Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Tiegan's New Brother

We thought a lot about finding just the right basenji to adopt as a companion and brother to our magical pixie Tiegan. Our wonderful little girl was the first consideration. The goal was for us to have two basenjis who would not just get along but also develop the type of positive dynamic that Ivan and Dasa enjoyed.
For a while, we considered adopting an African or half-African young adult or puppy. Our little Avongara Dasa was truly amazing; sweetness personified. However, we finally came to the realization that while we could get another African, we cannot get another Dasa so we needed to think about what was best for Tiegan. We then decided to take our time and wait for the right dog to come along. (That plan worked spectacularly well with Tiegan, our Princess of Sunshine and Magic.) Mere days later, there was Miles, and the same feeling that told me to ask about Tiegan, once again said, “Ask about that dog.”

As Eric dryly observes, Tiegan has leadership potential, so the new boy had to be the agreeable sort who wouldn’t mind a tiny girl taking charge. Miles has had some very rough periods in his short life, but BRAT foster parents provided him loving stable safe havens so he is sweet and affectionate. He is very amiable and non-dominate; the foster mom’s 3 female dogs had the upper paw.

The last weekend of July we drove to his foster home to bring Miles home. Miles is two weeks older than Tiegan, and we are also his fifth home. Tiegan is small for a basenji, and Miles, at a lean 31 pounds, is large for a basenji. He is very sweet and agreeable, so usually follows Tiegan’s lead. 

I am happy to say they get along very well. At first I was worried that Miles would be too big or would play too rough for my tiny girl. No worries. He is really a teddy bear, very cuddly and affectionate with us, and careful when he plays with our little brindle whirlwind. They have a very high combined energy level. We now have two very active 20-month-old basenjis to keep us busy. When they do the Basenji 500, it’s best to simply stay in one place, unmoving as they careen around us, bouncing off the couch, galloping around the piano, catapulting off the couch again and scrambling around the corner, through the kitchen, down the hall, flying over a stack of dog beds that were flung off the couch during this series of leaps . . . .   

   Tiegan and Miles play, run, chase squirrels, and run more big circles through the back yard. They stand with their front feet on tree trunks, willing the squirrels to come back. They trot around with their chins up, looking for movement in the leaves overhead. We have enough trees in our back yard that the squirrels never have to touch the ground, they can run from tree to tree, and occasionally up the excitement level by running along the top of the fence.

We still occasionally call our new babies Ivan or Dasa, which sometimes makes us tear up a bit. However, we are so happy to have Tiegan and Miles, and we believe we were meant to be their people. Our house is filled with laughter, a captivating delightful gift for which we feel so very grateful. Thank you BRAT for entrusting us with our tiny Tiegan and teddy bear Miles.

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