Archive for the ‘New Dogs’ Category

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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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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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Well, hello!

August 2, 2011

Long time, no blog. Summers get crazy around here…It’s MNGR’s busiest time both for events and for adoptions. We’ve checked off most of our major Summer gigs, including Marketfest, Highlandfest, and Pride. Still to come are the State Fair and Jesse James Days in Northfield.

We’ve also been busy on the home front. Our kidlets go to Montessori over the Summer, where they (hopefully) learn stuff and go on field trips and play soccer. They’re also in a kiddie taekwondo program called Little Ninjas, and we spend a ton of time at the martial arts school. But the biggest news is that sometime this month we’ll be adding two more humans to our pack – a little guy and a little gal, both 4-ish years old. We are battening down the hatches. This includes preparing for Lloyd to go on a 3-week trip to China, and then come home to an undoubtedly chaotic adjustment period. We may be slow to process adoptions during this time, or be forgetful about responding to emails. But keep bugging us and we’ll get to it. Excuse the brain mush — it’ll pass. At least until we have 4 teenagers…

We’ve gotten a number of dogs from Kansas this summer, and we really appreciate the Kansas-area connections that we’ve been making. They are sending us 5 new pups on Thursday; 3 boys and 2 girls. One of the girls is 7, and might be a brood momma. 7 is a great age to adopt a hound – they are still young enough to act like puppies now and again, but also settled.

There will be one boy in the bunch that we are reserving ONLY for our past adopters or past greyhound owners with references from another group. He is a special boy and unfortunately boys like him generate interest just based on appearance.  He deserves someone who wants him for who he is, not for his beautiful baby blue coat. If any of our members are interested, shoot me an email asap.

Some of our longest-term residents still wait for families because they aren’t cat-tolerant. If you are a catless home, please do consider one of these guys. Beaut and Dudley have both been living in the main house with our family dogs. They are perfect dogs. Very different personalities from one another, but both perfect just the same. I’m going to have a very hard time parting with them, and they need truly special forever families after this long wait. Anyone who adopts either of them will be getting a priceless gift.

Maker (who we’ve decided to call Jake, since Maker is really kind of a no-name name) still waits as well. He’s just a nice guy all around. Kind of a klutz, kind of a goofball, with nothing but good intentions. Unless you are a cat. We’re looking into a urinary issue with him, but it should be fixable. He’s such a pretty boy and so good-natured, he really ought to have a family by now. He’s been living part-time in our main house (he’d be in full-time if there weren’t already 9 dogs in here), and gets along with everyone including the 2-legged kids. He is SO excited to be allowed in here that he’s just beside himself. He wants a family so badly.

Then there is Gal. Can’t believe she has waited so long. Beautiful, photogenic fawn girl – but alas, a cat eater. She’s an alpha girl, so needs to be an only female. But she has personality to spare. She would be a true companion for someone. When we show her, she comes roaring out like a freight train, so excited to meet whoever it is. But give her a few minutes and she calms right down. When she’s in the house, she lays on the couch just like all the others, like she owns the place.

Of course we also have Gina (cute little black girl), Jilly (silly fawn brindle), and Fisher (SWEET black boy, slightly timid). Is that everyone?  Feel like I’m forgetting somebody…

Anyway! Now that we have our remodeled kennel, we will generally have a bit more room for boarders (unless a new haul has just come in). Depending on the population here at the time, boarding dogs either stay in the main house with our personal pets or in their own pen in the kennel (with turnout playtimes, etc). We’ve never set a price before, and have always left the donation up to the owner. However, with increased interest, we have decided to set a Suggested Donation of $15/day for the 1st dog, $12/day for the 2nd dog, 3rd dog and up $10/day depending on space. It is ALWAYS limited space and first-come-first-reserved. We only take greyhounds. Other dogs are on an extremely limited case-by-case basis, as we sometimes have greyhounds here who are not good with other breeds. Of course you are welcome to make an extra donation to the rescue if you wish, including material donations such as Kirkland dog food, large beds, etc.

In other news… If you are new to the blog, or new to dog adoption, please check out this article. It was featured this week on Yahoo!’s Lifestyles homepage. Feel free to pass it around to anyone who is thinking of getting a dog. Just a few things to keep in mind when making that decision, based on the many “bouncebacks” we’ve seen in our 10 years of adoption and rescue:

10 Reasons NOT to Get a Dog

OOH! I almost forgot the most exciting new news! Well, for me anyway – haha. A very nice, generous family has donated a 1998 Chevy Astro (that we affectionately call Astrid) to MNGR. Yes – out of the blue. We were floored. We just got her on Friday, and are still amazed that someone just gave her to us. So now MNGR has a “fleet”! We can pick up dogs from the vet AND do a home visit! We can have one van at an event, and transport hounds to and from with the other van. It is just too cool. THANK YOU SO MUCH – if you are reading this!

One last note before I close…

We are deeply sorry for the passing of one of our adoptees, Deja Vu, in July. She was lost to heat stroke, and her family misses her very much. She was only 3 years old. You were loved, Deja!

Please let Deja’s story save a life, and review the signs of heat stroke. It has been downright nasty weather, so please be careful and keep your pups inside as much as possible.

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Tomorrow’s Meet n Greet and other catch-up

October 15, 2010

Tomorrow (Saturday) there will probably be no Meet n Greet at the Richfield Petsmart.  We have our kiddo’s Christmas card photos, and I haven’t been able to find anyone else to do it for us.  So unless I get a taker at the last minute, assume cancellation.

Things have been on the crazy side around here as usual.  Last weekend we received 4 new dogs from Daytona.  Poor Daytona has over 250 dogs waiting to be adopted or moved outside of Florida to other groups, and around 70 of those have broken legs.  The 4 that MNGR received have repaired broken hocks.  All are in good shape, though, and healing well.  My personal favorite is a little dark brindle boy named Horton.  I hope to get them up on Petfinder soon.

We also received two “bounceback” dogs: Sady and Boots.  Their family had to relinquish them due to the economy.  Sady is a small white female who is very shy but has a lot of potential.  Boots is a dark brindle playful girl.  They too should be up on Petfinder pretty soon.  Right now they are being fostered in Rochester.

On the homefront, we’ve had a couple sickies here.  Eyore went in to have 9 teeth extracted, and did very well.  Until the next day when his head swelled up like a football, making him look like a Bull Terrier/Greyhound mix.  Then the following night around 10:30pm, he popped a clot in his mouth and gushed blood like a fountain for about 2 hours.  So that was fun!

On the same day, I had Tobey in for a swollen wrist.  Thought he had a slipped pin from a 2007 break.  The x-ray showed nothing, but we noticed that he had some bruising on his belly.  Did some bloodwork, and Dr M said something that gave me a nice big shock: “He needs a blood transfusion!”  She had on her serious face, so I had Lloyd come over and take Tobey to the specialty clinic in Blaine.  He had 1000 platelets (normal for a greyhound is about 125,000) and was at a huge bleeding risk.

After a bunch of tests, including a bone marrow biopsy, a lymph node aspiration, tick titers, ultrasounds and more x-rays, we have decided to call it immune-mediated thrombocytopenia.  Basically, his immune system went nuts and started attacking his platelets, but we don’t know why.  He’s been on prednisone and doxycycline, and they are slowly climbing again.  He had 31,000 on Tuesday, and will be tested again this afternoon.  Strangely, Tobey has felt totally fine through all of this.  Somehow his body has been compensating, but we were watching carefully for seizures or other symptoms that could indicate internal bleeding into his brain or organs.  Scary stuff!

My big concern for the past couple days has been my greyhound “crush,” Larry.  He’s a 12.5 boy who is not mine, but whom I love and adore.  He was attacked by a cat and is having a very hard time of it.  His family almost lost him yesterday, but today he seems to be making some gains.  So, please send all good thoughts to my sweetheart Larry!!

That’s all the update I have time for today, but hoping to write more soon.

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July

July 29, 2010

Seems like everytime I start a blog entry lately, I have to begin by noting how much time has passed since my last blog entry.  What can I say?  Summers around here are crazy.  We’ve made it through all the June and July events, including the long Highlandfest weekend.  Tonight is the last Thursday of Marketfest in White Bear Lake.  In August we have a bit of a break from festivals, but then we have the MN State Fair, Jesse James Days in Northfield, and a Como Zoo event piled up.  That should take us right up to the end of Minnesota’s decent weather season.

Adoptions have slowed down a bit.  Unfortunately we’ve had a bit of a run where people submit apps and then never respond to my emails back to schedule a time.  I always wonder why that happens.  Did they change their minds?  Seems strange that they’d bother to fill out our loooong app if they weren’t pretty darn sure they wanted a greyhound.  Did they get a dog elsewhere during the (generally short, but sometimes 7-10 day) lag between application and our trying to schedule them for a visit?  Wish people would at least let me know what happened so I wouldn’t wonder.

Anyway, on the upside, it looks like Blue has found a family via Highlandfest.  They met her there and hopefully will be taking her home next week or the following.  She’s sweet, but black, so has had to wait a bit longer.

We’ve gotten some new faces in, including a sweet guy named Edgar who was adopted within a week.  Check our Petfinder page to see pic of the shy but adorable Fisher, perky and funny Riser, and playful Gal.  All likely to be cat tolerant.

Poor Beaut still waits for a family.  He is not cat tolerant, but he is a love and a half.  Anyone want to give him a chance??

On the home front, things have been rough for our dear Apollo.  I mentioned in the last post that he was moving a bit more uncomfortably than usual.  Well, it didn’t seem to let up, so we decided to knock him out and do some xrays.  The pain seemed to be in his lower back or hips, so that’s what we shot.  Good news is, there are no obvious signs of metastasis at the time of the xrays.  Bad news is, of course, that it could just not be showing up on the xrays yet but still be there.

Anyway, we decided to operate under the hypothesis that he just tweaked his back somehow, and I took him for some chiropractic and acupuncture.  The chiro vet said he needed some “major adjustments” because he needs to carry his front end twisted in order to make his one front leg fall in the middle of his body.  So, she adjusted him.

The next day, he could not walk.  He was moving worse than he was the day after his leg amputation.  I was worried that the chiro vet had cracked a vertebrae or something.  We gave him some morphine for pain, and waited.  The next day, he still couldn’t walk, so I (unfortunately) gave him another dose of morphine, not wanting him to be in pain.  He was panting and whining (and he NEVER whines), and I was in a panic.

I called the chiro vet, but she was out that day.  They passed me off to another vet in the practice, who promptly told me about 30 seconds into the conversation that I ought to consider euthanasia.  WHAT???  So, I called the fabulous Dr. M at 8AM at home on her day off, nearly in tears.  I told her what that other vet had said, and her jaw dropped to the floor.  She was mad!  Went on about how she has never in her career said that to a client without seeing the dog in person, even if it was a dog she had known for 10 years.

Again, Dr M talked me down off my ledge.  She told me that it was completely plausible that the chiropractic had knocked him on his ass like that.  But, she listened to him over the phone breathing, and told me that his panting and whining was a classic morphine side effect.  So!  Unfortunately I had just given him more morphine a half hour before, so all we could do was wait it out and see how he was moving once the morphine was out of his system.  I now have this valuable piece of information about Apollo: He does NOT metabolize narcotics well!  It took over 24 hours to get that 12-hr extended release morphine tablet out of his system.  And once he was no longer in la-la land, he actually was doing a lot better.  There was a point during the night when we tried to wake him up to go potty, thinking the morphine should have worn off by then, when he simply could not control his legs.  I thought I had paralyzed my dog.  So come the next evening, when he was able to get up and move around, I was completely and totally relieved.

That all happened about a week ago.  He’s back up and about again, around the level he was at prior to the chiro appointment.  We still feel like there is something going on with him, but don’t know what it is.  He had a massage last night (yes, they have  doggie massage therapists) and the gal who did it said all his muscles were really tight and spasming.  So!  We basically don’t know whether he really does have underlying spinal mets, or whether he just tweaked his back and now his muscles are all cramped up.  Clearly, we are hoping the massage makes a difference.  I’m sending his rads off to a radiologist anyhow, hoping for good news.

Everyone else at home is doing fine.  I’ve been missing my Old Guard lately, though.  Had a dream one night that my Crisco was alive again, and I just held him and held him.  It was a very vivid and realistic dream.  Wonderful to be with him again, even if only for that ethereal time.  I’ve also been back to work on the portrait of Sly that I started so long ago (but went months without working on), so that has put him in my thoughts a lot as well.  I’ve been so lucky to have all these guys in my life.

Well, I have a lot more to say, but not the time to say it today.  Hopefully soon!

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And so it goes.

May 5, 2010

It always seems strange to me that life keeps going on after these losses.  How can the world continue to move without one as wonderful and loved as Whitey?  As Crisco, or Tanner, or Sly?  But somehow, the sun rises the next day and the other dogs need to go outside, the human kids need to be taken care of, and my inbox fills up with emails to be answered.

The day after we lost Little White, we were due to meet a haul of Daytona dogs.  So we have added 5 pups to our roster here… All came in pretty rough shape, skinny and full of ticks and fleas.  But all are very pretty and sweet dogs.  We got 3 females and 2 males.  Hoping to have time to take their photos this evening and then I can get them up on Petfinder.  I ran them up to the vet on Monday, so they are all ready to go.  One has even been moved into her foster home already for some TLC and fattening up.

On Sunday, we had a casual greyhound playdate here (I will post some photos below) to celebrate the memory of beautiful Whitey by remembering all the greyhounds who still need us.  There was lots of sniffing and exploring, a bit of running, and everyone was good and exhausted by the time they came home.

Monday was Whitey’s cremation service.  Since we learned that it was possible to have attended cremations for pets, we have done that for all of our dogs.  We use a place in Edina where you can place some special items with your loved one and then be there as they are placed in the crematory.  It gives you a chance to say goodbye one last time, and keep them from being “alone” when their bodies leave the world.  With Whitey, we sent a handful of dirt from his digging hole and a small white rock that I found in there that morning; six dandelions from his yard (one for each month he was with us); his blue tripawd t-shirt that matches Apollo’s; a pillow from our couch that I always used to prop up his head; a photo of him with his whole family; and an Arby’s roast beef sandwich.  I was glad to be able to kiss him one last time.

Yesterday, Apollo went in to resume his chemo treatments.  His incision is finally, finally healed up!  Finally!  He is looking good.  He’s at a good weight, and he did well during his treatment.  He happily ate dinner last night, but I expect he won’t have much appetite today.  I have some Cerenia to use, so we will see.  I am relieved to finally be getting back to his chemo.  He’ll have 5 treatments including yesterday’s.

In other news…  I didn’t want to say anything when it happened, because I didn’t want to take away from White’s story.  But we added a new family member to the pack.  Yes, we decided to take Tigger’s listing down off of Petfinder and make him permanent.

I had not really spent any time around him until about a week and a half ago.  Our Rochester coordinator Kelly brought him up from his Rochester foster home so that I could show him to an applicant who lives in the Twin Cities.  Well, the applicant decided that she could not have a barker (she is in an apartment), and a barker he is.  He was in my house for 10 minutes and I knew he was not leaving.  I called Lloyd and told him I was taking his listing down so no one else would apply for MY DOG.

Tigger is 8 years old (young, by our standards) and terribly sweet.  He is never more than 2 feet from me – a champion snuggler.  He wags his tail nonstop, and is ridiculously food-motivated.  He has quite a lot to say, and makes a range of sounds.  He isn’t a problem barker here, although he certainly does talk more than our others.  I love him already and he is perfect for our family.

In Whitey’s last couple days, I was able to take a couple photos of Tigger attempting to snuggle with him.  Tigger will snuggle with anyone who will allow it, and few of our other dogs will!

Here he is:

And some pics from the playdate:

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Catch up

March 26, 2010

I have been shamefully ignoring this blog, I’m afraid.  We’ve been trying to get into a routine with our new family member, while taking care of all the family members (2-legged, 3-legged, 4-legged, permanent and foster).  But I am hopeful that things are starting to settle down a little.

Side note: My A key is sticking, so I apologize for any typos that I fail to correct.

Let’s see, where to start?

Well, I’m not sure whether I mentioned this before or not, but we got 2 sweet new adoptable boys from Iowa on the day Lloyd left for China.  Their names are Buddy and Pike, and both are sweet and very handsome guys.  Buddy has dreamboat eyes.  We will be cat-testing them tomorrow.

What else?  Aero has found a new family, and Daughtry has his home visit tonight and will probably be adopted.  We’re very happy for them!

We also have a very special new adoptable boy named Tigger.  He is 8 years old and had been in a home for 5 years.  They gave him up through no fault of his own (they said they wanted to “simplify their lives”), and he needs a second chance.  In my house, 8 years old is YOUNG!  While there are no guarantees in life, Tigger probably has lots of time to give to a new family.  He is sweet and snuggly and friendly and cat-safe.  He does have a lot to say, so might not be a good choice for someone in an apartment, although this may be partially stress-related given that he has just lost his family.  He is being fostered in Rochester right now, so please let me know if you would like to meet him.  If I could talk Lloyd into an 8th greyhound, he’d be here right now.

In our personal pack, I’m afraid the tripawds have had a bit of a rough go lately.  I took them for chemo last Tuesday, and Apollo was not able to have his treatment because his incision was still not healed up.  There was about a quarter-sized spot that just would not close up.  The tissue at the “Y” part of his incision had become necrotic, and we decided to put him back under to debride it and resuture it.  The vet actually did this while Whitey had his chemo treatment, and it took her less than half an hour.  Apollo has felt better since then and his appetite has come back.  I was starting to worry about his weight, but he has been eating well lately.  OSU wants us to wait until that has totally healed before continuing his chemo, so he has still only had one treatment, and won’t be having his scheduled chemo next week either.

Whitey did have his treatment last Tuesday and it hit him really hard.  He was “off” on Tuesday evening, and each day I hoped that he would perk back up, but he continued to slide downhill until Friday.  When Lloyd got home from work on Friday, we discussed and decided that he was definitely worse.  We called Dr Meaghan and she told us to take him to the e-vet.  Meaghan *never* says that, so when she does, I listen!  I took him up to the Blaine vet that did his amputation, since they actually see dogs who are doing chemo (the other e-vet probably does not).  They thought I was a little odd, because I walked in there knowing the blood values from his last CBC off the top of my head, as well as his temp, heart rate, and chemo drug…but oh well.  They are good there and we like all the techs.  Unfortunately they had a lot of serious emergencies that night and we ended up getting triaged until like 2AM.

When we got there, he was very weak and could barely stand, had a fever and a rapid pulse.  But his blood values didn’t look all that bad, although he clearly had gotten some infection going (which is easy to do when you are immuno-suppresed from chemo).  So they gave him a huge bolus of fluids subcutaneously and some antibiotics to go home with.  He slept like a lump from the time we got home until 5pm the next day, and has gotten gradually perkier ever since.  He is back to his old self now, thank goodness.  He was actually digging a hole in the yard yesterday with is one front leg.

And speaking of our turnout yard…  We broke down and hired Pet Yard Pickup to do a “spring cleanup” yesterday.  We had been trying to keep up with the poop ourselves, but over the winter it was impossible.  While Lloyd was in China, everything melted and we had poop soup out there.  It was disgusting.  Neither of us has time to deal with it right now, so we gave up and threw money at it.

Well….We are glad we did, because the poop professionals picked up 34 bags at 60 pounds each of poop!!!  They said we were the biggest single-yard job that they had ever had in 21 years of business.  A dubious honor indeed.  I’m going to take a photo of all the poop bags later today and I’ll post it.  If anyone local is looking for a great poop service, we love Pet Yard Pickup, and they definitely gave us a discounted price.

That’s all I’ve got time for at the moment, but I hope to get back into the swing now and update more frequently.