MINI WINNIE THE MINI DACHSHUND
I was so not going to do it this way. I mean that. I had the whole thing planned perfectly. And one thing I am really good at is planning.
I knew after Sofie’s death we would get another dog. I am a believer in getting new dogs when one passes on. I’m a believer in getting new dogs when none have passed on. I have always found that you love each dog differently, but with all your heart.
My plan was to wait a bit, six to nine months felt right to me. I told Lucy who loved Sofie deeply – but was desperate for a puppy , that we would get a puppy. We just needed to wait a spell. We all wanted to mourn Sofie. We were all mourning Sofie. It was a sad house.
Somewhere in the middle of my well thought through plan I remembered how long it took me to get Ramu after his predecessor Sumo Wrestler died. It took fourteen months.
Popular breeds like popular handbags and restaurants have long wait lists.
With Ramu I was on a list for a puppy and when that puppy was born it was born deaf, so that didn’t happen. The breeder had $500 of my money as a reserve fee, she promised me “next litter.” Then she skipped town. I now doubt the first dog was deaf. I now doubt there was a first dog.
I was a bit more careful with the next breeder. She was in Kansas, and I was wait listed there. Eventually I got my puppy, but it took far longer than I had expected.
So this time I decided to hedge my bets and get myself on a list in advance. About a week after Sofie left us I started looking at dachshund breeder’s websites. I found a great one in Louisiana but the wait list was literally 250 people long. I’m not kidding. Then I thought about the plane trip which I don’t love, or shipping them. No way. I typed in “breeders New York State. “ I found one near Niagara Falls with gorgeous looking dogs.
There were no puppies at the moment, but that was fine. Didn’t want a puppy right now I reminded myself.
I picked up the phone and called Cherie Smith, the woman who bred the dogs upstate.
I told her my story. Dog people love talking about dogs. She was more than willing to hear all about Sofie. And she was impressed we kept her alive so long. We talked for forty-five minutes.
She was apologetic that she had no puppies available. She had one litter that was all spoken for, in fact they were going to their new owners the following week.
And she didn’t have any pregnant bitches. She did say she would be breeding this summer which meant late fall or Christmas puppies.
That was perfect for us. I was actually thinking right after Christmas would be best.
We discussed down payments. She said it was up to me. She didn’t ask for them. I could keep calling her, but if someone called first the puppies would likely be gone. I told her I wanted assurance. I would send her a check.
Two days went by. I wrote out the check but didn’t know where to send it. So I called her. We chatted a few minutes before she asked me how soon I might be ready for a puppy. “Summer?” I said hesitantly. It would most likely be the earliest.
Then she told me about a puppy that had suddenly become available. A family had had to back out of their contract. They were supposed to be picking the puppy up on Saturday. SATURDAY? This was on Wednesday.
She described the little dog, a piebald dapple. Meant nothing to me. White with a brown face and grey patch, and it “looked like she had been drinking hot coco.” I told her it didn’t sound like what I wanted, and I really didn’t think Saturday was the right time.
She said, “let me send you a photo.” I think she knew she had gold in them pixels.
This came through my screen. I immediately forwarded it to Lucy, Taylor and Glenn. Everyone said YES!!!!!!!
They were meeting families at the Home Depot in Binghamton on Saturday. Twelve thirty.
We got lost. We arrived at twelve- forty.
Her name is Winnie. We are all so in love with her we can barely stand it. We think Sofie sent her. We tell ourselves that, when we feel like we love her too much, too soon. “Sofie sent her.”
She sleeps on towels the way Sofie did. She barks the way Sofie did. And then she does jillion things that are pure her. Just 100% Winnie.
She has a face and personality like no dog I have ever seen. Honestly, people who have met her will tell you that.
Let’s put it this way, we started her her own Instagram account. Within a week she has 355 followers and has been featured on several giant Dachshund Instagram accounts. One day she got 1700 likes. A big day for me is 30.
She could be destined to be America’s Next Top Dachshund. But whatever she is, she is 3 pounds of love and life and licks. And she brings us all so much joy.
I literally took all last week off from work and was on pupturnity leave.
You know what they say about the best laid plans…