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We Have a New Puppy: Isla!

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We are SO excited to share great news with you: we have adopted a new puppy!

Since we lost Tiki in November, we’ve been searching for just the right companion for Barli. He’s very gentle but Barli is a fearful dog and easily intimidated by other dogs…so we knew we had to find just the right match.

We’d originally planned to adopt an older dog or at least an older puppy. After an unsuccessful foster-to-adopt attempt, we saw that Barli needed a companion that would come in smaller than him (even if the new dog grows much larger than Barli) and, at least in the initial weeks, would be submissive to Barli so he doesn’t feel nervous.

The answer: a little puppy.

In Texas with our temperate winters, puppies are certainly born year around–but the Christmas rush made finding a young puppy more difficult than I anticipated. We searched Petfinder for shelters from Waco to Corpus Christi.

Then last Friday I saw this listing on the Texas Humane Heroes website:

Honestly, I’d been avoiding the Texas Humane Heroes listings a bit–because nearly 15 years ago that’s where we adopted Tiki. I thought it just might be too depressing to revisit the shelter and remember that wonderful day.

But then I decided that maybe it wouldn’t hurt to just swing by and have a look.

And I fell in love.

“Scruffs” was part of a litter of seven puppies that had been arrived in the Killeen shelter in early December at 3-4 weeks old then, two weeks later, been sent to the Leander shelter. The shelter did not have the mother, so she’s a mystery.

I observed the litter to see which one was a calmer puppy yet still outgoing–and decided to visit with the seven-pound blonde girl–who I guess reminded me of the blonde girl we adopted over 14 years ago just a few yards away:

I spent about an hour playing with her and Facetiming John–and then the decision was made!

Soon she was on her way home! John brought Barli out of the yard on leash to meet his new little sister:

Barli’s first reaction was a bit of fear–marked by sudden drooling. After a day of getting to know her through the ex-pen, though, Barli soon warmed up and now they’re doing zoomies around and around the yard. Barli was so ecstatic to see his new little sister returning home from her first vet visit yesterday–yep, she’s here to stay, Barli!

It’s anyone’s guess what her breed mix is; her hair is super soft although it’s hard to know how that will change as she grows. Weighing seven pounds at 8 weeks old, the shelter guessed she’d be a medium-sized dog, maybe somewhere in the 40-50 pound range.

Her new name is Isla, a fun reminder of our years writing guidebooks to the islands–and to the many visits we hope to make with her and Barli to Mustang Island on the Texas coast.

She’s still got about seven weeks to go before her immunity kicks in and she can walk our trails (which are shared with many coyotes and foxes, so there’s a real danger before she finishes her shot series) but I’ll be socializing her with a lot of visits to dog-friendly stores in the coming weeks.

I’m so happy that I visited Texas Humane Heroes last Friday. It did bring back a lot of memories of Tiki’s adoption day–and there’s really no better way to honor her memory than to bring a new dog into our hearts. Isla’s already brought so much joy into our lives and into Barli’s.

Stay tuned for much more of Isla!

Paris Permenter
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