Tuesday, May 10, 2011
I am a proud new poppa of a great new poopie. Welcome to Red Maple Farm and the Laraway Family "Little Ceasar". Since our Great Dane Cleopatra was euthanized a few weeks ago from cancer there has been a big dumb dog void in my life. I can't sleep at night without a Great Dane taking over my bed. When Cleo died, I knew that we would get another Dane but I really wanted a rescue. I really wanted to help a dog that needed a great home. One of our BOD members and good friend Linda emailed me about a 5 month old puppy in Sharon Springs that was on craigs list. Since the kids and I didnt do anything for Mothers Day because we were shearing llamas, I was already in deep do-do with the wife. I was hoping that I could do damage control. I contacted the people and left for their place right after school on a secret mission.
I eventually found the place in Sharon Springs. I was met by an older lady that welcomed me to their "dog rescue".... There were a couple of old abandoned trailers, the lady and her son were living in a camper, there were shepherd mix dogs chained all over the place. I am not one to judge anyone else for the way they live but I wasn't impressed with the way the Great Dane pup was living. Great Danes are not outside dogs (no dog should be), Ceasar was in a kennel by the trailer with no shelter, food was tossed on the ground and I imediately saw that he had mange. I asked where they bought the dog, when was its birthdate and when was the last vet visit. She didnt have an answer for any of the questions, neither did her son from an earlier phone call. How could you pay for a purebred puppy "somewhere by Albany", not know when it was born or not take it to the vet for the gauntlet of shots, tests and worming???? If you dont have the money to go to the vet, then you shouldnt buy a dog. If you dont have the money to go to the vet, then you shouldn't own a dog. I wasn't thrilled about much that I saw but I knew one thing. I wasnt leaving the puppy there! I wrote a check, grabbed the puppy and put him in the truck. The older woman stood in the driveway crying as we left, I wish her well and hope that the check will buy some food for the dogs remaining there. I hope that someday she and her son can get on their feet and move out of the camper into a better trailer on their property. I wish them the best and hope that they dont wait until the law gets called before they get some help.
On the road, I tried to call the vet but couldn't figure out how to unlock my sons cell phone. I swung my truck into the Beekman Mansion and asked Jason if I could use their phone. I called Cobleskill Vet Clinic, told them that I had just picked up a Great Dane Pup and was in route to their clinic. I drove as fast as I could while the puppy projectile vommitted all over the backseat of my truck. I pulled into the vet clinic and in we went. Ceasar walks great on a leash so someone has had him on one. I let the vet know what was going on and suggested that we start off with a mange test and a parvo test. Thank God that the parvo test came back negative but the mange test came back positive. The girls at the clinic loved Ceasar, he wagged his tail and was all kisses. They tried to feed him some dog treats, which he didnt know what to do with. I got the meds, wormer and truck cleaned up and we were road bound again. We decided to wait two weeks to start puppy shots when he is stronger. I also brought home the Red Tailed Hawk that was at the clinic getting x-rays and we headed for little league. I pulled in to the little league parking lot right before my wife and kids got there. I could tell that she wasn't thrilled with me for a varity of reasons. I handed her a list and asked her if she could stop by the grocery store on the way home. She glanced at the list and realized that it is my Great Dane Puppy recipe, Danes need a lot of calcium because they are growing so fast. She gave me the scolding "you didn't look" as I rolled down the rear window of my truck so that she could see Ceasar sprawled out sleeping on the backseat and she melted. Darcy forbid me from getting our last Great Dane. When Cleo died she wanted another one more than I did......Happy Mothers Day Darcy. I love you and you are a Saint for putting up with me for all of these years.
While Darcy was at Little League, my daughter Hannah, farm manager Bruce and I worked on getting the mange bath done and getting Ceasar dry. Hannah instantly started putting photos on Facebook and friends started showing up to see the new family member. He might not be pretty but he is ours. After the kids and Darcy went to bed, Ceasar and I fell to sleep on the sofa in the office watching tv. Ceasar is 42 pounds at 5 months old so he really isnt a lap dog but I let him lie on me anyway. At midnight we went to bed, same ritual as Cleo, I pulled as many of the sheets and comforter as I could onto me before he was given permission to sail into bed. Must be a Great Dane thing, he doesnt think that I need more than 2 feet to sleep on either and he sprawled out like he owns the place....well actually, maybe he does. :) You are a lucky dog "Little" Ceasar.... I am a lucky guy. WES