January 2nd, 2009: G-Man and I drove up to one of the biggest houses we had ever seen in person, let alone been in. It was in a golf community in a very wealthy area. We were there to pick up a black female pug that had been labeled as "unmanageable" by her owners. G-man and I had recently become volunteers and approved foster parents for the Kentuckiana Pug Rescue (KPR). This was our 2nd foster, but our first actual surrender visit (visit to the owners "surrendering" the pug to KPR), and we knew the "surrendered" pug we were picking up was going to be our foster pug until she found her forever home.
The following is the information that her owners had provided about her in conjunction with their decision to surrender her to KPR because they could no longer care for her:
"What I Don’t Like:Being picked up or patted by grownups. I'll run away or scoot just out of reach, but will never snap. She will jump and snuffle at a person's feet, but will not remain still long enough to receive any affection.
What are my Potty Habits? She goes outside 2-3 a day (first thing in the morning, late afternoon, evening), but can take up to 15 minutes to do her business. She prefers to wander around and sniff, or to interfere with the other dog while she does her business. She also has a tendency to wander off, which often turns into (for her) a game of chase because she does not come when called. Almost every day, she will soil the rugs once or twice - even after being taken outside. She will give no indication of her need, not even to make eye contact. She just goes and does it, then gallops happily back."
What I found odd is that the owner of this roughly $750,000 home had not found the resources to build and/or provide a fence for Wrigley to prevent her from "wandering off." Upon meeting one of the cold and detatched owners, a few conclusions were confirmed. At the very least these people cared enough about their dog to surrender her to KPR rather than take her to a shelter (KPR is a NO KILL rescue/shelter). As I stood in the foyer speaking with the surrendering owner, the jolliest black blurp of fur came skipping towards me, snorting the whole way. I picked Miss Wrigley up and she rode in my lap while my husband drove us, all the way home. She never whimpered or cried once- for her owners or for anything- the whole way home and thereafter.
A few weeks later I had to provide KPR with a biography of Wrigley for them to post on their website as they posted Wrigley's profile, announcing her availability for adoption. One of our jobs as foster parents were to assess her behavior in our home for about 2 weeks and then provide this information to the rescue so that whoever adopted her would be fully informed. I had mixed feelings while writing this bio, as even at that time my husband and I were strongly considering adopting her. I've attached the bio I provided here:
"Wrigley is a loving, 3 year old, black female pug, who will be celebrating her 4th birthday in March. She is a petite little girl who weighs 18lbs and seems to be in excellent health. She is potty trained and has not had one single accident in her foster parent's house, but she is used to following a potty routine and goes out once in the morning, afternoon, and evening. She has a wonderful personality and is named Wrigley for a reason. She loves wriggling around in your arms or on top of you before settling down! She is playful and bounces around with her little tail wagging, just waiting to be petted! She loves to snuggle up next to her foster parents or is content lounging beside them on her doggie bed. Wrigley loves her toys and gets excited when you play fetch, but prefers smaller, plush toys because of her small size. She also had some teeth pulled previously, so it's easier for her to get her mouth on plush. Wrigley loves treats (of any kind, but has to be watched closely with Greenies and other smaller treats, as she tends to swallow before chewing because of her missing teeth). Wrigley sleeps with her foster parents and her foster brother and sister, all in one bed!! Wrigley will only cry if you put her in a crate. Though she was fine at first, her foster parents quickly spoiled her to the point that going in a crate now will simply not do! She enjoys playing with her foster brother and sister in their fenced in back yard, and is good with younger children as well. Wrigley is used to staying out all day with her foster brother and sister and having free range of the house when her foster parents aren't home, as well as when they are. Wrigley responds to "sit," "treat," "out," and "potty." These are terms she didn't seem to be familiar with at first, but caught on real fast when her foster parents continously used them for her to learn. Wrigley is a very special little girl and would make anyone a wonderful pet. All she wants is your love and attention...."
2 months later I wrote the following as a follow-up "rescue story" regarding our adoption of Wrigley:
"Today, March 18th, 2009, marks the 4th birthday of our precious addition to the family, Miss Wrigley Milby. She has been such a blessing to my husband and I, as well as her brother and sister, Mason and Lily. From her much extended morning/afternoon naps, to her nighttime kisses before bed, she has made us smile at least once each day since the day we rescued her.
It’s sometimes very hard for us to comprehend how such a loving pug could have been such a burden for another family at one point in time. The major negative habits that Wrigley was labeled as having when she was surrendered have never once reared their face in our household. She has had only one potty accident in our household in almost three months. Furthermore, it was claimed that this little girl did not like being held or receiving affection. Miss Wrigley loves snuggling with her forever family- so much in fact that my husband and I just bought a king size bed for more sleeping space at night and for the babies during the day of course (since all they like to do is sleep). Little Miss Wrigley could also give kisses all day long, leading us to entertain the thought of entering her into the “best kisser” contest at this year’s Pugapolooza.
This is truly the story of a wonderful, charming little girl who had just been denied some much deserved love and attention throughout her life. She is our Wrig Pig, Snuggle Bug, Wriggle Piggles, Wrigley Piggley, Miss Wrigley, wriggle worm, and most importantly, our pride and joy. We love Wrigley and thank KPR for their existence. Another pug’s life changed for the better. Thank you for all you do."
Wrigley is now 5.5 years old. We adopted her at 3.75 years old in January of 2009. Therefore, we have had Wrigley in our lives now for almost 2 years. It seems like only yesterday I was faced with the burdening decision of whether or not to turn Miss Wrigley our foster pug into Miss Wrigley our forever pug by adopting her. It was a difficult decision at first, but not because she was a "bad" pug.
Bringing Wrigley into our home forever changed the entire dynamics of our family, as well as mine and my husband's relationship(s) with Mason and Lily. The dynamic duo had been bonded and been together since puppyhood and practically birth, in addition to being half-brother and half-sister. It shouldn't be a stretch to imagine the welcoming committee Wrigley first received from our other two when it first started to set in to them that she wasn't leaving the next day. We didn't know if we were ready to permanently take Wrigley into our home or not. In the end I couldn't bear the thought of Wrigley going to anyone else when I knew for sure she was being loved and cared for unconditionally where she currently was. I said a prayer and hoped that my own dogs, Mason and Lily, would eventually come around.
My husband and I made the decision to adopt Wrigley, our dogs did eventually accept her as their own, and it was the best decision we could have ever made. Our lives were forever changed for the better by adopting a pug. I hope you will have a similar story to share someday!