Schatzi is a rescue mutt who I adopted in 2007 after her brother, Boomer Beak-Nose Butt-Breath, passed away. Boomer was my old man. I rescued him after a friend of mine took him to the pound. He was a comical dog. A dorgi (corgi-dachshund mix for those not in the know). Boomer was a grumpy old man by the time he came home with me but with some arthritis medication and lots of love he finally seemed at peace with the world. Sadly, though, our time together was cut short. I think once he was at peace he could let himself go. After he decided to make his trip to doggy heaven, I knew there was no way I could live without a sweet fur-baby in my life. So then came Schatzi, the Needle-Nosed-Trash-Picker.
I met Schatzi at her foster home where she came up next to me and curled up in what we call her "cinnamon bun" with her sweet brown eyes looking at me. I met a few other dogs that day but knew those brown eyes had me. To be honest, I didn't pick Schatzi. She picked me. She knew a sucker when she saw one. My smart girl!
When I brought Schatzi home she was the most submissive and timid dog I'd ever met. She would hide in the back of her crate and would roll over onto her back the moment anyone came near her. I grew concerned that she'd never be able to put her anxieties aside. To try and combat her timidness, Schatzi and I went to school. We learned how to sit and stay and heel. We also learned how to trust one another. She also learned how to be a circus dog. When Schatzi had enough walking in figure eights on her leash she'd throw herself on the ground and flip and turn and wriggle until she got herself out of her collar. From then on our instructor called her the circus dog. My circus dog.
In time my sweet shy girl began to come out of her shell. Her fear of riding in the car became less and less the more we rode together. She soon learned that riding in the car usually means something good on the other end, like other dogs & people to play with or long walks with lots to smell. She got more and more confident and no longer rolled on her back the moment she saw anyone approaching. She never did learn to really bark, though Mommy is not complaining about this! She still hates thunderstorms with a passion. But for the most part she's grown into a lovely well adjusted and sweet tempered dog who is damn near perfect in my book.
I've mentioned Schatzi is a mutt. Up until a few months ago she was a mystery mutt. For my birthday, however, my dad paid to have Schatzi's DNA tested. I waited with loads of anticipation for her certificate to come in the mail. When it did I was honestly not all that surprised. Her dominate gene is beagle, which her size and coloring/fur sort of lends itself to. In the mix is also some doxie, which I have always suspected. Her needle nose and floppy ears gave her away. The last bit of her mix is still a mystery to me as her DNA says she has some Cavalier King Charles in there. Where? I haven't a clue. None the less her strange gangly medium sized body with skinny little legs suits me just fine. In her life pre-me she had had a litter (she was just a year old when I got her so she had them when she was still a baby herself!) and she's lost some of her girlish figure but I don't mind. Our flabby bellies match.
Besides her somewhat comical appearance, Schatzi truly is one of the most well mannered dogs I've ever met. Everyone who meets her seems to be in agreement with this as well. I have contemplated training her to be a therapy dog but with my upcoming move I don't want to commit to that just yet. As I mentioned before, Schatzi does not bark. She does not lick. She only jumps up when you invite her up. She doesn't bite or nip or show any signs of aggression what so ever. She is ALWAYS happy to meet new people and thinks that everyone must be a dog person. She is all around great!
The sad thing is, Schatzi and I will be separating for a long time soon. While I am in school Schatzi will be living with her grandparents and their two dogs (with whom she gets along with splendidly - is this really a surprise?). I know she will be loved and well cared for but the prospect of being sans-Schatzi for a year is heart breaking for me. This dog is my sidekick. Due to my current situation, she and I spend nearly 24 hours a day together. She comes to work with me and whenever possible, runs errands with me.
I do intend to move her oversees when I settle in the UK permanently. Dan already knows that Schatzi and I are a packaged deal. I worry about what the move will be like for her though. While she has become a much more confident dog, she is still prone to anxiety and what could be more anxiety provoking then a transatlantic flight? I also want to make sure she won't have to be in quarantine. The UK has a program where so long as she has her microchip (which she most certainly already does) and rabies vaccination, as well as a blood test proving the correct level of the vaccine, she won't have to be quarantined. I will be working on all of that stuff prior to my leaving as it must be done more then six months in advance of her moving. Since the chances are likely I will be staying in the UK after school, I want her to be ready to move. It will be a very nerve racking journey for both of us I am sure but having her with me as I make a permanent move to a foreign country will most certainly be a major comfort and well worth it in the end.