Dear Fellow Dog Lovers,
I’m starting this post in an unusual way. I’m going to tell you about an adoption-to-be on Friday. If you are a regular reader of my posts, you know Pam well; you also know volunteer Linda well. This is their story.
When Pam arrived at WHS in April on a transfer from our sister shelter in Hawaii, she was fearful, shy, and bewildered. This picture was taken on her first full day in Oregon, tail tucked, ears back, and body tense, with Gail.
Almost immediately, Linda took Pam under her wing, which is typical of Linda with dogs needing extra understanding. Slowly, Pam began to trust, then love Linda.
Linda did her best to talk herself out of adopting Pam, as she already had a full house of dogs.
We were all excited when Pam finally got adopted in July, but it turned out not to be the right fit, and she was returned. She was very happy to see Linda again.
Linda decided to foster Pam at home until she got adopted. Pam fit nicely into Linda’s pack and everyone got along. Still, Linda wasn’t sure about taking on one more dog, and a young one at that. But sometimes a dog picks her person rather than the other way around. And Pam had decided. So on Friday, Linda and Pam will come to the shelter to do the paperwork so that Pam is officially adopted. Pam’s many, many fans both in Maui and here, are over the moon for our sweet girl. And Linda has one more happy dog in her pack!
I’ve been an outdoor dog my whole life. Can you teach me to be an indoor dog now?
Maggie is a three-year-old German Shepherd mix with a few special needs in her next home. She is a beautiful, sweet girl!
Maggie has been an outdoor dog her whole life. She is really looking forward to spending some time with her new peeps indoors, once she feels comfortable in such different surroundings. We don’t think that will take too long, as she thoroughly enjoyed her time in Mary’s Place with us and settled right in on the couch and LOVED the GFB (Giant Fluff Ball).
Maggie will need a cat-free home. Her former family used her for hunting of small animals, so her prey drive for such is strong. Because she was an only dog out in the country, having limited experience with other dogs, she has been fearful around shelter dogs, so for now, anyway, needs to be dog solo in her new home. Maggie is a happy, friendly girl, eager for petting and attention. She had her first car ride when she came to the shelter and found it very exciting. She can be nervous around strangers at first, but we found her to warm up very quickly. Though she’s been around some children and done well, staff is asking for her to go to an adult-only home, as she will have many adjustments to make to a new kind of life as it is.
While Maggie needs to go home with understanding peeps who will help her adjust to a new way of life—including walking on leash without pulling—she will be so worth the effort! And to help, the shelter is giving her new family a free Dog Smart class, a free 30-minute lesson and a 50%-off cost of a 90-minute consultation with one of our trainers. She already knows some commands like sit and down and is eager to learn many more. Having been an outdoor-only dog, her owners said she was not house-trained; however her shelter kennel is always clean.
And if you are looking for a dog who loves to play fetch, here she is! We took her to a yard and she had a blast!
Maggie isn’t picky about what kind of ball she fetches, either.
Maggie is also quite the story teller.
After the yard games, we settled down for some blanket time, and Maggie relaxed right along with us.
Maggie may need some time to adjust and learn some new skills, but oh, what a delightful family companion she will be for some lucky peeps!
Next, I’m going to tell you about two of our recent transfers from Hawaii.
I’m new here, but I’m really liking Oregon! Can’t wait to find my Oregon family!
Our new Maui dogs arrived last week, so I got to meet them for the first time on Sunday. Reeves is a five-year-old Pointer/Cattle Dog mix. He was shy at first meeting, looking very serious and a bit worried.
But it wasn’t long before he relaxed and warmed up.
Reeves was a favorite at the Maui shelter. Here’s what they had to say about this sweet dog:
Reeves is one special boy—handsome, friendly, smart, and affectionate. He has done very well in play group, got an A+ on his first Beach Buddies outing, and has been stellar in his kennel, the perfect gentleman. He was surrendered when his owners moved but they said he was ‘loving, sweet, house-trained, loves toys, going on walks and cuddling.’ He is a terrific dog.
Here’s what his Beach Buddy wrote after an outing:
“Reeves was very calm, quiet and well-behaved. He traveled well in the car, loved jumping in the waves and rolling in the sand. He knows sit and up, got very excited when he saw kids on the beach. He is a GREAT dog.”
Marianne and I could not agree more! Reeves loves people and is rated for kids about ten and older, due to his size. He is house-trained. We decided to try him with some blanket time and he enjoyed hanging out with us. Reeves went to playgroup on Monday and did great! He loved romping with the other dogs.
Reeves has the most soulful, beautiful eyes.
He seemed to want some reassurance in this strange new state.
I love his smile.
Some family is going to be mighty lucky to adopt this Hawaiian boy!
I’m from Hawaii, too! Yes, I look like Reeves, but I’m not him!
We think Mac is a Staffordshire Terrier/Lab mix. He is a big boy at 65 pounds, with a lot of energy.
We decided to start Mac out in a yard and see what he thought of playing fetch. He is a fetch dog through and through.
Like Reeves, Mac was also a favorite at Maui. Here’s what they wrote about him:
“Mac is a heartier version of Reeves—a little more meaty but coincidentally just as friendly, affectionate, good looking, and smart as his shelter mate. Mac is a big marshmallow, just as sweet as he can be, with polite kennel manners. He is a gentle giant who will win you over with his eager expressions. Are we going on a walk now? I smell Oscar Mayer’s! Do you think I could catch a fly with my tongue? He is going to be a wonderful addition to the family, a good balance of energy and serenity. I think we could all use a Mac in our lives!”
Mac is rated for kids about ten and older and is house-trained.
After our active fetch games, we took a break in the shade and this happened.
Yes, he got some cheese for that pose. Then we had some blanket time.
We are hoping that both of these Maui dogs are adopted into their new Oregon homes very quickly.
We have a wonderful update and a tribute to a very special dog this week.
I met Gunner in August of 2014. Here he was with Jolene at that time.
Gunner was four years old and a happy dog who loved playgroups and people. But he was also nervous and afraid in new situations when he felt uncomfortable. He was adopted once, but returned because of his fearfulness. We worried about him getting adopted again, knowing he needed an understanding and patient family. We didn’t need to worry. Finally in October, Gunner found his perfect people. I was thrilled when I got this update last week.
“Five years ago we adopted Gunner. At the time we had two other dogs. This was our first time owning a pit-mix breed. We wondered how they would all get along. Gunner fit right in. He was shy and nervous at first, but each day he became more and more sure of himself. Since adopting him we lost both of his buddies, but he still has three cat buddies that he puts up with. He loves car rides, during which he barks the whole time. Absolutely loves water, we set up a sprinkler for him every summer! And trying to water flowers is a chore with him because he thinks it’s water play time!! His toys, especially squeaky ones, are the best. We do Bark Box for him, and he now knows the box when we bring it in and gets all excited. His person is my husband, and when he’s home, Gunner is attached at his hip!! He’s a little whiter in the face, moves a little slower, but he is a great dog!! The stigma around this breed just breaks my heart. Gunner is such a lover, gives kisses and is just a gentle goof ball!!! So glad we adopted him!!”
Shane was adopted by my friend, Melinda, on March 3, 2003. He had been found as a stray and was a Rottweiler/Doberman Pinscher mix. His adoption was before I started volunteering at WHS, so I didn’t meet Shane until he was much older, in 2013 at the WillaMutt Strut. This is the picture I took of Melinda and Shane on that day.
A few days ago, Melinda sent me this sad, but lovely tribute to Shane. It is just beautiful and anyone who has lost a much-loved dog will understand the heartbreak.
“Seventeen years just wasn’t long enough, Shaney. You have been my constant companion, comfort and friend. You were the perfect poster child for what amazing pets are waiting at shelters and rescues. I will always be grateful to Willamette Humane Society for letting us take you home all those years ago. You adored me and I was so blessed to have you. You raised all of the foster kittens and taught neighborhood kids that dogs are not to be feared. You never met a person or animal that you did not love. Thank you for waiting by the window so faithfully for my return each day, even in your very senior years. Your loyalty was unmatched and I will miss you more than words can say. I expect to see you waiting for me on the porch of heaven, sweet boy. Your Minnie will always love you.”
At times like this, I think of the following quote that I find so true.
“There is a cycle of love and death that shapes the lives of those who choose to travel in the company of animals. It is a cycle unlike any other. To those who have never lived through its turnings or walked its rocky path, our willingness to give our hearts with full knowledge that they will be broken seems incomprehensible. Only we know how small a price we pay for what we receive; our grief, no matter how powerful it may be, is an insufficient measure of the joy we have been given.” ~Suzanne Clothier
That’s it for this week.
All of the dogs I have featured today, along with other terrific dogs waiting to be adopted, can be found at Willamette Humane Society. Here is the link to the adoptable-dog page:
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