Monday, June 27, 2011

What a feeling — helping rescue dogs get adopted!

On Friday, my friend Allison and I headed to K-9 Stray Rescue League in Oxford to walk some dogs for them. We are so glad we did it!
The last pair of dogs we were walked were adult labradors named Duke and Gracie. They were sharing a pen together and we asked what their story was.
"Their owner died," a volunteer told us. "They were surrendered to a shelter and the day before they were scheduled to be put down, K-9 picked them up."
Can I just say, "Whew!"
Those two definitely deserve better.
Walking rescue dogs is no easy task. No dog that stays penned up for any period of time can be expected to do anything less than tug and pull and be totally wild when let out on leash. We had plenty of dogs that were ready to pull our arms right out of their sockets, but not these two sweethearts.
They walked together, side by side, smiling and happy to be out and about, tails gently wagging. They didn't pull at all.
As we walked, chunks of old fur were flying off them in the wind. They were shedding and in need of a good brushing, so before we left K-9, we sat down on the deck and brushed out all that soft lab fur.
We talked about them all night, hoping to hear they'd been adopted.
On Saturday, we got the news we were looking for while stopping by Pet-A-Palooza at The Palace in Auburn Hills.
Carole Powell, founder of K-9 Stray, stopped us when we walked into K-9's area.
"You two brushed those labs out so nice they were the first ones to get adopted this morning!" she said.
Allison and I erupted in cheers and high-fives. What an incredible feeling it is to know you've helped two great dogs find a great new home after first losing their owner and then coming so close to losing their own lives as well.
Powell filled us on in the adopting family.
"They're just wonderful," she told us. "A nice family with children and a new baby. The dogs are going to do great there."
And I have no doubt that they will.

Video of Allison and I walking Duke & Gracie

Dusty still needs a home! 
Also on Friday, I met Dusty — a chocolate labrador and pit bull mix who is absolutely gorgeous. He really stole my heart.
See Dusty's Adoption Profile
Again, you expect penned dogs to pull like crazy. Dusty didn't.
Sure, he pulled a little bit, but he was very interested in what I was doing — that's a great sign, from a dog trainer's point of view. If I stopped, he stopped. If I said his name, he was at attention immediately. Having a dog that is very focused on and motivated by human attention is a huge bonus. It makes training so much easier.
Dusty needs some four-on-the-floor training and probably some work with mouthing too. He didn't really mouth me at all, but in playing with a potential adopter who encouraged the mouthing, he quickly delved right into it.
Either way, he's got great energy and excellent training potential. He is a total lover and wants to bond with every human he comes across. Top it all off with his attractive looks and you've got yourself a great dog, so what are you waiting for? Adopt Dusty!


  1. Thank you Karen! Dusty is a favorite at K9!

  2. How wonderful to read! I will be sharingthis on a group page. Because volunteers take the time to help, Volunteering to help animals is a wonderful feeling. It is too bad there are not more volunteers!

    The shelters shuld appreciate what we do because without us many more would never make it out of the shelter.