Sunday, November 29, 2009

Carrie-Getting Better Every Day

Carrie, our project dog, is getting better every day. The progress is slow, but we expect that. She is becoming a little less fearful and a little more a part of the family each day. Over the last few days she has done some good things. She came inside from the yard without us having to herd her in. She followed us downstairs this afternoon and came right into the family room and took her spot. She hasn't done that before. We have removed her crate and she eats in the family room now. She isn't quite ready to eat with the other dogs in the kitchen, but we are getting closer to that. Today she has been snoozing on her blanket in our family room and hasn't jumped up every time we come near her. She is getting more comfortable with her surroundings and is realizing that nothing bad will happen to her here. She still isn't ready to come up to us and ask for pets, but we are working towards that. Carrie is such a sweetheart of a dog and we can say that we are very optimistic about her future. We think she is going to turn out very well, but it will take more time and patience. That is ok, we have plenty of that. Carrie is going to turn out as an A+ dog in the end and we look forward to seeing her achieve that. If you would like to meet Carrie, please contact Denise Davis.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Help Wanted: One Superhero

Perhaps you grew up watching episodes of Batman or Wonderwoman and fancied that one day you too would become a superhero. I know what you were thinking. You figured that one day when you grew up you would build your own batcave and spend your nights cruising the streets of Gotham keeping the world safe from the Joker. Now that you are older you have probably figured out that the batcave idea probably isn't going to work out. If you drive around at night in a mask and cape you won't catch the Joker, but you might end up on the Jerry Springer show. That's ok. That's not the kind of superhero we are looking for. We are looking for a superhero who will come and rescue Carrie. The superhero we are looking for won't need to leap tall buildings in a single bound, or fly faster then a speeding bullet. Our superhero will have a fenced in yard, a big heart, and lots of patience. Our superhero will know that Carrie will need time, patience, and plenty of TLC to come out of her shell and be the great dog that she will be. Carrie is actually a pretty easy dog to take care of once you get the hang of it. We are having no trouble handling her at all. She is just scared of people, that's all, and she needs someone who will put the time into her so that she learns not to live in fear all the time. No greyhound should ever have to live like that. Maybe you are thinking of being Carrie's superhero, but are concerned about the one practical issue with having her, which is what to do with her if you leave town. Putting her in a kennel is not a good plan, nor is hiring a housesitter. We will solve that problem for you. If you have plans to go over the hill and through the woods to Grandma's house, just drop Carrie off at the Hound Hotel on the way. She can stay here as often as you need for as long as you need. We will work for free and Carrie is always welcome here. You would know that she would be in a safe and friendly place with people that will take good care of her. So go ahead and make plans for the holidays, we have you covered. If you would like to be a superhero, call Denise and schedule an appointment to meet Carrie, and point your Batmobile towards the Hound Hotel.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Goodbye Blair

In the spring of 1999 we were ready to adopt our second greyhound. We asked Denise to give us a project dog. She had just gotten in a load of dogs and one of them was a mess. She was a brindle female who was terrified, scraggly, and smelled horrible....just what we were looking for. We took her home and began her rehabilitation. After several trips to the vet, the mother of all baths, and plenty of TLC, she became the best dog we could ever have hoped for. She grew into the friendliest, most affectionate, and loyal dog we could imagine. For ten years she has been our faithful companion and our best friend. She taught us never to judge a dog by the cover. The worst one in the yard may actually turn out to be the best one. It took a long time, but eventually she even became a good ambassador dog, representing the breed at many meet and greets. Recently she became very ill from complications related to her age. Yesterday we had to let her go. We are heartbroken, but trying to stay positive. She lived a full, happy life as a member of our family and we are grateful for all the years she was with us. We love you Blair, we miss you, and we will never forget you. Rest in peace.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Carrie-Still Spooky!

Carrie, our little spook, is proving to be a pretty tough nut to crack. She is a sweetheart of a dog but she is still scared of her scary foster mom and dad. She still will not approach us on her own and still cowers when we go up to her. We are making progress with her, and she is improving, but it is a slow process. We may have to call in Dr. Phil to see what is going on in her mind. She likes to be near the family most of the time, but still wants to keep her distance. She is showing more signs of wanting to fully join the family, but something is still holding her back. Time is probably the only cure. She needs to learn to fully trust us. Once she does, she is going to be a terrific dog. She is very smart, playful, and gentle. Getting her past the fear seems like it will take a good bit of time, but fortunately we have plenty of that. Carrie can stay at the Hound Hotel for as long as she needs too. We love having her around and a greyhound in need is our friend indeed. We will keep providing updates on her progress. Stay tuned.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

The proof is in the picture

Carrie did a big thing today. She came into the family room and laid down on a doggy bed while her scary foster parents were in the room. I managed to get a picture of it. That is a pretty big step for Carrie. She is still afraid to come up to us but the distance she has to keep between her and us is gradually decreasing. Maybe she is figuring out that life at the Hound Hotel isn't that bad after all. Good food, lots of pets, and comfy places to sleep can't be all bad. We still have a long way to go with Carrie, but we are celebrating each little victory with her. A dog like Carrie will put even the most patient person to the test, but it is worth the effort. She is a terrific dog and she deserves a second chance at a good life. Stay tuned as we hope to have more small victories to report soon.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Will you be the winner?

Carrie, our little spook, is getting better every day. It takes a lot of time and a lot of patience to bring out a dog like Carrie, but our efforts are starting to pay off. Each day she is just a little less fearful, and each day she gets a little better. It is baby steps with her, but we expect that. Today I opened the door to let her out and she ran out. That might not seem like much, but for Carrie to come within a few feet of me on her own is terrific. Normally I have to lead her or carry her to the door because she is too afraid to walk near me on her own. It means she is starting to build a little trust in us. The hours and hours of sitting next to Carrie on the floor petting and reassuring her are paying dividends. Once she gets to the door, she turns on the jets and off she goes. Our next door neighbor has a boston terrier that came up to the fence and Carrie had fun playing with that dog today. We can see that Carrie is going to end up as a very friendly, playful dog that will make someone very happy. She will probably be the best dog they ever had. She has never had an accident in the house, doesn't damage anything, and has been very easy to take care of. We don't crate her at night, or even during the day when we are gone and when we get back, not a thing is out of place. The person who adopts Carrie is going to end up the winner in all of this. Her eventual adoptor will need to put some work into her up front, but the payoff will be huge. She still needs some more rehab time at the Hound Hotel, but if you love greyhounds, this is one to consider.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Carrie-One week later

We have had Carrie for a little over a week now and she is making progress, but it is slower then we would like. It is very odd because in every way she is a perfectly normal dog, except around people. When we weren't looking, she starting stealing kitchen towels, she taught herself how to go up and down the stairs, and she likes to play with our dogs. She does all the things we would expect any normal dog to do. But once a person walks in the room, she gets scared. I don't know what experiences she has had in the past with people, but obviously they weren't good. I can imagine her being a shy dog to start with, and her trainers growing progressively more frustrated with her, making the situation worse and worse. I don't know if that is the case, but I can certainly see something like that happening. Carrie probably still views us as her trainers thinking we are going to drag her across the kennel to try to make her race. She is making progress in that department, but it is slow going. It takes a long time to build back the trust after it has been lost. We can tell that she wants to come out of her shell, but isn't quite sure yet. She follows us around the house but keeps a safe distance. She is like any other dog in that she wants to know what is going on, but she is still afraid to get in the middle of it. She comes up to our room at night and sleeps with us and our hounds. She doesn't like being left alone downstairs. She will get there, but it will take some more time. Stay tuned for more updates on her progress. In the meantime, enjoy the video of Carrie and see for yourself what a beautiful dog she is.