Flash (aka Itty Bitty)
Learning to be a snuggle bug
Flash the chihuahua is a teeny tiny bundle of love. His person passed away and he was living in a crate 24/7 with a family member who suffered from dementia and wasn’t able to provide adequate care. Information wasn’t available regarding vaccinations or veterinary care, so the first thing Flash needed when he came to his ODH home was a thorough examination. His mouth was infected from rotted teeth and he had a large hole between his mouth and nasal cavity created by long term infection of teeth and gums. His bottom jaw has eroded away and taken on the shape of a bird beak. The many problems with his mouth were corrected in an extensive dental procedure.
Flash fit in quickly with the other little dogs in his ODH home. He is happy to have food offered and always cleans his plate. He is getting less nervous over time and from the beginning has been a little snuggle bug. He likes to be hidden under a blanket which keeps him warm and safe. After a few weeks f he did a little happy run around the house and then jumped in a dog bed and rolled all around. His ODH mom thinks that is when he realized he was in his forever home where he would be warm, safe, cared for and cared about.
Saying Goodbye to Itty Bitty (Flash)
I picked up Flash on December 28th. Although I haven’t cared about Christmas presents for myself for many years, this turned out to be the best Christmas present ever.
I had a dog bed on the passenger side of the car on the floor; I thought it would be a comfortable, safe place for our new addition. By the time I came around to my side of the car he had jumped up into the passenger seat. Not sure how to safely travel with him, I ended up putting him in the front of my jacket and zipping him in. And you could say that was the way we stayed for the year that I was fortunate enough to have him in my life.
Flash as a name didn’t seem to suit him and soon we were calling him Little Bit and that turned into Itty Bitty and that into Itty. This little four pound guy had experienced some tough going. His little jaw was eroded away on the bottom and his back legs were so bowed he looked like Popeye when he walked. But, oh he was a happy dog. He would bounce like a little deer running across the yard when he would see me. He would nestle in on my lap and sigh with contentment. He would sleep as close as he could get to me at night. During the day he followed me around like my little duck and slept in a dog bed close to me in my office or sewing room. We were devoted to each other and in my heart he brought me joy that looked like his happy bouncing run across the yard.
Itty loved everyone and was happy to make friends. I had a gathering of friends one weekend. At one point I noticed that every time I looked up someone different was holding him and giving him the pets he craved to fill up his love tank.
Sometimes as a foster we don’t have our furry friends for long, it might even be days and that is hard on the heart. I read about seniors passing and I, along with other fosters feel the heartache and shed tears knowing what so many of these sweet souls have endured before coming to Old Dog Haven. Recently I have been able to find the sweet side of our loss which is giving these lovely creatures a warm, safe and loving place for however many days/weeks/years they have left and giving them a loving send off over the Rainbow Bridge.
And then there is the gift that we are given experiencing the resilient love of these wise, quirky, joyful, loyal guys who live in the moment. We had a year with Itty Bitty; I thought we would have him a long, long time. It was hard to say goodbye and I really miss that little guy.