The Ralphie of today looks nothing like the scared, skinny four year-old who came to live with Hannah O. and her family. A Corgi breeding friend of hers had purchased a kennel in Texas and paid to have the dogs flown to Virginia, but had to meet the plane in St. Louis to put two of the dogs down, they were in such bad condition.
“When Ralphie arrived Virginia, his ears were raw from flies (he still has those scars), he was skin and bones, and very fearful. We almost didn’t get him because he ran away during a thunderstorm and it took all the next day to find him. His vocal chords have been cut, so at that time he didn’t bark. When I went to pick him up I had to bribe him to come near me — cheese is his favorite!”
“He had never climbed steps, been inside a home or walked on a leash, and had been bred to his mother, his sister, and his daughter, among others.” (Editor’s note: The people who did these things don’t want to meet me in a dark alley).
“His given name was DNA Lil’ Bear, but we renamed him Ralphie. He is so smart it took less than two weeks to train him! He has a corner on each couch he calls his own, and if you tell him to go to his “kissing spot,” he will jump up on one of the corners and get ready for a kiss on the top of his head. Ralphie sleeps in my room every night on a bed right alongside mine, has a “baby blanket” he carries around the room, and he totally loves his kitties!”
What Happens When a Wardrobe Door Breaks and No One is Home But Ralphie?
by Ralphie’s Mom
“Arrived home last night to discover the wardrobe door on the floor in front of my bedroom door and one very upset Corgi on the other side! Everything that was hanging on that door was on the floor too. Ralphie couldn’t get out of the room, either … wonder how that happened and what the poor little guy’s reaction was when this big wooden door crashed to the floor? I’m going to have to give him loads of TLC to help him work through this one!”
“As I tried to pick up the door, I realized that one hinge had broken off completely and the other was just barely attached. Went ahead and broke the whole thing off, as it was the only way to pick the thing up and move it out of the way. Someone we know and love has been really clingy all night and morning. (Of course I let him sleep in my bed). As I speak, he is lying on the sofa beside me with his head on my feet.”
“Ralphie must have tried to “Defeat the Evil Beast” causing this disruption in his beloved bedroom, because the clothing and purses that used to hang on the door were all over my bedroom. Can we say webcam opportunity missed here? Sort of wondering if Little Man made a trip to the Land of Narnia through the Wardrobe … except that it wasn’t from the Land of the Spare Room and there is Waaay too much stuff in my wardrobe!”
“Started to flip out that it’s one more broken thing that needs fixing, but remembered my past. The curio cabinet in the corner of my grandparents’ parlor sat propped on books with a matchbook holding the door closed for at least 40 years! When I inherited it, I did take off the three casters and no longer needed the pile of books, but the matches are still holding the door closed — 19 years later!”
“For now, that nasty door is propped up against the wall, while I try to figure out who will come help me put some new hinges on the thing. Since I’m used to old things which break frequently, I can wait a while.”
* * * * * *
Ralphie takes a bawth …
by Ralphie’s Mom
“In the words of Eloise, Ralphie took a “bawth” yesterday. Indian Rivers Humane Society was holding a dog wash in town, so I had planned all along that we would participate. When the morning of the event arrived, someone — we know who he was — kind of got the idea that “something was up.” Ralphie spent most of the morning sitting by himself on the rug in my bedroom, back by the water heater or in the bathroom. He obviously heard the word bath and wasn’t one bit happy to hear it, NO SIR!”
“Normally you can’t get out of the house without the Little Dude wanting to go for a ride, a walk, a love session on the front steps. He wasn’t budging. When I finally got him to the car, I had to lift him because he can’t jump in and gets freaked out if anyone else tries to pick him up and put him in the car.”
“Off we go!”
“We arrive at our destination, where there are tents, banners, loads of dogs and many friends. Just a little too noisy, too much commotion for Ralphie. Many of these friends have read Ralphie’s other adventures and are big Corgi fans. The main event is about to happen when out slips Ralphie from his collar and off he goes! Luckily he isn’t much of a runner, and was easily pursued in the parking lot, before he had a chance to reach Route 17.”
“As I carried my 25 pound “little man” to the wading pool, we gather a crowd of friends who all want to help. In he goes! I hope I get to see the picture Jean took of him, and I hear a comment about the look of fear — I’m sure it was! I think after a while it was just an act, because the Dude had at least four women giving him extra special attention, a wonderful massage, and I know he likes that! Anne and friends were extra gentle and smothered my little man with special love, which he always appreciates. They didn’t even get any water in his face! By the time they were finished he was feelin’ fine. Jean had the towel ready for another rub down and he was good to go!”
“The girls had gone to visit gift store, so we had to stay and visit awhile. By this point Ralphie was so comfortable and relaxed that he could easily “hang 20″ with these friends. He knew he was with good people.”
“I am so thankful that Ralphie has such fine friends at IRHS. They helped him to relax and enjoy an experience he thought was going to be terrifying. I think he won’t be so frightened next time, and it will be all because of the folks at IRHS!”
“Thank you Anne, Jean and company!”