2:55 PM, Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012:
Take a big breath, this is tough...
So the puppies took to Vienna right away when we brought her home yesterday, both girl dogs are extremely motherly. When she cries, they whimper and want to help. Always concerned, sniffing and licking her when the opportunity arises. They do however understand that WE take care of her and when we tell them (even softly) "no", they back off and watch from afar as we soothe the baby. Couldn't ask for better pets in this situation. Very sweet.
Finally put them to sleep in their house as we put Vienna down for a bit and when it was time for a feeding they heard her cry and started whimpering outside. I wasn't letting them in even though they'd be good around the baby because I wanted to continue the pattern we started that they stay in their house at night. But boy were they clawing at their door, the back door, and every part of the house they could get to trying to get to the crying baby.
This was the start of unfortunately the 2nd "90 minute +" session of getting the baby to latch. For whatever reason (had several visits with lactation consultants) she's tough to latch. She's a "hand sucker" as they like to call her and prefers her hand/fingers/palm to anything. We are trying desperately to avoid pumping/bottle - but the baby is on the line weight-wise of losing too much (all babies lose some after birth) and not gaining back fast enough. Talya is totally "engorged" and we know the baby, even when it does latch, isn't getting enough. So it's a high pressure situation. After trying from 1:38 to 3:15 this morning, we finally had to succumb because the baby was now only sleeping because she had been fighting and screaming for 2 hours, not because she was well fed and satisfied. I started boiling the bottles while Talya tried to keep the baby soothed and pump at the same time. And then there's a bang on the window. Soon followed by an even louder bang on the door. We're running on fumes as it is (funny what taking 2 hours per feeding does to you when the baby has to feed every 2-3 hours - lol). I go out back and see the gate is open. I close it and look out front and there's a van and a light. Whew.
I run up half naked but ready for whatever awaits... and it's animal control. With a rope and ready to take the dogs. Big dude. He tells me they attacked a cat and wanted identification. I say OK, go back inside and realize that we hadn't unpacked all the bags from the hospital earlier wherein my wallet resides. The water is still boiling, the baby is still crying and now the dogs are locked inside the house going absolutely ape-shit because of the guy in the front bangin' on the door. After about 5 minutes of no luck I go out front and tell the guy the situation and asked him to repeat everything he said to me because I remember none of it. He does, Talya finds the wallet and I give it to him. He proceeds to write up a citation at his truck and I sit on the sidewalk barely awake.
As he's talking me through everything, I finally process what had happened. There was a stray cat in the street and the puppies went after it. That cat apparently had an owner, though it's an outdoor cat and they called animal control after the attack. He said they were taking the cat to the vet and he doesn't know if it would make it, it was "a mess". He asked me some more questions and asked if I wanted to give my information to the cat owners and I said "of course" and gave that to him. He said while I was processing everything that they can subpoena that information if they want it anyway - and at least this shows you are acting in good faith. He could not however tell me who the neighbors were so I guess I have to wait for the phone call. He was very nice, and could have taken my dogs, could have done all sorts of stuff that he didn't do. The scary part however is...
...if that cat dies, I believe they're in their right to not only sue me, but to have my animals put down. I guess. I'm still finding it incredibly hard to believe that you can let your pets out and then sue if they get hurt. If my cat got out and was mauled by a dog, I certainly wouldn't blame the dog owners - even if their dog was roamin' free. Once you let them out? Kinda game-off in my book. So now we await the call. I'm concerned however we're just gonna get a notice in the mail from a lawyer or something else from the city. All such a blur. And so heartbreaking knowing the dogs were trying to get to the baby. They were freaked out because the baby was crying and none of their doors worked, so they went through the gate. (heart hurts) They saw a cat and, well, there you go. They are still dogs after all.
So once all that was done I had to clean up CeBe who had cat shit, dirt and maybe blood on her? Couldn't tell, but there's no doubt there was an altercation. LeeLoo was spotless. Get the baby feeding with Talya (which she finally did - looked like she had never eaten in her whole life she was so happy) and only now am realizing how tragic this may be. So we just wait. I'm drilling a hole in the gate latch to put a chain around it today and honestly? Am just more concerned about that baby eating. I love my dogs but if they have to be put down, that's my fault for not having a gate that was chained. It's just heartbreaking that it was Vienna's cries that made them try and get to the front of the house. They're so protective already of her and it's like she has 4 guardians. Jesus this is heartbreaking.
Chest hurts. What a whirlwind. Thought I'd post the video of us taking her home and meeting the pups. Which depending on the outcome of this story may be the saddest video I've ever put together.
Jesus, life really is a balance. Here's hopin' we extend our fairy tale a little longer before tragedy strikes.