We have a new arrival from a rescue shelter!

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

That tee shirt that says "Rescues are the best breed" is a winner with us!

This is our new boy, a 3 year old eleven pound Havanese, with a ton of allergies and medical issues.

We lost Harry, a Lhasa Apso, at almost 15 years old, back in May. I realized if we waited until we didn't miss him anymore we might never have another dog so we went to the shelter (where we got Harry) and took home our new arrival after we were interviewed and they contacted our vet to make sure we were qualified to be adoptive parents.

So far he's been a happy and loving pet (enjoying car and truck rides) but he is not used to asphalt streets or walking on them and heads for the grass. He reacts as though it hurts his tender paws. He also hasn't been trained to use the great outdoors for his personal needs and poops on the bedroom floor. I've taken the poops and the pup to the dog pen to show him where we'd like him to go. He also hasn't barked but the need hasn't come up either.

He was in the rescue shelter since June 13th and in a previous shelter for the three weeks prior to that. He was picked up as a stray and my heart can't take the thought that someone let him go out without tags and no phone calls to locate him.

Any ideas on how to help him through this transition period? Thanks for any help you can offer.

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Rowlett, TX(Zone 8a)

Way to go, Pirl. I lost my 16-year old cat in January and I totally agree with you about "if we waited until we didn't miss them anymore, we might never get another." So true. What's his name?


Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7a)

Perhaps you can set specific times to take him outdoors to do his business,
like in the morning, after meals and at bedtime. Lots of praise and a treat
every time he does what you want may make it more clear to him what is
expected of him. In his previous life he may have had a neglectful owner
who didn't give him a choice of where to go and he was forced to just go
wherever he could. And of course he was on the streets and also spent time
in shelters where going in his cage was his only option. Be patient and
repetitive and he'll soon learn.

Many blessings to you for giving this sweet pup another chance at a good life.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Carla - there are no words of comfort that make accepting the death of a beloved pet feel any better. I wish there were so I could offer them to you.

No name yet. Most recently he was Hawkeye but that was just for a month. He was a stray so we have no idea of his birth date or age. We're considering Lefty, Clem and Rocky as names.

June - My husband brought him out this morning, immediately, but he didn't do a thing in the dog's pen. He has wet on the grass. Tonight and tomorrow morning I'll feed him and then stay with him in the dog's pen/garden room. We can't give him any treats with all of his allergies but I can give him a belly rub, which he loves, and lots of praise.

It may sound unreasonable but the shelter said he'd be a big expense with all the medicines and allergies and special care needed. My feeling was that I know we'd do everything for the dog (as we've done for previous rescues we've adopted) and I couldn't be sure someone else would do the same so now he's ours and we're thrilled to have him.

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Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7a)

If his feet are sensitive and he seems to prefer grass, is it possible to put
something soft on an area the floor of the dog's pen/garden room? I'm
thinking something like shavings or shredded newspaper. Just thinking
out loud about possibilities that might encourage him to understand
that that is "his area" for a specific function. Over time you could gradually
reduce the amount of shavings until he's willing to go on the ground. He may
have in the past been punished for doing his business in the wrong place so
is nervous about the whole situation.

I like two-syllable names so am voting for Rocky. ;-)

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

I have had a piece of leftover synthetic carpeting in the garden room for quite awhile and he does like to pee on it. I can get another piece for his other needs.

I've always had two syllable pets, funny that you mention it! Our lates thought was Pepi.

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7a)

When you call a pet (or a child) it helps to have two syllables. You
need that rising inflection on the second syllable! ;-) I like Pepi.

The carpeting sounds like a worthwhile experiment. Everything right now
is new and confusing to him so he just needs to be guided to what is "his"
and "OK" and what is not.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Thanks so much for your help, June. I told Jack (my DH) about the rug and he agrees. We have more of it leftover so it's certainly worth a trial.

It just happens that our favorite restaurant out here is named Pepi's. That may well be the name we select.

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Deer River, MN(Zone 3b)

Aww. He looks a lot like my Wookie, except that Wookie is about twice his size, and his coat is wavier than your boy's. It's possible that your guy's feet have been badly burned in the past by being forced to stand on hot pavement or asphalt, in which case his aversion to those surfaces is perfectly understandable. Grass, carpeting, or some other soft, not-heating surface will be a lot more inviting to him. If you must take him on hot surfaces, it might be wise to invest in a set of dog booties to protect his pads.


(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

We're going to look into something to protect his feet. From the way he behaves we feel sure he was a house dog and didn't get to enjoy the great outdoors. His pads are in great shape and do not appear to have suffered at all. At the shelter the dogs are walked on grass so he's okay with that. He also shows no problem with brick and managed to leave a deposit while I was out gardening with him 20' away. I praised him and brought the evidence to the dog's pen and showed it to him.

Tonight he let out his first little Woof. Babies cough louder than that!

A few minutes ago he put himself to bed without being told or shown what to do. What a good pup!

Las Vegas, NV(Zone 9a)

My male schnauzer puppy is now 10 months. His name is Cecil. Everyone thought I was crazy but it is a perfect name for him.

Training is persistence. Outside when they wake up. Outside after they eat. I did not think they were ever going to get it but they finally did. Best think it is morning walk and late evening walk. I was also told they should not have full run of the house until they are trained.

Our neighbors across the street have a Havanese. Must be the breed because he has special food and terrible eye allergies. Our puppies are fed only dry dog food, no human food except yellow, red & orange peppers, sugar peas, asparagus and carrots. They love the peppers. The first 4 months were hell but I lived through it. Every time DH fed them something they should not have, they threw it up. Caught him every time.

We lost our 12 year old female schnauzer in October. A week later our 18 year old cat died. Not a good month. We have now had the puppies since first part of December and the new cat since mid January. They are all three best buddies and now the older male schnauzer actually joins in and plays with the cat. And we have made a special effort to make sure the older male schnauzer still has his own off limit to the puppies places. The older schnauzer is 4 pounds lighter in weight and he always gets the first walk. He sleeps on our bed with the cat and the puppies sleep in their crate.

I did not think I would ever get them trained, but I did. My DH has very little walking ability due to Parkinson so the walks were and are my responsibility. Today they had their first rain. Both the cat and the puppies. It was hilarious to watch.

Pirl, if I die, I want to come back as your rescue dog. What a lucky dog. Sharon

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7a)

Another thought if you can save a bit of his poo and use it to show
him where it is SUPPOSED to go he might catch on faster. When he
eventually catches on, praise him to bits.

I'm so glad you shared this with us, Pirl. I'm looking forward to following
the new adventures with you and this sweet little dog.

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7a)

Pirl Whoopee, he made a little "deposit" on his own and you did
exactly the right thing by showing it to him in the pen. You're solidly
on the right track and I just know this will all work out well.

The little woof sound brought a tear to my eyes. He is letting go of his
fears, testing out what is acceptable and that is wonderful.

Sharon, you are another great example of someone with the heart
and patience to work with animals. I love the stories.

DISH, TX(Zone 8b)

Congrats on your new familiy member. He's adorable. Now, what I can say is that since he was a stray he probably burned his pads on the hot concrete and remembers it was hot. He will eventually learn that it won't at certain times. But don't push him. I suggest going to a pet store and buying one of those grassy pads that let them go to the bathroom in the house for now. It is going to take a little time. But ease in to your routine with him. Let him have a comfort zone to stay in while he is learning to trust.
Through the years I have taken care of several traumatized animals. Even a horse, for about six months, I used the fence as a comfort zone until she trusted me enough to be right with her. When it was all said and done, she followed me around like a dog. I gave her to a family with children and she is happy to this day.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Thanks, everyone! He's adapting well and even peed next to the outdoor (leftover) rug. He sniffed his older poops this morning but didn't add to it.

Jack is the official walker here and just getting the dog out of the garage (fear of driveway/asphalt) is a job but once he gets to the grass he's fine. So they go on a grass walk in the morning, lunch time and before bed. He always has the dog's pen available. He'll see the vet today and we'll get his/her opinion on the asphalt situation. He seems very sensitive to heat since he's willing to walk on the driveway at 9:30 PM.

His little Woof last night was so sweet. He really just wanted to be at Jack's side. What a cutie!

I was the first one up this morning and he greeted me happily. I gave him his medicines as I took my own vitamins and then took him out to the dog's pen and stayed with him there for awhile. He doesn't mind the cement or brick and enjoys the grass. When we got back inside I brought him to see Jack, who was sound asleep. What a morning greeting! He did everything but flips and couldn't stop kissing Jack. I think it's the biggest compliment Jack has ever had and hope Jack doesn't expect me to roll over repeatedly, jump up and down and give him 100 kisses a minute!

Here he is with my daughter as he gets his first belly rub from her. It was love at first sight for all of us with our sweetie.

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Saugerties, NY(Zone 5a)

He's adorable and I wish you all the happiness in the world. God Bless you for taking him into your home, he's a very lucky dog, he's now in his forever home...

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Thanks, Christine. Maybe he's the one who rescued us from hum drum!

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7a)

Pirl -- I was consumed with envy at the picture of your lawn! We've had such severe
drought here for the past two years that our "lawn" is reduced to a brown patchy mess.

Pup's joy at greeting his new family is like a little miracle. Amazing how forgiving animals
can be of their past experiences and how willing they are to trust again. He's landed
in the right place at the right time.

Kilmarnock, VA(Zone 7a)

God bless you for taking him in. It will bring you more joy that any one can ever imagine.

Lafayette, NJ(Zone 6a)

Pirl, one of my bosses has a Havanese and he comes to work quite often. He is a lovebug. He is very smart and loves to be around people. He's a very quiet dog, except when someone he doesn't know approaches the office door. Then he sounds like a much larger dog. His owner has him trained on a wee wee pad. I don't know why he doesn't walk him. I think it's due to the condo he lives in. This dog is very good with young children.

Maybe he is not used to using the great outdoors. I am sure you are going to enjoy your new pup. I'm not a dog person and I've fallen in love with the dog at work.

I wish you good luck with your new friend. He is just a cutie!

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

June - that was taken at my daughter's house, 7 miles away. Tomorrow I'll take a few here. Our grass is just about as green. Thank you for your very sweet comment. Our little sweetie knew exactly what to do this morning when Jack walked him - no more issues with training him to go outside. Now he actually shows off and goes repeatedly, probably just for the praise.

Bseward - God bless the shelters and their employees for bringing him back to good health. He does bring enormous joy and big smiles.

This afternoon we were at a big neighborhood party and a few people made faces when they heard of his many ailments and medications. One actually said, "That dog should never have been put up for adoption", and she is a lovely person. I told her that if the dog doesn't mind Jack and I taking our vitamins and a few medicines, doesn't mind Jack using Refresh for his dry eyes and doesn't care that we both have the tremors then who are we to demand perfection from a dog?

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Elsie - we cross posted.

Thanks for the encouragement and praise for the Havanese as well as your good wishes. No one at the party had heard of the breed. They are loving, intelligent dogs, quick to learn, and good with other animals as well as children. I've rung our own doorbell to see his reaction but there's no stranger at the door, just me, so no barking yet.

I did persuade him to cross the courtyard, then the driveway and play on the lawn around 7:30. He was so very curious at the big world and the driveway didn't seem to bother his little paws. I'll keep taking him out to get him used to it and in time he'll come around.

When I took him for a little drive around the area he was at the window every minute and loved the tour.

Lafayette, NJ(Zone 6a)

Pirl, I think Barbara Walters had a Havanese. I think that's where I heard of them first. The dog at work is very quiet - I think he barks when he sees someone strange in the glass of the door. His bark is a big surprise. Be aware - the dog at work likes to play keep away. The owner now has to use a treat to get him back in the office. The dog stands with his paw right at the seam in the carpet and won't budge an inch. The owner lives in Long Island and commutes to NJ every day with him. Everyone says what a good traveler he is. Oh and the other thing - he doesn't seem to be afraid of anything. He's one of those big little dogs.

This is Teddy at work.

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(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

How sweet! He's like a little Teddy bear so he's perfectly named.

We went to the vet's this morning and our boy made friends with a giant yellow lab. It was cute to watch them together. He was willing to make friends with the cat, Whiskers, but the owner held the cat back and the cat didn't even seem bothered by the dog's friendly attitude. For a breed we had never heard of, we're learning a lot about them and we're so grateful to have him.

Does Teddy have any skin allergies or medical issues that the owner mentions?

Lafayette, NJ(Zone 6a)

I don't know of any medical issues that Teddy has. I think that the breed has hair rather than fur.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Thanks. That's a relief. They told us at the shelter that the Havanese don't shed so I guess it is hair. I just brushed him tonight and got 10 kisses in return. To my way of thinking that's reward enough!

Las Vegas, NV(Zone 9a)

Pirl, the Havanese across the street has many allergies and problems. They have had him since he was a puppy. I will find out exactly what his problems are. We have babysit him many times in our home. He is adorable and sits on the couch pillow behind you while you watch TV. The only problem is he wants to sleep in our bed, on my pillow. He is now 10 years old and has a major problem. I will also find out about that. He came from a top breeder in California. Hugs, Sharon

Kilmarnock, VA(Zone 7a)

I had never heard of the Havanese breed until a dear friend got one a couple of years ago. Her name is Lovey and she's adorable. I too haven't heard of their mentioning any health issues with Lovey but I'll check. When we met Lovey, we discovered she was aptly named. She truly is a love and the perfect dog for my friend.


(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Thanks, Sharon. I'd appreciate knowing anything that can help us help him. So far, he takes his medicines like a pro and is using the dog's pen for the right reasons. His big thrill each morning, after being outside and after breakfast and med's, is going in to see Jack. He already knows who "Daddy" is and loves being petted. Now Jack even gives in to a kiss or two on the ear! Success!

He's too small to make the leap to any bed, loveseat, chair, etc. so no problems with bed for him (or us).

Betty - Lovey would fit so well. The more I read about them, the more I realize they are the ideal breed for us.

It was news to me that articles state the prevalence of juvenile cataracts requires an annual exam by an opthamologist. Our vet's office has four doctors so I hope one is experienced with the issue.

Fairfield County, CT(Zone 6b)

Pirl - sweet little doggy! Maybe the asphalt issue is the color (dark) and not the asphalt. Maybe he can't see that anything is there - it just looks like empty space to him.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Thanks, AYC. He has no problem with the driveway now, just the street. Both driveway and street are asphalt so I'm guessing it's the gravel in the Town's asphalt mix that bothers his pads.

Here's a shot of the pup on the lap of the man who said he never wanted a lap dog!!!

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Lafayette, NJ(Zone 6a)

That's a great picture.

I'm not a dog person but I do love the dog at work. I have thought of taking him home and raising him as a cat - with my cat Chloe.

New York, NY(Zone 6b)

Pirl, I am so happy to hear that the baby is working out. So is he, he has a forever home now.

Dahlonega, GA

Your pooch looks exactly like a dog my mother had 50 years ago . It was given to her and know no history on it . the dogs name was Buttons . Mother did say that all those dogs had a natural part down the back . Does the Havanese have that parting of the hair ? Buttons was allowed to have a litter . Only got one pup , a female and her name was Candy , altho a cross breed , she looked just like her mother and both were the sweetest dogs ever . I'm jealous .

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Elsie - that would be funny to raise the dog as a cat. I wonder if he'd use a scratching post.

Torriesmom - He certainly does! He put his name on our hearts immediately. It really was love at first sight and we have no regrets.

Digger - Lhasas have the part down the back and so does this charming guy. I think quite a few breeds have it.

Years ago I allowed my Lhasa to mate and she had four pups, three males and one female. We kept two of the pups and they all had much nicer coats than the mother. Most of them lived 'til they were 14, as did our rough Collie and our Bearded Collie.

If you're jealous from photos you'd be super jealous to meet him. He has this adorable habit, when I'm offering him both breakfast and dinner, of rolling over first before eating.

Lafayette, NJ(Zone 6a)

Pirl, that's funny about rolling over. Teddy does that. He won't sit but he will roll over. Sometimes if he gets excited he tries to do all his tricks at once. He tries to roll over without laying down on the floor. I think you are in for some great times with him.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

That is so funny about the rolling over! Smitty (he finally got a name in the last hour) will sit but very briefly, then roll over. Jack and I howled at Teddy doing all his tricks at once.

It's Smitty because we are both smitten with him!

Now we're taking him on a ride to Petco for booties, hypo allergenic treats and some hard toys. He's too quick to take apart the soft toys. Soon he'll have me trained to sit in the back since he prefers the passenger seat. We do have a seat belt for him.

somewhere, PA

Oh I'm just so happy for you, Jack & Smitty!!! He indeed is adorable and lucky you found him.


Denton, TX(Zone 7a)

I think Smitty is adorable..and that is coming from a cat person..

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7a)

Smitty! What a wonderful name for this little guy. It's cute, boyish and a bit
sassy, just like he seems to be.

Pirl, I admire all the progress you've made in just a few days since you first
posted here. Smitty is destined to bring a lot of joy into your life in return for
the loving forever home he so deserves.

I love this thread and hope you will continue to keep us up to date on

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