Leia ~ Adopted!

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Leia is an 8 week old female catahoula mix. More info to come!

Check out her Photos on Facebook!

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If you are interested in adopting little Leia please read Our Adoption Process and follow the steps in that post.

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12/26/15 Update: Leia was adopted by the Kastor family of Jacksonville today. Congrats, lil girl!

 

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Padme ~ Adopted!

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Padme is an 8 week old female catahoula mix. More info to come!

Check out her Photos on Facebook!

 

If you are interested in adopting Padme please read Our Adoption Process and follow the steps in that post.10408850_10153645191214792_7205632691597688937_n

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12/27/15 Update: Padme was adopted by the Carlson family of Port St. Lucie last night. Congrats to you and your new family, little girl!

Finn ~ Adopted!

155741_10153645188019792_2061825758643821556_nFinn is an 8 week old male catahoula mix. More info to come!

Check out his Photos on Facebook!

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If you are interested in adopting Finn please read Our Adoption Process and follow the steps in that post.

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1/8/16 Update: Finn was adopted by the Smiths of North Port, FL today! Congrats on your new family, little guy!

Solo ~ Adopted!

12369083_10153645194179792_1174934165758972020_nSolo is an 8 week old male catahoula mix. More info to come!

Check out his Photos on Facebook!

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If you are interested in adopting Solo please read Our Adoption Process and follow the steps in that post.

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12/21/15 Update: Don’t blink! Puppies move quick. Jon Souers of Land o Lakes, FL took his new little buddy home today and it looks like they are settling in well.

 

Anakin ~ Adopted!

12366375_10153645186769792_7990415876157094868_nAnakin is an 8 week old male catahoula mix. More info to come!

Check out his Photos on Facebook!

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If you are interested in adopting Anakin please read Our Adoption Process and follow the steps in that post.

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12/25/15 Update: Anakin was adopted by the Tremblay family of Sorrento, FL today! Is there any better Christmas gift than the gift of a new loving home? Congrats to you and your new family, little guy.

 

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Rey ~ Adopted

12369079_10153645192659792_2017272086608322917_n Rey is an 8 week old female catahoula mix. More info to come!

Check out her Photos on Facebook!11045496_10153645192304792_1647209636990324678_n

If you are interested in adopting Rey please read Our Adoption Process and follow the steps in that post.

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12/22/15 Update: Rey was adopted by Robert and Chelsea of Sanford, FL yesterday. It was love at first sight!

 

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Parvo Puppy

Rest in Peace

Rest in Peace

Early this week, our Jen rescued a pup from Alabama.  Unfortunately, the pup tested positive for Parvo.  Because the dog was not showing signs of lethargy yet, I really hoped she would make it.  Jen started the chicken stew and kept her hydrated, but for some reason, I woke up from a sound sleep at 4:30 AM, and a few moments later, I received a text from Jen that the pup had labored breathing.  A few minutes later, I received the dreaded phone call… the pup had passed.  Jen was crying hysterically.  Parvo is hard… it’s very hard.

We had high hopes for this little one.  We received a lot of great name ideas on Facebook.  I’m just sorry it wasn’t meant to be.

The Boss

06/10/13 Update:  Poor Boss, he finally found the perfect home, and we have learned that his owner is very ill, in and out of the hospital, and has no time for boss.  Boss has separation anxiety, and he misses his people.  If I could describe Boss’ perfect home, it would be with someone who would let him load up and go to work with everyday.  He really needs the company of his human.  He should be heartworm negative within the next three months.

05/10/13 Foster Update:  Boss was tested at the vet and is now light heartworm positive!  In just a few months, he will test negative.  Boss still shows signs of separation anxiety.  He would be best in a home where he can go to work with his owner.  He loves to load up, and be with you all of the time.  Boss is a great dog whose loyalty is unsurpassed. 04/01/13  Foster Update:  Boss is doing well with his heartworm treatment, and should test negative in less than six months.  He also has learned to enjoy playing with other dogs, even male dogs.  He really has turned out to be quite a companion.

The Boss

Boss is just over a year old, Catahoula/Boxer. He is a true gentleman, kind hearted and aims to please. Boss enjoys the company of calm children and has excellent potential to become a Working Therapy dog (Canine Good Citizen) or he would be happy as a companion animal for an older couple or elderly person, he loves nothing more than a good rub down and a quiet night watching TV and cuddling with his person.  Boss has an active puppy side but he also knows how to sit down and enjoy a quiet night J Boss would love to have a fenced yard that he can run and play in. (preferably 6’, as I do believe he may be part spring J)  Boss is continuing his work on crate training, and is doing well.  Boss would love someone who is home most of the time.  Boss has began treatment for heartworms, and is doing well, this doesn’t slow him down in the least.  If you think Boss could be the new member of your family, he is being fostered in Davenport, FL. You can see all of his photos on Facebook.

Dot~Adopted

Dot with Jen

After spending a few hours with Dot, I’m sorry, but I see Collie all over her, especially her markings and her tail.  I kept my eye on her brother Yaz, who I also think has a touch of collie in his blood!  That’s a very noble nose he has!  We were not told there was a collie on the premises, so we have to go with what we know, Aussie and Catahoula/Aussie.  I guess we won’t know until 12 months pass if I am right!

Dot is very shy, and unsure in new surroundings.  She loves being held, as she gets extra safety in someone’s arms.  Basic puppy training classes will give Dot the self-esteem that she needs.  She is a wonderful girl, very smart, and she loves to play!

I see Collie!

You can see more photos of Dot in her photo album on Facebook.

Click here to learn more about Dot’s litter mates.

 

 

 

 

 

adopted by Kim & Rich

adopted by Kim & Rich

05/12/13 update:  Dot has been adopted by Kim and Rich of Ormond Beach!  She will be renamed Stella… such an awesome name!  Can’t wait for updates!

Maddon~Adopted

Blind dogs don’t need to see to give kisses!

I had a chance to meet Maddon yesterday, named after Joe Maddon. He is everything a normal puppy should be. Calm and quiet at times, rambunctious and playful when it’s time to play! He has incredible hearing, and being blind doesn’t bother him one bit. As a matter of fact, from a distance, no one knows he’s blind.

For more stories about adopting a deaf and/or blind dog, click here.

Playtime!

We have new photos of Maddon in action, they are awesome, and on Facebook.

 

Click here to learn more about Maddon’s litter mates.

 

 

Welcome to the Wilson Pack little guy!

Welcome to the Wilson Pack little guy!

05/21/13 Update:  Maddon was adopted by Jen Wilson’s Dad, who also adopted Dundee from us years ago!  Maddon will have the Wilson pack and the Wilson family to train and love him!

Jen’s Puppies

Yaz (adopted) and Dot

Jennifer Wilson spotted this little visually impaired Puppy in Dothan, Alabama and drove half-way to meet the owners so TDL could find him a perfect home.  Upon arriving, two more litter mates hitched a ride!  All of the pups are just now turning 8 weeks of age.  They will have their second booster shot this Wednesday, and will not be ready for spay/neuter for at least two more weeks.  We believe the father of the pups was Aussie/Catahoula, and the mother to be a purebred Aussie.

We have created individual pages for these pups, so we can update their photos and progress as they grow up!

Maddon

Yaz

Dot

Maddon

Maddon, the star of this rescue is very sure of himself, has great hearing, and is very visually impaired.  That doesn’t stop him one bit!  He loves the play and enjoys the security of having another dog around!  Named after Joe Maddon, whoever adopts this little boy will have a BFF.

Dot

Dot, named after Dot Richardson, is very shy and unsure of herself, but she is quickly becoming more secure and enjoying the environment that the Wilson’s and their pack are providing.

Yaz, named after Carl Yastrzemski is the pack’s leader.  He is playful, intelligent and stunning.  Yaz has been adopted!  We will provide updates shortly!

We will be providing updates shortly.  In the meantime, these pups need to spend time with each other to experience healthy puppy pack playtime, and to learn from the Wilson pack, what they have not yet learned due to their mother’s absence.  You can see their initial photo album on Facebook!

If you are interested in meeting one of our dogs or learning more about it, please e-mail us at TheDogLiberator@gmail.com and let’s get the process going! Share such information:

as where you live,

your household composition,
your yard/fence/exercise plan,
pets you have and/or had,
your normal work schedule,
how much time the dog will be alone,
what you are looking for in a dog,
do you have a pool
what contingency plans do you have in place should you no longer be able to care for your dog and,
if you rent, do you have landlord approval,

and are you prepared to bring your new dog home if you are approved during your meet?

have you or anyone in your family ever been bitten or traumatized by a dog in the past?

is there anyone in your family, circle of friends, or anyone who lives with you that can decide if you can have a dog in your home?

also, provide us with your phone number, home address, including county and zip code

and then we’ll go from there! The more you share the better!

Also, for more information about adopting a rescued dog, Please visit Let It Go for details.

See more of our available dogs on petfinder http://www.petfinder.com/pet-search?shelterid=FL918

Join us on Facebook to get the latest updates on our rescued dogs https://www.facebook.com/DogLiberator

If you have any questions about our adoption fees, please read our adoption fee blog.

The Chosen Ones, Owning a Deaf Dog

Skate as a puppy, now Ludwig

Regardless of the dog you have today, the dog your friend or neighbor has, or the dog you may adopt tomorrow, one day you will encounter a deaf and/or blind dog.  The information in this article will help you and your dog tremendously!

Written by Christopher Chosy

My wife and I have a beautiful 2 1/2 year-old Aussie named Ludwig (though we call him Luddy) that we adopted from The Dog Liberator Rescue (Skate) when he was just a pup. Almost every time we take him out someone will stop us the conversation usually goes like this:

Person: “Your dog is beautiful what kind is she?” (they always think HE is a SHE)
Me: “HE is an Australian Shepherd”
Person: “But he is all white”
Me: “Yes he is Deaf”
Person: (Usually raising their voice or switching to a pity voice) “OH POOR THING well he is very cute”
Me: “We adopted him from a rescue The Dog Liberator they do great work.”
Person: “So you knew he was Deaf beforehand how sweet of you!”
Me: “Trust me, he chose me and I wouldn’t trade him for anything!”

This humorous conversation is played out over and over again. I don’t get upset or frustrated because I understand preconceived notions about Deaf dogs; they are similar to those about Deaf people.

My wife and I became involved through our church to work with the Deaf and hard of hearing community. At first we were apprehensive; especially me.  I had conjured what Deaf people must be like in my head before even meeting one Deaf person.

When we decided to move forward one of our instructors for ASL (American Sign Language) ended the first day with an illustration I have never forgotten. He said:

“the Deaf live their life in a box especially when they interact with the hearing world.
When they are around other Deaf persons or those in the hearing community that learn their language,
they are able to get out of the box, always let them out of the box.”

 

When we put our new ASL skills to practice I learned not only that my preconceived notions were off base, but they were completely wrong. Now I cherish all of my close friends who just happen to be Deaf!

Ludwig and Meja

Perhaps you feel this way about Deaf dogs.  Maybe you have preconceived notions in your head about what they must be like. Could be that you did research on the Internet or spoke to someone who told you negative things. Naturally such things would leave you feeling apprehensive and it’s okay to feel that way.  I have to tell you from experience, you are missing out on some great dogs that will give more love than you could give them, for their entire life!

What are the basic differences between a hearing dog and a Deaf dog?

Deaf dogs are not distracted by sounds.
Deaf dogs are constantly focused on your every move, thus easy to train.
Deaf dogs are not thunder-phobic!

So what is it like to have a Deaf dog?

Deaf dogs are constantly focused on you; not being able to hear, they are always  looking at you for direction; this makes them a delight to train. Our dog Luddy knows as much ASL as I do! I have lost count on how many signs he has learned. What was amazing is the number of things he does all by himself. If we open the door he will stay no matter what, he will not go through the doorway unless signed to come.  The same goes when we travel to the park; I open the car door and he will wait until he is told to come out. These aren’t things we taught him, these are things he learned on his own.

Chris and Ludwig

Luddy loves kids!  If he could be surrounded by kids at all times he would be in heaven. We have some friends with younger kids and he is very gentle; even when they pull on his tail and ears.

If we take him to the dog park, he will play, but he always keeps one eye on us. A simple wave to come and he will come running. If we play in the backyard and we walk inside he will be right next to us. They are definitely companions for life; true Velcro dogs.

Fireworks, thunder, loud noises etc. Luddy could care less; doesn’t spook him at all.

Velveteen, Adopted in 2010

He is a great guard dog, I am not a scientist, but my Deaf friends swear their sense of smell is very sensitive and heightened.  Also, they pick up on vibrations quite easily. This must be the same for Deaf dogs having a heightened sense of smell compared to other dogs. Luddy can smell someone as they walk through the doorway. The most incredible thing is when my wife or I are coming home from work.

One time he and I were in the backyard playing when he pause and bolted inside the house and stood at the side door. I looked out and didn’t see anything but about 30 seconds later my wife, driving home, was pulling onto our street.  I thought this was a coincidence until two days later the same thing happened again. How he knows is a mystery to me, but he does.

We also give him a “sign” for when someone comes to our door; that’s when he lets out his “scary bark” and runs toward the door!

Yes, Deaf dogs do bark, his normal bark is quite and high-pitched, and as I mentioned his scary bark sounds like a normal dog. Luddy can’t hear it but he knows we can.  No need to worry that Deaf dogs will leave your house unprotected; quite the opposite.

Knish, Adopted 2012

Some people will tell you not to get a Deaf dog because they will snap, there isn’t anything behaviorally or mentally wrong with them they just can’t hear. With that being said, it is cruel to sneak up behind a Deaf dog and scare them or jolt them out of their sleep. If you choose to do that to any dog you may get bit; can’t say that you don’t deserve it though.

There is so much more that I want to share with you about owning a Deaf dog.  What’s amazing is that once you own one, you will never own a hearing dog.  It’s true.  People who have owned a Deaf dog will adopt another Deaf dog!  So what are you waiting for?

Note:  The Wilson family have adopted and fostered many deaf/blind dogs, and their extended family and friends have personally adopted several.  Their first was Fiona.  After adopting Fiona, everybody wanted one!

Because of greedy and irresponsible breeders, deaf dogs are on the rise.  Breeders lie about the dog, in an effort to get rid of them, and sell them to unsuspecting dog-lovers, or they abandon them.  It is doubtful that we will ever be able to put them out of business, but with great rescues like The Dog Liberator, some of these dogs have a chance.

China and Baby Ga Ga

Deaf Dogs Hear with their Heart

So if you took the time to read this article, or if your on this website looking to adopt a dog, I ask if you see a dog that may be Deaf or vision impaired don’t look and say “oh they are cute” and pass them over. Imagine them living in a box, and your the only one who can let them out, for that I can promise, unconditional love will be yours for their entire lifetime.

Please let them out of the box.  ~ Christopher Chosy

Click Here for our Latest Book, about rescuing Deaf Dogs.

 

Everybody Lies

Several months ago, I went to a dog show in DeLand.  All of the dogs there were AKC registered purebreds.  A woman had two collies, and was ready to “show” one.  Asking a friend if she could hold the leash of her female, I volunteered.  Before she went into the ring with her male Collie, she warned me that her female was “in season” and to watch her carefully.  I just smiled.  My girls, Sarah and Danielle joined me (only 9 years old) and they bent down to pet this little Collie girl I was holding.  Sarah looked up at me and said, “Mom, she has China eyes.”  I smiled at her, because I knew that dog was blind.  I could also tell the dog was deaf.  When the owner returned, she thanked me for my help, and you know I had to be me!

“You have had her eyes looked at right, and her hearing checked, right?”  I asked her.  I kid you not, the woman backed away from me in total terror.  It was as if I had sprayed her with mace.  She knew, that I knew.  And I knew, that she knew.  She scrambled for words, looked down at the ground for a moment and said, “Oh, my vet has checked her out, there’s nothing wrong with her,” then she vanished.

Do I care that she is competing with a deaf/blind collie?  No!  Do I care that she is breeding her?  Seriously?  Do I really need to even answer that question?  Seriously?

Sassafras, Adopted 2010

When Miss Fritzi wanted to adopt Sassafras from us, we were shocked.  She was in Connecticut, why would she want to adopt a Deaf Old English Sheepdog from Florida?  Because she did!  She had deaf OES before, and the woman knew what she wanted.  We didn’t argue!  After talking with Fritzi over the phone, she explained to me that she had purebred Old English Sheepdogs, and she entered them into competitions, they won quite often, but no one knew that there were deaf.  She explained that deaf dogs could not enter agility competitions.  “I will not drink the Kool Aide,” she told me.  “I entered my dogs in competitions, I just never told anyone, and I certainly didn’t breed them.  No one knew my dog was deaf.  I didn’t tell anyone until after she passed away.”

 

Don’t Love Me Just Because I’m Beautiful!

China and Sarah

 

Last week, after we enjoyed ourselves at the DeLand parade.  Brittney Myers and my daughter, Sarah took turns holding China the leash.  China was stunning, dressed in pink!  Many people asked if they could pet her, and of course the answer is yes.  They would bend down, rub her little head and talk sweet to her.

“Oh how sweet, are you a good girl?  Would you like a cookie?”  All the while China is focused on her handler, not on the stranger.

“She can’t hear you, she’s deaf,” we explain.  The admirer then gets confused, and wonders how they couldn’t tell.  “She’s the most highly trained dog here, but she can’t hear you.”  So it appears that Chris experiences the same reactions in public with Luddy, as we do when we are out with China!

Kiss, Adopted 2010

After the parade, we went to DeLand Skydive for a bite.  I noticed through the smoked glass of the restaurant, a puppy outside.  I saw it from that distance, the pup had a China eye; meaning it was blind.  I approached the man, and politely asked if I could look at his pup.  He agreed.  The pup wouldn’t sit still, but when I finally got to look at his eyes, I was right, his left eye was blind.  Again, the girls, Sarah and Danielle came over to pet the puppy.  Once again, Sarah looked up at me and said, “Again Mommy?”

Yes my dear Sarah, again!

China

China

I informed the young man very politely that his dog was blind in one eye.  He was devastated.  He shared that he had just purchased the pup, for a large sum of money.  I told him the pup was lucky that he bought him.  I told him not to be concerned, the blindness matters not.  I did tell him to train the pup from the right side, and not to let anyone, especially children spook the pup from his left side.  He told me he had taken the pup to the Vet, and that this can not be.  Once again, the man quickly left.

Maybe I should learn to be quiet?  If I do, this pup like many deaf and blind dogs, might be punished unfairly (many deaf/blind dogs are abused).  Can I prove this?  Of course I can!  China was severely abused, by a mom who didn’t know she was deaf.  China was beaten, and it took me over six weeks for her to even allow me to touch her.

Hey Mister!  Your dog isn’t stupid, your dog isn’t ignoring you; your dog is deaf!

Bill Wilson and Fiona, Adopted 2011

 

So this begs the question of the day… to Veterinarians know but don’t tell?  Do they not see it?  Do they turn a blind eye to the condition (pardon the pun).  This begs the question, why is it when I walk into my Vet’s office, they can see it from down the hall!  They know I have just brought in a deaf/blind dog!

“Where do you find these dogs?” Dr. Pinzon, who is a vision specialist, asked me last year.
“I don’t find them, they find me!”  I answered.

Note to Self

I can tell you that it was my Aunt who told me that my three year-old Sheltie, Mischief was blind.  I didn’t believe her.  Mischief never missed a thing.  My Aunt insisted, and I was floored.  I took Mischief to the vet, and my Aunt was right, she was completely blind.  Mischief had a great life, and lived to be 12 until seizures took her life.  Her blindness never stopped her!

Full Disclosure

Jalo now Gigi with Mary

We don’t always go out of way to rescue deaf and blind dogs!  Just a few months ago, Jalo was pulled from Miami-Dade and her owner, Mary, discovered she’s deaf.  I took Baileys in from his owner, who didn’t know he is completely blind in one eye, and has poor sight in the other.  What’s important to understand is no one is complaining!  In none of these adoption photos are the adopters disappointed in anyway!  These are all really awesome dogs!

 

 

More than Just Great Dogs

Falcor, adopted 2011

I hope that we continue to share our experiences with deaf and/or blind dogs.  They are truly amazing.  As I was reading what Chris wrote for this post, I couldn’t help but smile.  Everything he said about what Luddy does, is what China does!  China is the first to bark at the door at strangers.  Why?  I think my dogs hear the car’s engine, they recognize the sound of that car door, they know those footsteps, and they simply just lift their head up.  They do not run to the door, because they know who it is!  China, however, doesn’t know who it is.  A stranger is a stranger, and someone is that the door!  She runs and barks ferociously, protecting her home.  She doesn’t recognize me through the glass, my other dogs do.  She doesn’t stop barking until she can smell us.  She is an awesome watch dog!

With regard to their clairvoyance, China lays by the front door 15 minutes before I pick Sarah up from school; 1:45 every day.  Prior to 1:45, China sleeps on a comfy bed or the couch.    On Wednesdays, however, she lays by the front door at 12:45 for early release!  She does this so she doesn’t miss Sarah’s return, for if she sleeps somewhere else, she will not feel the door open!

Jen and Fiona

Not all Deaf dogs are Blind.  Not all White Dogs are Blind or Deaf.  We do not believe that Dundee, aka Chance is deaf or blind, yet he is a solid white Aussie.  If he is, he shows no signs!  Not all Blue-eyed dogs are Blind!  Not all Deaf dogs are visually impaired!  I agreed to rescue China’s Twin, Lilly, because I was convinced she was deaf and/or blind.  She isn’t!  She isn’t!

 

Winter, abandoned and forgotten

 

Today, I am fostering Winter.  He is a stunning dog, and I believe that after just one day, I have found his new home.  The Dog Liberator has followers that will trip over themselves just to adopt one of our Deaf dogs.  Why?  Well, the proof is right here on this page, isn’t it?  They are a lot like Potato Chips, you can’t have just one!

Click here to read more about our Deaf/Blind Dogs.  While you will notice that most of these dogs are breed for looks, they are adopted because of their incredible intelligence and intense love!

You can also visit http://www.deafdogs.org/

Help us Rescue and Save the Life of a Deaf Dog Today!

Help us Rescue and Save the Life of a Deaf Dog Today!

Houla Hoop~Adopted

A mini Catahoula Girl

01/27/13:  We don’t have much information to share about this little girl, except that she came from Athens Dog Pound, and she was transported last night by several volunteers (thank you).  She’s less than a year old, maybe 9 months.  She has a lot of puppy energy, and she is being fostered by Brittney.  She’ll be visiting our vet this week to have an exam, but she has had her shots and been spayed.  We will have her micro-chipped.

Houla Hoop is on the small size, I believe less than 30 pounds, which is awesome since Catahoulas are usually quite large.  She is very obedient, fully trained using hand and voice commands.  She is great with kids, and other dogs.  She has no ball drive so far, maybe she hasn’t learned how to play yet.  I believe she will make a great family dog with children, and other dogs.

We will provide updates as soon as they are available.  We only have her shelter photos to share for now, but more are on the way!  We will be posting them on her photo album on Facebook.

01/29/13:  Little Houla was adopted this afternoon… by Eva from Geneva! Seriously, details will be coming soon.

Houla Hoop – Adopted!

They have named her Alabama, Bama for short!  She was a joy to foster!  Brittney said she was easy peasy!  I can’t wait for updates!  Her new family said they’ll even video tape her around the pond, etc.  It should be fun to watch!  Thank you Athens Dog Pound Volunteers for getting her to us!

 

Friendly Smurf~Adopted

Friendly Smurf at 5 months

This little blue is less than a year old. We believe he is an Aussie Catahoula boy. His owner says he is the most precious couch potato love bucket doggy that ever walked the earth. He is fully housebroken, sits on command, is crate trained, fully up to date on his shots, gets along great with cats and dogs and is spoiled rotten!

Friendly Smurf

If you are interested in meeting one of our dogs or learning more about it, please e-mail us at thedogliberator@gmail.com and let’s get the process going!

Share such information

as where you live,
your household composition,
your yard/fence/exercise plan,
pets you have and/or had,
your normal work schedule,
how much time the dog will be alone,
do you own a pool,
what you are looking for in a dog,
what contingency plans do you have in place should you no longer be able to care for your dog,
if you rent, do you have landlord approval,
are you prepared to bring your new dog home if you are approved after you meet one of our dogs?

Friendly Smurf Today (aka Goose)

Email your answers to thedogliberator@gmail.com, and then we’ll go from there!  The more you share the better!

Knish, the Catahoula/Aussie~Adopted

Stunning!

Update: Knish is being fostered in the Orlando area. I find it amazing that everyone who has come in contact with this little dog has helped her with her training and her self-esteem. Today, her foster writes that she is amazing on leash, very intelligent, knows her commands, and is a joy to foster. We have also been told that she ignores cats, which is always a plus. If you are interested in getting more information about Knish, email thedogliberator@gmail.com

Here’s a new video of Knish on Facebook!

History: Several months ago (in rescue time) Hall County animal shelter had a litter of b-e-a-utiful Catahoula/Aussie pups up for adoption, all no larger than the size of my palm.

All of them were levels of blue merle, and most of them were white with blue eyes. Having much experience with litters like these, and knowing the breed characteristics of the parents, we had an inkling feeling that many of these puppies were deaf.

Needless to say, we had our name all over them.

Knish (second on the left) and some of her litter mates.

A few emails where sent, and there was agreement that as soon as the puppies were weaned, they would be Florida bound. I was giddy over the photos of these puppies (I have a soft-spot for merles) and the weeks until they came to us just couldn’t go by fast enough. Yet just as the deadline was drawing nearer, somehow a wrench was thrown in to our system.

The temporary foster had adopted the litter out!
Somehow it wasn’t conveyed this pups already had rescue, and one by one, they were adopted out.

Only one little puppy remained–a mostly white, blue eyed female. Unquestionably, she was deaf. She, too, was adopted, and then there were none. It was to this little white puppy that I felt a strong connection to. For some reason, I knew she’d come back. I hoped that the feeling would pass, but when you know, you know. And I just knew I’d see that puppy again.
We were all devastated, as we knew that TDL was fully capable of finding homes for all of these puppies, but we cut our losses and prayed that they had all found their true homes.

Now, after being a part of The Dog Liberator for only a short time, I can still say I have heard the mantra “What is meant to be is meant to be” enough times to believe it.  And boy, do I believe it.

Two fosters later and a few months past, and I get an email from Vicki Truelove.

We are the family that adopted the deaf dog from the shelter a few months ago. The one with ice blue eyes… mother is catahula Kerr and father was possibly australian shepherd. Please help us find her a great home! We know she needs more exercise and play than we are able to give her… She’s very playful and loving. We have 7 kids and with all their activities she is crated about 3-4 per day cause we cannot take her with us always. Would like someone that’d have more time to give to her so she’d have a better life.”

One of the photos sent along with the former owner's email.

I didn’t have to scroll down to view the attached photos to know what dog they were talking about. I knew. My heart leapt.
I immediately emailed Vicki back, telling her I’d take her. I had zero deaf dog experience–I had only briefly mentioned to Gisele how I would like to learn.

Shortly after, I contacted my manager at work, who is a Nationally acclaimed trainer, and asked her for help. She owns a deaf French Bull dog, and was more than willing to help me learn the techniques to train and manage deaf dogs. If you couldn’t tell, I was dead set on taking this girl in.

What is meant to be is meant to be, right? 
I knew this girl was meant to be a Dog Liberator Dog the moment I saw her. It was just a matter of when.

So–What do we know about Knish?

…We’ve already established she is deaf, so now what? We all know deaf dogs are incredible; all it takes is a peek at China and her story to understand what I mean.
But for those of you who are still skeptical after reading, let me rattle off a few more stories for you to look in to.  KissIrwinDundeeFionaBaby GaGa…all these dogs share the commonality of being deaf. But don’t be fooled in to thinking it’s the only thing they have in common, oh no. All of these dogs have also found their forever homes! For more information on deaf dogs, and TDL’s mission,  look here.

I was hesitant to post her blog page for a few days, because I wasn’t sure what to say. I was afraid she would be undesirable; I was afraid people would be put off by her hearing impairment. After having her for a few days however, it’s clear as day to me now that anyone who would be deterred by Knish’s inability to hear hasn’t the slightest idea what they are missing.

Playing with her favorite ball, and posing pretty for the camera!

This dog is fascinating. Simply put, I’m enthralled by her.
The first night, I slept on the floor next to her crate with my hand on her paw, terrified that she might wake in a fit of confusion. I was terrified that I had gotten in to something that was far over my head… It turns out I had nothing to worry about, much to my chagrin.

All of the concerns I carried about caring for a deaf dog have gone by the wayside. To tell you the truth, I think she’s even better behaved than my own two dogs!

She loves affection, and especially loves older children. She walks very well on a leash, and has the best doggie manners I have ever seen! She calmly lays down as new dogs come to approach her, but maintains a very confident, collected demeanor. Once she has made friends she plays just as you would expect any other puppy to play, and is prone to the same boughs of “puppy flop-syndrome”, in which any surface becomes comfortable enough to sleep on.

Already she has picked up on a few new hand signals I have taught her, along with implementing some flashlight training. For those who think her deafness will impede upon her ability to learn, you’ll be comforted to know she picks up signals and commands at lightning speed. Though she still has far to go, and would benefit greatly for intensive training, she sits for her food, and she sits for affection, which is a great start.
She crates with the utmost ease, and her potty training is progressing very well. Thus far she has displayed some signs of anxiety, but I have since purchased her a thundershirt, and already I have seen improvements in areas that she formerly presented nervous behavior.

Showing off her flashy new Thundershirt!

As with my other fosters, Knish will accompany me to work where she will have the opportunity to socialize with many other dogs, people, sights and smells, and I will update more often as her training progresses!

Knish is roughly 35lbs and five months old, spayed, and up to date on her vaccinations. i do not estimate her getting any larger than 45lbs, and because of her hearing impairment she would be best suited for a family that has a yard, or fenced-in enclosure where she can roam freely without placing herself in harm’s way.

 

September 10th Update:

After some consideration and second opinions, it seems to be the Knish is only partially sighted. Not completely blind, she still have some range of vision, but it is slightly lessened in her right eye. This is only noticeable in instances where she is in an unfamiliar area. I have been directing most of her commands from the left, and have been using a small flashlight to train her, in replace of a clicker, which she has been picking up on wonderfully!

She has a thundershirt which she wears somewhat begrudgingly (I don’t think she’s a fan of pink, personally) and I have seen much improvement in her confidence concerning new, or alarming things. Trips to the dog park with her are a hoot–she runs so fast, she’s like lightning, zipping and zagging all over the turf. Other dogs take to her very well; she has a very easy-going presence to her while in the mix with other dogs. This is very good news for anyone looking for another companion to add to their pack, but it’s especially good news for Knish! Deaf dogs tend to bond with, and very quickly pick up on the routine and actions of other household pets, and I feel Knish would greatly benefit from having an older,  more experienced sibling to show her the ropes.

A quick shot from one of our training sessions. "Just gimme the treat, Khaz!"

She’s a puppy, so it’s a no-brainer that she is very food-motivated. She has not quite locked on to the concept of returning toys yet, but she’s starting to get the picture (it’s only taken three days of making a fool of myself). Now, although she loves to romp and play, truly there is nothing she loves more than to CUDDLE. She loves to siddle up next to you and sleep, or lay in your lap. She takes such great comfort in being near people, it’s amazing to see her go from puppy supercharge to a calm, collected couch-potato in a matter of minutes.

All things Knish aside, I can safely say she is not the only one learning new things. Having her in the house has been a real learning opportunity for me, and sometimes, I think it’s not she that is being trained, but me!

Foster Update: 9/14/2011

When we first got Knish, were told she liked to chew–what puppy doesn’t?
Thinking I’d win some doggie brownie points, I stocked up on the chewy goodness a puppy could dream of! I even bought her a deer antler–my own dogs love ’em!  So imagine my chagrin when she just stared at these puppy wonders, like she was asking me why on earth I had suddenly showered her with useless things! A puppy who snubbed her nose at toys? CHEW toys? I couldn’t believe it.

Knish & Khaz

Thankfully, those days are slowly being put behind us! After a few play sessions with other dogs, and myself, Knish is learning the joy of playing on her own! I consider this a puppyhood rite of passage for her; she has been the first foster I’ve had that hasn’t cared a single bit about the seemingly hundreds of tennis balls in my home. Now she’s content to throw the ball for herself, sometimes enjoying it so much that she’d rather play than eat! (And come on, what puppy doesn’t love to eat?)

Her crate training, too, is going very well! She still whines a little when placed in her crate, but then she remembers how much she likes it in there! She sleeps solidly through the night, and on some days  even likes to sleep in even though she is free to roam the apartment. Video of her training progression to come soon! Won’t someone consider this smart, loving girl?

 

Could you be the perfect family for me?

If you, or anyone you know is interested in adopting Knish, please review our Adoption Process. While you’re at it, be sure to check out her extensive photo album over on our Facebook fanpage!

 

Please direct all questions and inquiries to TheDogLiberator@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

 

Brushfire, the mini Catahoula~Adopted

Brushfire, smiling after being rescued!

A few days before we were about to have an empty apartment, one of my Facebook friends from rural Summerville, Georgia posted a PetFinder picture of a stunning merle girl in Chattooga County Animal Control.  The minute that Steve and I saw her, we knew that this dog needed to come to us.  I was struck by her beauty, and unique pattern; like autumn leaves. I had to have her.

I sent an email to the shelter immediately stating my adoration for her. Retrospectively, I imagine I sounded a little frantic! The following Tuesday I sent Steve up to get her. Steve reported that on his way home from picking her up at the shelter, he saw firefighters on the side of the road putting out–can you guess it? Yep, a Brushfire! We took it as a sign.

Based off her shelter photo, we were expecting a 40-50 pound dog…somewhere between the size of an aussie and a smaller Catahoula. Much to my chagrin, a small Catahoula is what I got indeed! Brushfire weighs in at a whopping 26lbs. That’s only three pounds more than my Welsh Corgi!  Literally, she was an entire dog less than I expected! 🙂

A petite beauty she may be, but what makes Brushfire so special is that her beauty extends deeper than her coat and color.

Brushfire's "beauty mark"!

In rescue, we all know that  sometimes, our dogs carry with them “scars” from their past.  Unfortunately for Brushfire, her scars are as real as other’s are figurative.  I was enamored by her cute little underbite.  Brushfire has an underbite, a long, straight scar on her nose, and has the tip of her tongue bitten off.  We think that she had her mouth tied shut with string or twine when she was younger, causing the scar, underbite, and missing piece of tongue.  Happily, though, she bears no emotional scars whatsoever, as Brushfire is a happy-go-lucky girl who loves other dogs (of all sizes!), people, and kids.  In fact, Brushfire is content curling up next to you as you watch TV, surf the internet, or read a book!  Even though she spends her time with a big Aussie and a headstrong Corgi, Brushfire is always the star of the show, playing a formidable game of tug-of-war against both Denver and Weezer, and normally winning!

Brushfire is truly an incredible dog.  She is potty trained, and does great in the crate.  Her personality is so outgoing that you can’t help but fall in love with her– especially after she gives you a few kisses!  You can check out more pictures of Brushfire on The DogLiberator’s Facebook Page.

Brushfire is being fostered by Khaz Brooks in the Atlanta area.  She can be reached at khaz.thedogliberator@gmail.com.

Hollywood, the Aussie Houla~Adopted

Noble Pose!

These two young pups are available for adoption!  They are said to be Aussie Catahoula boys.  Hollywood likes to roll over on his back and get belly rubs, Goose prefers to give kisses and puppy breath!  They are being fostered in Deltona.  If you are interested in adopting, please read Starting your Dog Out Right, and How to Adopt from us, and then email me at thedogliberator@gmail.com
You can see more photos of Goose and his brother, Hollywood, on Facebook.

 

Goose, the Aussie Houla~Adopted

Sweet Face!

These two young pups are available for adoption!  They are said to be Aussie Catahoula boys.  Hollywood likes to roll over on his back and get belly rubs, Goose prefers to give kisses and puppy breath!  They are being fostered in Deltona.  If you are interested in adopting, please read Starting your Dog Out Right, and How to Adopt from us, and then email me at thedogliberator@gmail.com
You can see more photos of Goose and his brother, Hollywood, on Facebook.

Denali Bella~Adopted

Bella now Josie

Remember Holly’s K Puppies?  Denali (Bella) was the Mom of all of those gorgeous fur balls.  She arrived this weekend and went directly to Aloma Jancy Animal Hospital to be vetted and spayed.  One day later, Retired DeLand school teacher Michael Knowlton went to Aloma Jancy to meet her, and brought her home.  Yes, it was that easy!  Bella’s new name is Josie, and she’s going to live in DeLand!  Welcome Josie!

Partly Cloudy the Merle Girl ~ Adopted

Who wants to play ball?

Partly Cloudy is a lovely merle puppy born around Easter.  She was one of a litter of 6 puppies at Gordon County Animal Shelter in Georgia.  Because we had already agreed to take several other dogs, we simply had no room.  Sherrie, the wonderful volunteer rescue liaison at the shelter said, “Holly, I know you don’t like to break up litters, but even if you can only take one, please do.  Sometimes it helps get the rest adopted ~ there are fewer to pick from so people find it easier to decide.”  So I agreed to take the one little girl.  When Sherrie went to pick her up on Friday to take to the vet, Vicki, our short-term foster, asked her to put the rest of the litter on hold to give her time to find a rescue.  Sherrie answered sadly, “They are being euthanized right now.”  Only Partly Cloudy made it out….

Sitting Pretty

Having seen her and her littermates, I suspect that Partly Cloudy is an Australian Shepherd, perhaps with some Catahoula in her.  She is really quite lovely.  Not only are her markings quite unique, her personality is endearing.  She has a gentle way about her, playful but not overwhelming.  Now, this might be due to her very young age, or it could be her underlying spirit. You can enjoy many pictures of her in her photo album.

This little one has had a hard start in life.  I am going to make sure that her future is bright and sunny!

If you think that you might be interested in giving her that loving home, please first review our Dog Tips page, then read our adoption process and e-mail holly.thedogliberator@gmail.com

June 14th Update:

Partly Cloudy is doing great. She was so little when she came and had been through so much, she had a tough time. But now she thriving! She is very affectionate and loves to be held. She is forever jumping in the chair to sit with me or running up to show me her marrow bone or ball. Just simply wonderful!

June 17th:

Ralph is my Basset/Lab mix (he looks like a lab until he stands up and nothing happens), and he simply adores puppies.  Always has.  When we go to the dog park, Gus, my Basset/Bulldog, runs and plays with the big dogs, but not Ralph.  He seeks out the smallest dog and licks it to pieces.  He should have been a girl!  So here it is,the day before Fathers’ Day, and Ralph is in his element, playing with puppies.  You’ll enjoy this!

June 26th:

I’m puppysitting GinGin and Caboose, two puppies that were born in my closet last June.  I just love when I get to see my babies after they grow up.  The haven’t been around  whole lot of other dogs, so this has been a bit of a stretch for them.  Partly Cloudy is forever bringing them her marrow bones (her most favorite thing in the world), but they look at her like she’s crazy!  lol

 

Going home to Cocoa with Terry

June 30th:

Today was the day that Partly Cloudy found her forever home.  Terry’s 14-year-old Spitz passed away a few months ago.  Time has passed, she had moved to a new home, and it felt empty without a dog.  Enter Partly Cloudy.  The perfect choice!  It made me so happy to see them together.  Just a couple of weeks ago Partly Cloudy was very sick.  Today she is healthy and loved, beginning her new adventure with Terry.  Yes, I’m happy!

10/6/11: We learned today that Partly Cloudy was killed. Our hearts go out to Terry.

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