got him on the leash and took him around the block he found lots of vertical surfaces to water.

Over the summer we went to a mountain house in WV and he got to swim in the river, chase after fish and other things in the water, and lay in the grass in the sun and sleep.  There were 4 other dogs there, which was a little rough, but we put him on a long lead and he did better than expected.  On walks and in the water he was perfectly fine around the other dogs, but around the house he was territorial and a bit grumpy.  He’s still very fear aggressive, so we can’t take him to regular doggie obedience classes because he barks at almost every other dog and tries to bite them.  We have taken him to the dog park a few times, and he does well hanging around the outside, and even inside for part of the time.  But he’s always on full alert and any sudden sounds or movements cause him to startle and start barking and lunging.  He watches and whines like he wants to go play with the other dogs, but he just doesn’t really know how.

We’ve been able to manage Bodhi’s skin issues and have determined that when it gets the worst he’s usually also developing some sort of infection. A quick trip to the vet and some antibiotics knock it right out and he’s a happy camper once again.  He still gets a bath at least once a week with his medicated shampoo, which he doesn’t love but tolerates because it then means he gets to run around the house at top speed, wriggling on the ground or couch like an alligator. After he calms down he gets brushed and rewarded with treats.  Speaking of treats, there is almost NOTHING that he won’t do for food.  His favorites are banana and string cheese.  He can wake from a dead sleep and be at the fridge in 2 seconds flat when he hears the sound of a string cheese package.  

Food is the center of two of our favorite  “incidents”:

When we first got Bodhi we were told he had a wheat allergy, and we’ve always been very strict about making sure none of his food or treats have any kind of wheat in them.  He was still having his skin issues anyway, so we did sort of wonder in the back of our minds if he really was allergic to wheat.  We got the answer one day when Todd made himself a nice “breakfast for dinner” of scrambled eggs with cheese and two pieces of wheat toast with butter and marmalade.  I’m sure you can see where this is going...Todd got up to answer the door and within a few seconds, Bodhi had jumped up on the coffee table and wolfed down almost the entire meal!  Within just a few hours he was ferociously licking and scratching at his skin. He spent most of the next 2 days laying on the floor like a beached whale.  We don’t wonder about that wheat allergy any more.

The second story is my favorite, and in a way I’m strangely proud of our little guy.  A friend of ours was over one night and left a closed jar of crunchy peanut butter on the table when she left for work in the morning.  An hour or two later I woke up to the smell of peanut butter in the bedroom.  I went out to the living room and the jar of peanut butter was on the couch, open!  I looked at the jar carefully expecting to see a hole in it somewhere, but instead there were little teeth marks all around the lid of the jar.  Bodhi had unscrewed the lid and eaten as much peanut butter as he could reach with his little muzzle.  His head was covered in oily peanut butter and he had peanuts stuck in his beard.  We wanted to punish him, but he had such a look of illness and shame that all we could do was laugh.  It took him two days of brown rice and boiled chicken to recover, but it hasn’t diminished his love of peanut butter one bit!

Bodhi has been such a wonderful addition to our lives, and we are thankful every single day that we have him.  We’re excited to come home and see him after work and he now sleeps with us on the big bed every night.  People literally stop us on our walks all the time to tell us how cute and sweet he is, and we’ve had several offers to “take him off our hands.”  As if we could give up our little guy!  We’re hoping one day to add a Cairn brother for Bodhi (or maybe five?)

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