Our first foster Rottie is finally here. 10 month old Belle spent the past weekend going from one volunteer driver to the next on her journey from Los Angeles, California, to Eugene, Oregon. Her traveling buddy and fellow Rottie, Daisy, is now with another Eugene foster family as well.
Two coordinators from the rescue group came to help with dog introductions over the course of a strategically planned walk. They led the way with Belle while my husband and I followed closely behind with our family dogs, Frieda and Lola. Our girls were allowed to sniff at Belle’s behind during the walk, but they were discouraged from any face to face interaction. This went fairly well. Lola was easy going and nonchalant. Frieda was dying to sniff, then after she’d sniffed, she just wanted to be in front, leading. About halfway, we switched places in the line, and Frieda and Lola walked in front of Belle, allowing her a turn to sniff them. Thumbs up.
We returned home and walked around the backyard on leash for awhile before letting Belle off leash first, then Lola, then Frieda. Lola and Belle seem to get along fine. Frieda, younger, alpha, and more uppity than Lola, was more intimidating for the new dog. The three attempted play several times, though it was broken up cautiously each time it got too energetic. After awhile in the backyard, we moved inside the house. Satisfied that the foster was in a safe place, the coordinators left.
Left to right: Belle, Frieda, and Lola
Together with the kids, we took all three dogs on a 2.5 mile walk. Belle would easily pull ahead if allowed, and is just a little insecure on leash, but these are mild issues that will alleviate with consistent walks. We passed several other dogs on the route, and though she showed interest in them, she did not exhibit aggression or overly excited behavior. She so far has been fine with each of the kids, especially with our youngest, who has never been without dogs and has to be told to give them their space.
Even after the walk, it took Belle awhile to calm down and stop pacing at home. She constantly tried to jump in my lap. This might have been fine if she were a lap dog, but even as a smaller Rottie, she’s simply too big and therefore is learning the command “off” again and again. We had a monstrosity of a pee accident (apparently she did not pee outside after our long walk but saved it for the length of our hallway). She has trouble with “sit”, but we’re working on it.
Belle was found wandering the Sonoma Desert. Her prior owners were located, but they did not want her returned to them. Rather than find her a more suitable home, they chose to abandon her. She exhibits every potential to be a great forever pal for someone. If you are willing to lead, she is more than ready to learn. It is already clear to me that her future person cannot be a pushover. True to her Rottie core, if you let this girl have her way with where she wants to sit, and how, when, and what she wants to eat, she will quickly rule your home. If you want a cute puppy but aren’t into consistent walks and you think enforcing boundaries is cruel, please look somewhere other than the Rottweiler.
There are already two potential adoptive families scheduled to meet Belle on Friday this week, which means she could be our foster for only five days. I’ve been so excited to meet our first foster that when she arrived, it was like having a rock star in the house. She is an absolutely beautiful young Rottie and we’re going to work on what we can while we have her.