I don’t have time for another blog. But I have a psychological need for one. On 21 April, we adopted an (estimated) 18-month-old Cane Corso from the shelter. We knew that he needed surgery for his Harder’s glands. We knew that he was big. But we had no idea how much our lives would be turned upside down by the arrival of Spencer.
In the past three months, Spencer has had 4 surgeries, a punctured eye and an infection in one of his eyelids. He’s gained back 7 kg. He’s learned how to play. He’s also tried to chase friends off our property and annex the alley to our house as part of our territory. (Update February 2015: based on our increased knowledge of what research is teaching us about dogs, we now believe that his behavior in the alley is not because of territoriality but because he feels threatened by strangers in such a confined space.)
We don’t know his full history, but in the month before his adoption, he spent one week at the dog pound, and three weeks at the shelter. His former owners had dumped him — half blind because of the severity of his Harder’s gland problem — in the street to fend for himself. We have no idea how long he was there before being picked up.
Nor do we know what inspired us to adopt a dog out of the blue after 12 years of conjugal bliss.
We thought we did our due diligence before Spencer’s arrival. We researched the breed, the surgery, the cost of doggie health insurance, etc. I had dogs as a kid. But we were totally unprepared for the upheaval that Spencer would create in our lives. Our naiveté was probably a good thing for him, because we probably wouldn’t have adopted him otherwise.
This blog will be a log of our journey together, with some history to fill in the gaps since we brought him home. I am writing it to help us look back and realize the progress we make since it’s so easy to getted bogged down in everything there still is to do. I am writing it because I think my Facebook friends are getting tired of me going on and on about the dog, but I need an outlet. This is a difficult psychological journey. I am writing it because there might be other people like me going through this who want to know they are not alone. I am writing it because, despite everything, we can’t imagine our lives without Spencer.
This is what our puppy looked like the day we brought him home.
And here he is three months later.