Sunday, September 30, 2012
Gosh. I wonder if we have any girls with special stories that need a home? Who could we possible introduce them to? While we're racking our brain thinking up possible matches, we thought you'd enjoy this photo of Olive having a little get-to-know you moment with Larry and Zoo.
Saturday, September 29, 2012
Friday, September 28, 2012
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Saturday, September 22, 2012
Boom will be living with Joe and Megan -- and best of ALL -- their two kids. She was destined to be with kids (thank for helping us know that, Kiki!) and it certainly showed when she met this family at our Open House last weekend. We couldn't be happier.
Enjoy your new life, Jibboom. It was a joy and a pleasure to spend Summer '12 with you.
For old time sake, here's a replay of her first play session with Gurdy...
Miss Diva is set to go home today - a real live home. I didn't realize how much I'd miss her 'til Tim told me the home visit was completed and she was good to go. This little vixen really got under my skin when she first came to us, then with time she got right into my heart.
She was red hot reactive and horribly socialized to dogs when we first met her -- it was the key reason we took her in. While we were evaluating her at her shelter back in May, as luck would have it, she showed her worst side right when the shelter director walked into the room. We saw it in her face - Diva had just screamed her way onto the short list the next time they needed space. Tim and I looked at each other and sighed -- we had no choice but to take her.
When she came to the barn she was horrible with her mentor Elliot - stabbing at his face like an anti-social speed freak. He held steady. Play sessions were short and heavily monitored and every bit of training included rile/recovery work. We managed, shaped, scolded and praised - day and after day. Progress was slow. One day Elliot finally had enough and took her by the head and shook her, giving her a permanent scar. She screamed bloody murder. It was a turning point - "Ah ha! Dogs get mad when I do stupid stuff." Since then, she's started using her brain when she plays and has built smooth and solid relationships with all of the boys and most of the girls. She's now the 'dependable one' - she listens closely when we give her direction. She's a flirt pole show off. She calls right out of exciting play and backs off when dogs tell her to back off. She earned a roommate and has been kenneled with Farnam - good practice for her new dog brother who she'll be sharing her new home with.
What a difference a summer makes.
Goodbye little girl. I knew I'd be happy when you finally found your family, but I never knew how choked up I'd be.
Wednesday, September 19, 2012
Here he is taking a quick play break AND getting in a quick chin scratch - you can practically see the twinkle in his eyes.
And before bed-time, Jimmy picked a couple of toys to keep him company. He chewed on that blue bone toy with the enthusiasm of a young pup then flopped exhausted to wait for the lights to go out.
So am I imagining it? Could it be true? That like a tender flower, our Jimmy is starting to bloom?
We know for a fact that Lisa's got a good eye for seeing to the core of a stressed dog's funk, because Olive was a mess of PTSD-like behaviors back then. But of course Lisa saw the real Olive and decided to try and convince anyone who would listen that she was still alive, just slightly buried underneath that stress.
Olive adores Lisa - as you would guess. Even back in the shelter, when she couldn't muster the courage to lift her head or kiss her on the check or accept her toys, she loved her.
So much has changed. The girls had a reunion this past weekend that included a pajama party in the guest cabin and major zoomies in the yard. Fun! Lisa remarked on how bold and pushy Olive is now and how smoothly she navigates the drills at training class. And Olive was more than happy to show off her stuff.
Thatta girl Olive!
Tuesday, September 18, 2012
"Hmm. I smell Gurdy and Willy and Astro and Diva and Boom-Boom and Oscar and Elliot and Catfish and Tallulah ...."
Me: "You darn dogs! You gotta stop pissing in the garden!" *shaking fist in air*
Olive: "Okay." Sez while quickly letting out a wee spray for the others to enjoy.
Me: "TIM! We need a fire hydrant back here ... Or ... a ROCK!"
Tim: "Okay. Let's go get us a rock."
It's a lot like looking for the very best pumpkin at the pumpkin farm. Every rock looks exactly like its neighbor until you start getting to know them as individuals. Then, they show you so many different personalities that it gets overwhelming.
Round gray rocks, colorful chiseled rocks, humble rocks, statuesque rocks. How do you choose?
We spent almost half an afternoon getting to know the homeless rocks, imagining as best we could how each one would fit in. The workers left us to ourselves -- there was no meet-your-matching going on in this place.
"Hmm. This one is too pointy. And this one is too round."
"Lookit - This one has a great place to lean and put a coffee cup!"
Monday, September 17, 2012
So here's the gig and - gosh - we sure hope you can come.
I'm a Good Dog.
We'll have a hoedown style BBQ, drinks, live music and a caller for some serious barn dancing, and a pack of the canine celebs ready to shake your paw - all at our beloved Rescue Barn in the Oakland Hills.
Meet Jonny Justice, Teddles, Uba, Audie, Zippy and Amazing Grace and congratulate them yourself on five years of being at home, doin' good PR deeds for pit bulls everywhere since leaving VA. Of course the barn dogs will be there too.
The only hanging question you should have is: WHAT WILL YOU WEAR?
To buy tickets: Hoedown!
Sunday, September 16, 2012
Three weeks ago, her damaged front leg had to be removed when vets determined it could not be repaired. Two weeks ago, we 'met' her new home - a young family in Oregon who had room for a three-legged whipper snapper. And yesterday, we all said good-bye to our littlest patient.
Just like the leg. Easy come, easy go.
Saturday, September 15, 2012
Thursday, September 13, 2012
Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Tuesday, September 11, 2012
Diva "Psssst Willy! Your little brindle girlfriend has left you for another guy. Waddaya think of that? Pretty rotten, huh? So ... Doya wanna go steady then?"
Willy, "Uh. You're cute, so Okay."
(Don't tell Willy, but we caught Diva whispering the same to Astro, Farnam and Elliot. This belle of the ball has a pack of boyfriends all to her little self right now. Suh-weet!")
Monday, September 10, 2012
The hope is to get this little miss on track with being a CGC star and -- maaaaybe -- even a therapy star like Big Sal. Her deafness affords her a devil-may-care attitude around even the loudest distractions, and her sunny outlook is perfect for charming every human she meets -- So why not? We'll just have to see if she can learn how to sit her happy butt still in exciting places. :-)
We will miss her something fierce around here! No more wee silly nugget circling our ankles and demanding a constant party in her honor. Sob! Fare-thee-well Gurdy. Thanks so much Jackie and Greg and Sal for giving her your best.
Astro got a spring pole. Farnam got a nice walk to strengthen his wobbly legs and some training. Diva got to be everybody's play session party girl.
Yomai did her first (nearly) solo shift and organized the chaos like a pro - an important step towards being a full fledged team member.
After ten days of decompression time, Jilly (once named Magellan) had her first full contact intros with Uba and Lulu. That ten days made all the difference and our once overly-defensive girl felt right at home with her new dog friends.
Shown with Uba, who is smooching barn crew trainee DeAnna.
Sunday, September 9, 2012
BAD RAP open house.
Friday, September 7, 2012
He came from the Spindletop case so lord knows how long he's been waiting to get started with his life, but he's a senior so it could've been ... Years? There's no telling what he saw or how he was housed or if he had any friends or what he experienced during that time. The owner of the now defunct Texas rescue knows, but she's not talking. So we're left to ponder what the dogs decide to confess to us.
Right now, Jimmy's not telling us much of anything, except that he likes his food and his dog bed and sniffing the ground and going for walks. People don't matter too terribly much. We're aren't scary, we aren't bad -- We just aren't.
Is he waiting for someone? Is he senile? Is he enjoying himself or just biding his time?
While everyone else is tossing toys and looking for fun, Jimmy just stares out a lot. When it's his turn for exercise, he kicks up his heels and cavorts around the yard momentarily like one happy puppy. When he starts pacing in Lost Man circles, we put him back ...
Then ... it's back to staring out at the world from his vantage point. I figure he must've done the statue act so much in Texas that he's come to believe that's what he is.
Statue Man - staring out. For years.
He performs obedience like a trick pony -- Everything perfect. "Here's my paw. Here's my down. Here's how I can jump on the pause table. Here's how I wait for my food and look into your face until you say 'Okay.'"
Then .. he's back to being all alone in his little head. Never a tail wag or sparkle of recognition.
Here's where I worry: Who will want our Jimmy?
Will he find someone to love him even if he doesn't slobber 'Hellos' when they come home from work?
Will they understand that he's just a little bit different?
I know I shouldn't worry, but it's what I'm good at.