Wednesday, November 1, 1995

In the beginning ....

This story for us begins in 1995 but it started two years earlier. My daughter Terry, living on Long Island, had been given a pair of Rottweilers named Nikko and Felony. This would be the second home these two dogs would live in, not because they were a problem but because their previous owners loved them so much they cared enough to see they had someone to take them when they could no longer do so. Terry had four small children and these already adult Rottweilers adopted their new home and new family with great enthusiasm and filled it with love. One of the stories she told us was that Nikko would pull the two boys around the house while they sat on a blanket.

In 1995 Nikko and Felony produced a litter of puppies and my daughter asked me if I would like to have one. We drove back to Long Island and got to meet them all and brought our little girl back to Kentucky and named her Mocha and called her Mo for short.

We already had six cats living with us and Mo quickly became part of their clan. It was an interesting experience to see the interaction between them since the cats had never been close to a dog before and Mo had never seen a cat before.

Mo became quite attached to me and followed me everywhere but since I was working a full-time job she spent more time with my wife Jacqueline. Mo was a very smart girl and my wife spent hours training her to do some interesting work. Turns out that "work" was the key word that got Mo excited about doing what she was asked. Mo learned to do pick-ups and delivery, and anytime you dropped something on the floor Mo was ready to pick it up for you. I was in the 2nd floor bathroom getting ready for work one day and called to my wife that I needed a new tube of toothpaste. The next thing I knew Mo was climbing the stairs with the tube inside the cardboard box in her mouth and she looked so pleased making the delivery.

One day we took Mo with us and walked about a half-mile down to the local supermarket and my wife went inside to buy a bag of carrots. On the way home Mo carried the shopping bag in her mouth and more than one car slowed down to take a look.

Six months later .... 
In April of 1996, six months after Terry gave us Mo, she called to tell her mother that she had to move and needed to find a home for Nikko and Felony. Terry was actually in the process of packing boxes with clothes and stuff and transporting them to her new place. Nikko and Felony knew that something was going on and on several occasions Terry would come back to pick up more stuff only to find the two Rottweilers had unpacked the boxes. My wife decided to help and while I remained in Kentucky going to work, she decided to drive back to Long Island, 12-hours 800 miles by herself.  After spending a day helping Terry move she put the two Rottweilers in the back seat of her Ford Escort wagon and drove 12-hours back to Kentucky.
On the momentous day they arrived back home Mo went into her first heat. If you want to know what excitement is about think of the pandemonium of two adult Rottweilers, one an intact male, entering a new home with six cats and a female Rottweiler who just went into heat. Oh, by the way, did I mention that Nikko and Felony did not like cats? 

In the next few days all three Rottweilers made quick trips to the local Vet's office for minor surgery and that ended the mating problem one and for all.

The problem with the cats took a bit longer to deal with.

We made immediate decisions to keep everyone separated until they got used to each other. Dogs, in general, do not hate cats - its just that they are not not used to them. Living together in the same house allowed the two new Rotts to become familiar with the sight and smell of their small, furry neighbors. But I am getting a little bit ahead of myself. 

As soon as Nikko and Felony arrived I began searching the Internet for anyone that would be interested in adopting them. I soon discovered the existence of a nation-wide Rottweiler Rescue and began posting messages on their bulletin board. About 10-12 days after the arrival of Nikko and Felony I was getting inquiries from Alabama, California and Wisconsin. I had exchanged a few phone calls from a lady in Wisconsin and was in the planing stage of setting up a meeting somewhere in between when something strange and wonderful happened. I happened to look into the deep soulful eyes of Mo's mother, Felony and, I swear this is true, I felt something tug at my heart. It suddenly dawned upon me that what I was trying to do was a big mistake. I could never break up this family and give these two Rottweilers away.
The story of The Three Bears begins ... 
In 1996, about a year after we got our three Rottweilers, I created a web site that started to document our life Living With Rottweilers and it was somewhat popular because it showed the true nature of these magnificent beasts. The web site was moved from one ISP to another as time moved on but was accidentally deleted a few years ago. Then along came Google Blogger and the ease of recreating those moments was to good to pass up. As I begin again to write about this I am faced with only one problem. The blogs allow only a timeline from newest entry to old and I am literally beginning to tell this story looking in both directions. One way around this will be to make the entries as a Chapter in the story which can be viewed in the archives. As soon as I get caught up with the last 15 years I will continue the journey on a day to day basis.

Now back to my story …

For some unknown reason many Rottweiler owners like to name their Rotts Bear. Because of this I started calling our Rotts, The Three Bears and gave each of them the surname Bear. Nikko became Nikko Bear, Felony became Felony Bear and their daughter Mo became Mocha Bear. Less than a month after the arrival of Nikko and Felony the cats had lost their fear of the Rottweilers and the Rotts seemed to take the cats in stride as members of the family. I am not an expert on cats but I have read that in a clan of cats each member seems to take on a different task and Butch appeared to be the ambassador. Butch who had already made friends with Mo decided to become friends with our male Rottweiler, Nikko Bear.