The Dog Liberator™

The Dog Liberator rescues abandoned dogs throughout the Southeast. Based in Central Florida, this non-profit organization fosters all of their dogs in a home environment. Founded in 2009, all dogs are fully vetted, spayed or neutered prior to adoption. The Dog Liberator focuses in rescuing the herding breed, which consists of Border Collies, Shepherds, Sheepdogs, Aussies, Collies, and Deaf/Blind Dogs.

Fiona, the Deaf Aussie Pup

Fiona, the Deaf Aussie Pup
Fiona the Deaf Aussie

On April 28th, I received a phone call from Terry Watts from Panama City.  “Gisele, I just got you a little pup”, she said.   I shook my head and thought to myself, she means she got Holly a little pup!  “I just couldn’t help myself.  I know I didn’t ask you first, I just saw her and jumped in the car right away to get her.  She was on Craig’s list, they were getting rid of her, she’s only 7 weeks old, and the poor little thing is deaf.”

I immediately smiled, because Terry didn’t know what she really did!  She just rescued a Wilson pup!  About two years ago, the Wilson family adopted Nitro from me, and they had been watching all of the Aussies the come through our rescue.  They were very interested in Baby GaGa, but Karyce’s Mom (Tina Nestrick) had already finalized Baby GaGa’s adoption.  I promised them that the next Deaf Aussie pup I rescued, would be theirs.

Nitro's Parents

I texted Jen Wilson immediately:  I have your pup!  She replied:  Pardon?  Then I forwarded photos and the pup had a home!

I wrapped up two transports the following weekend, one from Alabama and one from Georgia, and I was ready to work on getting the pup out of Panama City.  Every day I received a text or a phone call from the Wilsons, making sure the pup was on her way, and asking if I needed anything.  All I needed was time!

It was around 1:00 PM on May 4th, while I was putting the transport together, I had a feeling that being Mother’s Day weekend, I was not going to be successful.  I called Terry and asked her if she’d drive the pup half-way from Panama City to Daytona Beach.  We reviewed the map together and picked a meeting place.  With a little bit of gas money, Terry was ready to go!  I called the Wilsons, and believe it or not, they left about an hour later to get their pup!

Terry & the Wilsons

At 10:00 PM I received a photo of the meeting, and it was awesome.  The Wilsons got to meet Terry, and Terry got to meet them, and see for herself the  joy in their eyes and the love in their heart for this tiny pup that they had been waiting for!  The meeting created a ways and means for the Wilsons to thank Terry personally.  It sounds like a fairy tale doesn’t it?  Well, it is!  They named her Fiona!

Nitro & Fiona

While Jennifer may have thought that Fiona was her Mother’s Day gift, the real mom turned out to be Nitro!  It appears that Nitro has taken this pup under his wing!


The Wilsons will foster Fiona until she has had all of her shots, and is spayed, at that point, she will be permanently adopted.

Fiona at the Vet

I met Fiona at Val-u-Vet yesterday and had planned on meeting Dr. Oliver so she could receive her first set of shots, was de-wormed and microchipped.  However, Dr. Oliver popped in and said he wanted Dr. Dario Pinzon to see Fiona.  Why?  He’s their eye specialist, which is something that I had completely forgotten.  Dr. Pinzon examined Fiona’s eyes and even allowed Bill to see her pupils through the examining device.  He stressed the importance of sunlight for her retinas, and explained that because her pupils are not in the center of her eye, that they are offset, she will have poor vision if an object is entering her field of vision from her right side.  This was very useful information for training purposes.  The Wilsons will not purposely communicate with Fiona from her left side.  We still are not sure if she is completely deaf.  She seems to cock her head, and look around while we make loud noises, as if she’s wondering where the sound is coming from.  For now, I think it’s safe to say she has selective hearing!  Bill said, “isn’t that typical for a woman to have selective hearing!”

Bill & Fiona

What Dr. Pinzon didn’t realize was that my China and Fiona are the same, therefore everything he was explaining about Fiona, he was helping me with China.  Yes, it was a wonderful day!!!!  Thank you Terry!


One thought on “Fiona, the Deaf Aussie Pup

  1. adopted from Humane Society what we thought was a st. bernard puppy. turns out our Vet believes shes an Australian sheep dog. We love her. So cute. About 12-14 weeks. But she’s ‘deaf’ or selective deaf,. please help us. We want to train her, but she’s getting to be a little spoiled, if you know what i mean. thanks. Charlie

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