animals, dogs, fellow dog lovers, humane society, pit bull terrier, shelter dogs, willamette humane society
Dear Fellow Dog Lovers,
It’s great to be back! I had a wonderful visit with my Michigan family, but was so worried about the two-week quarantine due to the scare about canine flu. The happy news is that the scare is over, the quarantine is finished and everything at the shelter is back to normal. The staff and volunteers did a fantastic job of relieving the dogs’ stress by being “kennel buddies” and spending lots of time in each dog’s kennel petting, brushing, and playing enrichment games with them. When not with the dogs, many volunteers washed dishes, did laundry, and stuffed Kongs with peanut butter. While everyone is thrilled that the quarantine is finally over, the unexpected consequence was realizing the value of volunteers spending time with a dog in its kennel. Because kennel presentation is so critical to a dog’s adoption appeal, we hope to continue to add kennel time to outdoor time when working our shifts.
Once the quarantine was over, many dogs were quickly adopted. Here are the Blog Dogs who found their new homes since my last post.
There is another adoption that I want to highlight. If you are a regular reader of my posts, you know Rockstar very well. A young START dog who came to WHS early last September, he was adopted and returned twice due to house training issues. Rockstar was a staff and volunteer favorite because of his happy, friendly personality. He was a true star during play groups, as he never met a dog he didn’t like. In February, former staff member Karen took him home as a foster. It didn’t take long for her to fall in love with this happy-go-lucky youngster. When the house training improved and Bailey, Karen’s dog, the cats, chickens, and bunny gave their OK, Rockstar’s name became Tanner and the adoption was completed! Here is what Karen had to say about him when she emailed that she had adopted him. “He’s a great dog and we love him. We decided to take the plunge with a young dog – first in about 10 years. We’re going to have a lot of fun! He’ll be back to visit – hopefully we can come to playgroup occasionally.” Here he is, in his own words.
One last note about adoptions. You have often seen pictures of volunteer Kathy in my posts, as she is a Wednesday afternoon walker with me. Shortly before the quarantine, a new dog named Bo arrived. Kathy was smitten from the start. She became Bo’s Kennel Buddy during the quarantine and when it was lifted, she adopted him. Here they were the first day they met. She reports he is a super dog and all is well. She has promised an update soon. Lucky Bo!
You can imagine the excitement on Sunday when play group was held for the first time in three weeks! To say there was a lot of chatter is an understatement. It was a beautiful sunny day and as you’ll see, spring was in the air!
This is Bronwyn, one of our Brooks rescued dogs.
Paloma, a two-year-old Pit Bull Terrier mix, was a little overwhelmed when she was in the yard with the other big dogs. When we put her with the more mellow, smaller dogs, she had the time of her life. Her new best friend was Minerva, a three-year-old Jack Russell Terrier mix.
But Paloma also was intrigued by the other little dogs.
Meanwhile, in the big dogs’ yard…
My name is GingerSnap
My first day back was on Sunday and after play group I got to meet some new arrivals. Volunteer Barb had told me about a new, very scared girl named GingerSnap. Barb had been very concerned about how frightened she was and said that something in her eyes made Barb’s heart melt. I was anxious to meet Ginger and was so excited when she was put on the adoption floor that afternoon. Sarah and I spent some time with her outside and we both agreed with Barb that she is a special girl. Not only did she relax and give us kisses, Sarah quickly discovered that Ginger knows several commands like sit, down, shake, and stay. She is going to make a wonderful friend to some lucky family. Ginger is a four-year-old Pit Bull/German Shepherd mix.
I’m new, too, and very shy, but such a good dog!
Next we met Dori, a three-year-old Border Collie mix. As you can see, Dori warmed up to Sarah after a few minutes of quiet outdoor time. She will do best in an adult home or with older, calm kids, as she gets nervous around little ones. She also would be a great candidate for the shelter’s shy dog class to help her feel comfortable around both people and other dogs. She is a sweetheart and will make someone a loyal best friend.
I may be older, but I’ve got a lot of love still to give!
Little Max is still waiting for his perfect match. He is a ten-year-old Dachshund mix who is happily living at volunteer Krystal’s house as their foster dog when the shelter is not open. I helped Krystal out a couple of times last week picking Max up from WHS at closing time and dropping him off at her house for the night. Both times he snuggled in my lap on the way home. Once we arrived at the house, Max bounded up the steps to greet his four foster siblings. Max needs an adult home, or one with older kids, and he does not like to be left alone for long periods, so a retired couple would be perfect for this boy. Here he was on Sunday with Sarah.
And here he is at his foster home where Wyatt, Krystal’s Lab, takes him under his paw.
It’s me again!
You saw a lot of Paloma in the cartoons from play group. In the afternoon, I happened to see two young walkers, Madelyn and Garth, and their mother out in a yard with Paloma and wanted to get a shot with her and them. I think she has such a pretty face.
Every so often, a bonded pair of dogs arrives at the shelter and we always hope they can be adopted together. At the moment we have two such pairs. Here are volunteers Debbie and Kada with Bebe and Scooper. They are 13 and 12-year-old Shih Tzu/Maltese mixes and have lived together for twelve years. Both dogs are eager and playful and are hoping for a home together where they can take leisurely walks and long naps side-by-side.
Here are Mocha and Max, sister and brother, Miniature Dachshund/Yorkshire Terrier mixes. Mocha is seven and Max is five. Mocha is very dependent on Max for confidence. Max has the most beautiful blue eyes! Both dogs had a fun time in play group and are hoping for a loving family together.Today new Wednesday volunteer Marolyn spent some time with Mocha.
Sarah’s Most Favorite Dog EVER!
This is Cassidy, a seven-year-old Pit Bull Terrier mix, a START dog, who arrived at WHS in December. She has had some ear infections, so has only recently been available for adoption. From the moment Sarah laid eyes on her, she was in love. Today Sarah announced that Cassidy is her most favorite WHS dog ever. That is quite something, as Sarah has loved many, many shelter dogs. Cassidy is affectionate, knows several commands, loves to play fetch, and is a gentle soul. Here are two shots from this afternoon.
What’s that you say?
I always love when a dog cocks his head. Sandals does it a lot. Today Kathy spent some time with this wonderful one-year-old Shepherd mix and when I wanted him to pose for a picture, he did!
Sandals LOVES to play with other dogs. He is still a youngster in mind and body and has not met another dog he hasn’t wanted to play with. He often has play dates with Volunteer Manager BJ’s dog, Zoe. Here’s what BJ said about him in her weekly newsletter for volunteers.
“Zoe, my Border Collie office assistant, has asked to feature her best friend du jour, Sandals, aka Boomer. She missed coming to the office during the quarantine, and really missed being able to play with her shelter dog friends. This week, she has been romping with Sandals, and she is particularly impressed with his aerial acrobatics, and his total agreement that she is, in fact, the boss of everything. She thinks he would make a good companion for a home with another active, physical dog like a young lab or pit bull. He likes to run and play, with lots of body checks and he loves to catch some air leaping over his playmates. Pretty cute dog! He is a mixed breed, his kennel says shepherd mix, but that just means he is tan and black. He really is a mystery mix of DNA, with a great personality, who likes everyone he meets and loves to learn new stuff.“
After a play date this afternoon with Zoe, we decided to let Sandals have another date with Bronwyn, one of the Brooks rescued dogs, a ten-month-old Border Collie mix. After a half hour of rambunctious romping, I asked them to sit for a picture. I took out my camera, made a high-pitch noise to get their focus and this is what I got.
Mary Tyler Moo
I have three updates today. First, remember Mary Tyler Moo? She was a very shy START dog with a blind eye who arrived at WHS in early December. She quickly became a favorite of volunteers and staff. It was no surprise that one of our own walkers adopted her. Here she was when she arrived at WHS. And here is her adoption story.
“I knew volunteering at the Willamette Humane Society was going to be tough because I am such an animal person. My first day volunteering Mary Tyler Moo was there and I felt so bad because of her injury. I noticed that people would walk right past her without even giving her attention because of her breed and injury. I started to spend so much time with her so she could feel loved. We instantly connected. She was so sweet and excited to play. We would go to visitation rooms to hang around. She was my baby girl. I wouldn’t stop talking about her at home and I could tell my mom was curious about meeting her. One day my mom came to pick me up as I just so happened to be outside with Mary. She fell in love. We ended up going back two days later to visit Mary and my family quickly felt the same way about Mary as I had. We put her on hold that day and came back the next day to officially call her ours. Mary Tyler Moo is such an amazingly loving dog. She hates being alone and just loves to get those great belly rubs. She has really opened up to our family, and especially my little sister who is two. I am very thankful that I have found this dog. She is and always will be my best friend.”
One last note about Mary Tyler Moo. I found out recently that her original name was Mary Tyler Moore, but when it was put into the computer, there was not enough room to fit her entire name in, thus her last name was shortened to “Moo.”
Last Sunday I was happily surprised when I saw two of my Wednesday evening volunteers drive up with their WHS alumnus, Hope (formerly Suket). Suket, a six-month-old Lab mix, was a transfer from another shelter last August. It was soon discovered that she was deaf. Then an amazing thing happened. A couple arrived looking for a dog. The young woman was deaf. When they saw Suket, it was instant love. Suket’s new name became Hope. The young couple even became WHS dog walkers! They stopped in Sunday so I could take their picture for an update on Hope. Here is the happy family.
I’m sure you remember Lucy, the long-term WHS dog who was taken into the Pittie Pals program last November. We were so excited about the training that Lucy would get and were sure she would be adopted quickly. Last week I got the following note from Debbie, the co-founder of Pittie Pals.
“I need help from the “Lucy Fans” at WHS. Lucy has been boarded now at Pet Village for three months. She is doing very well. She’s completed her novice obedience class. She graduates next week. She is one of the best students! Her adoption includes this class again at no charge to the adoptive family and Pittie Pals will also pay for the advanced obedience. We want Lucy to SUCCEED! I spoke with Tana at Del Norte Humane Society in Crescent City (her stop before WHS) and Lucy has such a sad story. She’s been passed along TOO many times. I will stay hopeful and I’m asking for any and all help I can get.”
Here is what I wrote about Lucy for the Pittie Pals entry about her:
Lucy deserves a forever home. If you read my posts regularly, you will remember Lucy, a wonderful three-year-old Rhodesian Ridgeback/American Staffordshire mix who came to WHS from the Crescent City shelter where she had waited a long time for a new family who never came. She arrived at WHS last September. She became one of our long-termers and I grew so fond of her. Each week we would play fetch, her absolutely favorite thing to do in the whole world. (As you hold the ball in your hand, Lucy will give you an excited play bow, grinning widely, quivering with anticipation. Throw the ball as far as you can, and Lucy will dash after it with pure joy. But the best part is when she rushes back to you, stops on a dime, drops the ball at your feet, then backs up and gives you another play bow.)
Finally in early November, Pittie Pals, accepted Lucy into their program with the intent to work with her to increase her adoptability and find her the perfect match of a home. Since that time, Debbie West, the co-founder of Pittie Pals gives her glowing report. Lucy will finish her 9-week obedience class this week. She is one of the BEST students! Her adoption through Pittie Pals includes this class again at no charge to the adoptive family and Pittie Pals will also pay for the advanced obedience.
Lucy has beautiful house manners and can be quite the couch potato when not playing fetch. She walks very politely on leash, is treat-motivated for easy training and loves to go for car rides. Lucy’s adoption fee is $200. She has had all of her vaccinations, has a microchip, and is spayed.
The only restriction on Lucy’s adoption is that with her intense love of her toys, she should not be put in a position where she has to share a toy with another dog. Lucy is being boarded at a local boarding facility, but after being there for three months, she so deserves a real home with a family who will love her. If you have been hoping for a smart, happy, playful dog in training, Lucy could be the one for you. If you are interested in meeting Lucy, please contact Pittie Pals on facebook (Pittie Pals) or at email@example.com. They would love to set up a time for you to spend some time with this very special girl.
We just know that there is a perfect home out there somewhere for this very special dog. She has been without a family of her own for so long. We need everyone’s help in finding that family who doesn’t even know that they need her to be complete. Let’s find Lucy her forever home!
We love you, Lucy.
That’s it for this week!
Remember, if you see a dog on my blog whom you are interested in meeting, try to make arrangements to get to the Willamette Humane Society soon. Some dogs are adopted more quickly than you might think.
You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Stan Bidlack said:
Congrats to the entire WHS staff & volunteers — what a really fine bunch of pros in keeping WHS safe & in operation during such a rough episode!