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January 2019

Adopt ♥️ Love! Reduced Adoption Fees for Chihuahuas at Muttville SF until March 1st

My first dog love was for a very large fluffy Samoyed. She was a senior sweetheart we took in from a family friend who was moving away. I spent more time on the oily ground of our carport playing with her than I did with any doll or toy. Fast forward to three years ago and the start of my weekly volunteer shifts with Muttville Senior Dog Rescue.

Thanks to weekly shifts with the sugar faces in the doggy loft on Rescue Row, I can say that little poodles, terriers and chihuahuas have won my heart a hundred times over! This affection I have developed for these wee dogs kind of surprised me because I have been a devout big dog lover my entire life, up until now.

We all know that it is to our detriment when we believe stereotypes, when we assume other people’s experiences are the only truth. Assuming the stereotypical picture parroted about chihuahuas is the absolute truth is no different. Not all chihuahuas bark a lot, shiver constantly, act territorial or bite everybody. It makes me very happy to report that I have met some of the cutest, softest, calmest chihuahuas since I began volunteering at Muttville.

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My Muttville Story About Adoptable Tag

What is it about big dogs that I love so easily? Is it their large body proportions? Their often out-sized personalities? This week when I met a new big shepherd-like boy at Muttville Senior Dog Rescue, all of my empathy responded to his presence.

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This dog came at me as soon as I entered the open doggy loft. He thrust his big plush head into my lap to say pet me. So I did. His thick fur was rich. I immediately smoothed his face and cleaned his eyes, telling him with my hands and expressions that he is loved, and in a safe place.

Some people get nervous when a big dog isn’t shy about telling you that they need and want you. This dog’s body language said he was open but wasn’t a pushover. He let me kiss his face, and enjoyed some cuddling but he wasn’t lazy about it. He seemed to orchestrate how you could engage with him, as if he was saying, “I want you to pet me, only right here, not there, and like this.”

He reminded me of when we first met our newly adopted dog. She was a big fluffy girl who acted very open and willing, but only to the untrained eye. In reality she was just showing you that her confidence in herself allowed people she barely knew to engage with her. But as we learned over time, she knew what she was doing and if you did something she didn’t like, you knew it.

Tag, the big shepherd boy, was showing me similar signs. What I hope to communicate to anyone interested in adding him to their home is this lesson. Trust him. Love him. Set him up for success, and he will be your fiercest buddy and confidante.

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