While visiting our daughter and her family in California we were introduced to the Chinese Crested breed (Powder-puff variety) for the first time, Having owned and even bred only large dogs we were intrigued by the small size and large personality. While we were not seriously considering another dog at this time, since we no longer have children at home and travel a lot, the "portability" of such a small sized dog was attractive. |
When we got back to New York in January we got to thinking of perhaps trying to locate a rescue Chinese Crested. Not being the most popular breed in the world, rescues were few and far between. We found one in Pittsburgh, PA, run by a lovely young couple, and thus began our search.
The call finally came in late March telling us a match had been found for us. We made arrangements to pick up our child the second weekend in April. The day before we were to leave on the 400 mile (one way) trip we had a death in the immediate family and could not go as planned, The death of a close family member and knowing we had to cancel our trip to Pittsburgh left us devastated. Since we could not commit as to when we would be able to make the trip we thought it best to pass what was to be our good fortune on to the next person waiting, as we know how we agonized over the three month wait. We called the rescue and told them of our decision and we were assured that as soon as we were ready we would return to first on the list.
When all family matters were settled we called the rescue. We were told that, at that time they had one dog in their care but most probably she would not be placed as she was in terrible shape from the abuse she had suffered and most likely would not make it. We pleaded and cajoled. Four weeks later we were on our way to Pittsburgh (via Philadelphia where we picked up our adult son).
The moment we laid eyes on Suzie we fell in love with her and knew she was our destiny. She was a frail six pounds. A nervous wreck who spun in circles and cowered whenever anyone kneeled down to pet her. It only took moments for her paw prints to be firmly imprinted on our hearts and off we went, back to New York with our new child. Our son drove so that we could take turns holding her and telling her how much better her life was going to be. We were never sure how old Suzie was when we adopted her, but dentition suggested somewhere between five and seven. As a result of her abuse her front legs were arthritic and one ear would NOT stand up...a quality that made her even more endearing.
Eventually Suzie came to trust us, her spinning circles ceased and she no longer cowered when we attempted to bend over to either pet her or pick her up. She gained, and maintained throughout the rest of her life, about eight pounds and came to love us as we loved her.
And love her we did! She traveled with us to many places: California, the Bahamas (no quarantine for entry there); Maryland, Pennsylvania, Maine, New England to cut our annual Christmas tree, just to name a few. She loved the car, but also liked air travel where we would slip her out of her carrier onto our laps shortly after each take-off. When travel restrictions were such that she could not join us she was cared for by our wonderful neighbors, here new aunt and uncle, who loved her as we did and emailed us every day to keep us up to date on her antics. We'd return from a trip to always find her freshly bathed by her aunt looking happy to see us, eager to cuddle when we settled in for the night.
Of course there was no shortage of creature comforts. She slept in bed with us, right in the middle with her back against one of us and her paws touching the other. She showered with mom (she's white after all) and loved to have her hair blown dry. Her wardrobe was quite extensive and she loved "dress up".
She brought 11 short years of sunshine in to our home and hearts and will be missed. I know that she'll be waiting for us at the Rainbow Bridge when the time comes, ready to cuddle once again.