I've watched the process unfold so many times over the years. The phone rings or an email chimes, a knock sounds at the door of our farmhouse kitchen and the game is afoot. A puppy seeker has wandered down one path or another and has found Foxglove Farm, and is seeking the perfect puppy to fulfill all their puppy dreams.
I'm good at this. Who would have thought that little four-footed creatures would need a matchmaker but they do. Fitting each puppy with his or her perfect home, that exactly right situation where puppy and puppy person can find joy and help fill an empty place and yes, bring a little puppy love into this stressful old world of ours.
Sometimes, I find a puppy person who is set on one or another of our flashier little numbers, and occasionally I have to steer them gently towards the puppy I know is the better choice for them. I had a call earlier this evening, from a sweet lady who was much in need of a puppy. In fact early in our conversation I encouraged her, "If you don't get a puppy from Foxglove, you still simply have to get a dog!" Her story is her own and I won't share it here other than to say that she had met one of our Foxglove babies up in New England and one of my dear Foxglove puppy owners had sent her our way with exhortations to "Let Terry help you find the right dog, she'll help you get just the right fit!"
We sorted through several puppy options, in the back of my mind as often happens, the face of one particular little puppy kept gazing wistfully at me. I knew he was just exactly right for her, but at first she was drawn to some of my more brightly colored puppy kids.
The problem was, she needed just the right puppy. Not a fussy puppy. Not a precocious puppy, beautifully marked and brightly coated as he might be.
She needed an old soul of a puppy.
A quiet puppy who was gentle and a bit thoughtful, a puppy who would understand instantly that she needed someone to love and someone who would settle in quickly and wholeheartedly begin his job of being her devoted companion.
And so as the minutes flew by and we talked of puppies and personalities, of unlikely things like England and our favorite puppy names and as that one little face drifted softly in my mind's eye, we came together to the same conclusion. That indeed little Archie was meant for her. That he would be just the one who needed to come fill her heart with life and sweet puppy affection.
"I love his face, those eyes, they keep looking at me..." There it was, that connection, even though she'd never met him, she had recognized the inner beauty of this earnest faced creature and I knew she was the going to love my kind-hearted Archie and give him exactly the home he needed.
So baby Archie is sound asleep on this early fall evening. I like to think that he dreams puppy dreams of his new home, of his new life and the lady that he will love with all the love his small heart has to give which is very much love indeed.
Yes, he may not be the most astonishingly beautiful puppy I've ever raised. But he has the makings of a handsome little fellow and will grow out of his duckling stage into a wonderfully atractive grown up dog who will make me proud that he's done the job I raised him to do...
Bring Puppy Joy... And in the end, that's all that really matters...
"My puppy still smelled amazing days after she arrived! What did you use on her & where can I get it?"
In my past life I took a summer long course to learn dog grooming in a steamy South Carolina grooming salon. Among a host of other dog skills gained there, I learned the that quickest way to beautiful coat for our client's dogs was using top notch grooming products.
Several years ago when Agatha's Apothecary was just getting off the ground, I began searching for a line of grooming products that would nourish skin and coat, keep dogs smelling divine for days and importantly, not include the laundry list of chemicals most coat products for dogs contain. An added benefit would be products that didn't give my allergies a fit just being near them. (I've thrown away an appalling number of grooming products for that very reason, they wrecked havoc with my allergies!)
That journey resulted in the creation of four products that have exceeded everything I could have wanted and more. The shampoo is the BEST I've ever used (and I've bathed 1000's of dogs) the conditioner produces a super healthy coat that's easy to brush. The doggie deodorizer fur freshener does exactly that, it doesn't just mask fusty smelly dog odor, it works to naturally neutralize odor on pets and pet bedding, all the places pets live. Pup Pup Cologne, natural essential oils that help soothe and calm fractious canines.
So here's how to make your puppy (or dog) smell amazing at home too!
I start with the bath, (always lather your dog twice, so important puppy people!) of course I use our Luxury Lather, it's aloe vera base means I can wash little faces and not worry about harming puppy eyes. After a thorough rinse, I use about a tablespoon of Healthy Coat Conditioner, again, working from the head to the tail, massage down each leg and rinse with nice warm water. Don't forget to use your hands to gently squeegee as much water as possible out of the coat, paying special attention to ears and legs. Wrap in a fluffy towel for a minute or two, again blotting as much moisture as possible, you'll find drying time is much faster when you don't skip these extra short steps.
By the way, it's important that puppies learn about hair dryers from an early age, most will be visiting their local grooming parlor many times in their lives and early socialization with the tools of that trade can make for a dog your groomer will love to work with. Happy dogs are always easier to groom and you'll find your groomer can work wonders with the coat if it's kept in super condition.)
After puppy coat is dry and fluffy, a spritz of Fur Freshener will add polish and sheen without harmful silicones and keep the coat fresh for days. (If tangles are a worry, add a bit of Healthy Coat to your Fur Freshener, shake well and use every time you brush, soon your dog will have coat as beautiful as Agatha's!).
It's important if you have a "coated dog" a dog with long coat that tends to tangle, to always always use conditioner after the bath. To neglect this step will mean a snarled matted coat that your groomer decrees must be shaved and is beyond her ability to brush out. She will LOVE you for adding these products to your at home coat care routine trust me on this one! The added step of using Fur Freshener between baths will keep static electricity at bay, the enemy of your hair and your dog's hair too!
Last step is just a couple of drops of Pup Pup Cologne at the base of the neck. Pup Pup is a blend of pure essential oils of lavender and bergamot that also helps repel fleas and ticks and mosquitos. That combination of herbs is naturally calming and if you've ever slept on lavender scented sheets you know how restful that aroma truly is. Confession? I'm so in love with this little product that I keep it in my purse and use it for my own perfume, it's soothing fragrance is just the thing when I'm rushing about running errands, all it takes is a drop or two and instant relaxation!
So there you have it Puppy People, the path to a puppy that will make you the proudest pet owner on the planet!
My faithful puppy people know how to find Agatha's products on Amazon or at www.agathasapothecary.com home of the best dog supplements, of course, on the planet! You'll find all of these there if you want to add them to your own DIY dog grooming toolkit!
I hope you enjoyed this edition of the Puppy Post and those of you who arrived here by route of www.puppydiva.com welcome! I've missed my special friends and I hope you'll enjoy these puppy stories and more snippets of our life here at Foxglove Farm. I'd love to hear your puppy stories too, we all have that special dog that came just when we needed him or her to help fill a place that no one else could ever fill.
They do that with all of their faithful hearts.
Give your good dog a hug won't you?