What Does Gray Fox Say? Blog 3

Walter Update:

He is no longer with us. Monday, February 19, 2024 was his last day. My wife, Anne, and my sister, Leslie, were with him when he passed.

Here's a little backstory of when we first got him:

We found Walter at an adoption day put on by Pet Tales Rescue at Celebration Cinema. Prior to the event, the organization had posted pictures and descriptions of the dogs and we decided to go there to meet a different dog. The dog we were there to see was a corgi-mix.

Once we were there and saw the dog we wanted to meet, we weren't really interested for one reason or another. But this other dog, Liam (Yes, Walter's original name was Liam), was this sweet little guy that seemed very comfortable with us, particularly Anne, very quickly. He even very calmly sat on Anne's lap, let us touch his paws, and generally mess with him without nipping or growling (which was important to us as we eventually wanted kids). But, we needed a second opinion on such a big decision and brought my mom to see him. She loved him too. So, we put our name on him and picked him up from his foster family a short time later.

At the time, we lived in a two-bedroom apartment in Wyoming, MI. The apartment complex did allow dogs for an added cost, but we figured we could make it work until we got a house. When we first got Walter home, training began. Between Anne and I, I was the only one who had ever had a dog growing up. She had a cat. And when I was young our family had crate-trained our dog so I figured we should do the same with Walter. He proved me wrong. Instantly. Anne and I had a plan to put him in his crate and leave the apartment for 15 minutes and then return so we could ease him into the new situation. I even set up a camera to record video to see what he did while we were gone. And let me tell you, we weren't gone 2 minutes before Walter pooped in his bed and frantically ran around in there screeching as loud as he could! The biggest issue was he kept stepping in the poop! We returned to a very unhappy, poop-covered puppy. He taught us a lesson we will never forget.

Once we got him, the crate, blanket, etc. all cleaned it was about time for bed. We were tired, but he was not. My parents gave us a dog "playpen" that we set up in the dining area of the apartment, not in our bedroom as to try and help him develop some kind of independence. Again, he proved me wrong. That first night he would not fall asleep. He whined, and whined, and whined because he was lonely. I believe Anne had to go to work in the morning but I worked from home as a photographer. So, I laid down outside of the playpen and he calmed down enough to lay near me and we each got the tiniest bit of sleep before the sun came up.

It didn't take long before we were fully comfortable leaving Walter in the apartment alone without a crate. And we never really had issues in that regard again.

He was a smart, sneaky, sweet, stubborn boy who was always excited for us or anyone else to come around. We'll always miss him.

What does Gray Fox say?

"Thank you"

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