Let me introduce you to Lucky Strike Red, our 4-year-old Miniature Schnauzer. From the moment Lucky arrived in our family, she filled it with craziness.
Our 3-year-old Miniature Schnauzer – Flossie – was far too human, and we decided that she needed a canine sibling to remind her that she too, is a dog. After a short search we found Lucky, so named because she was the only surviving puppy of a litter of Schnauzers sadly born too soon. We didn’t have the heart to change her name, so Lucky she will always be.
Relatively naïve to dog owning, we hadn’t anticipated the complications that a puppy born in these circumstances might bring, but we quickly found out. Lucky displayed none of the polite behaviours typically learned through play with a litter of sibling: she was eager to play and eager to bite, not responding to our cries and shrieks.
There were undoubtedly times in the first few weeks when I felt sure we had made a huge mistake
Lucky didn’t enjoy being picked up, being stroked or any kind of human love, which was quite a change from Flossie. Gradually over time, and with the patient interventions of two teenage human siblings, she has become incredibly soppy and loving.
There were undoubtedly times in the first few weeks when I felt sure we had made a huge mistake, and in momentary periods of doubt, I thought about contacting the breeder to give her back. Amongst all this, Flossie was unimpressed and became adept at turning her back on Lucky and ignoring her.
Other issues of a medical nature soon surfaced, and we discovered Lucky is allergic to dust mites and pollen. She was also frequently sick for no apparent reason, almost always scratching herself, but thankfully our vet was incredibly thorough and knowledgeable, and through careful management of her diet we have managed to keep this under control.
I am thankful every day that she came to live with us, and that I didn’t give in to those momentary doubts
With all these visits to the vet however, Lucky has started to show a stubborn streak and as soon as he opens the door and calls her name, she plants her bottom firmly on the floor and refuses to move.
Lucky is now four and we do wonder sometimes if she will ever grow up. She is obsessed with stealing slippers and socks and likes nothing better than being chased whilst making your slipper just a little bit slobbery. She has to be the first upstairs, the first through the doorway and leading the way in front on any walk.
As our friends at doggy day-care regularly say, she has no off switch. She is totally unique, and she has filled our lives with craziness, but she has also filled our lives with the most unimaginable love and happiness. I am thankful every day that she came to live with us, and that I didn’t give in to those momentary doubts.
As for Flossie, well, she remains suitably unimpressed.