I have had a very good week with a number of "puppy check-ins" as I sometimes refer to them. I LOVE to hear from "the puppies". Here are bits of some of the messages sent. Anything in italics is a comment from me.
From Deb about Belle
"Belle is as close to perfect as a dog can be…
We absolutely love her…
She is sweet and kind to everyone.
She hangs out with us and sleeps on or near the bed.
She loves to play and she loves to get pets.
She is a princess at bath time and has never offered to chew anything…. (Cameron- did you read that? )
The only time she has ever growled was at a campaign worker for Barack Obama when he came to the door.
He was actually afraid of her.
We decided she was clearly a republican! (Well she did spend a summer in Alaska)
The girls are planning to start Canine Good Citizen and then Therapy Dog training with Belle in January. The local hospital has a pet visitation program and she and the girls will do that when she has her certification. I am sure that will be a slam dunk. My cousin is confined to a wheelchair and has cerebral palsy, she can only make sounds and swing her hands.
Belle went to her and sat next to her wheelchair and let her pet/thump her (not hard) on the head. She never moved away from the wheelchair.
We can’t thank you enough for sharing this wonderful dog with us.
From Cindy about Briar Rose
I think I may have told you I lost the man I was dating to cancer ........
I just cannot tell you what it means to have her here. I had taken a photo of Bob (my friend) and Susie (Cindy's 1st sheltie) right before she was put down in April. I had given a copy of that photo to Bob's brother who used the face portion to put in the obituary when Bob died. I looked at it the other day & could not believe I lost two treasured friends within months of each other. It just doesn't seem possible. Then.....I look at the beautiful little girl that gives me the look of adoration and my heart just takes a leap......it's almost like God knew I would need her. In fact, in a card a neighbor gave me she wrote "I think God sent you Briar Rose as a blessing...." She's right!! He did!!!!
Take care......know that this little bundle is hugged & kissed so much!!!! I can't get enough of her!!!
Thanks again for letting me adopt her.......she is my heartbeat!!!!!
Sometimes the messages are not so sweet.
This was sent from Pat about Cameron
Hope you are enjoying the beautiful Fall weather. I just love this time of year...pumpkins and falling leaves and just all the beautiful colors. Still warm enough to be outside, too. Need to ask you about a problem with chewing we are having with Cameron. He is fascinated with our couch and has destroyed one pillow and chewed the skirt on it several times. No amount of Bitter Apple or Bitter Cherry or telling him "no" seems to work. ..............
Pat and I emailed back and forth a number of times discussing Cameron's chewing behavior. As I told Pat- often chewing is about the inherited behaviors of chewing and which behavior is being satisfied. Anyway- here is a message Pat sent today.
He has been happily playing with a cardboard box all day yesterday and part of today. Thanks again for all your diligent help.
Forget about "What Breed should the Obama's get" for a moment. Lets focus on "where should the dog come from".
We have an opportunity- Lets not Waste it!
All eyes are on the issue of “where will President Elect Obama get the family dog”. This is a GREAT opportunity for all of us (yes, even HSUS) to plead our cases. Lets not WASTE IT.
Here is what I am doing, and I am encouraging you to do something similar.
1. Write to your CONGRESSMEN/WOMAN. These are the people who will be proposing new legislation to limit breeding. Tell them the following:
A. Buying from a breed specific “hobby” breeder provides lifelong support. Hobby breeders are interested in making sure the dogs they produce are loved and cared for. This means that when a purchaser has questions about care, behavior, needs, etc, they have a person to ask.
b. Buying a purebred dog from a “hobby” breeder means that you are more likely to be able to “see” the expected temperament, size, look, etc. of your dog. Most hobby breeders are selecting for certain traits that are greater than just “the resulting dog is such-and-such a breed”. We know that behavior is genetic. We know that certain characteristics are genetic and we select for these.
c. Remind them that Purebred Dog clubs sponsor RESCUE and relocation programs because we CARE about our breeds and we UNDERSTAND the physical and behavioral characteristics of these breeds. If someone is interested in “providing a home for a dog in need” they can still get a purebred.
2. Once you have written your thoughts down in a logical manner that you are going to send to your Congressmen/women- then POST them ON LINE.
a. This is a GREAT way to increase your audience.
b. Add it to a facebook page, a blog, a website, anything to get the information OUT THERE.
We need to work EXTRA hard to promote ourselves as people who LOVE DOGS and CARE about the puppies we produce. HSUS is targeting “breeders” and proposing anti-dog legislation right and left.
With the national spotlight on the President-elect’s choice for a dog- LETS WORK HARD to get a positive message out there. Once he has made his choice- our opportunity has been reduced (but not lost).
I big question for sure. Contrary to what many believe, there is no such thing as a Non-allergenic dog, but breeds of dogs that are single-coated have a decreased tendency to cause allergies and are often refered to as Hypoallergenic breeds. Of course poodles are the most popular, but my choice for the Obama family is the Portuguese Water Dog. These dogs are good with children, medium size, fun, obedient, loyal and protective. This family appears active (and intellegent) and the PWD is too. If the Obama family prefers to resuce a dog, they can still get a purbred. Breed clubs always have rescue and relocation programs for their breed. He can achieve the goal of geting a breed with known traits (such as hypoallergenic) and also provide a home to a dog in need.
My vote for 1st Dog- The Portuguese Water Dog
(and you all thought I was going to suggest a sheltie
Show Low, Belle's father, was at a herding trial this weekend too. He placed 3rd in Started B Course Ducks (HSBd). I think that was his first of three legs, so no new title yet- but a successful start!
The B course is much larger than the A course. The extra space can really mess a lot of dogs up and we don't usually see shelties running on the B course. Congratulations Show Low!
Belle's son, Acadia Sweet Home Arizona (Rincon), completed the PT herding title. Pictured is Rincon waiting his turn to herd, and then the final step - putting his sheep away. He did a wonderful job. Woo Hoo Rincon!
Amy emailed me to report that this past weekend she and Quill completed the Rally Excellent title (RE). Congratulations! Amy reports that the Vallejo Dog Training Club had two rally trials in one day. At the morning trial, Quill placed 1st out of 21 dogs that qualified. In the afternoon trial, Amy and her other dog, Sophie, were 1st in the Advanced class. Way to Go Amy!
I also got to meet Pam's daughter, Jessica, for the first time. I feel like I have known her for a long time because I have known Pam for almost 9 years now. I always see Pam at dog related events, and Jessica has not attended those events, so on very last day of my trip, I finally met her. I spent the last night at Pam's house. The three of us went out for Sushi and Coldstone Creamery ice cream. YUMMMMM. Then in the morning, Pam took me to the airport to come home. It was a VERY fun trip. It wouldn't have been Nearly as much fun if it wasn't for my friend Pam making so many arrangements for me- Thank you to Pam, Jessica, Amy, Lorrie, Donna, Ingrid, Sharon, and Yvonne for having me out to Calf.