Thursday, December 30, 2010

Joey Videos

Some of the videos from Joey's first socialization session. Joey had never had to meet another dog before so Mark carefully negotiation introduction to his pack Kudos, Keno, and Hershey. By the end of the sessions, he was doing pretty well.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Transport Tale - Joey!

Oh my goodness what an adventure!

Joey - One happy and loving lil guy!

First, let me just give a shout out to Google Maps, ... I hate you!    >.>

It took me 2 HOURS to make up for the crap directions which were supposed to take 15 minutes...
Thank you to the gas station attendant, the lady at 7-11, and the 2 other vet clinics who helped me get to my location. (I think I need to invest in a GPS...)

When I finally got to the vet to pick up Joey he was all ready to go. Freshly groomed and bouncing around like a fluffy ping-pong ball, Joey just wanted to run, a lot! Then we discovered our little hitch... no leash and no collar. We made a make-shift collar/leash combo out of the one I keep in my car (for emergencies) and went for a walk before hopping into the car. I figured out a brilliant way to keep him secure, carabiner hook and the metal loop in the back of my car (for bungee cables) used to make an easy to open hook. I secured the handle of the leash in it and he could walk freely but not move past the center console, so he stayed out of my way while driving, but could be comfortable and put his little head on my shoulder when he wanted a pat. He is so sweet with people. Very playful and loving and he truly desires your attention!

Joey in the car sporting his new collar!
We paused at Walgreens just long enough for me to literally run in, ask which aisle for dog collars/leashes, grab one, swipe the card and run back to Joey, who seemed a little concerned as to why I'd left him in the car but was thrilled when he got to try on his new collar. He spent a moment enjoying the new feeling, then returned bouncing.

Once we hit the highway Joey was very calm and would occasionally get up, check that I was still driving, stare at a few other drivers, who stared back, and then he'd lay back down. When I cracked out a few crackers (breakfast!) He got very excited, but when he realized I couldn't share, he just lay down and chilled. No whining, No crying, just relaxed and calm.

When we finally arrived, the first order of business was some run time, and he loved stretching his legs. Then it came time for introductions. Mark brought out Hershey (sweet and gentle old chocolate lab) to meet him first and Joey immediately froze, tensed up, and growled. Lynne, Mark and I all had the same thought and all voiced it, "Ohhh crap this is gonna be interesting...." Joey was now meeting his new foster pack... and was immediately demonstrating no desire to share his new space.

Joey is great with people but isn't socialized, and because of this, is a little stressed when he deals with dogs. Mark carefully negotiated introductions, which took some time (45 minutes for the 3 member pack to meet Joey) but soon Joey was able to be around all 3 while on a lead, no growling, no tension, just observing.

To understand Joey's behavior, imagine you are Joey, who "speaks Spanish" and all the sudden 3 new faces are all speaking English to him (dog language) a language he doesn't understand. They are walking up to him, asking him about who he is, getting in his space, and he can't communicate that he isn't comfortable with this. So he gets upset, which is universal. Mark helped Joey learn dog, and by the end of the hour, Joey had graduated to ESL (English as a second language) and was learning how to play, who was dominant, and how to speak dog. Mark's dogs were amazing at helping Joey learn, and tolerated his outbursts very well. When he'd try to be dominant, they'd turn it into play, when he got tense they'd give him his space until he could handle it. If anyone could help Joey, it is Mark and his pack! He's like the Caesar Millan of Dog Liberator.
Meeting the kids

Joey's next test was meeting the kids. He was very good with meeting the little boy, but when the little girl came out something became very apparent. He'd had a little girl once. His eyes warmed, his posture melted into a happy pose and he wagged from nose to tail. I don't know much about Joey, but I know he likes kids, and misses his little girl. I almost cried seeing him and can only imagine how painful it had to be to be given up, and lose "his people."
Think he's a little happy?

Joey taught me 2 important things:

1. Always have a strong leash and collar with you
            He broke the "in case of emergencies " one when he jumped out of the car!
            Glad I bought him a second at Walgreens!

2. Never give up on a dog.
            Joey fought off Heart worms
            Learned how to be a dog in an hour
           Overcame the loss of his family and stress of the kennel.
           Came back from being very underweight
           and is STILL able to love people again & learn to be a functioning dog, even when we had our doubts.

__________ Click any of the following pictures for a larger version! __________

------------- Before my Visit -------------
From D.L. Page - Skinny lil guy

From D.L. Page
From D.L. Page- waiting for his forever home

From D.L. Page - Anyone wanna bet he'll be able to get away with murder?
------------- During my Visit -------------

Monday, December 20, 2010

Johnny Ray Gets his home!

Well, he had to prove me wrong just one more time. 

I was all excited about seeing him again tomorrow but he turned on the shine and found his forever family today (12/20/10 {well, technically yesterday but shh}) along with his new sibling!

Johnny (left) goes home with his new family and sibling!

Merry Christmas Johnny Ray!!!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Upcoming Transport!

Very excited today! Just found out I'll be giving another Dog Liberator pup a lift! And what's only slightly better then seeing a new dog? Seeing one you've already transported when you get there!

I'll get to see Johnny Ray and introduce him to his new pack brother (A pack which will be notably smaller with out Miami {Mia}, Star, and Sugar Ray, all of whom have found their forever families in time for Christmas!).

What's 5 hours driving when you get to meet some awesome people doing great things, some awesome dogs waiting for their forever families, and you get to be a part of it and change their little lives forever and for the better~

Will update this post soon. Hopefully with some of my own pictures and maybe some video!

Sugar Ray finds his forever home!

As of Dec 18th Sugar Ray got his forever home! 
He went home with Mike and Frayda and was more than happy to hop in the car, see the video  → here ←. Watching that video practically brought a tear to my eye. He just hopped in the car and grinned.

Congratulations boy! 
Merry Christmas!!!

Pictures from right after I transported him and after his bath!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Update: Congratulations Miami!

Miami, now Mia, got her forever home today! Her owners even brought Miami's foster family cookies and brownies to help the fosters cope with the loss of Mia. Mia's new parents recently lost their dog, and decided that they had more then enough love in their heart to bring another home. Mia is still on meds, recovering from a hard time of not wanting to eat but was thrilled to be going home for Christmas. Congrats lil girl.

In other news... someone stole the D.L. Van.... Please pray for it's safe return, and for the soul who thought this was necessary.

I finally cleaned the dog fur out of my car. Johnny Ray and Sugar Ray got a little fur blown out when we were cruising down the highway with the windows down. Both boys are still waiting for their home. May they find their people soon!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Update: Congratulations Star, Bucky, and KitKat

That's right, Star got her forever home today! You might remember I met this spunky lil girl when I dropped off Johnny Ray and Sugar Ray (She was mentioned in this post).

All of the dogs at Dog Liberator  have one Christmas wish this year, their forever families.
Everyday they are patiently waiting for that one special person to come and take them home.

Merry Christmas Star!

Update: and Bucky, and  KitKat (Johnny Ray's little girl) who all got their forever home today! YEY

On the other hand prayers go out to Bailey Boy and his Family (already at his forever home) as he fights for his life over the next few weeks due to a back injury.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Watching Johnny and Sugar Improve (Updated 12/16/10)

I've been watching for updates on "my boys" like a hawk. It's amazing to see the difference already. I can't wait to link in some videos and pictures!

When I first saw Johnny Ray, he was almost a pinkish orange color from the red dirt he'd been living in. He is supposed to be black and white but he was more suited for Halloween. He was skittish,, tucked his tail, and constantly needed encouragement.
Johnny Ray at his new D.L. foster. Looking much better already.

Johnny Ray on the day Dog Liberator pulled him from a shelter
His most recent updates says he's becoming part of the pack and his photos (hopefully soon to be added) show his fur to be a new, bright shade of white.
A video of my boy: Johnny Ray's Video

Sugar Ray, on the other hand, adapted to the pack immediately and is so full of himself. He loves to "sit there and look beautiful" as some of his pictures show (hopefully soon to be added.)

Sugar Ray at his D.L. Foster

The day he made it to Dog Liberator.

UPDATE: The New Improved Sugar Ray
Update 12/16/10: Sugar Ray finally got his much needed make over and now looks sleek and shiny. He looks 5 years younger without all that extra fur.

So nice to see both of my boys doing so well!

Now we just need to get them the BEST Christmas present ever: and amazing new forever home!

See those bright doggy smiles.
::::::::::::::::::::Check out the boys' progress: Sugar Ray and  Johnny Ray ::::::::::::::::::::

Mild Disclaimer: The term, "my boys" does not mean dogs I own. They are the ones I transported and thus "my boys"
---------------------- Also, Photos and film are property of Dog Liberator 

Sunday, December 5, 2010

My First Ride as a Transporter for Dog Liberator

So on Friday I read a post from my favorite dog rescue, Dog Liberator which simply said "we need dogs transported from Orlando to Clearwater if anyone is free!!!!" After following the rescue for over 4 months, I decided to post that I was off if anyone needed me.

The next morning just after 12 noon, I received  an email saying that they needed transport for two of their new guys, Sugar Ray and  Johnny Ray and I would be their driver. I was excited and with in moments of getting the email, brushed my hair, grabbed some road food (muffins, cashews, cookies and soda (stable food and sugar/caffeine)), quickly converted the car (a Subaru wagon) from "family mode" to "haulin mode", and hopped into the car. Within a little over an hour I was meeting with Gisele, her pack, and meeting the boys who I'd be spending the next 3 hours with.

First I met little Johnny Ray. As he walked out of the house he got low, wiggling and promptly velcroed himself to me as I knelt to get on his level. He placed his paws on my knee and I patted him, rubbing his ears and stroking his bony little back. He's pretty skinny but some good meals will fix it in no time. He's a little skiddish and very eager to please. When it was his turn to get into the car he was more then willing and settled right in.

Next I met Sugar Ray who was calm and cheerful even when he met me for the first time. He simply sniffed my hand, wagged his tail, and was ready to hop in the car. He's a big fluff ball right now but he's gonna be one big gentle giant, even when groomed.

We said our goodbyes and were off on our journey. As we drove along, both of my furry friend settled down for the ride. Occasionally I would glance in the rear-view mirror to see who was awake and who was resting. Johnny Ray was often awake, and waiting for me to meet his eyes in the mirror. When I did I'd hear his little tail thumping against his crate happily.

When we arrived at their new foster home it was apparent that they were a little confused about where they were so I stood by the car and talked to them for a bit.  Sugar Ray perked up pretty quickly but Johnny seemed a little concerned about all the new scents and pressed his head against the cage door, encouraging me to reassure him about this new place, and so I did.

Sugar Ray was the first to meet the new foster pack and did very well, calmly greeting each member and wagging tails. Johnny Ray was next and was a little intimidated by his new family. He would sniff a few tails, then retreat back to my hip or his new foster Daddy's side and try to place his paws on our side. We worked on teaching him to sit beside us instead, and within a few moments he was ready to meet a few more people.

I had the chance to meet some awesome dogs who are looking for a good home. The first was Miami who is a quiet, sweet little girl who just needs someone to love. She just stood quietly by me and wagged, waiting for me to pet her. When I failed to do so soon enough she gently bumped my hand with her nose and gave a little lick.  She is a Beautiful girl and will make some lucky owner a great partner.

And then there was Star, who is just a loving little ball of energy. She was running around, playing with anyone who would give her the time of day. She is a little spit-fire and just seems to love life and most definitely intends to make the best of every second of it.

By the time I left, the whole pack, including Sugar Ray and Johnny Ray, were running around the yard, tails wagging, playing follow the leader (and in Star's case, drag the follower by their leash.)

I was told I'd done them a great favor by driving these two little boys to their new foster home because it made room for two new little border collie pups, one with a broken leg, the other deaf. Really, I should be thanking them for the privilege of meeting these inspirational dogs, all of whom have face hard times, whether it is a lack of food, abuse, abandonment, or never even having a home yet each  has found it in their heart to trust again and love again despite such adversity.

Today was such a blessing!

P.S.: This is a banner I am slowly making. Right now it only has 2 patches but there will be more.

I can't wait to do so.