by Auntie Zina, 2011
Annie a.k.a. Annie Meat Feet, Feetie, Annie Fannie Lou, Annie Meat Feet Mucky Tooties Scruff Herbert By Golly.
History and Helpful Notes given to us by Zina and Julie when we Adopted Annie from them in 2011.
“Annie is approximately 10 years old this year (2011). In October 2002 she was dropped off with a half bag of dog food on the driveway of a farm in SW Michigan. We were working for an Animal Rescue organization at the time and lived on a farm close to the farm where Annie had been left. We took on the task of rescuing Annie and the first time we saw her she was running across a field towards us as a blur of long white hair that almost reached the ground. She was too nervous to come right up to us so she sank to the ground a few yards away, tail wagging, as she peered at us from under a curtain of hair that all but obscured her face. The kindly farmer’s wife had been feeding Annie from the bag of food that had been left with her but the farmer didn’t want another dog as they already had one who lived in a dog house in a large enclosure next to the farm house. The farmer had told his wife that the stray dog had better be gone before the food ran out or he would shoot her. Well the food had run out and Annie had found a way to squeeze into the farm dog’s enclosure so was actually sharing that dog’s food. We tried everything to encourage Annie to approach us but she didn’t trust anyone except the farmer’s wife so we had to leave without her hoping that the farmer’s wife would be able to catch her soon after. A day or so later we were called to come and fetch Annie who had been cornered in the farm dog’s enclosure and was now tied to the fence awaiting our arrival. We duly collected Annie and took her back to our farm where a 12’ by 16’ dog run had been attached to our own dogs running area. We installed Annie and made a fuss of her before going into the house.
Over the next couple of days we named the little white dog Annie after Orphan Annie and we gradually won her trust. We fed her and petted her and she watched tail wagging as our two dogs Molly and Kip ran and played together in the enclosure next to her dog run. Each time our dogs were called into the house Annie would bark and whine as if to say “What about me. Don’t leave me out here on my own”. Both Julie and I are very soft hearted and so it didn’t surprise me to come home from work a day or so later to find three dogs greeting me at the door instead of two. We fully intended to take Annie to adoption days to find her another home but somehow it didn’t happen and she stayed. We soon took Annie to a groomer and she had her first ‘hair do’. All we had been able to see of her through the curtain of long white hair was her big black button nose, ( gone pink as she aged), and an occasional glimpse of her big bright eyes, so it was good to see her sweet face and perky ears emerge. The groomer said that Annie had never had a hair cut so we knew that if we allowed her hair to grow again we would eventually have a dog that resembled a miniature Afghan hound.
Annie settled in with us very well sharing bunk beds in our laundry room with Molly and Kip. She demanded attention inserting herself between us and any dog that was being petted. We were soon ‘trained’ to put one hand on her and one hand on another dog and, if no other dog needed to be petted, we could be sure Annie would be right there pushing her nose into our hands and never tiring of attention. She was very keen to please us and needed reassurance if she thought we were displeased with her. She soon showed us that she had known abuse by reacting very nervously if we kicked off shoes or a slipper dropped off a foot. She would scoot out of the way and have to be persuaded to return to be close to us. She displayed nervousness around men, especially men in work boots. She never displayed aggression toward men or anyone else for that matter, but she is still nervous of feet and obviously associates them with being kicked.
Annie has always responded well to children although she has had limited exposure to them. It would be advisable to monitor her closely if she is approached by young children and if they scream or screech near her. She can be nervous in new situations or surroundings or at sudden loud noises.
Annie should be spoken to gently unless you are giving her an instruction when a firm tone of voice should be used. Do not speak to her in sentences if giving her a command as this will confuse her. If you shout at her she will be nervous and confused. If she does something naughty then reprimand her in a firm voice by saying NO or Bad Girl and then do not make eye contact with her for a short while. Annie will be mortified if she hears an angry tone of voice and if you ignore her. After a short period of time call her to you and make a fuss of her to reassure her that she is no longer in disgrace.
Note, you can only reprimand a dog immediately after it has done something naughty. They have short memories and will not understand if you tell them off for something done hours before. If she should mess in the house and you find it sometime later call her over and say “What’s this” in an angry tone and then say “Outside” and take her outside immediately. She may not pee or poop when you take her outside as she has already had the accident in the house. However, she will associate the reprimand with the offense and will try not to repeat the error.
Always take her out and encourage her to “Go Potty” before you go out and leave her alone in the house. If you are away for several hours and she does have a mistake do not reprimand her. Annie won’t mess in the house unless she is desperate, has not had a chance to go outside to do her business when she needed to, or has a stomach upset from eating something that disagreed with her.”