- Gender: Female
- Age: 14 yrs
- Size: 40 lbs
- Color: Orange
- Cats: No
- Dogs: Yes
- Kids: Yes
- Traits: Claudette is a sweet cuddly Young at Heart setter
Claudette has been with ACES since July of 2009. She is spunky enough that it's easy to forget she's about 14 years old now. Overall, Claudette is a happy, loving dog. Her front teeth had to be removed, and her back teeth aren't so good. She has a couple bare spots (from a flea allergy) where the hair will never grow back, but her toothless grin and tail wags are as strong as ever. She may never win a beauty contest but Claudette has grown into a lovely senior citizen.
Claudette officially retired in January 2013, becoming an ACES Safe Haven Setter. She is happy to spend her retirement years in a comfortable ACES foster home. Claudette loves to ride in the car but has become somewhat of a home body. She likes her car rides to end up back at home. Whether going to the vet or visiting friends, Claudette doesn't want to get out of the car until she can see that she's back home again in her own garage. But show Claudette a car, any car, and she's ready for a ride. She's even been known to jump into the trunk of a strange car in a parking lot while her foster mom was talking with the car owner.
Claudette is still active and enjoys her time in the yard. She especially likes to go out just after dark when the other dogs have come in. Then she can stalk critters without the younger dogs interrupting her quest. Claudette gets along with the other dogs in her foster home, but they know not to take advantage of her good nature. She'll put those annoying youngsters in their place in a flash.
Over the past year, there have been signs that Claudette is aging albeit gracefully. Dry dog food upsets her stomach, but she is thriving on a combination of canned food and home cooking. Claudette really felt the cold this winter and wore a sweatshirt or jacket all winter. Encouraged by her foster mom, she learned that cold winter nights are much warmer in a bed snuggling up with a human. So when it's cold, Claudette's the first one in bed at night. On warmer nights, she's content to sleep in her dog bed where her younger siblings are less likely to crowd her. Claudette's joints are good so she has no trouble jumping on the bed or into the car.
Claudette would just sit back and watch when she came to ACES in 2009. It took her almost a year to decide to come out of the bedroom and join the rest of the family. She didn't act afraid; she just didn't seem to know what to do. Since then, Claudette has learned not only to join the family, but she has also learned to dance. She has a special dance for when her foster mom comes home and another to ask for a treat. Sometimes Claudette dances for dinner, and she dances for squirrels and other critters. She dances for her favorite foster brother, and sometimes she dances with that toothless grin just because she's happy. Claudette's theme song is Lee Ann Womak's "I Hope You Dance." When Claudette had "the choice to sit it out or dance," she decided to dance.
Update 3/23/14: Claudette remains in good health, but is starting to show signs of her age. The extreme cold this winter has really taken a toll on her but she has her own warm fleecy coat and her foster mom covers her with warm blankets to ward off the chill. Her foster mom also encourages Claudette to cuddle on the bed overnight to stay warm. Claudette is a great cuddler.
Claudette started having frequent tummy upsets recently. Her foster mom changed food again and started giving Claudette more home-cooked meals. This has perked Claudette up considerably, and now she often dances for her meals like a puppy. Her favorite meal is chicken, sweet potatoes, and peas.
Although Claudette is not as active as she used to be, she joins the family more and more. She follows her foster mom around in the mornings before work, knowing she will get an extra treat. Claudette has her foster mom trained well. No one could resist Claudette's toothless grin and her "I'd like a treat please" dance. Claudette loves to snack. Potato chips and popcorn are her favorites. Claudette has learned how to get her foster mom to sneak her a few snacks even if there's not enough for everyone. Claudette knows that seniority has its privileges and she takes full advantage.
Setter Sidekick Laura and her ACES dogs Tucker and Gracie send lots of hugs and setter kisses to Claudette.
With love from me (Sandra Witten) and my two setters, Tiger and Annie
Jodi Jenkins & Angie Howard encourage all potential adopters to consider the special love that Young at Heart setters like Claudette offer. The love of senior setters is like no other.
Claudette dedicates one of her special "happy dances" to thank Pam Miller for her support of ACES Safe Haven Setters.