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Friday, October 18, 2019

Feature Friday - Scarlett the Potcake (Dadli Dog)

Happy weekend, everyone!

I thought I might introduce my dogs, one each week. This week I'd like you to meet little Miss Scarlett.

Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua

Scarlett was born in Parham, Antigua - one of seven puppies. She and her siblings were brought to the PAAWS Antigua shelter at about 8 weeks old. Unfortunately, four of the puppies didn't survive. Scarlett was named Unity by the staff and lived in the puppy kennel with her two sisters, Uzzy and Unique.

Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua

Uzzy and Unique were adopted fairly quickly, but Unity stayed at the shelter for two long years.

Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua

A "potcake dog" is a mixed-breed dog from the Caribbean islands. They truly are mutts, with no two dogs being the same - though the most common ones are tan with long noses and slightly darker muzzles. They get their name from the food they were traditionally fed - the congealed peas and rice mixture left over in the bottom of the cooking pot. In Antigua they're also called Dadli dogs, after the original name of the island.

Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua

We were in Antigua on vacation in 2017 and stopped by the shelter to help out. The staff has a lot to do and don't always have time to walk and socialize the dogs every day. They appreciate when visitors come by to help them out. They brought us dogs at a time and we walked them around the block, stopping under a shady tree to take pictures each time. We walked 14 dogs that day!

Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua

Our oldest dog, Chloe, is getting too old to roughhouse and we wanted to add another dog to our pack who would give our younger dog, Sasha, someone to run around with. We had taken a liking to Scarlett so we contacted the shelter to see if she was still available for adoption. And she was!

Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua

There were a few months of back and forth emails as we tried to figure out how to get her to Canada. Also, the shelter asked if we would be interested in adopting Scarlett's kennel-mate, Zac, as they had spent most of their lives together and had bonded. We had walked Zac with Scarlett that day and thought he was pretty cute, so why not?

It ended up being about half the price to accompany a dog on the plane than to send them on their own, so we decided to fly to Antigua, spend the week on vacation, and then fly the dogs back.

Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua

Once we were back, we set up the office as the new dogs' room. We cleared out almost everything and added in their travel kennels and dog beds. We even built a gate in the doorway so that they were secured but could still see out.

Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua

This room has become Scarlett's sanctuary. Even now that they have the run of the house, she still spends a large amount of time there, sleeping, or just watching the world go by.

Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua

It turned out that Scarlett is extremely timid - loud noises and quick movements will send her running. We didn't know this when we met her as she's very agreeable when she's on a leash. So she didn't end up becoming Sasha's playmate (Zac filled that spot). But even so, she and Sasha have become best friends. Sasha knows when it's time to play and when it's time to be quiet. She and Scarlett spend quality time together every day, snoozing on the bed or on the couch.

Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua
Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua

We've learned that, as introverted as she is, Scarlett loves (LOVES!) to be outside and to go for car rides. When she sees her leash come out she starts bouncing around and her tail wags in frantic circles. She's such a serious dog that I adore it when she just can't contain her happiness.

Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua
Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua

We've been able to draw her out of her shell over the last 18 months - she spends more time with us hanging out watching TV, she gets very excited when we get home, and she's especially bouncy first thing in the morning. As soon as Tom wakes up she starts jumping all over him looking for hugs and ear rubs.

Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua

Being a Caribbean dog, she isn't thrilled with our Canadian winters so she has learned all about sweaters and coats. And of course she has to show off that she's Canadian now!

Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua
Scarlett potcake dadli dog PAAWS Antigua


**If you would like to support PAAWS Antigua or would like to know more about potcakes in general, please click on one of these links:

PAAWS Antigua

Eastern Ontario Potcake Rescue

Potcake Place (Turks & Caicos)

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