Dear Fellow Dog Lovers,
I never get tired of seeing children reading to our shelter dogs and I hope you don’t, either. When I arrived at WHS on Sunday, the kids were setting up and picking out the first dogs they wanted to read to. Once they were settled, I snapped a few pictures.
I’m not sure who enjoys this time more, the kids or the dogs.
Need a couch buddy—someone you can watch “Dogumentaries” with? (Get it?!?)
Grady is a senior boy, about eight, and is an American Staffordshire Terrier mix. He was found as a stray and came to us from another shelter. He is a very calm, gentle dog. He was very serious when I first met him, looking at me with soulful eyes.
Although we don’t know anything about his past, Grady has won our hearts and we have learned several things about him. He is quite thin and needs to put on a few pounds. He has some older dog characteristics like a possible early cataract in one eye and a graying face. But if you are looking for an uncomplicated, easy-going boy who will be happy just to hang out with you, Grady may be your perfect fit. He walks very well on leash, takes treats gently and is very much a “people dog.” In playgroups he’s not been interested in romping, but mingles. He has corrected dogs who have been too forward with him. He would need to meet any dog he’d be living with, to make sure they respected his boundaries. Because of his age, he is rated for kids about thirteen and above.
After spending a little time with us, Grady started to relax and looked less worried.
Marianne is one of his biggest fans.
We decided to take him into Mary’s Place to see if he’d like to play with some toys. He didn’t, but we discovered he knows several commands like shake and down.
He is very affectionate and likes cheese.
When we hid some cheese bits in a food toy, he was determined to find every morsel.
Grady is going to be a wonderful family dog and we’re hoping a family who wants to give a sweet boy a relaxing retirement will scoop him up.
I’m new here and I’m ready for my new family! Hope you come soon!
The first thing you notice about Rocky is his eyes. They are blue and earnest. The second thing you notice is his smile. Rocky is a five-year-old mixed breed boy who is eager, happy and sometimes a clown.
Rocky was transferred to us from another shelter where he didn’t get adopted. He is hoping that he’ll find his forever home here. We don’t think that Rocky has had an easy life. He has some old, now-healed injuries. But whatever happened to our boy, he doesn’t hold a grudge and is a joy to be around. Rocky walks well on leash, knows some commands, and is treat-motivated. He has done well in playgroups, but should meet any dog he would live with. He seems to be sensitive in his back end, but tolerant of all other touching. He is rated for children about 13 and older. He seemed to enjoy posing for pictures with Ayla.
I had to go take some pictures of another dog and saw this as I came back to Mary’s Place.
Rocky is a delightful character and for an active family, he will make a wonderful companion. He is eager to learn new things, would love to go on any adventures you’d like to take him on, and is happy just being with his peeps. We hope he’ll be adopted very soon.
I’m spending a little time away from the shelter with some friends, but I’m still available for adoption!
Rufus is one of our long-termers, having been at WHS since July. This wonderful boy has not found his perfect family fit yet, though I have written about him several times.
But while he waits for his new family, Rufus has gotten to go on adventures with volunteers and recently he was invited to spend a couple of weeks in a WHS volunteer’s home. He is loving his time away and sent me this report from his temporary foster host, Chris.
“Rufus is an extremely happy boy and incredibly affectionate. From the moment I first met him it was obvious that he loves people. He wants to greet everyone, but despite his enthusiasm he never jumps up and keeps ‘four on the floor’ when first meeting people. In the house he always wants to be with me and almost never leaves my side. He loves to give kisses and to cuddle. He loves curling up in a lap more than anything and prefers to sleep beside me. He took an instant liking to everyone in the family. Despite clearly wanting attention and love, he has had no problems being left alone in the house. The first time I left him alone he barked once—one little yip—when I left and then never again (I waited outside in the car to see if he would keep barking). He has not shown any interest in chewing on furniture or anything else and is most content when he’s curled up on the couch next to me. He likes toys but doesn’t go nuts for them; he would prefer to just sniff and explore the yard or else get petting and scratches from me.”
“Rufus is a lot of dog, and his enthusiastic love could get overwhelming for some people. He would really prefer to lick you all over. He has calmed down a bit in the time he has been with me, so I think that he might acclimate to a new home fairly quickly. He sometimes flinches when touched unexpectedly, especially on the head. He has never snapped or acted like he was in pain, but I suspect that he has been hit in the past.”
In the spirit of total disclosure, Chris is working on Rufus’ reactivity, something we have also seen at the shelter. “Dogs, cars, bicycles all cause him to bristle. He does also pull to some degree even when there is not another dog around, though I found it easy to correct this by simply taking a few steps backwards. I was also able to get him to reliably heel and walk beside me at my pace if I kept a treat in my hand and treated him regularly. Overall we really love Rufus; he is a very sweet dog.”
We will keep working with Rufus on his reactivity when he comes back to the shelter. Anyone who adopts him will need to continue to help him overcome this behavior, but he is so worth the effort.
To read more about Rufus and see more pictures, check out my December 18th post here: Rufus
I wrote about our senior bonded pair, Frankie and Churro last week. You can read all about them here: Frankie & Churro
We couldn’t resist taking them in Mary’s Place on Sunday just to have some laughs. And laugh we did. These two are such a hoot and will bring such joy to some lucky family.
Stella was adopted last week, but she kept us in stitches while she was at the shelter.
We have two wonderful updates this week!
Remember our sweet Moose whose tongue is too big for his mouth, so constantly hangs out a bit? He waited for his perfect family for so long, but the wait was worth it!
His family adores him and sent me this update. And who knew that Moose has a favorite musical?! We never thought to ask him.
“What to start with…. he is the best couch potato and loves watching Sound of Music with me. And when it’s time to wrestle or go on walks around a quiet neighborhood, he also is the best man to have around for that, too. He is not protective of his food or his toys, but he really hates cats and would love to chase them. I am looking for a canine friend for him to play around with. I know he probably misses having a companion that understands why smelling EVERY SINGLE BUSH HE PASSES BY is so important to him. The search will continue as the year goes on.
He does protect his home very well. If there is any movement or noise outside the door, he growls and/or barks. And at first, he even barked at my boyfriend until he gave him many treats to gain his trust. Now they are good friends, but it is clear Moose and I have a closer bond. I go to the bathroom and he waits outside the door for me. I go to bed early and he comes and snuggles with me instead of staying with Evan on the couch watching him play games. That either means I am his person, or he really actually wants to be in the spacious, soft bed. He isn’t allowed on it unless we go to bed. Moose really is the family member I was looking for: easygoing, clumsy, cuddly, spastic, loving and most of all, handsome. He is quite a charming gentleman and I am very lucky to have him in my life. Thank you for your time and work with him.”
Elle won our hearts the moment we met her. She was gentle, knew stuff, and was an absolute sweetheart. We were sure she wouldn’t be at the shelter long and we were right. Once again, we are grateful for adopters who don’t care that she is eight years old.
I was so happy to get this update from her new family this week.
“We had such a hole in our hearts when we lost our yellow lab a year ago. Then I went to WHS and found Elle—a senior dog with a slight limp, but you couldn’t ask for a more beautiful soul. She goes on walks and hikes with us, made herself right at home with us and our family, and is still working on trying to win over our two cats. We couldn’t be more happy with her. She has, in just a few short days with us, filled that hole with all the love that she can. Thank you so much WHS.”
On those happy notes, 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