Monday, November 12, 2012

Annie finds us.

When we met Annie our lives changed in a way we never thought possible.
How could a puppy make such a difference?
There she was, just an advertisement on Pet Finder. Something very special caught my eye.

SPECIAL NEEDS Leanne was born into the care of a backyard breeder. At a very young age, it became apparent that she was special and unlike the other pups in her litter. She was taken away from her mom & bottlefed at the tender age of only 2 weeks. As she grew, the breeder noticed that Leanne could not see very well. Realizing that she would be unlikely to be able to sell this particular puppy and make any profit, she surrendered Leanne to us. While Leanne is quite vision impaired, she can make out large shadows & shapes, so she is not completely blind. Her eyes have been examined by two veterinarians and an optometrist and no one can find any reason for these vision problems. Her eyes, retinas & optical nerves are all perfectly normal and responsive. Perhaps she was born blind, or maybe she suffered some sort of head trauma during birth or as a very young puppy. Regardless, there is nothing that can be done to restore her sight.

I can't tell you how many times I read this ad over and over again. Just out of curiosity, I emailed the link to my husband Paul with the title
Why did I have to see this?
A reply came back immeiately, let's go!!

Now, "let's go" meant a 2000 kilometer road trip from Vancouver Island, British Columbia to Calgary, Alberta. We only had three days to complete the journey. Truck and camper all loaded and all ready to roll. Myself, Paul and the most important passenger, Ruby.

Ruby? Let me introduce Ruby to you. She is also a Great Pyrenees, we raised her from the age of 8 weeks, she is now 1 and 1/2 years old and I couldn't think of a more appropriate guardian, mentor, canine companion for our new puppy. If there ever was a description for a family pet, I would have to say Ruby is the most loving, kind, gentle and compassionate dog we have ever had the pleasure of calling our own.

The moment arrived, Paul, Val, Ruby, please meet (whom we lovingly now call Annie) Leanne. Through tears of joy, and tears of sadness Annie was officially our newest addition to the family. Her foster parents Ron and Diane Steppacher taught us everything we needed to know, her likes, dislikes, the words to use, what foods she eats and what habits she had developed. I couldn't help thinking how they must be feeling after handing her over. We have kept in touch with the Steppachers, via email, text messages, and phone calls.

Fast forward to our arrival home and the introduction of Annie's new digs.
Large home in the country, fenced property, landscaped yard, a couple of old cats, a few chickens and loads of room to run and play. Annie has found Pyradise. She is scared when we carry her to the grass, Ruby is barking wildly at the new addition, Paul and I have no idea what we have got ourselves into as Annie starts spinning out of control. She has no idea of where she is, why she is there, or how she got to this place from the other place! It must have been terrifying for her. Round and round small circles, big circles, throwing herself backwards, falling over , barking uncontrollably. We watch this wild like behaviour with our eyes wide open. Paul and I discover very early on that we are the blind ones, Annie is home.

So yes, love is blind.


  1. As my blind "puppy" is about to turn 8 years old I just have a sliver of advice. Enjoy everything. Every discovery, every triumph, every blunder, bobble and turn. It all goes by so so fast.

    1. Thank you Jills, I'm so glad to hear from another blind puppy parent. Great advise. I need to post that on my kitchen wall for those days that get all twisted around... and there have been a few.