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Phelps Anderson's Story . . .
Update 04/18/2013: "He will hang around the grooming table when another dog is being done, very politely of course, but very deliberately waiting his turn………very fun to see!"
Phelps is a keeper! Give him a short time in your home and you’ll feel as comfortable with him (and he with you) as your favorite pair of jeans. Like so many young-at-heart seniors, he’s adapted with initial caution and a lot of common sense to life in his foster home. You can see his growing comfort as part of the resident pack. He’ll step to the middle of the pack now when everyone lines up for treats……but only if asked. He’s so polite! He has been completely trustworthy in the house, earning him run of the diningroom and kitchen when his family is away and at night. He continues to dine in his crate and is often found napping there on a nice thick pad.
His coat has sheen to it now from lots of brushing and is very plush. His fur doesn’t lay perfectly flat so it’s inviting to run your fingers through. Most of his grooming has been done on the floor since he’s most comfortable there, but he has been on a grooming table and stood for short stretches while his ears and feet were tidied up. The personal attention is something Phelps has grown to enjoy. He will hang around the grooming table when another dog is being done, very politely of course, but very deliberately waiting his turn………very fun to see!
He’s begun stepping out with his family and is a real pleasure to be with in public settings. He recently spent part of an afternoon at an NPS visitor center. Lots of traveling families with children, various groups with dogs, and a bustling pace filled the scene. Phelps was easy on leash while checking out the large dog walk area, with nose to the ground and a willingness to step ahead when asked. Heavy highway traffic nearby didn’t phase him. After moving on to the picnic area and main walkway, Phelps encountered people. He was at ease with everyone’s approach to meet him. He was especially good with the children in 2 families, aging from 3-7. He let them pet him and then patiently stood alongside, watching visitors pass by as his foster family talked with others. He noticed dogs and seemed willing to meet them too but none matched Phelps’ calmness, so his attention was limited to the people.
Again, he’s a keeper! Phelps is a gentle gent who should fit into a quiet to moderately active home as a solo dog or a second one. His family should be committed to giving him light exercise daily, maintaining him on a quality supplement for joint support, and watching for possible change in an eyelid tag. He will do best if his life includes few stairs, perhaps occasional contact with little people and a family for whom good temperament overrides all else. He's undemanding and unassuming but, like all good ESSs, he will appreciate being loved and well cared for through his senior years. Ask about meeting him soon. He’s a good boy!!!
Original: "With a week of trustworthiness when his family was home, he was left uncrated for a night and proved deserving of the opportunity."
Is anyone wondering how this gent got his name? It goes back to last summer when, during the Olympics, Michael Phelps was breaking records for the US swim team. A Good Samaritan found “Phelps” roadside right about that time, took him home to safety, and the dog was named. Over coming weeks as his family worked with a local humane society in southwestern Virginia to ready him for adoption, “Anderson” was added. It’s a long fairly long handle that this sensible senior carries well.
While with his rescuer, Phelps lived indoors but had limited run of the home and enjoyed a huge fenced yard with cows on one side of him and horses on the other. He has been reserved as he’s settled into his foster home where he has a whole house to figure out but he’s more at ease every day. Stairs were difficult at first; he’s overcome the half flight to the small dog pen for necessities but thus far hasn’t taken on the full flight to the second floor. For the first several nights, Phelps was crated alongside resident dogs on the first floor. With a week of trustworthiness when his family was home, he was left uncrated for a night and proved deserving of the opportunity. Nothing was disturbed and he was found sound asleep in a dog basket in the livingroom when his family came down the next morning. He will continue to be crated when his family is away and he eats his meals there as well.
Phelps lives with 3 Springers, ages 2 to 13. He doesn’t play with them but isn’t afraid of them. He will wait patiently with the pack for his treat to be handed to him and is beginning to thread between dogs to ask his foster mom for attention. He’s met little people, briefly out in public, ages 3-7 and has been very calm and accepting of their attention.
At his vet visit, Phelps was extremely patient with all handling. The vet needled a small cyst on one eyelid to drain it and commented on how good he was with that. Should the cyst return and rub his eyeball, it can be removed but, for now, it requires no further treatment. He has started on a supplement to support joint health; this may help with those steps but other than that, Phelps checked out as a very healthy senior.
Home grooming goes on daily right now for Phelps. His coat is shiny, thick, and benefits frequent combing. He was a little wary of this attention initially but is more at ease each time his family sits down with him. He’s a little skittish when it comes to feet but is learning to share them too.
Phelps has no bad house manners. He’s not counter-surfing or snooping behind cabinet doors for the trash. He’s only had one accident in the house, and, it was not his fault. Restlessness indicates he needs to go out, and, normal trips out with the pack are all that’s required for his success. He voluntarily “sits” on occasion but isn’t a dog that responds to a list of commands. He’s been easy to walk on a loose leash and will readily “come” when called, either in the house or out in the fenced yard.
All his travels have been done in a crate. Car rides don’t seem to be Phelps’ favorite thing and he needs a boost into a mid-size SUV or a ramp. If stops are made for errands along the way, he may bark but will quiet as soon as the journey continues.
Overall, Phelps is a gentle soul who is blessed with good health and can be a steadfast companion in a quieter home. He could be a second dog but also seems as if he could be comfortable as a single. His energy level is moderate but he’s not a couch potato. He absolutely loves time outdoors and easily kicks into an easy jog when given the chance. If he has daily walks or off leash time in a fenced yard, he'll be happiest and will continue his good health.
Phelps is easy to hug, easy to live with and very handsome. As one who notices tails, his foster mom finds his to be an outstanding one, very expressive. Just watching it swish from side to side as he explores the new spring grass brings a smile. Check him out if he’s the kind of companion you’d smile for……………… :))!