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Saturday, April 17, 2010

Dalmatian | German Shorthaired Pointer

I am obsessing over designer dogs, so when a friend pointed out Linguini's absence from the blog, I immediately felt the need to oblige thus sticking with my recent "designer dogs" theme.

Designer dogs? Huh?

Linguini's story started at the Pasadena Humane Society, an animal shelter. M had one dog, Rosie, a chocolate lab, and didn't want another at the time. She wasn't into rescuing yet. She did however lose her cat and while looking at the pound for her, spotted ... the spotted Dalmatian. Now all puppies are adorable, and Dalmatian puppies are no exception, but Linguini was different. M was told that Linguini was a German Shorthaired Pointer and Dalmatian mix.
Who needs Dalmatian puppies, when you can find a fine specimen of a
Dalmatian and German Shorthaired Pointer mix?
Linguini is proud to be a mutt

I already consulted my precious "designer dogs" list and there was no special term for our Linguini. BTW Linguini was initially named Daisy to match our Rosie. She was no dainty Daisy, but she did move like a wet noodle, so she was renamed Linguini shortly after her adoption.
"Daisy" and Rosie

Linguini and Rosie appeared to be two peas in a pod. Wrong! M was fooled, and, as soon as she let her guard down, Rosie attacked Linguini and ripped her throat. Linguini was hospitalized for a while and later spent a month recovering at home with a tube sticking out her throat. She required around the clock care. She recovered in the end, but only after losing control of her bladder for a couple more years.

About three years later, Rosie got killed, but I'm not allowed to talk about that. Linguini regained control of her bladder, which made life easier on everybody. She decided she was going to be an escape artist next and soon was nicknamed Houdini. There was no stopping her. The pound pounded our door many times to demand that we take control. They threatened with fines, taking her away, putting her down (OMD), but Linguini didn't care. M mounted a 60 foot tether in our back yard, by the pond and had to keep Linguini tied whenever she wasn't around. Needless to say M and Linguini were both miserable. 

Can you see the German Shorthaired Pointer in her? 
Other than the fact that she frequently and clearly points, we can't see it

Linguini is a happy dog that wants to please. If a human looks at her she falls on her back to get a belly rub. She's peace-loving and never cared to interact much with other dogs. Until recently. 

This is Sue, Linguini's BFF

Sue doesn't make friends very easily either, but those two had their own chemistry going. Funny story, Sue playfully bumped Linguini while horsing around the other day and Linguini was airborne! Rhodies are tough and strong. No hard feelings of course. Anything goes during playtime. Sue and Linguini have set their own boundaries. They visit each other's homes, hang, share toys and marrow bones... When you see a loner take to another dog the way those two did, it's magic. 

Happy spotted dog, um, Dalmatian, um, mutt

The minute I joined the family, Linguini was gentle with me. She would run towards me, but as she approached, she'd take tiny leaps to make sure she didn't hurt me. I'll never forget that. For a couple of years, we shared the home as the only dogs, peacefully, each doing her thing. 

When Frankie, the "Chiweenie" joined us, I thought, "this is it!" Frankie was constantly hanging from Linguini's face, jumping on her, tugging on her ears with her sharp puppy teeth, and I was sure that one day she'd become appetizer. It never happened. The worst thing Linguini's ever done to Frankie is a low warning growl, but the brat doesn't care anyways.
This is Linguini now
She loves to spend her days by M's feet
The closer to M, the happier she is

She enjoys sharing whipped cream with her pack
She loves food and has become a skilled counter surfer! 

As if Linguini's life hadn't been complicated enough, when she was about to turn ten, about a year ago, she started getting sick. She had difficulty getting up, her energy was low, and M took her for a check up. She had several dog tumors (benign) and her liver and thyroid functions were slightly compromised. M changed her diet, put her on a joint juice, and started exercising her religiously. Ta-da! A brand new Dalmatian/German Shorthaired Pointer was born. 

Our new dog

Linguini's health is restored for now, and a year later she hikes, swims, loves her visit to the horse barn, and has a bestie. She's constantly happy and the other day she even caught a bird, to M's dismay (only a couple of weeks ago spotted dog had caught a gofer). 


When Linguini was sick, last year, M told her, "I gave you ten good years, you owe me at least that many." I think Linguini got it!

As we all well know, it's not about quantity but quality. We all love her and appreciate every moment we have left with her. That was the story of my sissy, the gentle and happy Dalmatian/German Shorthaired Pointer mutt! 

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