Disclaimer: If you are easily offended by sheer honesty, or you think me having my own opinions is "being negative", then this is not the place for you, and I suggest you leave and head elsewhere. I call a spade a spade, and I don't sugarcoat anything.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

My Groucho

Well, it is almost that time again. The time I celebrate my Groucho's life. It's been 4 years now. That's longer than I got to keep her! She wasn't even 4 years old yet when she died. She'd been through so much in her life. I got her as a breeder, and that is what I did. She even spent some time in BC with a mediocre breeder! I should NEVER have sent her there! I wonder sometimes what it was she did to Groucho, because when Groucho returned, she just wasn't the same dog she was when she was sent there. My guess was that woman kept her outside in a pen, even though I asked her kindly not to!! Groucho was not used to being kept in a pen away from the house and family! She was used to cuddling on the sofa, and in bed, and having the companionship of people. After having Groucho spend 4 months out of her life there, and when she came home, I discovered she just was not her old self, I wanted to track that woman down and kill her!! She did something to Groucho, and I didn't know what! But Groucho was more skittish than I'd ever known her to be, she was scared all the time for the first few months after I got her back, and she never fully recovered from that! And getting her back it's self was difficult. That woman made it difficult! Just asking her how my Groucho was doing each week was hard. Religiously, every week, I would e-mail, or phone, that woman and ask her how Groucho was doing. Usually when I called, I would have to leave a message, but then I would never hear back from her. I had to e-mail her to ask, and even then, she would not respond until I practically threatened to kick her butt!!

Then the big clinker came. I heard from a third party that she was moving to Minnesota, with MY Groucho!! I wrote to her and told her she's not doing anything of the sort!! She gave me the "That's private, personal information" act and added "I don't owe you any explaination for anything!" I told her firmly, "You have my baby! Of course you owe me an explaination!" And I reminded her also that I have a right to check on Groucho whenever I want to to find out how she's doing. Well, I remember when the day finally came to get Groucho back. That woman told me to be at the Walmart in Coeur d' Alene in Idaho at 10 AM the next day and she will send someone to give me back my Groucho. So, in order to get there, we would have to leave that instant so we could be there at that place and time. My ma agreed to take us. It was actually a fun trip, traveling in the night, we told ghost stories and everything. So there was something positive. Well, we stayed at a hotel for the night in Coeur d' Alene, and waited for the hour to come when we had to be at the Walmart to pick up Groucho.

When we did get there, it was about 9 AM, and so I decided to wait. It shouldn't have been long. I almost fully expected that woman, or whomever she would send, to be there on time. I don't know why I expected that, but I did. She's never been reliable to this point!! But I just wanted my baby back, then I could be done with that woman for good!! Believe me, she was NOT the kind of person I'd have wanted to be friends with!! So we waited and waited and waited, 10 AM came and went and no one showed up! Then 11 AM, then 12 PM, then 1 PM, no one! So I started getting worried. We arrived at the Walmart at 9 AM. I began to wonder if they had arrived before then, didn't see us, then turned around and went back home! Ma told me to call her. But I remembered I forgot to pack her number! So we had to call John, who was back home, at his computer, and ask him to get into my account and look up her number. So that is what he did. It was about 1 PM when I called her and asked where the heck she is! She was just about to leave to go somewhere so I was so glad I caught her then! She gave me some crap about how the guy ran into some trouble as he was crossing the border. I didn't believe her really, but she said he should be there at 3 PM. I said OK. So again, I waited and waited. 3 PM came and went and he still hadn't shown up!! I was worried and pissed off!! Finally at about 5 PM ma said she has to head back home because she had to work the next day. I was about to go, saddened and defeated and still without my baby! I was totally sorry by now I had let that woman have her! I had been warned about letting someone I didn't know borrow my girls. And I swore I was NEVER going to do that again!!! The sad part was, it had costed me my favorite girl, my Groucho! Well, just as we were about to leave, a man walked up to ma and he was holding Groucho. Ma called to me, and I saw the most beautiful sight I'd ever seen! My baby was back!!! I ran over to her, I could not get to her fast enough! She was dirty and stunk, but I didn't care. I was so happy to see her again all I wanted to do was hold her tight and never let go. I didn't know when the last time was she'd been bathed. Probably when I took her to that woman!

Well, that was one of several bad experiences I'd had with breeders. It's very tough to get into breeding! Really! Growing up loving animals so much, I thought breeding would be one of the easier hobbies for me to get into, but I was dead wrong!! Show breeders suck when it comes to interacting with newbies! Let me tell you, I know from personal experience, they are the most uninviting people I've ever known!! Then there are the breeders like this one who borrowed Groucho who are dishonest. Let me tell you, if a breeder acts like they have something to hide, they usually do! That's why the whole time I was breeding, I was an open book! Ask me anything, and I would tell you. As long as it wasn't too personal!! But breeding is like a business, even though show breeders will tell you it's not. I think they tell you that so they can use that as an excuse to keep from telling you things you should know about them! I didn't want to know someone's personal life, but I got suspicious when I would ask a breeder something like "how many dogs have you got?" or "How many champions are in this dog's background?" or when breeders hide their names in forums! That's what bischis did! And I wouldn't trust that woman around the corner!! I never liked bischis!! EVER!! I never will either. She made that choice though, not me. And she thought I was picking on her and she was playing like she was a helpless, innocent victim and I was just picking on her for no reason! Believe me, it wasn't for no reason!! I don't start fights like that! When I "pick on" someone, it's for a damn good reason!! She started on me! I didn't even know her. I couldn't have started anything with her. I've been known to misunderstand people sometimes, and when I do, I usually admit it. But when I feel some random stranger is attacking me without any kind of provocation from my end, I will definitely attack back!! And that's what bischis did with me. I'm the kind of person that when I see someone new, or I don't know, I always try to give them a chance. It's a test to see if they are friendly people or not. I don't want to be nasty to someone who could be a potential friend. That's just how I am. But show breeders are not like that. They start off attacking people they don't know. Or in some way they just jump to conclusions. In my experience, usually the wrong conclusions.

Heck, that's why I make a lousy show breeder! I'm too good of a person!! LOL! Ask any show breeder (or better still, go to shows or the Pluba forum and get to know them yourself). When you look at them from the inside out, you notice they don't have a smidgen of the morals that I grew up knowing. In fact, most of them act like the kids you see that grew up neglected, unloved and even bullied. And don't let the fact that they have kids of their own fool you!! That woman who got my Groucho also had children. But you should have seen what Groucho became once I finally got her back from that woman. My poor baby must have been abused in some way because she was never that scared of little noises or of people before I sent her there.

Then there are the commercial breeders and I have also now seen first hand what they do to their dogs. Personality-wise they are no different from show breeders. But they don't take care of their dogs at all. Minnie is a puppymill rescue. She is still scared of people somewhat. She only just started going to my sis. And this progress has been made possible because I let Anna give Minnie the treats now. Minnie needs to start associating Anna with something positive. Then she will start going to her. But she's getting better! Before, she wouldn't let Anna within an ear's shot of her! I had to get her acclimated to me first. She is my dog! Not Anna's. But we are family and I can't have one member of the family afraid of another. Now, Minnie even licks my face, and she wouldn't do that 6 months ago! It's obvious she did not have much contact with people at all.

Well anyway, this is Groucho's Day. Well, in a couple of days. And every year at this time I celebrate her life. This year I did it with a video. It's the one time I really wanted to get serious. I had no idea when she got so sick, how serious it was because I'd had pregnant dogs before that behaved much the same way. It was never a cause for worry. So that's why I didn't take her to the vet that morning. I know I should have, but I didn't. I thought it would pass. It did with other dogs I had. I didn't really panic until I saw this clear, pinkish fluid coming from her behind. I thought though she was maybe miscarrying! That was when I rushed her to the vet. The first vet I went to wouldn't do anything because we didn't have much money. I had to drive 20 miles to another vet in another town just to have her looked at. They gave her something that stopped the fluid loss, and when morning came, I took her to my regular vet and she was barely alive then. They put her on life support. I wanted her to make it out of that so bad! But unfortunately she didn't. I spent 3 days just not eating, all I wanted to do was sleep, and I did a lot of crying. That was the first month. I didn't have anything to cuddle except my plush lemurs. I was a wreck for a long time! And it had lasting consequences too. Most of all, I'm very sensitive to abuse on dogs. Last night on Dr. Phil, he showed this man in an elevator kicking a beautiful little dog (looked like a papillon or a parti-colored pomeranian). And he didn't kick the dog just once, and not like he was just gently pushing the dog with his foot. I mean, he kicked that poor dog several times as hard as he could!! I wanted to get in that elevator with him and kick his butt as hard as I could when I saw that video!! If I had been there, I would have killed him!!!! I'd have kicked his butt, punched him in the belly, kicked him in the nads, and scratch his eyeballs out!!! That video pissed me off that much!!! Any animal abuse pisses me off. (Don't pay attention on YouTube where I said I would kill a cat!! I was just playing with the cat people there!) But I am especially sensitive to attacks on dogs. Most especially, little dogs.

I remember a dog show Anna and I went to in Oregon, she bought Odessa a lead because she wanted to train her for showing. Well, as we were walking over to the papillon ring, Anna tried to get Odessa to walk on the lead, but all Odessa wanted to do was drag her feet. But Anna kept trying to get her to walk anyway. Well, we didn't know it, but this dumb show breeder was watching her and she came over and started accusing Anna of abusing Odessa!! I just looked and saw her there talking to Anna, and Anna looked a little stressed. I asked Anna what was that woman saying, and Anna said she was saying that Odessa was being abused. Well that show breeder was lucky I didn't just tell her to get her stupid ass the fuck away from us and leave us alone!!! Because that was what I felt like saying!! But back then, I had better respect not only for other breeders, but also for someone who was old enough to be my grandma! No matter how unfriendly they seemed to be. I just told her that Anna was NOT abusing Odessa, she was just trying to get her to learn to walk on a lead! Then, without any apologies or any offer to help Anna learn how to teach Odessa to walk the right way on the lead, she just turned her idiot ass around and said "hm. It looks like you're abusing her." and she walked away. People like her is the reason I hate show breeders so much. I was not exactly thrilled to have a member of my family be accused of something like that without any kind of apologies or offer to help fix the problem she thought was bad enough to harass a couple of strangers over. If I had been her, and had enough nerve to go up to someone I don't know and think they were doing something immoral, I would have had the guts to help fix the problem once I found out they were not doing what I thought they were doing. Or at least said "My bad! I thought you were abusing your dog. I'm sorry." But then, like I said, I guess that's what makes me a lousy show breeder. I have better manners than that! I was not even harsh with that woman when I found out she was accusing Anna of abusing Odessa. I wanted to be, but I was not! Call me a not-so-good breeder all you want to! Heck, even call me kooky or loony. I don't care! But don't EVER accuse me of animal abuse!! Not unless you want to go head-to-head with an angry 250-pound latin woman who still mourns her long-lost baby girl. I may abuse people sometimes (mostly just in fun), but I never abuse animals.

Anyway, here's Groucho's video:

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