Saturday, February 12, 2011

A Very Happy Ever After for Ravenswood – Adopted 2/16/2008.

We learned about Col. Potter Cairn rescue when we adopted our 1st Cairn, Ryder, in December 2006. We were researching care, feeding and grooming of Cairns on the internet and found your web site. What a great source of information, it has been a big help.

In the late summer of 2006 we started talking about adopting a 2nd Cairn and starting checking out the available Cairns when we found Ravenswood. There was something about her that got our attention, maybe it was her bright shiny eyes, the gray hairs sprinkled around the black hair of her face or the reddish highlights around her muzzle, but it was love at first sight.

Finally the day to bring Raven home came. We could hardly sleep the night before we were so excited. The weather that day was snow with freezing rain and we almost got stuck driving up the steep driveway at Raven’s foster home, but that did not deter us. When we first met Raven, she immediately went to her safe spot when we entered the foster home. Lynn and Joe P calmed Raven down and brought her closer to meet us. It was obvious that Lynn and Joe had come to care for Raven a great deal. Gradually Raven became a little more comfortable wound us and Lynn put her on Carlene’s lap. We chatted for a while and learned more about how Lynn and Joe had helped prepare Raven for living with a family and it was quite obvious how hard this was for them to let her go. Little did we know then how quickly and how much we would come to love this little girl.
Raven was very shy and wary when she came home with us, which was understandable. The changes came slowly. For the first 2 months, she slept in her crate in our bed room at night and stayed in her x pen during the day. In the morning Raven needed a lot of coaxing with treats to come out of her crate. Sometimes it would take 10-15 minutes to get her tome come out, only to see her run back to her crate. Gradually she would come out and stay out, because she learned that breakfast was coming soon.

Although we had considered and discussed the challenges of adopting a puppy mill rescue, at times we found the challenges to be a bit more than we had expected. Recognizing our commitment, we persevered and asked for help and suggestions. Thank you Lynn P for all your help!

The changes we slow, but noticeable. After a couple of months, Raven would wander around the house while we were home and investigate. She gradually became much more comfortable with her new surroundings and loves to sit on the couch next to us. At bedtime we would put her in her x pen. One night we decided to let Raven sleep the whole night on the couch and that’s where she has slept every night since.

Each change no matter how small, was an event and another milestone in Raven’s continuing progress. The first time she barked. (6-7 months after she came home with us). The first time she walked freely on a leash. The first time she kissed us on the nose. The first time she did not try to run away when we trimmed her nails, brushed her, trimmed her hair or gave her a bath. All of these are little things with dogs that are raised as puppies in normal, living family environments, but all were quite traumatic at first for Raven.

Having Raven as part of our family has been so rewarding in so many ways. To see her excited and curious when people come to visit. To be greeted by her with tail wagging when we come home from work. Having her sleep on the couch next to us when we watch tv or read. Most mornings she comes to visit us when we are in the bedroom or bathroom getting ready to go to work. Raven now loves to go for walks and rides in the car. She gets so excited when we ask if she wants to go for a walk and lets out lots of arooos! Raven has blossomed into a perfect little lady and we are so happy to have her be a part of our family. Thank you to everyone at Col Potter for the great work you are doing, it is because of you that we met our little Ravenswood!

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