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Old 09-11-2008, 07:35 PM
 
Location: Beautiful place in Virginia
2,658 posts, read 10,447,984 times
Reputation: 1278

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I was looking for a dog for the longest time, after researching each particular breed.

I initially went to one of the puppy stores in the area and saw some that looked so cute while others looked sickly.

Needing an indoor dog that was also hypoallergenic (since my daughter has reactive airways - at least in DC she did), I narrowed it down to a few breeds.

After asking many questions here, Petfinder was mentioned. So every night I searched (while also contacting breeder$ for a Coton de Tulear - realizing later that they run $1800 to 3k). I found a local rescue that had the picture of this very cute white dog standing almost at attention, and after reading the profile, I just fell in love with the idea of acquiring him. However, his foster mother was in Atlanta. I spoke to her for quite a while and decided he was 'better than new' (i.e. pet shop dog - since he already had shots, was crate trained and was going to be microchipped). Her mother was seriously ill so it took time to get him to Jacksonville.

When he arrived (I believe it was something like the 2 days prior to Halloween), he was a little 'longer' than I thought (based upon the books who report Bichons to be about 10-13 lbs). His beard was wet and I asked the lady from the rescue why. She said he had thrown up on the way here. I thought "Oh, great!"

He wanted to lick me but I had kept my distance since I didn't want doggy germs and his lunch on my face. I promptly wiped his face off and gave him his 1st bath after the lady from the rescue had left.

He took some time to potty train and to do tricks. However, he has integrated well (in about 8 months time of living with us). My parents moved in with us and my parents are not really pet people. However, now, it touches my heart that my mother talks to him, pets him, has him on her lap, and he communicates with her (in his non-barking manner). My dad who didn't like dogs, initially, has adjusted to Snowy also and says "I like him. He is a nice dog."

He has some funny quirks like not really barking, not wagging his tail, and taking 1 minute to sniff before deciding to pee or not to pee (that is the question).

He takes to brushing his hair, clipping nails, expressing anal glands, clipping his hair, pulling the hair out of the ears, and brushing teeth pretty well. He does not like to take a bath and will complain when I bring him into the laundry room and tries to stay close to the door.

Reading books,speaking to fellow pet lovers and asking advice from all of you has helped me tremendously.

At times, I search for another but they are certainly a lot of work to get adjusted. I tend to feel bad when we leave him for boarding when we go out of town.
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Old 09-11-2008, 07:42 PM
 
Location: Brooklyn, NY
12 posts, read 43,340 times
Reputation: 14
Default Billy

My rescue is not about a dog but a parakeet. But since we are all animal lovers, I thought I share my story. We had four parakeets, and since my husband and I love them, we decided to get another one. My husband stopped by the local pet store (a family owned one) on the way home from work. He starts talking to Vinny (the owner) and he tells my husband he has a bird he needs to adopt out. One of the neighborhood people was walking home from work the night before (a cold January night) and he saw a birdcage sitting on top of the garbage. He talks a look and sees a parakeet sitting on the bottom. Well, my husband bought him home. Poor guy had a tumor, so he could not hold on to his perch. He kept falling. So, I cleaned his cage and made it handicapped accessible so to speak, making it easier for him to get around. I had perches and ladders, water cups and seed cups within easy reach. We kept him by himself, because boy he was a biter. No one could go near his food. He would wobble up his ladder and go in for the attack or look up from the bottom and make a aaaaaaa noise. Nothing could be done about the tumor, so we kept him comfortable and he lived from eight months. He used to sit in my hand and rest while we watched tv. This was a number of years ago, but I still remember my little Billy. I have taken in two more rescues since then and now have five parakeets, the oldest being Mimi whom we have had for eight years now. Thanks for letting me tell my story.
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Old 09-11-2008, 09:43 PM
 
Location: Santa Barbara CA
4,695 posts, read 10,101,139 times
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I have to share the rescue tale of a cowoker/ friend's dog. When I first met this friend she was 100% cat person but she liked my cocker Maddie and then as the cats all got old and died off she got a very old cocker that had was blind and decided she was going to give it a home for what ever time it had left ( can't rememebr if that one had cancer or not ). Then she met a young mixed dog at the shelter and asked me to go look at him and see what I thought.

At the shelter I had to look at everybody and there was a dog that had just been brought in as a stray. She was very thin and dirty and almost looked like she had coyote in her, but Oh so sweet. I told the lady at the shelter if I was looking for a dog I would take that one as I had a feeling she was going to make a great pet if someone gave her a chance.

My friend adopted the little dog but he had a temperment issue that came out a few weeks later but she tried for several months and ended up not being able to keep him after he had bitten her a couple times.She is a bit afraid of dogs so any aggression terrifies her so he was not a good match for her.


Well she mentioned at work that she did find a new dog and did I want to see her photo as they still had it on line. I looked at it and it was the dog that I had seen several months prior at the shelter. She had been put in foster care and the lady that fostered her knew my friend and had contacted my friend and said I have the perfect dog for you. I was thrilled to see it was that dog, then another coworker came over to see the photo and it turns out she and her daughter were the ones that found the dog in a creek and called animal control . How weird is that ?

My friend did adopt her, she is some sort of shepherd mix and she has been the best dog for many years now. My friend also started fostering old cocker spaniels that are blind and many have cancer and she lets them live out their lives in comfort and die feeling loved. Her thought is no one else wants them and they deserve to feel loved when they die . If there were medals for dog owners I would make sure my friend had one and to think she had been a cat person!

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Old 09-11-2008, 09:58 PM
 
Location: "The Sunshine State"
4,334 posts, read 12,186,169 times
Reputation: 3010
I was not going to tell Suzies story tonight because it got too late. But since I am staying up with her all night, now I can.
I was volunteering for my rescue group and they asked me to foster two female puppies who had been left in a box in a shopping cart during a cold winters night at a food store. There were three of them. One had died and I took the other two. They were about 6 weeks old. I named them Suzie and Samantha! I only had Samantha for two weeks when she got adopted. I took Suzie every week to the Petsmart for Sat. adoption days. I was busy and was not able to stay with her during the adoption days so I left her at 11 and would pick her up at 4. My Mom was taking her beagle to Obedience Classes at the same Petsmart. I would go with her and take Suzie along for the ride. I would sit Suzie in a shopping basket and my Mom would always comment how Suzie would never take her eyes off me! I already was getting attached to her....she was my first foster puppy. The next Sat. I took her for adoption day and cried all the way home....I could not give her up! I went back to the store...took her out of the crate and went to Carvel and bought her and I a cone to share! That was it! She was four months at the time! For some reason no one would ever really show any interest in her.....maybe because she was not the prettiest dog, but in my eyes she was! Suzie will be 10 in Dec.
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Old 09-11-2008, 10:05 PM
 
Location: "The Sunshine State"
4,334 posts, read 12,186,169 times
Reputation: 3010
Quote:
Originally Posted by sunny06 View Post
My rescue is not about a dog but a parakeet. But since we are all animal lovers, I thought I share my story. We had four parakeets, and since my husband and I love them, we decided to get another one. My husband stopped by the local pet store (a family owned one) on the way home from work. He starts talking to Vinny (the owner) and he tells my husband he has a bird he needs to adopt out. One of the neighborhood people was walking home from work the night before (a cold January night) and he saw a birdcage sitting on top of the garbage. He talks a look and sees a parakeet sitting on the bottom. Well, my husband bought him home. Poor guy had a tumor, so he could not hold on to his perch. He kept falling. So, I cleaned his cage and made it handicapped accessible so to speak, making it easier for him to get around. I had perches and ladders, water cups and seed cups within easy reach. We kept him by himself, because boy he was a biter. No one could go near his food. He would wobble up his ladder and go in for the attack or look up from the bottom and make a aaaaaaa noise. Nothing could be done about the tumor, so we kept him comfortable and he lived from eight months. He used to sit in my hand and rest while we watched tv. This was a number of years ago, but I still remember my little Billy. I have taken in two more rescues since then and now have five parakeets, the oldest being Mimi whom we have had for eight years now. Thanks for letting me tell my story.
What a nice story and how kind of you to take that little abandoned bird in! I am glad you told your story here because when I first joined CD and I saw the Pet Forum I was a little surprised not to see a bird category, since they are also part of many of our family pets too! I hope in the future they will add a Bird forum on. I also have a bird, his name is Miki and he is a Mollucan Cockatoo. I have had him for 12 years now.
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Old 09-11-2008, 10:24 PM
 
Location: Houston, TX
2,375 posts, read 5,353,716 times
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Nothing too exciting about my dogs. I found the first (shepp/husky mix named Serena) on Petfinder.com. I was looking for a medium sized dog that was under a year old and within 2 hours drive time. The humane society in a town 45 minutes away had her and her sister. While I wish I had been able to get both at the time I could only afford one. I printed both pics off the internet and asked hubby which one he liked better. He picked one and the next day I called and reserved her. Pick up was a few days later and then I brought her home and sat in the kitchen with her until hubby got home (boy he was shocked that I had gotten one, but luckily she was cute so I didn't get in trouble.)

The second one was a year later and the human society here in town had a rottweiler give birth at the shelter. When the pups were old enough we went down (together this time) and picked one out. A couple of days later we were called and I went to pick up my little rottie/lab mix. Her name is Pandora and she is a 55lb lap dog.
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Old 09-11-2008, 10:53 PM
 
1,087 posts, read 2,910,997 times
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Two nights in a row someone tried to break into my window in the middle of the night while I was asleep, and the dog I already had (an elderly Collie) did not bark, so I wanted a second dog more for protection than anything else. I was picky in what I was looking for. I wanted a calm adult female Collie, not a rambunctious 10 month old pup.

I went to all the rescues within an hour and a half drive from here, and I couldn't find what I was looking for. I met a Collie mix at one shelter. He jumped right into my lap and he was super cute, but it was a young, rambunctious male. He was at animal control, and they don't hold them long before euthanizing them. The handler looked at his card and said he should already have been euthanized but "something" told them to hold on to him a little longer. When the handler put him back in the cage, the dog cried as I started walking away. The handler said "Don't worry, boy, she'll be back". I had no intention of coming back. He wasn't the right dog for me. Also, that shelter charged by the weight of the dog, and his adoption fee was over $100.

I kept looking, checking out the "free dog" ads in the paper but still didn't find what I was looking for. I told my mom about the Collie mix, but that I didn't think he was the right one, and he was a bit out of my price range, considering that whatever dog I got, even if she was already vet checked at a shelter, I still wanted to have enough money left over to take her to my regular vet for a thorough exam.

Anway, my mom called that Sunday and said my dad had gotten a bonus at work and he wanted to help me with the adoption fee. They talked me into settling for the male Collie mix, instead of waiting for the "right" one, as they were worried about the attempted break-ins and wanted me to have protection as soon as possible. But Monday morning is the day they euthanize, and there was no guarantee he'd still be there. I called them first thing in the morning to see if they still had him, and they said they didn't have time to look, and to call back in an hour. I called again, and they said they still didn't have time to look, so I decided to drive down there. The shelter was an hour and half drive away (the furthest one I had looked at), and even if he had still been there that morning, I thought he'd probably be euthanized by the time I got there.

I got there and he was still there. When I took him home, all the way home I kept telling myself I had made a mistake, and that, with my major health problems, there was no way I could handle such a rambunctious young dog.

I was wrong. He fit into my household perfectly. It was as if he could sense what I could and couldn't handle, and he totally meshed with my lifestyle and my health issues. I could not have wished for a better dog. He's the absolute love of my life. I didn't know it was possible to love a dog as deeply as I love Shiloh. We have an incredibly strong bond.

Turns out, he doesn't bark at humans, and if something scares me, he hides between my legs instead of protecting me. Not quite the "guard" dog I intended on getting, but years later, he did save my life. Not from an intruder, but from a medical problem. I hardly remember life before him, and can't imagine life without him.

I'm not much of a poet, but I wrote this poem for Shiloh on the third anniversary of his adoption.

To My Best Friend Shiloh

That cold winter day when we first met
I surely didn't know
That you would be the special one
Who soon with me, home would go

The nice man took you from your cage
So the two of us could meet
You were cute but I wasn't sure
That you would be the right one for me

Back into your cage you went
I heard you cry as I walked away
"Don't worry, boy, she'll be back"
I heard the nice man say

"Somewhere", I thought, "there must be
A perfect dog to share my life"
And so my search continued on
I looked near and far both day and night

I didn't find what I thought I wanted
Perhaps I had no clue
So I went back to that shelter
And decided just to "settle" for you

To my surprise we bonded so fast
It happened right from the start
How could I have ever imagined
That so quickly you would steal my heart

In my search I had been so wrong
It didn't take long to see
That a power greater than I had known
That my want had not been my need

People often say I saved you
If only they could see
The void in me had been so great
That it was you, my friend, who saved me



Last edited by themudpuppy; 09-11-2008 at 11:10 PM..
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Old 09-11-2008, 11:13 PM
 
Location: Texas
692 posts, read 3,579,015 times
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I work with an animal rescue and just over a year ago a couple picked Ted up in Illinois. He was in the middle of a busy street and was almost hit by a car. Covered in mats and burs he was groomed further de-matted, but this couple couldn't keep him. So they brought him up to an adoption and were directed to me.

I was left with the decision of let him be taken to the city shelter where he would likely be put down or sit his life out in a kennel do to his behavioral problems or take him home and try to find him a new home. I took him home, not in the mind set of keeping him, but just three days later I was in love.

I later found out he had been on the street twice before this time when he was picked up. His owner(s) picked him up but didn't fill out any information on his microchip. I looked hard for his owner(s), but to no prevail I couldn't find anyone.

Since I didn't find an owner of any sort and I couldn't get him into the special Shih Tzu rescue I had planned on taking him to; I took him to get his annual shots and to be neutered. I was thinking I would get most of the money I spent back when he was adopted and I got the adoption fee.

Well it's been a year and four months and he doesn't look like he's going any were. All of our dogs love him and play with him which was kind of the selling point. Also Buster who needed to loose some weight; with some of Teddies help he's dropped 20 lbs.

That is one of several stories, but the others were either owner surrenders when puppies or picked up because they were not being taken care of correctly. Saw them at one of the city shelters (each came from some where different) and home the came.
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Old 09-12-2008, 06:09 AM
 
7,079 posts, read 34,425,711 times
Reputation: 4036
I found my girl, Demitasse (Tassie to her friends) online. I'd always wanted a second dog, but I had some requirements. The dog had to be TINY. Because I take the train to go to the country on weekends and I already carry my 16 pound Pug in a carrier, I couldn't carry much more in terms of dogs. So size mattered. A female would be nice, because my Pug is a ladies' man (Yes, of course he's neutered!) and would likely get along better. And I didn't want a dog that was too terribly fragile.

I looked in all the rescues online. I made a visit to a pug-chi mix who was gone before I even had a chance to think.

Then I saw Tassie, a little brown chi-mix with gray on her muzzle and a sweet face. We met and I took her on the spot. She'd been turned in at the Bronx (kill) shelter because, at age 7, her family didn't want her any more.
She was constantly sneezing and wouldn't eat. So we went to the vet because I was worried about distemper with the sneezing. Who knows if her prior family ever had her vaccinated! It seems that her teeth were SO bad that she had a fistula (abnormal opening) between her oral and nasal cavities and it was saliva that was coming through her nose! Poor girl!

She had a major 'Complete Makeover, Chihuahua Edition.' All of her teeth, but ONE, had to be removed. She had the swords that were growing from her toes trimmed, her ears were cleaned...all while blissfully asleep. She came home on two weeks of antibtiotics, but clearly more comfortable.

And then she started to eat. Obviously the only thing standing between this little girl and food was painful teeth. So without the pain she's become a member of the 'clean plate club.' And has gained a half pound.

She didn't know how to walk on a leash when she first came to me and now she's a champion. In less than three months. And she was always completely housetrained, which is always nice.

I'm so happy with her and I think that, for the first time in years, she's happy and well-fed, too!

Last edited by Viralmd; 09-12-2008 at 08:58 AM..
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Old 09-12-2008, 07:10 PM
 
Location: California
423 posts, read 1,321,305 times
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This is a great thread! Wonderful stories, everyone. Here's mine. I guess it's a typical rescue story, but it's changed my life!

I had just started volunteering with a rescue group, as a dogwalker for the dogs that live in kennels. They asked for volunteers for an adoption event, and I signed up. At the event, held at a park, there were many rescue groups, and some dogs & cats from the county shelter. The woman in charge of our group's volunteers mentioned, in hushed tones, that we need to really point people to the County animals as they were in more danger - and they are, Los Angeles has a very high-volume shelter system and dogs last about 2 weeks there.

There were some bouncy puppies, etc., but the one that caught my eye was a little red dog that was lying flat on her side in the grass. Her handler was sitting next to her quietly. I asked him what was wrong with her. She had apperently been spayed the day before the event and was still groggy! Not to mention overwhelmed. This poor little red dog looked into my eyes and I promised her I wouldn't let them kill her.

Well, I couldn't have a dog where I lived at the time - my roommate had cats - but the whole afternoon at the park I kept tabs on "my" dog. At the end of the day she went back to the shelter. I guess she didn't show well, sleeping all day like that. I found her photo & info on their website and posted ads on Craigslist every day for a week for somebody to please go adopt this dog. Every other day I would call the shelter and find out that she was still there. I found out her euthanasia date was set for the following Monday, if nobody adopted her.

Meanwhile, I had told a friend about her, and my friend mentioned that she could keep the dog if I wanted to try finding her a home. Well I jumped on that! That weekend I drove to the shelter and with my last $40, bailed out "Mimi." After about 5 minutes in the car, she sighed and relaxed, relieved to be out of the loud shelter. She stayed with my friend while I continued to advertise on Craigslist, other websites, posted flyers everywhere...my roommate relented and let her visit on weekends. She met a few potential adopters, none of whom felt that 'spark', all of whom felt it necessary to tell me that "boy that dog sure loves you!"

Well, who can argue with that? Sienna, as she is now known, made the decision for me. On the day we met, probably. I was moving anyway, so made sure to find a dog-friendly apartment, and my friend kept her for several months until I moved. Every time I visited Sienna went crazy greeting me. She asked me to save her life, and she knows I did. When I look at her, I sometimes still see a vision of what her future would have been - a little red shaggy body, the last one on top of the pile - and get choked up, like I am right now.

I don't know what posessed me to save THIS dog at THIS moment...I don't even feel like it was MY decision! This is definitley one of those things that convinces me there's a higher power at work.

Ok sorry for the novel! Brevity is not my friend... :O) Thanks for the opportunity to tell the story!

Her shelter mugshot, all the good pics are on my other computer:

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