Today is Percy’s second birthday. I can’t believe that he is only two! We sometimes forget
he is still so young because he doesn’t act like the traditional puppy, thanks in large part to his breed. He has his crazy moments like any other puppy, but he prefers to be by himself in the bedroom or staring out his window to check up on his neighborhood.
So in honor of my little weirdo turning 2, I though I would share the story of how we got our little guy!
Percy is my first pure bred dog. You don’t think that there can be anything different between a mutt and a pure bred, but you would be thinking wrong. He is a Shiba Inu, a relatively new breed of dog in the United States but an ancient dog in Japan (so ancient it is considered the first breed of domesticated dog in Japan). Shiba Inu roughly translates to brushwood dog or little brushwood dog and they were used as hunting dogs to flush out small prey from shrubs. The breed was introduced to the U.S. in the 1950’s and thanks to the internet has slowly grown in popularity, enter the Doge Meme. This breed of dog is very loosely labeled a dog. Their mannerisms are very similar to cats. They are more stand-offish and aloof, they prefer to be by themselves, and they clean themselves just like cats. There is also the “shiba scream”, a sound you will hear no other dog make and is literally a scream. They do it when they are unhappy or annoyed but they also do it when they are excited and happy. You never know when your Shiba will let out the blood-curdling noise. The first time Percy did it was a few nights after we got him, in the middle of the night. We think Opie was bothering him in his kennel so he screamed. It scared the shit out of both of us as we were dead asleep, I seriously almost peed myself.
Opie was two months out from his near death experience (I will write more about this in another post) and Tyler and I had been wanting another puppy for awhile. We began our search in October of 2014 and didn’t get Percy until March 2015. I had joined a bunch of dog groups of Facebook but hadn’t been checking them due to the Opie situation and we had certain breeds in mind, Jack Russell and Shiba Inu, but they rarely popped up. One day at work, someone finally posted about Shiba Inu puppies that were available. I immediately screenshotted it and sent it to Tyler.
People began flooding the post with questions about the puppies. They were four month old black Shiba Inu puppies. Shiba Inus come in 4 different colors, orange, black, white and tan, which is kind of a mixture of black and orange. We had only ever seen the orange and since I only have ever had unique dogs I fell for the black. They were born on an Amish farm in the middle of nowhere Indiana. The Amish farm immediately raised a flag and the post began to be bashed for being a puppy mill. I decided to privately message the poster, who was not the seller but a friend and asked for more pictures and information. I did not want a puppy mill dog and she sent me several pictures proving it was not a puppy mill and gave the owners glowing recommendations.
The next day I called and spoke to the seller and agreed to come out that Saturday to see the puppies. Tyler and I were stoked. I believe Percy was 400 dollars and even came with a certificate to be registered but we never did that. So we drove out to Amish country on a beautiful spring day and after breifly getting lost we found the farm. We pulled in and were greeted by a dog immediately. The kennels could easily be seen and were large and spacious. The family bred both Shiba Inu puppies and American Eskimo Puppies. Their were only three puppies left, all boys. We met the owner and he let us walk over to the kennel and watched as the fluffy balls bounced around with their mom. We could also see their dad a couple of kennels down.
All of the puppies were cute and each had different coloring. One was mostly black, one
had more white and orange markings, and Percy was right in the middle. The largest one was much more hyper than the other two and the smallest sort of stayed back but again Percy was right in the middle. He was excited to see people but still nervous. Tyler pointed to the biggest one but I pointed to Percy, so we of course got Percy.
The transaction was quick and in about 20 minutes we were driving home and I had a stinky puppy on my lap. He was really stinky when we got him which is why his nickname is Stinky. He also threw up in my car twice, once on my shoe, but I didn’t even care. I was happy to have a new puppy.
We talked about his name the whole way home and finally decided on Percy. Tyler will tell you he is named after Percy Harvin but I say he is named after Perseus. When we got home, he fell asleep with me on the couch for almost 2 hours. That was the last time we have cuddled for that long. He will lay with you but wants his space, so if you are at one end of the couch he is at the other. He loved being in his kennel, so we let him get comfortable with the apartment and us at his own pace. We soon realized he had a love for paper and fabric softener sheets. He loves to tear them up into the smallest pieces possible but he doesn’t eat them (unlike Opie who eats inappropriate things all the time). I lost two pairs of black flats to the chewing face but for the most part he was the best puppy.
Even though he is quirky, he has been the best addition to our little family. While I sometimes wish he was more cuddly and a little less quirky but overall he is perfect just the way he is.