I am just going to start at the start. This is going to be a long one. A Dozer Doozie, if you will.
Mister saw a post on Craigslist on Sat., Aug. 22. Free Male Pit Bull is need of good home (or something to that effect) with this picture:
How can you not fall in love with that face? I had been on him to get another dog for Gidget for about a year and he finally found one he liked, so I emailed the people. The guy called us almost immediately(red flag?). The dog is 6 years old, had him since he was born, new baby in the house, no time for dog. Really? No time for a dog you have had for 6 years? Sounds fishy to me, but I'm a doggie freak...
So we make an appointment to drive down(an hour away, in the boonies) and see the dog the next day. We spent six hours with these people on Sunday. Their friends came over and we stayed for BBQ. No one mentioned any issues besides these two: he may potentially have a male dog aggression problem and he may, if you do not lock him up, may "mark" something(which is polite doggie terminology for peeing all over the place with his stinky, pungent man-dog pee). So we took him home. He got along well with Gidge(at least he didn't try to hump her or eat her), he did well with the oodles of babies they had flying around the place, and Mr. liked him. He did well in the truck on the way home (Bonus Point: he rides well in cars), he pretty much went right to sleep when we got home (which is really impressive considering he didn't know us from god and he had slept with the same guy for 6 years), and he was very affectionate.
We locked him up in the "fruit cellar" which is just a room in the basement with canning shelves. Looks like this:
Nothing fancy, but it has a door and window. Mister thought it was important that he have "natural light". Weirdo. So Monday he was fine. No problem, no hint at the disaster to come.
He did well in the morning apparently. Mister came home, let them out, then left again to go work on his motorcycle. I came home an hour later and he had scratched the door, busted it open, and peed on like three boxes in the basement. Luckily he did not pee on anything important.
That mess on the wall in the background was already there. We need to strip the mortar paste off the walls. Ick.
We locked him in the other room we have in the basement, which was initially supposed to be an exercise room, but the stationary bike never quite made it in there. He scratched the door up, but no big deal, doors are replaceable, at least he was contained.
We put him back in the "exercise room". Mister came home and he had chewed on the door frame. Still fixable, still minimal. Meanwhile, at lunch that day, I bought an x-large airplane crate.
We put him in the crate. Mr. came home at lunch and he had busted the door open. So Mr. tied him in with a big rope. I came home and he was still blessedly contained. Unfortunately, I still had to clean up the pee residue from his earlier breakout. Mr. had wiped it up, but had not had time to mop it.
Went to see a guy about one of those outdoor chain-link doggie runs, 10' x 10' with 6' walls. Mr. decided he didn't like it. Went home. Dog had gotten out by pulling the gate IN this time.
Mister bowed out of the work picnic we had planned for the day, because he was pissed about being outsmarted by the dog, so Gidge and I went by ourselves. Had mucho fun, went to two bars afterwards with co-workers. First had a patio, Saint Louis has a "doggie allowed" patio law, so I asked, the host asked, then came and said I could bring her in. She laid down and went to sleep. Then the manager came and said they don't allow dogs on their patio. So who the hell did the host ask in the first place? I took her back to the car, we finished our beers, and we left. Jerks.
Next place said I could have her, but had to keep her on the opposite side of the decorative iron fence. Fine, whatever. I guess I should research what exactly the patio/doggie law is.
We had to go to my cousins graduation party. Mister put a metal rod through the front of the crate and tied a rope to the door and the rod, so (theoretically) he couldn't push or pull the door. He managed to untie the rope, not chew through it, untie it. And proceeded to pee some more. yay.
We put him in the exercise room, in the cage, door against the wall, with a 2 x 4 wedged against the lip of the crate and another against the wall. He got out. But at least he was still in the room.
Mr. called ex-daddy Monday evening and was told a hand-built wooden crate was the only thing able to contain the demon spawn. So Mon. evening he built a wooden door for the plastic crate. We put him in the new, improved crate, inside the room. And ex-daddy agreed to meet me Thursday afternoon with said existing hand-built crate. He broke the entire side of the crate open. See below.
We left him in the exercise room. Period. No extra fancy ideas left. He did this to the door.
That is a hollow core door, obviously. He then proceeded to push the remainder of the door until he was back in the basement again. So the door looked closed, but he was staring at me through the glass. This time he peed in the bookshelf.
Boxes I can handle. Books, not so much. Books are my hobby. All I do is read. It's a disease really. I called Mr. in hysterics: Tired of this, can't do it anymore, too stressful, tired... etc. Told him to call ex-daddy, we were bringing him back. Now I am not one to give up on animals, so while I can't continue stressing out while at work and cleaning up after him, I really didn't want to get rid of him. He is perfect in every other way. Cuddly, gets along with Gidge, friendly, gorgeous. So Mr. calls and ex-daddy says "ok, let me call my wife and I'll call you back". He doesn't. We agree the dog cannot remain in the house for another day. We decide he will be an outside dog. We will chain him up. I am not comfortable with this idea as we live on a busy road and he is not chipped, but I go to Lowe's and get 10' chain, and farm rated hardware to keep him chained. Then I go to Petco for a collar that won't choke him or let him slip out. Lady says it doesn't exist, the only thing that can contain a pit bull is more chain. It's illegal. "Hire a babysitter for the day". Can't, Mister won't allow people in the house when we're not home. "Take him to a kennel". Can't, he doesn't have his Bordatella shot. "Bring him in for grooming". Ding, ding, ding! We have a winner. I go home, tell Mr. he is going in for grooming the next day, get chewed out, get my way. hehe. I talked to ex-daddy while at Lowe's and he agrees, again, to meet me with the wooden crate Thursday.
I drop Doze off at Petco. I meet ex-daddy, get the crate. Pick him up after work, "Oh, he was just excellent in the crate all day. Have you tried giving him something to keep him busy?" Uh, yeah. We tried that. You take him home, lock him up tomorrow, give him a Kong, and see how you like coming home to a disaster and an untouched Kong.
Ahh. The crate worked. All is well. Yayyy!
But now I have this monstrosity in my basement.
Went to the park. Let Doze off the leash at the river. He decides he wants a big log bobbing on the other side OF THE MERAMEC. Takes off, current gets him, he swims strong against the current for about 2 heart-stopping minutes, then does a flip and goes under. Mister says "I'm not dying for that stupid dog. Let nature take it's course." How did I end up with such a heartless beast? So I take my shoes and socks off and start in. Gidge tries to follow me, but I shoved her back around and told her to stay. She actually listens. Luckily, after almost drowning, he too decides to start listening to me screaming myself hoarse. Starts back towards us and I managed to grab him.
After all that effort to contain him just so we could keep him, he almost drowns. Stupid fucking dog.
I commend you on your attention span if you are still reading this...
On the home front:
I got a new washer and dryer!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Stainless-look Samsung Steam fanciness. Cost waaaayyy too much money, but I can do more than one load of laundry a day now.
And I painted the dining room. Pics to come. Maybe.
See how productive we can be when the dog is not demolishing the house and peeing all over everything? Hoorah!
BTW: Yes, he does have separation anxiety. And yes, all of this could have been avoided had they told us and send the crate home with us the first day.