The TDL 10 Ways to Have a Safe and Happy Halloween


Poppy in her Seasonal Costume

As we prepare for all of the festivities of Halloween, there are a few things you can do to ensure that every member of the family is safe and happy, and has a great holiday. Here are our top tips for how to ensure your pet’s Halloween is a treat!

1. Identification

We can’t say “collar, tags and microchip” enough. If you have not gotten your pets chipped, please do so. A collar and tags are a great step to take, but collars can slip off and tags can snap off. I microchip, on the other hand, is just under the skin, and won’t be brushed off. The best option is to have the collar tags, and chip and to make sure all the information on them is up to date.

2. Keep Pets Inside

Not only are there lots of potentially frightening things out on Halloween, but unfortunately some people’s tricks get downright cruel. Pets are often let out, teased, stolen, or harmed on Halloween which is simply inexcusable. Keeping your pet inside is the safest thing for them (cats too!). Unfortunately cats seem to be in particular peril during this time of year (especially black cats) and we suggest keeping them inside several days before and after Halloween.

3. Candy is for Kids (and Adults) Only

Chocolate is highly toxic and many candies contain artificial sweeteners like Xylitol which is also toxic. For best results, keep the candy for the kids and instead offer you pet a nice, dog-safe treat like a slice of apple, a carrot, or a special dog cookie. Keep your candy far out of reach from your pets and if you have a pooch who is a counter cruiser, consider some sort of closed container. Also remember that kids drop candy, so on your walks, or when you let your dog out in the yard, check for any candy children may have dropped. Also, have the numbers of your vet, and a 24 hour emergency vet on your fridge just in case. If you know your pet has consumed chocolate or candies with xylitol, especially in large quantities, seek medical attention right away.


Torree: Winner of our 2013 Costume Contest

4. Protect the Pumpkin

We all love those glowing flickering lanterns, and sometimes our pets do too… a little too much. While some lanterns use fake candles, others still have real flames which can really burn. Make sure lanterns are out of the reach of pets (remember cats may walk right past one, even on the shelf). For best results, get a fake candle, but if you are going real flame, keep a close eye on it.

5. Glow Stick Woe

Most glow sticks are non-toxic but contain a bitter substance which can cause excessive drooling and fear based reactions like running around the house. Try to keep these glow-sticks out of the reach of pets as they can often look like a toy to your pup. If they do get ahold of one, a little milk or a teat can help cleanse the palate and stop the terrible taste. You can also dim the lights and check their mouth for glowing material and wipe it from their mouth.

6. Cable Keeper

With all of those awesome talking skeletons and fancy lights, there may be several new cords, cool twinkle lights, and electronics around. Remember that your new toy may become your pet’s new toy and chewing electronics can result in shocks and burns. Keep cables organized and out of reach if possible. If you can’t keep the cords and decorations away from the dog, keep the dog away from them. It may mean no romps in the front yard until the decorations are gone, but it is better than a shocking accident.

7. Fear Factor

Halloween is a holiday of tricks, treats, and frights. Unsurprisingly, all the costumes, masks, and unexpected visitors can scare you pup. Consider letting your pet stay home from trick-or-treating and if you are going to be handing out candy, consider crating your pup to reduce the chance of escape, or keeping them behind a baby gate or pen to prevent them from running to the door. Even the most well behaved dog can become frightened and possibly nip or run when scared. If you know your dog gets frightened on Halloween, come up with a keep-calm plan. Whether it is keeping them in a quiet room, in their crate, or maybe giving them a calming treat or sedative, it is good to have a plan of how you can soothe a frightened pet. Check out our article Helping Your Dog Relax.


Jake was a big fan of his costume, but if he didn’t like the hat that cute Bandana would be just fine!

8. Careful with Costumes

Not all pets love playing dress-up. Your pet may be much more comfortable in a seasonal collar or bandana. If you do go for a costume, make sure it is not restrictive, and won’t choke or strangle your pet. Make sure your dog’s senses are not impaired. As cute as a mask may seem, impaired vision and hearing can be frightening and dangerous to your pet. Additionally consider adding some reflective tape to your pet’s costume. As much as they may stand out in their costume, when it gets dark it can be hard to see them. For best results, let your pup wear their costume a few times before the big day so they can get use to them.

9. Choking Hazards

Beware of small parts. Just like little children, dogs often put things in their mouths and can choke on them or ingest them and then have a blockage. Whether it is the little ball on their antenna, or a cute little heart pendant on the front of their costume, pay close attention to them. Remove any small parts which are not well secured or which could be chewed off. Always monitor your dog when they are in costume.

10. Disrobe when Distressed

If you notice your dog panting, cowering, shaking, or just not looking like their normal happy self, take the costume off. Thick costumes can cause dogs to overheat. Make sure you carry water for your pet if you are going out and if you notice any sign that your pet isn’t feeling their best, remove the costume.


We hope you will have a safe and happy Halloween with your pups (and kitties!). If your dog is the costume-loving type, consider entering our Costume Contest for a chance to win a Mega Pack Pack!


The Weghorst’s Pack is ready for a safe and Happy Halloween!

Help your Dog have a Safe Holiday!

As we come up on another holiday, we have a few tips to help you and your dog stay safe and happy.

Monitor the Grill – The food you are cooking is very attractive to your pup. They can burn themselves on the hot grill. Also be careful where you dispose of any coals you may have used. They smell like meat juice and can be a tempting snack.

No Cooked Bones – They are choking hazards and can result in dental and mouth injuries, and intestinal blockages and perforations. Ouch!

Watch the Trash – Whether it is the tinfoil you wrapped the steak in, a corn cob, a bamboo skewer, or plastic, your pup might make them a snack and that could land you at the vet.

A Warm Day Warning – Warm temperatures can cause your pet to overheat. Have water available to your pet, provide shaded areas if you are going to be outside, or let them stay inside instead.

Watch What They Eat – Table scraps may seem like a nice treat for your pet but be careful what you share. Fatty foods can upset their stomach and sometimes lead to pancreatitis. Additionally some BBQ foods are toxic to pets including onions, garlic, alcohol and the artificial sweetener Xylitol. Here is a link of Foods Hazardous to Dogs. Instead, consider a special dog treat, or sharing a more pet safe and healthy food, like a carrot!

Monitor Chemicals – Lighter fluid, bug spray, alcohol, sunscreen, you never know what a dog will eat, lick or chew on. Make sure you store them safely out of reach.

Additionally, holiday fun can also lead to lost dogs. Some locations celebrate with fireworks which can be frightening to many dogs.  For tips to help deal with thunder, fireworks, and other situations your pup might find scarey, check out the following articles: Helping Your Dog Relax, More Great Ideas for Calming Dogs, and consider using a product we love,  The Thundershirt. We strongly suggest making sure your dog’s tags and microchip information is correct, legible, and ready in case they happen to decide to go on an unplanned adventure.

Also remember that a backyard party may result in a gate being left open or a pup slipping out the door.  Make sure your guests know the dog is lose in the yard and/house. It is better to be prepared for the chance of your dog running away, and implement preventative measures where you can, so please check out the following articles: How to Prepare for the 4th of July, Lost and Found – The Stray Dog, and Dog Catching Tips. Additionally our 4th of July post may be helpful.

Have a safe and Happy Labor day!

Dog Catching Tip

Brittney's Mystery

Brittney’s Mystery

You might have noticed the leash that Marlo was wearing in her photos, it’s made of chain! When we tried to catch Brittney’s Mystery, we learned a valuable lesson! After she snapped the leash in half with one swipe of her teeth, we had to come up with plan B! The flimsy leash we had was an epic fail! When we came back the next day to trap her, we had a braided nylon leash! She still could’ve bitten it, but it would’ve taken her a little bit longer to chew out!

Recently when I picked up William Wallace, in two seconds, he too snapped the leash in half. It happens! Several years ago, we rescued a Golden Retriever, Gracie, she too snapped her leash off like a pro.

After our encounter with Zsa Zsa the Poodle, I was prepared, and I suggest you do the same. I had a chain leash in the car!

Recently everyone has been reporting finding stray dogs! If you think you’re the type to try to rescue, do yourself a favor and arm yourself with a braided nyson slip leash (in case the dog does not have a collar, and then, once you can place a collar on the dog, use the chain leash. How would you feel if you helped a dog get to safety, only to watch it bite, snap, and bolt? It happens!  I actually went to a local petstore and paid a fortune for one of these leashes, only to find them reasonably priced on Amazon!

Friendly Dog Collars

A great idea!

A great idea!

“FRIENDLY” Color Coded Green Semi-Choke Dog Collar & 4 Foot Leash Set (Known As Friendly) PREVENTS Dog Accidents By Warning Others of Your Dog in Advance!

Here’s a great idea, just in time for the summer.  Whether you order one from the company, or shop around for collars like these, it’s a great idea to label your dog when you’re out in public, especially when those tiny humans want to pet your dog! Personally, I was  happy to see one that says “Deaf” or “Blind”. The company is called Friendly Dog Collars, and they are based out of the U.K. Friendly Dog Collars

Canine Reboot

Nutella, labeled a fear-biter

I’ve done this dozens of times… talked to owners who are frustrated with their dogs.  Wanting their dogs to be balanced, and happy.  Sometimes it’s the wife that hates the dog, sometimes it’s the husband.  Sometimes the dog doesn’t like the kids, or the grandparents.  Dog fights, cat fights… you name it.

One of the questions I HAVE TO ask when someone is trying to surrender their dog to me is, “if I can fix your dog, can you… would you… could you… keep your dog?”  sometimes the answer is yes, sometimes it’s no.

With the launch of Canine Connect, a service that I can offer to dog owners who truly care about the dogs, truly want the best for the dogs, but can no longer keep them, I’m asking that question more often.  “What if I can fix it?”

Over the past few weeks, the dogs I’ve fostered have really amazed me.  WiiGo transformed into the best little dog I’ve ever known.

McDreamy & McSteamy

McSteamy and McDreamy, terrified of everything, quickly became accustomed to home life and family living.  No longer afraid to walk through doorways, or put their paws on ceramic tile floors.  With their heads hung low all of the time, they were unsure, slow to trust, and not sure if I was friend of foe.  Just a few days later, I introduced them to the pack, one at a time.  Once they got to meet Lady Di… everything changed.  It was as if a light switch had been turned on, and they felt “safe”.  They exchanged play bows, and the heads were held high, tails were relaxed, and the playing began!  After that day they walked with pride, there was a bounce in their step, they greeted me with affection, and their adjustment period was about 48 hours.    Dogs do live in the moment.

Little Grace, being a happy dog!

And recently, Little Grace.  She was adopted yesterday, but before she left I had the pleasure of snapping a photo of her playing with the pack… and loving it!  It may not seem like a big deal to you, but it sure was a big deal to me!  It’s called joy!  If a dog can relax enough, be happy enough, have enough self-esteem, and know that it’s not going to be hurt, there’s absolutely no danger whatsoever, and it’s welcomed… they can play!  Way to go Little Grace… you made my day!

So if what if we could simply Reboot our dogs?  If I gave you a list of questions about your dog, would you know how to answer?

  • Is your dog shy, fearful, nervous, or anxious?
  • Is your dog aggressive, dominant or alpha?
  • Is your dog guarding you or protecting you?
  • Do you know why your dog acts like he wants to attack other dogs?
  • Does your dog have separation anxiety, or is he insecure?  Do you think the two are one in the same?
  • Do you think your dog is neurotic or bored?

Snapple, an Owner-Surrender

Snapple, Adopted

What would you think the main reason why people surrender or give away their dogs?

The Dog Liberator has rescued dogs that will otherwise be euthanized, OR at risk of being surrendered to a shelter or pound.

The Dog Liberator will help you rehome your dog through Canine Connect, thus preventing the dog from being adopted to the wrong family, which may ultimately lead to euthanasia.

Remember, owner-surrendered dogs are not protected under stray-hold policy.

Owner-surrendered dogs can and are sometimes put to sleep before their owners have left the parking lot.  


Chaos learns High Five

While I have spent over three years inviting strange new dogs into my home I:

  • introduced them to my family, friends, and neighbors
  • introduce them to new experiences like visiting the vet
  • going on walks
  • teaching them not to be afraid of the crate
  • teaching them to be quiet
  • starting them on housebreaking
  • show them how to properly greet strangers
  • teaching them not to bolt out of doorways
  • correcting them when they try to climb a fence.

My personal dogs have also spent three years inviting strange new dogs into their home, and they:

  • have showed them how to share a space
  • showed them that being rewarded has benefits
  • showed them how to interact with humans
  • showed them how to play properly
  • showed them how to come when called
  • but more importantly, my pack have taught dogs, how to be a good dog.

Deaf China takes Baby GaGa under her care

Dogs can teach another dog what a person can’t:

  • I can not teach a dog that greeting face to face is rude
  • I can not explain to a dog that sniffing the rear is polite
  • I can not approach a dog and correct their attempt to dominate… that’s Lady Di’s job
  • I can not initiate play with a dog who doesn’t know how to play… that’s China’s job
  • I can not show a dog that another dog is not a threat, that is Ozzie’s job

My home is what I used to call Border Collie Boot Camp.  Every fostered dog has had to find their way to survive and cohabitate here, eat side by side, enjoy bones without being growled at, and play ball without being attacked.  The result is probably the best gift I receive in rescue.  Watching a pack of dogs run together, play together, wrestle gently, and have a blast!

Lieutenant Colonel Di, Lieutenant Ozzie, and Private China!


There is no reason for the dogs to be nervous, fearful or anxious.  My pack clearly shows them that I am the pack leader, they can relax, and enjoy being a dog!  The true challenge is teaching the dog owners that their dog truly wants to be… just a great dog!

Maybe all your dog needs is a Canine Reboot!  Email me if you would like information on how we can Reboot Your Dog!


The Mystery of #0215 – Gilligan

Adoption Update 10/03/12:  Hey Gisele! Hope all is well!

Indi is free and clear of heart worms, he was just tested a few months ago at his annual. He is still coming out of his shell, he has started rolling on his back to get belly rubs and pushes us with his nose for attention. He is very affectionate, but only in certain rooms. I think it is a comfort thing. He loves his sister to pieces, he naps with her constantly and followers her around the house. You can tell by his body he is no longer on edge, doesn’t jump when you touch him, he is finally feeling safe and relaxed. He is such a good boy.
We will not be coming to the reunion. We will be with my parents before they head to spend the holidays with my brothers and family.  Plus Indi is still skittish around new people. That is something we are still working on with him. 🙂

Gilligan is just a young boy. I saw a photo of him sent by Hope Master at Floyd/Rome, GA Animal Control. He was laying down. Hope said he was scared, but they’re all scared.

So, Megan goes to pick him up off of transport last night, passes him off to Melissa, the CSR at Val-u-Vet. He was terrified, more importantly, he had to be picked up off the floor, because he’s too scared to walk.

I gave him some food, water, and yes… a brand new beef marrow bone, put him in a comfy crate with a Kuranda bed, and left him alone. I thought that by this morning, the shell shock of being nailed by animal control, (possibly with a catch pole), thrown into a pound, then transported across the state by various people in various cars would wear off. It usually does by the morning, but not this morning.

Nope. He sat in the corner of his crate, would NOT come out, would not have eye contact, trembled so bad I thought his fur would fall off, and he would not come out. Not even with hot dog bites as a bribe. Nope, this little boy is terrified.

Looking at his little short legs, I don’t know what he’s mixed with, but there’s a lot of Border Collie in this cute little guy. Is he a Borgie? Wouldn’t that be nice, to have another Borgie!!! So, I put a leash on him, and figured, if I start walking, he will too. After all, I am the pack leader right? Wrong again. He slid across the floor and would not get up. Oh boy.

I picked him and put him the car… he flopped. I brought him to Val-u-Vet for his shots and neuter. I called them, told them I was out back, and I needed George! George came out to meet me and Gilligan, wrapped him up in a blanket and carried him to a crate.

On the way home, I remembered the trembling, and I haven’t seen him “walk” so I called Meagan and asked her if she ever saw him walk, her answer was no. I asked her to call the transporter, and he did say he saw him walk out of his crate for a second, then he plopped onto floor. Melissa agreed that he did not walk, however, he did stand up briefly to pee. Is the trembling be because of pain or fear?

I had a flash back of Nutella. When I first got her, there was no doubt in my mind that if I would’ve stuck my hand in her crate to get her out, she would’ve nipped me. I know that look when a dog is thinking about “fight or flight”. He could of nipped at Megan, and Melissa said she had to literally pull him out of his crate, so the opportunity to nip was there. He could’ve nipped me this morning easily, but he didn’t. This tells me he wants to trust, but just can’t. He doesn’t want to hurt anyone, but he’s so afraid to be hurt. Then I remembered Shy Shannon and Goldie Hawn, neither of them had ever been outdoors. Maybe he’s afraid because he’s never been outside.

So, tomorrow he will be examined from head to toe. I’ve asked the staff at Val-u-Vet to let me know if anyone catches him stand up in his crate. But the question remains, what has happened to this little boy that he is too afraid to walk or stand up? He shakes when you touch him.

Note: The vet did call me with an update that I really didn’t want to hear. He is heartworm positive. Doxy and Prednisone will be started right away, and he will go on Heartgard March 1st.

The dogs that I’ve rescued that were this afraid, I believe, were beaten because they were not house broken. But once you scare a pup to death, every time to go near the animal, he urinates out of fear. Doesn’t make sense, does it?

I don’t know what’s happened to him, but I’m sure we’ll find out… eventually. Gilligan is one of many who have been abused in some way, including Nutella, Bailey, China, Shannon, Tuck Me In, just to name a few.

02/12/11 Update: Two things, I love being wrong, and we named him right. He definitely went on a three hour tour and got lost. This little boy’s problem? He’s been attached to his owner, had an incredible dependent relationship with his owner, and doesn’t know what to do now, he’s lost. We believe he got up every morning, jumped in the truck, and went to work every day with his owner, spent very little time outdoors, except maybe to do a tinkle, and spent the evening watching tv on the couch! He is fine with the other dogs, he doesn’t really acknowledge them. He spent the night sleeping between Megan and my daughter Sarah on the couch, and has no desire to play.

So while I don’t feel he’s scared because he’s been on his own and unsocialized, I think he’s scared because he’s only known one owner, one apartment, one truck, one routine, and he’s not adapting easily.

He is absolutely not going to growl, show teeth, or bite anyone for any reason, he’s really a very gentle boy that loves to be held. He has not wagged his tail yet, therefore, he has no joy, but we all know that’ll happen in time.

I’m going to be introducing him to different people just to see how he reacts. He will tell me who his former owner was. Once we know that, we can move forward to finding him the right home.


02/14/11 Update: Paul Pipitone has offered to foster and rehabilitate this little boy, and we jumped up and down screaming with joy! Updates soon.

02/15/11 Update: After reflecting Gilligan’s time with us in rescue, I’ve realized that at first, he was terrified of being at the pound, then transported by multiple strangers, then taken to the vet, neutered and vetted. But, I think when he saw me, he really shut down. Was it my voice? My long brown hair? I triggered something in him that really freaked him out.

He did well with my dogs, but to be honest, it was too soon for us to expect him to react. Maybe he was still sore from surgery, I just don’t know.

When we put a harness on him, instead of a collar, he did better. When he left my home, and went to Megan’s, he spent a few days just resting. Megan’s house is very quiet.

When Paul came to pick him up, Megan explained that he was just starting to get better with regard to his fear. Paul is providing updates daily, and I’m confident that he has the experience to explain Gil’s behaviors to us. Gil is lucky to have Paul, and so are we!

Day 1 Playlist:
Gilligan is doing really well on a walk! He WAGS HIS TAIL and gives Paul’s neighbor a kiss! Megan and I both believed he was owned by a young man. This is amazing for Day 1!!! Thank you Paul!

Day 2 Playlist:
A lot of improvements. Gilligan seens more relaxed, he eats, and takes a treat from Paul’s hand.

Day 3 Playlist:
Gilligan, now Skipper barks, is attentive, and learns to trust.

Day 5 Playlist:
Gilligan, now Skipper is doing awesome!

Day 6 Playlist:
Skipper has an adoption meet, and plays with Roxy!

Whoah Nellie!

If you thought that Shy Shannon, Trixie Belle, Chelsea and Nutella gave me a challenge, wait until you meet Nellie.

Before I dive into Nellie’s story, remember Cassie, Carter’s Mom? This little girl looks so much like Cassie it’s scary!

Nellie came from Mobile Alabama, our transport coordinator Christina and Suzanne were kind enough to make arrangements for her to hitch a ride to our rescue. And then? She escaped! For 48 hours groups of volunteers were searching for her. Christina told a fellow volunteer, Darla, “I don’t know how to coordinate a rodeo!” And a rodeo it was.

I will let Darla tell us exactly what happened, but finally, Nellie was found and transport was arranged once again. Flight risk is an understatement.
Our Rebecca made arrangements for Pilot, Jeffrey Archer to fly Nellie to me from Tally to the DeLand airport, but Darla, knowing Nellie personally thought about it, she said NO! So, Darla personally drove Nellie to my door. She’s a strong little border collie! I can see how she could easily elude even the fastest human! Here’s Darla’s take on Nellie’s Great Adventure!

Leg by leg transport from Mobile, AL, to Deltona, FL
Third Leg – Lloyd, FL, Black/white BC transferred from one vehicle to the next
Dog placed in the back of the next vehicle and leash removed (MISTAKE #1)
Dog not tied or secured in vehicle (MISTAKE #2)
New driver opened back door (MISTAKE #3)
Opportunity seen! Whoa Nellie makes a run for it!

Although I’m rarely at home on a Saturday afternoon and rarely on-line at that time, I checked my emails and saw a post of a dog who had gotten loose on a transport near where I live in Tallahassee, FL. As a member of the Big Bend DART (Disaster Animal Response Team) and having worked with ARNO (Animal Rescue New Orleans) since Hurricane Katrina, I knew I could help. I made a few calls to get additional help and drove to the exit. One car was driving around looking for her. (The other car had to continue with the transport.) Talking with people in the area, we found out the last sighting was at the Cavallo Ranch, a horse ranch about 1 mile up a small, muddy, dirt road on the other side of woods. We searched the area, looking for paw prints and broken weeds, searching empty horse stalls, talking with people who passed by and people at the ranch. Nothing!

Of course, it started raining, we continued until about 10:00 pm then decided to regroup by an abandoned gas station at the entrance of the dirt road. Nellie was seen when the first car passed a hidden grassy area. She took off at break-neck speed. We again followed her path. Her foster mother, Crystal, who had jumped in her car from 4 hours away when she had heard the news of the escape, arrived with her daughter who had a special bond with Nellie. They also joined. After some more time had passed with no response, we decided to settle in for a quiet watch-n-wait, hoping the child would bring Nellie from the woods. After 2 more hours, we decided to call it a night and regroup in the morning.

Sunday morning, we met up again at 7:00 am. I had a few connections through the DART team and arranged for a K9 Search and Rescue team to come and join the search. Three more wonderul helpers, Pat Simmons, Ann and the dog named Pete, joined the search. We followed several scent trails through mud, swamp land and woods, around abandoned business and houses – no definitive results except that we knew where she wasn’t. After reaching the point of the Pete’s time to rest and the heat of the day increasing, we continued with people only. Again, no sightings by us.

We returned to the sight in the evening. (Loose, scared dogs will usually hunker down somewhere during the heat of the day – and come out at dawn and dusk looking for food.) People had seen her again. This time, she was running by the freeway and, again, was returning to the gas station where the transfer originated. Another search of the woods, area and horse ranch. Nothing. Several feeding stations were set up to keep her in the area and away from the freeway. Arrangements were being made to set a trap the following evening. Contact numbers were given to nearby businesses, people and the ranch. Another evening wrapped up with no Nellie.

Then, later that evening, about 11:00, we got a call from the ranch. After all our work, she wandered into the lounge of the ranch offices through a doggie door! How simple! What a smart girl! Finding the only air conditioned place around that she had access to! Had she been laying in wait, watching all us crazy humans going through all the means we could think of to try to get her? I imagine her just watching us the whole time (instead of the other option – her terrified and hiding in the safest place she could find).

Nellie then went to a safe place, provided by another volunteer who works with a local no-kill rescue group, ECAH Animals/Capitol ARK. She proved to be a wonderful house guest – no potty mistakes in the house, no chasing the cats running around, no problems with the other dogs in the house.

The next issue became how to get her to her destination. When arrangements were made to fly her there, I had visions of her breaking out and running on the runways. Couldn’t do it. I had to take her there myself. I did. (Definitely no stops along the way!) She made it safely to the house of Giselle. After talking with Gisele, I felt really comfortable knowing she will find her forever home! Thanks to all who helped!



Nellie is resting now, and I will start working with her in the next few days, but a micro chip is really the first thing I plan on doing! I will be determining if she is a herding dog, a disc dog, an agility pro, or if she needs to move into Fort Knox! More about this gorgeous flight risk soon!

06/13/10 Update: Nellie has been very withdrawn, and to be honest, exhausted. I wonder if she has recently had a litter, and I truly wonder how long she has been on her own. She is very underweight, but I’m used to that, it’s the amount of rest that she’s enjoying really makes me wonder. I guess always being on the run and scared would make any good dog exhausted. But last night, it was time to work on socialization! With Erika’s help, I brought her to my side yard, and kept her on leash, and plenty of turkey hot dogs! The goal was to see if she would try to escape. Amazingly, Nellie sits on command and also does the “sit pretty” as well.

Then, we introduced Ozzie who, as always, was very polite to her. A few moments later, we brought out Lady Di. Much to my suprise, it was Lady Di that wanted to play with Nelli, but the answer was no. I was confident that she would not try to escape, and we all gathered in the larger yard, again, rewarding with more hot dogs. As Ozzie and Lady ran out the yard playing chase me now, Nellie watched with curiousity, but still no play. I was very discouraged.

Before we were going to call it a night, I brought out Serendipity, and within seconds, this little fluffy Aussie got Nellie to play! What? Did I get on film? Why… of course! Video coming soon!

on Facebook: Wendy Mcarthur – Nellie, looks like a completly different dog from when she was at the County Shelter. Her wonderful spirit is coming to life. I can not thank everybody involved in her rescue enough. but, i do believe these pictures show why we get involved , saving one dog at a time. It is so worth it when you see this kind of results.

Holly and Gisele,

First let me say…I LOVE HER! She is precious and oh so smart. I just hate to think what someone did to her, she is so young, but you can see she is oh so hesitant to truly trust. Spent some good, but hot, time with her and Cocoa in one of my fenced in paddocks today (several times). She knows now that is her ‘free time’ to be off the leash and have fun. Got a good back roll in the grass and then she was wide open to belly rubs and all the sorts. Stole Cocoa’s bone twice, which then Cocoa decided she must bury at once before the new pup steals again!

She is REALLY timid around John, but gaining trust by the second. After dinner tonight he got down on the ground with her on the patio (picture attached) and there was some real connection. She now approaches him with caution but hope. I have NO DOUBT that she will be off the leash and happy with life after a couple weeks here, if not sooner. Horse should be here Monday, so I think she will love that adventure.

It was funny this morning, I took her out around 5:30 am for a little walk and the roosters were a crowing…she loved it! She was meant for ‘farm living’ for sure! ‘Farm Living is the life for her’ (Green Acres). You guys did a great thing by rescuing her, and Gisele’s skills with acclimation were great. She is my shadow, and I know will be John’s mush puppy in no time.

Let me know if I am bothering you, but I know that I would want updates if I had spent time with her.


Sept 10 Update from Jocelyn

Love the tongue sticking out! She has brought new energy to Cocoa who has finally settled with the fact that ‘the pup’ is here to stay so she may as well take her under her wing.

Cocoa is trying to learn how to play BC style rather than lab style…cute to watch her try to figure out what makes Maggie happy!


Within 5 minutes, she has pulled all these toys out onto her bed and would pick one up, run around the house then jump back on the bed and grab the next one! I have a huge basket of dog toys right next to her bed…guess she finally figured out that it was there!


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