Sweet, wonderful Angelina came to ECPR with a group of sweet dog gals. All of the cute girlies had recently been spayed, and thus were forced to wear the cone-of-shame. But, instead of looking ashamed, the girlies looked cheerful and bright-eyed. The cones framing their pretty faces made them look like a boisterous garden of plastic tulips, bouncing and frolicking around the playroom. One by one, the tulips were adopted, that is all except for Angelina. For some reason, Angelina is having a much more difficult time finding her special, forever person or forever people.
Maybe it is her spunky personality. When in her element, she is not the type to be demure and understated. This girl is all vivacious energy! A lot of people want a dog who will be their Netflix buddy, so a lot of energy can be a handful. But after burning her energy, Angelina would be the perfect Netflix buddy. She has mastered the art of cuddling. With a girl like Angelina, so lovable and amusing, a television screen will seem like boring entertainment in comparison.
Angelina is full of curiosity. This beautiful world was made for investigations and discoveries! Angelina wants to smell all the interesting odors. Endless sensory entertainment can be found in the scent of an overgrown weed patch, a telephone poll or even a crack in the sidewalk.
Angelina’s curiosity also drives her to investigate what lies beyond barriers. She wants to know what is behind that door! Or what is under this fence! Her curiosity and joy of discovery leads her to go to great lengths to fulfill her need for discovery. We put short doggy gates up in the playroom to section off a corner for our old pooches or our dogs that need more calm. But if Angelina wants to go and say hello to her elderly friends, she will find a way! She has the determination and gumption of a cowboy from an old western. First, she surveys the gates. Then she thinks to herself “I can climb that, no prob!” Next thing everyone knows, Angelina is on the other side, wagging her tail and saying a hello to Humphrey and Piggles as Piggles barks for her to get of her bed. Although her curiosity leads her to be downright mischievous, her determination is admirable. Next time you feel like something seems insurmountable, think of Angelina, the little dog who always finds a way!
It is not just climbing that Angelina is a master of, she is also an expert at sneaking. She sneaks past doors like a ninja. Maybe a person she likes is walking through a door to a room she doesn’t have access to. With her stealthy skills of sneaking, Angelina finds a way to elude the normal physics of a closing door, and POOF! She seems to magically appear on the opposite side of the door. It takes a certain graceful finesse to outwit Angelina’s sneaking skills…. A graceful finesse that I do not possess. But luckily, what I lack in grace, Angelina has in smarts. Today, while walking through a door, Angelina jumped toward it and tried her usual ploy of pressing her two front paws on the door in anticipation of it opening. I said to her, “Angelina, Back up.” Much to my utter surprise, Angelina listened. This is not a command we have ever worked on together, she just picked it up on her own. Instead of trying to shimmy her way past my clumsy legs, she dutifully turned around and trotted away from the door. I was so proud! And this whole thing was not a fluke. It happened several times this morning.
So obviously, Angelina has the adorable good looks of a future Instagram sensation. She’s got the cunning and intelligence of a doggy Einstein. So why is this little girl still here when her sisters were adopted long ago? I think what is holding her back the most is Angelina’s reserve with new people. When she knows you, she is anything but reserved. But strangers bring out Angelina’s shy side. After all, strangers are scary! Sometimes Angelina’s shyness leads her to behave in rude ways. She’ll bark and try to act like a little tough girl. But when Angelina knows you, she is the most wonderful friend. She melts my heart with her cuddling methods. She loves to put her front paws on my shoulders while she licks my cheeks and chin. All the while, her tail is madly wagging.
Little Angelina is no longer wearing her cone because her spay has healed. So even though she is our last little tulip, she really isn’t a tulip anymore. Instead, she is some other kind of flower. Maybe a morning glory that is closed in the dark, but blooms bright and beautiful in the full sunlight. She just needs someone to give her a chance and to shower her with the sunshine filled life she deserves.