Care for 2 Rambunctious Beach Loving Rescues in Brazilian Fishing Village
I facilitate workshops around the world with the Alternatives to Violence Project (AVP). We go into prisons, schools and communities in over 40 countries. I am from the U.S. but I have permanent residence in Brasil and speak both Portuguese and Spanish fluently. I spend about 6 months a year away from my home - too much to have dogs, but they keep coming to me and I have a hard time saying "no"... I had 3 beautiful girls who were easy to look after: 2 went to stay with friends when I was gone and the 3rd (truly a "wild" dog who - unbeknownst to me - had lived for years in the scrub bush down the beach before deciding to adopt the 3 of us by climbing over the wall and immediately climbing back every time I put her back out) could stay home alone and a neighbor would feed her.
Sadly, they have all continued on their journeys and I now have 2 boisterous boys who are too 'high- maintenance' for people to take into their homes: they MUST have long walks/runs on the beach (no leash laws where I live...yet) to release all their energy (or they get bored and dog people know what can happen when very intelligent dogs - which mine are - get bored...) The neighbor who walks and feeds them when I travel is moving to another state very soon so I need one or two true dog lovers with experience to stay with them twice a year when I leave for about 3 months. My next trip will probably be from sometime in late September/early October to either mid-Dec or early January - I won't know the exact dates until late in the summer....
At the moment, I am in Brasil and I should have put this ad up sooner but I thought a local person was going to be able to watch them. That has not worked out so I am putting this out now, just over a month before I leave - the dates may change by a few days at either end. I prefer to communicate with potential sitters (or anyone, for that matter) by talking rather than typing so it would be nice if you have Skype. Though I don't want to scare anyone away - they are not that incorrigible - this sit would be best for someone/s with experience with intelligent, head strong dogs.
I only found two photos of my house (both during recent renovations - please excuse the messy veranda) in my computer and since my camera was stolen last week I can't take photos (I do not have a Smartphone). The photos of my boys are over a year old so Tigger is bigger now (almost 18 kilos). Because they are rescues I don't know their exact ages but I know Tigger, who I found beside the highway as a puppy, will turn 2 sometime in May or June. Anubis, who weighs about 17.5 kilos will turn 3 probably around the same time. + More info
Our Home & Location
We live in the neighborhood of Praia do Grauca (that is a 'c' cedilla, pronounced like s) less than a kilometer from Barra de Caravelas in the State of Bahia. There are less than 60 houses and many are rented by marine biologists from southern Brasil who work with the various environmental NGO's. Caravelas is the entryway to Abrolhos National Marine Park; there are endangered mangroves nearby and from June to November the humpback whales from the South Atlantic come up here to have their babies. In the neighborhood there is one very nice bungalow style hotel, one small simple pousada (hotel), a restaurant and several beach kiosks that sell fresh seafood and drinks.
Less than a kilometer away along the beach is the village of Barra with a supermarket, a bakery, a butcher, a couple of clothing shops and bike/motorcycle repair shops, several modest bar/restaurants (and a pizzaria) and a few churches. There is hourly bus service into Caravelas about 10 kms away through rural tropical countryside. The nearest large city is Teixeira de Freitas. Grauca is very idyllic and picturesque - colorful wood fishing boats anchored offshore, mini traffic "jams" caused by horses or cows or donkeys in the road, a beautiful beach with large, shady amendoeira trees and coconut palms. It is a dying way of life and some greedy guys have recently started subdivisions to sell off small lots so I don't know how long it will last...sigh......
The reason it has lasted this long is that it is at the mouth of a river and though the water is warm, calm and clean, it is not clear and, during new and full moon low tides, mud is uncovered along the shore line - luckily the dogs prefer the sand. You can walk along the beach (it goes on for over 15 kms before reaching the next town) past all the coconut farms and find clearer water; and a couple of times a month when the moon/tides and wind are aligned it turns a nice clear green/blue right near where we live.
If you know what capoeira is and have any desire to watch or learn, this (Bahia) is where it started and it is very popular here. Personally, I prefer the intermittent semi-weekly afro-brasilian dance classes. Although anyone could enjoy their time here, I imagine an artist, musician or writer could find inspiration with few distractions - except when there is a street party. It is very isolated and there is only one flight a day in and out of Teixeira. More common is a flight to/from Sao Paulo or Rio to Vitoria or Porto Seguro and then a long bus, taxi or rented car ride...or skip the flight and take a 14-hour bus ride from Rio.
As for my house, it has 2 bedrooms, 2 recently remodeled bathrooms, a living room and a large open kitchen/dining area with cathedral ceilings and a reasonably sized front yard - all sand. There is a large L-shaped covered veranda (with hammocks) and a star deck I added at roof level in the back to watch the night sky (there is a large undeveloped area behind my house so there is little light pollution). I just recently had satellite internet installed due to so many TH sitters saying they need it. I would expect the sitter to pay the bill while sitting. I would also like you to pay for electric and water - both very cheap, e.g. less than $8/month for water.
TH says to be detailed, but this is getting very long. If you are seriously interested let me know and I will call you and give you more information. + More info
Responsibilities & Pets
Both Anubis and Tigger are very affectionate and LOVE to wrestle and play, preferably on the beach which is a 4-5 minute walk. They love to chase seagulls, herons and vultures and to swim (the beach waves where we live are more like a lake than an ocean). Anubis digs DEEP for sand crabs, throws them up on the beach and then they both "play" with them (though I don't imagine it is much fun for the crabs who often either freeze or foolishly run back and forth along the beach instead of into the ocean!).
They love each other and play - sometimes quite roughly - all day long with rests in between and though I think Anubis Might be o.k. without Tigger, Tigger ADORES Anubis and doesn't like to be separated from him, though for Anubis' sanity I sometimes do separate them for a few hours. As I mentioned they need lots of exercise and must be taken to the beach for at least an hour twice a day - though often they would love a little more (early morning and late afternoon are best due to the heat). One of the 2 walks could be 45 mins or so once or twice a week and on a leash along the road if you get tired of beach walking....
I read (and believe it is true) that a pure dry dog food diet is not healthy (there is an enlightening TED talk about that) so I mix in veggies (which I must grate because they don't like them) and meat for both of their meals (which they get after their walks). They are very good about sitting before they receive their bowls and I trained them not to be bothered AT ALL if their bowls are touched or moved while they eat.
They are very affectionate with people they know and great with children. Tigger, for some reason, started threatening people (mostly men) who come in the yard and must sometimes be restrained (though other times he just needs to sniff and receive a pat and he is fine), but Anubis is o.k. if Tigger is put in the house or restrained. Sometime after my last girl dog died in March 2017 they, especially Tigger, also became aggressive with other dogs. I don't know if she was a calming influence or what, but I was very disappointed and am still working on changing him back to his always friendly self. Again, Anubis, by himself, is o.k. and just sniffs and/or tries to make friends, but when he is with Tigger, despite being older he follows his lead.
They are both VERY intelligent and I would love to be able to teach them to play frisbee. I wish those obstacle course training/dock diving events that they have in the U.S. and Europe were available where we live as I am sure they would love it....They can be left alone all day (though not every day) after their morning walk if you would like to go into Caravelas (by bus or bike) or visit other beaches (with lovely clear water) in nearby towns by bus.
There are a few garden plants that will need to be watered and a few weeds to pull. + More info
September 2018 | Mark