It has been a whirl-wind of a month around our house, resulting in not a lot getting done, including entries in the blog! A month ago, we had to say goodbye to our beautiful Ellie, which kept us from accomplishing much in that first week other than going to work and then coming home and spending time with Basil. We were doting on Basil so much because we were worried that she would become depressed without her best friend by her side. And she did certainly grieve, like we have been.

When we got Basil, we always knew from that point on, that we would be a 2 dog household. The change we saw in Ellie when we got Basil was amazing. Having a companion while we were away, meant she was never alone and always had someone to play with. We want to make sure that all of our dogs have that same life. Basil has never known the house without another dog in it, so it was likely very odd for her that first week after Ellie left. Because of our worry, we started to talk about when would be the right time to get another dog so that Basil wouldn’t be alone. We are still so sad about Ellie that the thought of another dog was still hard to comprehend.

It feels that the Universe…and maybe Ellie…had some other plans for us. The day that we decided to start keeping an eye out for a new dog, we found her. We thought it would be a few months, and would hopefully get a dog around Christmas or in the new year. Nope, it was going to be much sooner than that. We found a bluetick cross treeing walker coonhound that was from the same area as Basil…and she was ready to go home already. We decided to check her out, and take Basil out to meet her.

She was the last female of the litter and was just a cutie. Unfortunately, all her brothers and dad were also out and about and it was too much for Basil to get out of the truck to meet her, so she observed from the safety of the truck. Both the parents were there as well, so we were able to meet both of them and spend a little time with the remainder of the litter. It felt right, and she was just a sweetheart. We decided to take the leap, and bring her home.

Meet Berkley.

Basil was unsure at first, but is now completely smitten…most of the time. We adore her and are so happy that she came into our lives. She has made grieving Ellie a little easier because now we don’t worry as much about Basil.

Berkley is quite the character. When we first got her, she looked like she had no neck but rather a head on stalky shoulders. She looks up at you with her hound dog eyes rather than tilting her head up. As she has started sprouting, her neck has caught up with the rest of her body.

She is sweet and loves her cuddles, especially with Basil. She doesn’t know the meaning of personal space, which Basil sometimes tries to teach her, but most of the time is just happy to let Berkley climb on her or sleep on top of her. She grumbles and groans when first cuddling and trying to find that perfect position for optimum comfort. As she grows, it will be interesting to see how the cuddles go. We already have one 65 lb dog that prefers to be on top of you in some way, and now it is looking like we will have a second one that is the same.

As with all puppies, she can be a little monster. She pushes her luck with Basil regularly, stealing bones and toys from Basil, wrestling and just overall chaos. Basil is extremely patient, but also makes sure to teach her when she bites to hard or when she wants to be left alone. The two play together constantly, which is exactly what we wanted for Basil. Within hours of getting Berkley, Basil started playing with toys again, something she hadn’t done since Ellie got sick. It helped our hearts seeing her play.

Like most hounds, Berkley sleeps as hard as she plays, regularly snoozing. I have a camera setup in the rec room where they spend their days, and for the most part the two just snooze the day away, cuddled up on the love seat. The odd times she is awake, there are lots of toys to play with, though Berkley always seems to find something that she shouldn’t have. The first day, I didn’t do a good enough check of the room before I left and when I checked the camera, found that she had made a chew-toy of the remote. I quickly rushed home to get it before she could get to the batteries. Luckily her bite is not strong and her teeth are still tiny, so very little damage was done. She also finally stopped destroying the pee mat and is now using it instead.

She already has fantastic recall. I believe that is due to where she came from. The farm didn’t have a fenced yard, so the puppies were constantly being called and as a group moved around. She comes very quickly when called. She also has great housetraining. I don’t think this is due to where she came from, as I am pretty sure they were not kept in the house. She has had very few accidents in the house, and from day one of getting her, sleeps through the night without needing to use the washroom. When we got Basil, I was up at least twice a night for the first few months.

She goes on walks well, though she doesn’t like the sound of traffic, and is a little scared of the dark. She hates a regular collar, so we are using a harness for now, which is what I had for Basil until she got too big and would pull me off my feet. Because of that great recall with Berkley, for the most part, she just runs by your legs or in circles around your legs. She can get excited and start pulling though, which we are trying to nip in the bud early.

We are going to introduce her to cross-country skiing this winter to help her burn some energy. She is so little right now that she can get cold quite easily, so we bought her a little jacket. She is quickly outgrowing it, so we will see how the winter goes. Eventually, she will grow into Ellie’s jacket, which will hopefully help see her through this first winter. Basil generally doesn’t need a jacket, but likes it on the colder days because she hates any sort of cold.

During the summer she will get out fishing with Kurt right away to teach her proper etiquette while she is still young. It is a battle with Basil because she loves the taste of fish so much that she loses her mind and control of her hound-dog-howl when she knows we have a fish on the line. We are hoping if we get Berkley in the boat early, then she will learn fast how to behave. Poor Basil was so car-sick when she was a puppy that we didn’t get her out fishing regularly until she was 2 and now she’s a menace. Kurt would love another fishing buddy for when I can’t go with him. It’s actually part of why her name is Berkley (other than us actually liking the name). It is the name of one of our favourite fishing rods.

It will be an interesting spring teaching her about the garden and where she is allowed to be and not allowed to be. We feel like she may also be a digger, which could pose problems, but fixable with some training.

While we still miss our Ellie, Berkley has brought some excitement and love into the house.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Adorable, beautiful, all the above. Congrats on your new addition.


    1. JP says:

      Thank you! She is wonderful.

      Liked by 1 person

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