Our waif from Greeley …

… hit the jackpot with a new home in Berthoud, Colorado.  Recent transplants from Illinois, Debra and Mark are enjoying our typically mild winters.  Contrary to popular belief, the foothills and plains of Colorado are not coated in snow the entire winter.  The mountains, however, are a different story and we love to hear that our mountain snowpack is “above average.”

Elle is settling in to her new home with little fanfare.  Their resident cat, however, may have a different opinion of her new “roomie.” 

Here’s what Deb and Mark had to say about Elle’s first week …

Hi Vickie,  Elle has been here a week.  She has been a good dog.  She and Debra have bonded and she follows her around like Debra wanted.  She goes outside but is subtle about wanting out.  We take her out often.  We have found two bad habits of hers.  One she would be a car chaser.  When cars go by she runs across the back yard like she is chasing.   But she never goes out alone and can’t leave the yard so it is not a problem.  She doesn’t do it while on a leash.  The other bad habit is she is a beggar.  She begs at the dinner table.  We have not given her anything but she has to be scolded when she stands up. The crate is going much better.  She still whimpers but for a very short time.  She figures she is going to spend the night in there.   When we leave she will still howl. You can hear her in the garage.   Other than that she is a great companion for Debra.  She and the cat are getting along great.  Elle wants to play more but the cat ignores her when she is not interested so Elle  just walks off.  She is eating better now.  She started off eating one time a day.  But she eats twice.  Loves her greenies. They are much cheaper onliine than at pet store.  Everything is good.  She is right at home now and is learning her boundaries.  Debra & Mark H.

Besides Elle getting a new home, we’re excited to welcome Debra and Mark as new foster parents for our organization!!  Thank you for stepping up to the plate and opening your hearts and home for a dog that needs a second chance at a new life.  It is only through our foster homes that we are successful in this endeavor.  Again, welcome!!

Unsung heros …

… come in many forms.  And our rescue organization couldn’t function as efficiently nor as effectively without their generous help.  This post is to gratefully recognize the contributions of those who make rescue possible in all ways.

Michelle, who adopted Emma and then became a foster home in Northern Colorado.  She is also our Webmistress, taking good care of our website.  We’ll forgive her for moving to Texas.  Sue Seaton in Centennial, covering our home visits in the metro Denver area.   Jackson’s Mom (another of our foster dogs), Linda Gattis, who stepped up and answered a desperate plea to foster an 8-month old puppy (neither house trained or crate trained).  John and Neil who wanted to honor the memory of their Stoli by becoming a foster home.  They’ve worked wonders with their first foster, Bubba, and we’re thankful to have a foster home in the area again.  To those who have opened up your hearts and homes when needed … thank you!

Then there are the folks who have gone above and beyond to get a dog to us … Tom the Trucker, picking Mae-Mae up in Missouri … the wonderful ladies, Linda and Lisa, at C.A.R.E., bringing us Bubba and, just this past Tuesday night, Emmy, from Kansas … Marilyn Whisman from Wichita who cared for and got Emmy to the pick-up place … Pat from Pueblo who made sure little blind Magoo was safe and made his way to Castle Rock for the pick-up … the ladies from Denver who delivered Elvis to us after he’d been wandering a Capitol Hill neighborhood for weeks, a matted mess … Rachel from Sterling who made the trip to Fort Collins with Sterling (hey, it seemed like a good name for a stray!) … Odean, watching over the breed from cyberspace, scouring online shelter listings for Apsos in need and getting the word out to various rescue groups.  Those of you living in the West know that “local” is a relative term.  “Local” meaning 10 miles or 200 miles and it is no small feat to arrange or coordinate some of these transports.  For those who have journeyed on behalf of a dog in need of rescue … thank you!

As a non-profit rescue, we operate solely on adoption fees and donations … funds which are used only for medical treatment on incoming dogs.  To the foster homes who have provided — out of their own pockets — food, toys, treats, bedding, crates and whatever else it takes to successfully integrate a dog into a home … thank you for making sure the needs of your fosters are met in all areas.

Last, but certainly not least, the folks who have so generously made monetary donations or given discounts or goods so we can continue our work … Dr. Sherry, our fabulous vet at NorthShore Animal Hospital … Kathy, who knows our heart, sending donations and words of encouragement … Michelle’s Mom and Uncle Skip, watching our work from Pennsylvania … Trudi, who remembers us on Ka Tu’s “Gotcha” anniversary date … Connie Spears … Vickie Gallagher … our friends at Schering-Plough who donated the folders we use for our adoption packets … Jan Bloomenrader (who also adopted Kersey) and Judy Wendt (who adopted Magoo).  Thank you for remembering this ancient breed in your charitable giving.

Look in the mirror folks and gazing back you’ll see the face of rescue in each and every one of you … thank you!

In closing, this post would not be complete without a humble thank you to the “DogDaddy” … my husband, Alan.  It is with his assistance and blessing that we’ve been able to care for the many fosters over the past decade — and we simply couldn’t do it as well without him.  He’s the self-appointed poop picker … rides along with us on dog runs … cleans up messes — and messy bottoms … scootches over in the recliner, making room for yet another dog … and no longer rolls his eyes when I tell him we have another foster coming in.

Nine Hours Later …

… we had two 8-month old Apsos home and clean.  Not only matted but urine-soaked feet and bellies.  It took three people and almost six hours to get them cleaned up.  Matted to the skin in various places on their heads, muzzles and around the neck, chest and shoulders.  Feces caked on the rear.  

These boys are horses … I’d guess they weigh 21+ pounds (to put it in perspective, my boys weigh 14.5 to 15 pounds at maturity).  Golden in color with black tipping.  And exceptional temperaments.  Through it all, the only thing they offered were kisses.  No snapping, no biting, no whining … that’s saying a lot given what it took to get them cleaned up. 

They could be twins and we’re having difficulty telling them apart.  At the moment, one has retained baby canines, the other doesn’t.  Neuters are scheduled for the 19th.  They have a bit of separation anxiety but we’re working through that … 

Dawa and Momo
Rub-a-dub-dub ... Apso in the tub
Linda (l) and Debbie (r)

These little cuties … well, not so little … will be available for adoption in the next four to six weeks.  They need to be neutered, caught up on their vaccinations and microchipped.  We’re also in the midst of contacting a trainer/animal behaviorist to work on their separation anxiety.  While they’re getting better, we want to make sure we’re doing all we can for them to ensure they are well-adjusted.

Update:   Spoke with the trainer/behaviorist today.  She does not believe they have separation anxiety.  As they lived in an apartment that didn’t allow pets, every noise was responded to by the owner so that behavior [barking] was reinforced by the attention.  We’re ignoring the barking and it should extinquish itself in the next four to six days.  We’re also using a D.A.P. diffuser and spray as a calming agent.

It’s raining … Apsos!!!

Folks, rescue desperately needs some help.  We’re being inundated with calls to take in owner-surrendered Apsos and strays.  Unfortunately, we only have two foster homes in Colorado … myself and my rescue partner.  We simply do not have the space to intake any more at this time.  If you’ve adopted from us in the past, you are already approved as a foster home!! 

Please consider sharing a bit of your home and heart with a little one that desperately needs a second chance.  If interested, please read “Brother, Can You Spare” and then contact ApsoRescue@aol.com with any questions regarding our policies/procedures, what fostering entails, and how you can help.

Alone and Afraid

There I sat, alone and afraid,
You got a call and came right to my aid.
You bundled me up with blankets and love.
And, when I needed it most, you gave me a hug.

I learned that the world was not all that scary and cold.
That sometimes there is someone to have and to hold.
You taught me what love is, you helped me to mend.
You loved me and healed me and became my first friend.

And just when I thought you’d done all you do,
There came along not one new lesson, but two.
First you said, “Sweetheart, you’re ready to go.
I’ve done all I can, and you’ve learned all I know.”

Then you bundled me up with a blanket and kiss.
Along came a new family, they even have kids!
They took me to their home, forever to stay.
At first I thought you sent me away.

Then that second lesson became perfectly clear.
No matter how far, you will always be near.
And so, Foster Mom, you know I’ve moved on.
I have a new home, with toys and a lawn.

But I’ll never forget what I learned that first day.
You never really give your fosters away.
You gave me these thoughts to remember you by.
We may never meet again, and now I know why.

You’ll remember I lived with you for a time.
I may not be yours … but you’ll always be mine.

Incoming …

Sorry to have missed the Denver folks who were planning to come visit at the Golden Petco Expo.  Between our schedules, pressing committments, inclement weather and gas prices, we were unable to attend.  Hopefully, we’ll be able to connect with our dog families in the near future.  Seeing the little ones with their new owners is apsolutely a joy!

Last week we had a new arrival.  An owner surrender, he was relinquished for not getting along with the 19-month old baby in the house.  In keeping with tradition, he was given a Tibetan name, “Tashi,”  (Ta-shee) meaning prosperity or lucky.  Tashi will undergo a complete rescue exam and a neuter Monday morning as we get him ready to put for adoption.  

Tashi is a laid back little guy and has settled into his foster home like he’s always lived there.  Almost without fail, our fosters move seamlessly from one home to the next.  They live in the moment, accepting of whatever befalls them.  Given love, attention and the structure of routine, they quickly adapt to their new surroundings. 

Tashi, a white Apso with black mask, is three years old.  He gets along well with other dogs and, despite never having seen or been around a cat, does fine with Michelle’s cat.  Oddly enough, we find this true of the majority of our fosters.  Apsos have often been described as being “cat like” in their temperament (aloof).  Perhaps they connect on some deeper level at first meeting!  While Tashi is not crazy about his crate, he is crate trained … and housetrained.  Yes, that is not a misprint … he is housetrained.  He also loves to play ball and will entertain himself with it even after he’s worn you out throwing it for him.

If you’d like more information on Tashi, please contact me at ApsoRescue@aol.com.  He’s going to make someone a wonderful companion!

A New Arrival …

… is always exciting! 

Tomorrow, if all goes as planned, “Bentley” will become the latest foster in rescue.  An unneutered three-year old, he will be looking for a new home that can spend more time with him.  While we gather as much information as possible on our intakes, there’s always the unknown.  How will he do with other dogs … how will he come through his neuter … how will he react to his first grooming in rescue … what will he think of the resident felines … will he sleep through the night … is he *really* potty trained and crate trained … does he like children or do we need to find a home that limits his contact with toddlers … is he a hearty eater or a picky one?  So many questions!!

These little ones arrive in rescue and we treat them just as one of the pack.  They are expected to behave and, with training (some more, some less), they usually live up to our expectations.  They thrive on attention and structure.  It isn’t long before they settle in … and it’s like they’ve been here their entire lives.  Every now and again, a foster will return for an extended visit.  They walk through the door and move seamlessly from their house to ours again, like they never left. 

I used to think my dogs couldn’t live without me — wishful thinking on my part.  After all the fosters that have passed through my home, I’ve come to realize the canine is much more adaptable than we give them credit for.  Indeed, it is this adaptability that has ensured their survival through the ages! 

Welcome, Bentley … we look forward to getting to know you.

UPDATE:  Well, things *didn’t* go as planned, unfortunately, and, for the time being, Bentley will not be entering rescue.  Bentley managed to run away from home on the eve he was to arrive in rescue.  We hope he finds his way home again, safe and sound.  If anyone happens to find a little grey/white Apso in Lochbuie, Colorado, please contact us!