Acquired: Breeder (hobby breeder)
Training: I haven't learned care / training techniques
Posted March 16, 2015
Gingersnap Von Vaddlehausen was named by my dad, Gingersnap for her ginger red coat, and Von Vaddlehausen for her German heritage and her waddling gait. Ginger came in a white box with tiny dachshunds wearing red and green bows on the wrapping paper. The box had a little square cutout on one side, and as I sat down in front of the box with my brother and sister, I saw a tiny black nose sniffing us through the cutout. We squealed at the same time, and tore the paper off the box...and pulled out the cutest puppy EVER. I fell in love with Ginger, holding her tiny, wriggling, hotdog-shaped body in my arms, and feeling her soft, velvety fur. Our older dog, Sooty, was a mixed breed black and white sweetheart. She was gentle and cuddly, and had joined our family when I was 4 years old. She was getting old, had some arthritis in her hips from getting rolled over by a car when she was young. She never complained, but sometimes would have to lay down to rest, and my parents knew she wouldn't be with us forever. So, they decided that another dog would help soften the blow of losing her when her time came. Enter Ginger...a bundle of energy, low to the ground, ears almost touching the floor, tail in constant motion! Ginger loved everyone in the family, including Sooty, and Sooty welcomed her with wagging tail, but sometimes couldn't keep up with Ginger's antics. She would lay down, and Ginger would be all over her, and we'd laugh watching them.
Ginger's bad habits included rolling in dead fish at the lake's edge. This was, in my opinion, her worst habit. She considered dead fish a heavenly perfume, and took every opportunity to find one and roll it all over her fur. I was often elected to give her a bath after such a romp, and she stunk horribly! Her other bad habits were getting into the trash under the kitchen sink (waking us all one night thinking burglars had invaded), and stealing our cookies right out of our hands. Ginger would take a running start, and then leap to reach our hands as we held a cookie, and then continue her run, cookie firmly in her mouth, until she could reach a safe place to eat it. She tried the same trick with my uncle, stealing his steak dinner. He was able to get it out of her mouth, then put it back on the grill, sat down and ate it. We all laughed watching him!
Ginger became a mother when she was 2 years old. She had seven puppies, ranging in color from ginger, like her, to blond (Sir Tomothy Tommyrot- another name from Dad), and a black and tan (Lady, who went to my grandparents). We kept Tommy, and he and Ginger were partners in many crimes, racing away with cookies, ears flapping in the breeze. We were often with my grandparents at the lake, and Ginger, Tommy and Lady would run through the woods having a wonderful time with all the smells and sights in nature. At night, Ginger and Tommy would jump into my bed, curl up around my legs, and keep me warm while we all slept. I loved having them around.
Once, my dad was working in the garage, and a groundhog came into the garage. He said that Ginger and Tommy came racing in, each grabbed an end of that groundhog (who are vicious fighters when cornered), and they pulled him apart. They were protecting my dad, but that was the first sign of them killing an animal that I had ever heard about. And they were a tag team to be reckoned with!
Ginger was with us until I was 18 years old, and I was away in college when I got the news that she had run into our quiet little road and been hit by a car in front of our house, then one month later, Tommy, who had been so sad without his mother/friend, ran out and was hit in the exact same spot. I was heartbroken to lose them, and I guess it was the end of a stage in my life, but I will never forget their funny ways and loving hearts.