It hasn’t been too long since Mr. Franklin joined our home. He is already defying the odds.
They told us he’d never be able to walk up stairs. Truth be told, he doesn’t always walk. Sometimes, he takes them 2 at a time, in a jump.
They’d told us that we needed to be careful with his paws. He was skittish about them and got fearful. Now, he rather enjoys ‘holding hands’. It took a few days. Initially, he’d pull back. After showing him that we would never hurt his big, beautiful feet, he willing lets us pet them.
They told us multiple spots on his body would remain hairless due to injury and the depth to which the ticks had burrowed. As of today, he has regrown the hair over all but the 2 deepest wounds.
They told us his energy level would probably be low and that he may only go out two or three times daily. Well, he walks hourly to keep him moving and limber plus a walk to the mailbox everyday. The last 2 nights, he has broken into a full run with my son on his last potty of the night. Low energy? Yes, he naps, but he also can jump on beds and the couch.
They said he was too anxious to gain weight or sleep properly. He had been hesitant to eat at the rescue, barely eating what was in front of him and scarfing it down rapidly when he did. Now, he is eating the vet recommended 2-1/2 cups daily and sleeps straight through the night. His eating is slowing enough where we can see him chewing and he drinks more than enough water.
They said he’d had no training, was used to pottying where he pleased, that it would be hard to housebreak him. He’s had one accident in the house and it was technically my fault for losing track of time. We took him out hourly for the first 2 days and rewarded with a treat for every successful trip. He is a food motivated learner. It really took 2 days, no crate, to housebreak him.
I take no credit for any of his achievements. I have to put the credit where it’s due. The Lord was with us from the beginning and Franklin, himself, gets the rest of the credit. After having been through so much, all the abuse and neglect he endured, including the not-so-nice pick-up he got from Animal Control, all he wants to do is love and be loved. I can dig that feeling.
If any animal has a right to hold a grudge, it’s Franklin. But, he doesn’t. There’s no anger, no aggression, no bad attitude. He is so thankful for everything he gets. Every treat, every feeding, we get kisses beyond belief and nuzzles. He adores being called a ‘good boy’ and his tail will wag until he’s ready to take flight. Whoever gave up on him/abused him/threw him away like garbage, made an epic mistake. He is AMAZING.
We still have some hurdles. He has nightmares. It’s sad. He’ll curl up and fuss sometimes during sleep. He has no idea how to play. We’re working with a tennis ball and he is now to the point where he picks it up in his mouth then immediately drops it. Hey, it’s closer than we were a week ago. Until he’s ready, there’s a stuffed Lambchop and some chew toys waiting patiently. We’ll get there.