Ellie needs a friend, someone she can relate to. She needs someone on her level, ie smarter than me. Since she no longer has her "pet" Airedale to frolic with and her "cousin" Kennedy to cavort with, she has learned being the "only dog" is not all it is hyped up to be - despite everything Kennedy told her.
Sure we have our several walks a day around the neighborhood and time at the dog park, but she needs a pal when I am gone to conspire with, play tag, and (who knows) play a game or two of chess. Since we have moved she has become more reserved, even quiet. Her trips to the dog park are the highlight of her day. It is obvious she lacks canine companionship.
I decided to start looking for such for her. My DH suggested, and I agreed, that we should find a rescue, a older (3 or 4 year old), terrier type (a dog who could go head to head with Ellie mano a mano), and a male. So the search began. One would think shelters and rescues would be filled with terriers (or "terrors" as the meek refer to them) discarded by owners who could not handle their feisty temperament. After all, to be so little, these guys are "smarter than the average bear". But then again, maybe not, since who would want to give up such a fun, smart, lovable pup.
None of the local shelters had any candidates, so I went online. This is where it got interesting. It was as if I found the Island of Unwanted
Toys Dogs. There was "Joaquin", described as a Cairn mix but he made Ellie look like a show dog. His description matched what I was looking for but before I could inquire I saw he had been adopted.
Next there was "Elvis", a silky terrier. His description made him sound ideal, however I always question when all three pictures of the dog are just the head.
"Handsome" (anyone who names their dog such does not deserve to own a dog) was a cute small long hair Jack Russell. He was a top candidate until I read that he was "selective" about who he liked or not. If you "made the cut" you were his friend for life. The last thing I needed was a dog who was only nice to certain people.
"Butch",came up in the search but was not a candidate when I learned he was a cross between a pit bull and a terrier. Seriously? Those muscles and jaws with a feisty attitude - no thank you. God made terriers small with small mouths for a reason - to give their "humans" a fighting chance.
"Charlie" was a possibility until the third picture showed that he was over 2 feet tall and the description said he weighed 30 pounds. Too big.
And then I found the perfect companion for Ellie, "Skylark", a Scotty/Norwich mix. This was exactly what I needed. He was the right size, the right age, he had decent conformation, his demeanor sounded grand, and he was a good combination of two breeds I was familiar with. Eureka! Not so fast, seems Skylark resides in Palo Alto, CA and the steep adoption price plus airfare would defeat the cost savings of a rescue. I could easily find an AKC dog for that price.
Then my DH found "Ben". He declared Ben was The One. He was described as a "Schnauzer" but this was a small gray terrier. His age, size, description - it fit, a nice little package. Looking at his pictures, I only had two questions, one picture made his mouth look as if he had an overbite (which could be a medical issue down the road) and it never mentioned if he was housebroken. Of course when I mentioned this to my DH he said, "Nothing that braces and a diaper could not handle." (I failed to see the humor.)
I attempted to call about Ben - no answer. I emailed about Ben and sent a text. Just this morning, I received an email from Ben's foster "mother" that simply said "Thank you for your interest, please complete this (4 page) form. She did not answer or acknowledge the few questions I had asked in my initial email. Inquiring minds want to know more.