Archive for the ‘Adoptable Dogs’ Category

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Adoptions of 2013

January 1, 2014
  • EVA
    CHEETCH
    ANDY
    GEM
    HEPBURN
    APRIL
    RUTHIE
    BETH
    CALLY
    CANDY KISS
    FRANNIE
    MRS PIGGY
    EVE
    RUTBAH
    OTTO
    FALLON
    LUKE
    CRICKET
    KC
    FUN
    MAGNET
    JAX
    LISA
    NALA
    SAM
    TOOLIE
    DENISE
    HALLEY
    AMY
    MERLIN
    BAYLIE
    CHELSEA
    CLOONEY
    NOVA
    ELFIE
    DRAGON
    FEET
    LILY
    ANGELINA
    HOOK
    OZZIE
    JEWEL
    FIONA
    MOCHA
    BEAR
    CHARLIZE
    EASI
    CLAIR
    LADY
    SHOWY
    MOLLY
    VERA
    COLO
    LENARD
    CLOUDY
    CANON
    LUCKY
    TYLO
    DAWSON
    MISSISSIPPI
    ELLA
    ABE
    SQUIRT
    SADIE
    BUCKLE
    RALPH

Huge thanks to all our adopters, volunteers and supporters! It has been a greyt year because of all of you. We look forward to finding loving homes for lots of hounds in 2014!

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Defending “Rescue”

December 17, 2013

In the midst of preparing for Kevin’s surgery and waiting for him to come home, I have been trying to arrange for the arrival of 3-4 new dogs to MNGR. They have difficult stories, and trying to make room for them in our program makes me think about what our responsibility is as a “rescue.”

Many people don’t know it, but in some circles ‘rescue’ is a dirty word. MNGR has many people who will not work with us, both within the greyhound racing community and the greyhound adoption community, because we use the word ‘rescue’ in our name. It’s a political statement to some, the same as saying outright that greyhound racing is cruel and dogs that come from that situation are ‘rescued’ from a terrible fate.

When I founded MNGR, I chose the name deliberately, knowing what the ramifications might be. I knew that we might be blacklisted in certain places. I knew it might offend people. But I believe it most accurately describes what we do. Here’s why.

We have been lucky to develop personal relationships with many trainers and breeders in the racing industry who send us their dogs when they are finished with them. We appreciate these relationships. Some of these people have become our friends, even though we disagree fundamentally about certain things. But these relationships allow us to see firsthand where our adoptable dogs come from, to know things about their past including where they were born, how they were raised, their medical histories.

But others in the industry refuse to send us dogs, because they don’t like the idea that we think we are ‘rescuing’ the dogs from them. I’ve had notes written by angry kennel managers, saying ‘This is not a rescue. The dogs would have gone to another group.’ Meaning they do not kill their dogs. They make sure they go to adoption groups. Which is great, and which we genuinely appreciate.

Here’s the thing though, and here’s why I maintain that it is ‘rescue.’ The people that breed and race these dogs do not have a plan for what happens to the dogs when they are done racing… except for sending them to non-profit, volunteer-run adoption groups. If not for these groups, a majority of dogs would not be rehomed. This is what happened prior to the early 1990s before greyhound adoption started to become prevalent.

The non-adoption-group options for racing greyhounds are few. They can be put down (humanely or otherwise); they can be sent back to the breeding farm to take up valuable space; or they can be given away by their owners (to be used as coyote hunters on farms, among other possibilities). Rarely do they become pets of their owners – most trainers/owners have far too many to keep them all. The people who produce these dogs for profit have no system set up to make sure the dogs end up in good places. They are not running adoption groups. They don’t do home visits or screen potential new owners. They depend on volunteer adoption groups to do this. If there were no adoption groups, bad things would happen to the dogs. Adoption groups rescue.

Moreover, while we do know plenty of people in the industry who honestly care what happens to the dogs and take good care of them while they are racing (although generally not the same kind of care one would give a house pet), we also know this is not always the case. Some owners will repair a broken leg, and some won’t. Dogs come to us having sat with a completely untreated fractured leg until it heals in whatever way it can, often causing lifelong pain. Dogs come infested with fleas. Dogs almost invariably come with worms. Dogs come completely unsocialized and terrified, never having been out of their outdoor run on the farm.

Don’t get me wrong. We are grateful that they come. We are grateful to be able to help them. But this is rescue. Plain and simple.

But calling ourselves a rescue comes with a responsibility as well. There are some adoption groups who choose what dogs they take in. Who cherrypick for the dogs who will be easiest to place…. Small, female, fawn, cat-safe. When I started MNGR, I never wanted to do this. To the greatest extent possible, I have always wanted MNGR to take whoever needs to come. To the greatest extent possible, we go to get new dogs with a number in mind that we can reasonably house, and take whoever needs to go.

Will we take one with a broken leg? Yes! Unsocialized and scared of people? Yes. Food aggressive and turned down by other groups? Yes. Seizures? Yes. Not a purebred? Yes. Blind? Yes. 11 years old and never been in a home? Yes. Teeth rotting out and needing a $2000 dental? Yes. Incontinent? Yes. Dying? Yes yes and yes.

I can give specific examples of dogs we have taken that meet all these criteria. Could we adopt out MORE dogs if we selected for pretty and young ones? Sure, but that’s not what rescue is. We take whoever needs us the most.

I would honestly rather take a dog who is old, or sick, or injured, or has the misfortune to be large and black and male all in one package. I know the small fawn female will have another place to go. I won’t lose sleep at night worrying about her. But the big snarky boy and the old brood mom? We might be their only shot. That is why we do this.

Which brings me to the newest dogs arriving at MNGR. These three boys are lurchers. A lurcher is a greyhound mix. Some look like greyhounds, others a little different. They are also called “cold bloods” (racers would be “hot bloods”). A staghound is a type of lurcher (a greyhound/deerhound mix) that is common in the Dakotas and Montana. In many cases, it will be impossible to tell exactly what the mix is. They just look “more or less” like a greyhound. Those of you who follow MNGR will remember some of the lurchers we’ve taken in: George, Fear, Fiona (and her sister Mocha, who may have been purebred), Dug, and Frannie, among others.

In many places, lurchers are used to hunt coyotes on farms. Living outside or in barns, bare minimum medical care. And imagine the kinds of injuries that might be sustained when a greyhound hunts and catches a coyote. When they are not good hunters any longer, they are shot or abandoned. This is the closest thing America has to the galgo situation in Spain. In other places, such as Ohio and Indiana, lurchers are used for hunting or “underground greyhound racing.” These are field trials, generally using live bait, with no kind of oversight from any governing body. Again, unsuccessful dogs are mostly shot or abandoned.

One of the dogs we will be getting has been living outside (in Ohio, in winter) with minimal shelter. One photo shows a frozen-over water bucket. His owner has 20-25 dogs that he uses for field trials. The rescuers have developed a rapport with him and are able to take the dogs he no longer uses, but the others are stuck there.

Another of the dogs we are getting is a victim of abuse/neglect. When he was found, he was full of parasites and 20 pounds underweight. And blind. Blind because of parasites and untreated infection. He is young, only 4-6 years old. The people at OLP describe him as courageous, smart, sweet, loving, and amazing. Super trainable, housebroken, and affectionate. He’s also beautiful. But unfortunately with his “special need” he will wait longer for a home.

Dogs like these need and deserve our help just as much as the “easy-to-place” dogs. They deserve to see what life SHOULD be like. To rescue them, we need everyone’s help. We need people to open their hearts to a dog who might not be EXACTLY what they imagined, but who will prove to be so much more. We need foster homes. We need adopters. Please help us spread the word about these new boys. Maybe one of them is meant to be yours this Christmas. We cannot rescue them all, but we can make a difference.

Tom, chained in the cold.

Tom, chained in the cold.

Rain, blind, looking for love.

Rain, blind, looking for love.

 

““While wandering a deserted beach at dawn, stagnant in my work, I saw a man in the distance bending and throwing as he walked the endless stretch toward me. As he came near, I could see that he was throwing starfish, abandoned on the sand by the tide, back into the sea. When he was close enough I asked him why he was working so hard at this strange task. He said that the sun would dry the starfish and they would die. I said to him that I thought he was foolish. there were thousands of starfish on miles and miles of beach. One man alone could never make a difference. He smiled as he picked up the next starfish. Hurling it far into the sea he said, “It makes a difference for this one.” I abandoned my writing and spent the morning throwing starfish.”
― Loren Eiseley

 

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Oldies but Goodies

August 6, 2013

I was looking something up about Whitey’s recovery from his leg amputation the other day, and came across this post from the end of 2009. Go read it first.

https://minnesotagreyhounds.wordpress.com/2009/12/27/2009/

I wrote it, obviously, and in fact I lived it. But I was still in tears reading it. Man, I still miss every last one of them. It seems like it all happened yesterday.

Since then, we’ve adopted a bunch more seniors. Whitey and Apollo both died in 2010, both of their osteosarcoma. Tigger (age 9 at adoption) came in February shortly before Whitey died. And Eyore (age 9 at adoption) came the same day that we let Apollo go. There has also been Boozer (sweet, sweet baby adopted at 13 years old, and gave us a beautiful year and a half), Sarge (age almost 12 at adoption and still with us), two staghounds (relatively young for me, only age 8 and 9 at adoption) named Frank and Kevin, and most recently Marvin Yellowstone (age 11.5 at adoption).

There are so many seniors out there waiting. So many, it breaks my heart every time I see one posted. It’s never their fault. They’ve lost the home they’ve known for most of their lives because of divorces, new babies, job losses, or worse — new carpet. And they don’t understand, and they are sad and scared.

But they have so much love to give, and so much life left in them. Even though their last people may have stopped caring a long time ago, gotten bored, gotten busy, whatever…. The dogs will still give their new people a chance. They will still trust, and they will still love with all they have. That’s what dogs do.

No dog deserves to spend his old age in a shelter, confused and missing his family. You can make a difference in that life. And the difference it will make in YOUR life will astonish you.

MNGR frequently has the opportunity to take in brood mamas from the Kansas farms. Sometimes as young as 7 or 8, sometimes as old as 10 or so. These ladies have put in their time working and raising babies for the racetracks, and they deserve a loving family and a soft place for their golden years. There are almost always brood mamas available, so please contact us if you might like us to bring one up from the farm for you. The alternative for these girls is not always a good one, and we can only take as many as we can place.

I also sometimes post seniors waiting with other groups to the MNGR Facebook page. If you ever want more info about any of these precious babies, please get in touch with me. Most groups are willing to move “special needs” and older dogs out of state to an approved home, and we can help with that! Don’t just look at the photos and feel sad. Or worse, don’t just scroll on by the photos to spare yourself the pain. If you can’t adopt, foster. If you can’t foster, donate. If you can’t donate, at least share the posts and give these sweethearts their best shot at forever.

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Adoptions of 2012

December 29, 2012

2012 has been a fantastic year! We have done more adoptions this year than in any year since MNGR started. Thank you so much to all of our adopters, volunteers, friends and supporters. Without you, none of this would be possible. You gave hope to these hounds.

Tojo
Cricket
Beauty
Orton
Chip
Vicky
Kohl
Toolbox
Walter
Handy
Jenny
Diego
Sandy
Bullet
Bella
Boo
Dash
Honcho
Tom
Jade
Star
Laura
PJ
Roo
Jumper
Maria
Baloo
Lou
Fred
Lyon
Cash
Mo
Stephi
Monk
Pistol
Killy
Carly
Nikki
Bailey
Piglet
Double D
Bob
Otto
Gertie
Romeo
Sizzle
Dazzle
Lawerence
Hombre
Stanford
Jilly
Copper
Garcia
Paige
Buster
Tommy
Peanut
Ruthie
Adam
Navarro
Willow
Davis
Amy
Sleet
Dug
Tina
Jewel

Sadly, we also had some losses this year. We are grateful that Ally, Bree, Little Bear, Bonnie and Harley knew the love of the Johnson family even for just a little while before the left for the Bridge.

We look forward to finding more families for hounds in 2013. Much love from our families to yours.

The Komatsus: Jen, Lloyd, Sunny, Maisy, Milo, Poppy – and hounds Chester, Brad, Hank, Tigger, Eyore, Beaut, Petey, Buddy, Kevin, Frank, Sarge and Bond.

The Johnson/Kittlesons: Kelly, Brad, Braeden, Alex, Calla – and hounds Paco, Al, Cal, Sally, Pluto, Suzy, Sady, Abby, Libby, Annie, Scoobie, Gracie, Amy, Killy, Daisy, Pilot, Sleet, Jump, and Roo

The Adoptables: Colby, Andy, Lady, Feet, Kacey, Cheech, Gem, Magnet, Ernie, Nova and Candykiss
See us at: http://www.minnesotagreyhoundrescue.org/adopt/available-dogs.html

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Ernie

October 12, 2012

When Ernie arrived here the first week in September from Iowa, he was very scared. When you approached his kennel, he would huddle against the back wall. He was not a fear biter, so you could go in and pet him, but he obviously was not happy about it. As the days went by, is behaviour didn’t change much, but when you went to pet him he would actually extend his head toward you just a little bit, like he might actually want you to keep petting him.

After a week or so of this, I decided that we weren’t going to get anywhere with Ernie with him living in the adoptables kennel. So I brought him inside. Against his will. I had to take him by his collar and pull him into the house, where he refused to leave the kitchen landing that leads into the kennel for a while. When he thought we weren’t looking, he jetted into the living room and immediately dove into the corner behind our large beanbag chair. This has been his go-to spot ever since.

When it became clear that he intended to remain back there indefinitely, I put a couple blankets down on the floor so he wouldn’t be sleeping in such a hard spot. And for a few days he was back there ALL the time, except when we made him go outside to potty and drink water. I brought him food back there because he wasn’t coming out to eat, and he would only eat the food if he thought I wasn’t looking.

I spent time sitting on the edge of the beanbag chair talking to him and petting him. At first he would squish himself farther into the corner when I came over. Although if I turned my back, I could hear and feel him edging closer to me and sniffing the back of my head. Soon, he was almost pleased to have me come sit with him.

After a few more days, he started to come out at night. He would wander around the house, get some food and water. Although if I sat up, he would dash right back to his hiding place. A few more days and he took to playing with toys alone in the dark at night, even lying out on the dog beds to sleep for a while, as long as no one in the house moved or acknowledged him.

One day we had a duck-stick breakthrough. We buy these nasty dried duck strips in big bags at Cost*co and pass them out once or twice a day as treats. I had brought him a couple once to his hiding place. One day I was handing them out in the kitchen, and Ernie came to get in line! He snagged the treat out of my hand quick as he could and made off with it! 10 seconds later, back in line. We did this no less than nine times, it was the closest he had willingly come to me yet.

After that, every time I went into the kitchen, he was there at the edge to see what I was doing. And each time he took a little more time going back into his hiding place. He would get water, walk around a bit. If I walked towards him, zoom! But if I went about my business he would stay out.

Next, he learned that if I was sitting in the living room with my computer, I was unlikely to make any sudden movements. So he started to behave at those times like he had been doing at night. He would come out and lie on a dog bed, play with a toy, hang out, until I put my computer down or stood up.

In the past week, his goofy personality has started to emerge. One afternoon he stole 5 pairs of underwear from the hanmper and brought them out to the living room to play with. (Unfortunately, he tore up one pair.) I watched him going back and forth, back and forth, just laughing. Just underwear, nothing else, although I did find a dirty sock in his hiding place one day. He will also steal spoons or forks off the table if no one clears them quickly after eating, and has eaten at least 3 or 4 pencils. (Well, he is barely 2 years old, what do you want?)

Now we are at the point where he will actually come up to me for loves. He sits on the couch about 25% of the time during the day. He’ll run back to his spot if the rest of the human family is home, or if I make sudden movements. But he is doing awesome.

I have had the flu for like a week, and today I was lying on a dog bed next to Tigger taking a nap (yes, I take naps on dog beds on the floor – so?), and he came up for pets. After a while, he actually laid down next to me and snuggled up! It was fabulous.

I’m going to have a hard time letting go of this boy. But we have a dozen now, and he’s very young, I know the right family is out there for him. As he gets more comfortable with me, the next goal is to get him to extend that trust to other humans. He’s such a good boy, though. He is smart and learned his name right away, will often come to me when I call him (if the situation isn’t too scary). Sadly, he has gotten nipped by the other dogs several times because when he is fleeing to his hiding space, he will run OVER whoever is lying in the straight line between him and corner. But he does that less and less. We’re getting there.

Ernie will turn 2 years old on Tuesday!

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Summer wrap-up and asking for a little help

October 10, 2012

Well I’ve put all the human kids’ summer clothes away and I sent them off in sweaters and boots this morning. Even had to send the dogs in fleece jackets to MNGR’s event last weekend! Hard to believe Summer is gone already. We had our busiest Summer ever at MNGR! To date in 2012 we have placed 53 hounds!

Our Summer events were AWESOME and we’d like to thank all the volunteers who helped out, especially Ms Betsey with hounds Oliver and Holly, who was there for pretty much every one. We couldn’t do this without all of you!

If you’re not our fan on Facebook or a follower on Twitter (@MNGreyhound), we hope you’ll join us there for real-time photos of all our events, plus photos from hauls and the daily goings-on at the two main MNGR households.

We have been full to the gills all Summer with hounds, having taken in some pretty big hauls from Kansas, as well hounds from Iowa, Florida, and soon to be Alabama. Our most recent haul had EIGHTEEN dogs, most of them well under 2 years old. And we’ve gotten a few fabulous brood mamas too!

That’s where the asking for a little help comes in… Recently we’ve taken in more than our average number of dogs with some extra needs. Our beautiful broodies all came with some very nasty teeth, and Candykiss’s vet bill alone was $1200 — she needed 33 teeth extracted! Also with very high bills were broodies Killy (now adopted), Nikki (now adopted), Amy (still waiting), and Stephie (now adopted — not a broodie but a little 8-yr-old girl found wandering loose).

MNGR still only asks our regular adoption fee for these gals, despite putting way more money than that into their bills. We would deeply appreciate any donations toward their bills, however great or small.

Check out some pics of these lovely girls:

Candykiss, 8 yr old brood mama, still available!

Killy, 8-yr-old brood mama, adopted

Amy, 6-yr-old brood mama with some special needs, available.

Nikki, 6-yr-old brood mama, adopted.

We’ve also recently taken on some special-needs babies. The Kansas haul of 18 hounds was from a very large greyhound farm, literally hundreds of dogs, and the pups we received had spent their entire lives in outdoor runs. They are extremely undersocialized, and several of them were extremely shy. One boy, Pilot, would not come into the house for about 2 weeks because he was so afraid, even if you left the room and just left the door open. He has been staying at MNGR Rochester, where they were eventually able to get some anti-anxiety meds into him. He has been making amazing progress, but is still nowhere near being adoptable. Pilot is the worst, but there are a couple others in the same boat.

MNGR is completely committed to these pups (all less than 18 months old), and with love and work we hope that they will all find their families someday. If not, they will live out their lives here with us. However, MNGR pays for all the food and vet care that they will need in the meantime, which will be far more than the average hound we adopt out. Once again, any donations to contribute to their care would be very appreciated.

Here’s how you can donate to MNGR.

Here’s a couple of our shy babies:

Paige

Pilot

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Long-lost dog mama

February 6, 2012

Here I am! Yep, I’m still alive. Sorry it has been such a long time since I put up a new post. The new (human) children have more than settled in, so thanks for your patience in the meantime.

Whenever I have brought a new kiddo home from China, my biggest fear is how they will handle the dogs, since in the vast majority of cases, the kids growing up in orphanages there have never interacted with (or maybe never even seen in real life) any kind of dog. Let alone a dog who is as tall as they are — or taller! With Sunshine (my first daughter, adopted in 2009 at age 4), we had the hardest time. She was in sheer mortal terror for 5 days after she came home. Meaning, if she so much as glimpsed one of the dogs in another room, she would begin shrieking at the top of her lungs until it was out of sight. But on the 5th day, she woke up and decided “Okay, I’m over it.” I remember getting out of the shower and hearing her crying… I went out to see what was up, and there was Lloyd sitting on the couch with her — dogs all around. I said, “What the heck are you doing??” We had been keeping them separate, and trying to ease her into it in very small doses. He said, “She is crying because I will not let her sit on top of Brad.” And from then on she has been fine with the dogs. Her favorite is Tobey — our big, black 12-year-old who is almost totally inert and sleeps through most anything. For some reason she loves him, and when she leaves for school in the morning she will often say to me, “Mommy, you take care Tobey for me while I gone, so he not be sad, okay?”

Maisy (adopted in 2010, also at age 4) had no fear whatsoever. In fact, that child has no fear of anything. (We keep saying this will serve her well in 20 years, but for now — holy crap!) She waded right into the sea of dog faces at the gate on her first day home, saying “Ohhhh, doggies!” (in Mandarin). In addition to her generally fearless personality, Maisy had been raised in a foster family. So she may actually have been around dogs before, although we will never know for sure since at the time she didn’t have the words to tell us, and now she has almost totally forgotten her life there.

Milo and Poppy were in the middle of those 2 extremes, but on the milder side. They cried a bit for a day or two when the dogs would get too close to them, but it was blessedly minimal. Now they are totally over it, although we are still working on how to be gentle and all that good stuff.

Right now we have 9 dogs here with us…. The 8 personal dogs (Tobey, Chester, Brad, Hank, Eyore, Tigger, Boozer and Beaut), plus an “adoptable” named Mr. Peabody (aka Petey). Petey is a special case, and probably will never be adopted. He is just barely 2 years old, and never raced. He has a spinal injury that causes him to walk a bit wobbly (although he can run full-out — it just looks goofy), and also causes him to be incontinent for urine and semi-incontinent for feces. At my house he gets let out frequently and wears washable diapers at all times. MNGR’s vet says that he needs an MRI (about $1500) to determine the extent of the injury and whether surgery might help. If surgery IS an option, that would run another $3-$4K. We just don’t have the means to provide that for Pete-Feet. He is happy, and in no discomfort. He just is not housetrainable. But he is just THE SWEETEST boy around. Sunshine loves to play with him, and he loves to play with her too. He goes bananas playing with toys and running around. He also likes to snuggle, and always needs to stand with his head between your knees.

The rest of MNGR’s adoptables are in foster homes, or down with Kelly & Brad in Rochester. Kelly & Brad have been doing a FABULOUS job of getting dogs adopted! They’ve already placed 5 hounds since the start of the new year. So a big thank you to those guys for their hard work!!

Please come hang out with MNGR at a Meet n Greet sometime! The website schedule is newly updated. We are also doing the Twin Cities Pet Expo again this year at the Convention Center in Minneapolis. The dates this year are March 24-25. We’d love some volunteers, or just come visit our booth.

Oh, and if you will be out of town and need someone to watch your hounds, I have a new page on the website with info on boarding here at the “House of Roo” (aka Jen’s house).  http://www.minnesotagreyhoundrescue.org/boarding.htm

Hope everyone is having a great 2012! I’ll be trying to post more often and keep y’all up to date on MNGR’s happenings. Thanks everybody!