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A Story for Thanksgiving

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  • Mina Sharpe
    From California --- a lesson for rescues everywhere. I thought I d pass this along, since it certainly taught me a lesson in the virtue of patience. Happy
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 26, 2003
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      From California --- a lesson for rescues everywhere.

      I thought I'd pass this along, since it certainly taught me a lesson in
      the virtue of patience. Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

      A little red Cockapoo had been at South Central, in LA. CA. for over 10
      days. She came in with a little male, and both were marked as caution
      dogs, with a note that said "unsocialized". I know a lot of different
      rescues were called on them, and a few came to see them, but either
      didn't get them out because of the cautionary notes or due to being told
      that the dogs were unfriendly. (I'm not 100% sure this is the case with
      the black male -- I know it is with the red female). Not only didn't take
      them but didn't even get them out of the runs.

      Now, I understand this. Both dogs were past their reviews when I saw them
      this past Wednesday, and I did the same thing -- saw the caution note,
      listened to what I was told about them from the ACT's (that they had been
      snappy and mean), and as with so many other dogs not mean, I didn't even
      try to get them out. When there are so many to choose from, it's almost a
      blessing for one to be mean, because it's a reason we can choose another.

      Anyway, long story short, I was at the shelter again yesterday, and on a
      whim, I asked about the little redheaded female. Again, I heard the same
      thing -- she's mean, she's feral, and has been biting at the ACT's going
      in to get other dogs. Knowing that she had been available a long time,
      and that her chances were about up, I had them lasso her and bring her
      out. She was very scared, growled a few times when outside, then slowly
      let me start petting her. Within a few minutes she let me pick her up,
      and we were on our way to the back to start our adoption paperwork.

      Moral of the story: Give them all a chance.

      If I had listened to how the dog had been (and I don't doubt she had
      exibited all those traits before -- she actually tried some again when
      the RVT's were getting her ready for me too, once she was in a cage
      again) instead of taking the time to try and see how her personality
      really was, little Dina would either still be in the shelter, or worse.
      Yes, she's skittish. No, I would never place her in a family with
      children. But is she placeable -- 100% yes!

      In just one day, she comes up to me, she jumps onto the couch next to me
      for attention, she uses the doggy door to go out -- she's great! If I
      move too fast or too loud, she will run outside -- but then she'll come
      right back.

      The shelter is SUCH A TERRIFYING ENVIROMENT for these dogs. So many come
      in and get a cautionary note, which they then lose after settling down
      there for a few days. But others just are so scared and confused there,
      they never act right -- and they all deserve the full chance. We all know
      how the personality of a dog we see at the shelter usually isn't the one
      we see once we get the dog home.

      These caution dogs need the benefit of the doubt, or at least the benefit
      of 5 minutes of sitting down next to them, and seeing if they are capable
      of trusting. The ones that are just scared, and not mean, will generally
      show you some spark in that 5 minutes of time.

      I'll get off my soapbox now, but I felt like I needed to share this
      story, because I know many of us had seen this dog at the shelter in the
      last week, and like I did the first two times, passed her up without
      giving her the chance. Obviously, she was worth the chance.

      Mina Sharpe
      Cause for Paws Rescue
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