Kathy wrote a thoughtful response to how she has ended up with her dogs at different times in her life; I decided it was something I wanted to post so welcome Kathy, as our first guest blogger! And if you like Kathy's writing style like I do, check out her blog: http://yearofreadingmybooks.wordpress.com/
|Gus the Golden as a Puppy|
|Breezy the Bluetick|
|Gilly the German Shepherd|
|Ruby the Collie-Lab-Golden|
|Gus the Golden grown-up|
My vet said that I needed certification for eyes, hips and elbows on the parents. The only breeder of labs and Goldens who did all those certifications within a half day drive was a great golden breeder. So, I ended up with Gus, the world's best dog! I guess obviously, I was attracted to temperament. Afterwards, I learned that Goldens have a reputation for dominating obedience competitions. As we're starting to get into that, a nice bonus. And there isn't a gentler, more people-oriented, affection sucking dog out there. I sometimes think that it would be a crime to keep Gus from volunteering by visiting people in need of a dog visit - he ADORES meeting new people and being touched, in any way - from nail clippings to strokes. And he is very obvious about it - his eyes get all squinty and he grins... And he's wonderfully trainable. And calm. And fun (we were out berry picking today, me by hand, him by tongue).
|Gilbert the Beagle and Fred pseudo-dog [cat]|
Finally, your favorite senior beagle, Gilbert (who, I think needs to take an extended visit to his favorite dog blogger so she can experience being awakened by a beagle bay between 6:07 and 6:18 every morning and crawling around on hands and knees on the carpet sniffing for the elusive dried up 14 yr old beagle piddle spots :-) ). He lived in a rabbit hutch for 14 years until the owner decided he could not hunt anymore and surrendered him to a shelter.
14 year old deaf and half blind beagles not being in high demand, Gilbert sat, unadopted, for 4 months at the shelter (actually, he was lucky enough to be fostered most of that time, but it was clear he was not going to be adopted). I had sworn off hounds (that inability to respond to a recall thing). But I figured, beagles are little. He's old, he needs a home, I can furnish it, and I can deal with his limitations (at that time he was sleeping in to 8 am...). He has arthritis I'm treating with meds and exercise and he's stronger and healthier. So, I felt sorry for him, was willing to help, and liked the little hunting dog thing...
I don't think I'll do any more rescuing after this for quite awhile - when Gilbert and Ruby and Fred the cat go, I think I'll get another golden pup, for a matching set, and keep things simple with two young Goldens and that is it (vet and kennel bills will certainly be much lower). I've happily sunk a lot of love, time and money into rehabbing elderly rescue dogs and now I'm ready to keep it simple for awhile.
So, I've had a lot of reasons for adopting my dogs - looks, temperament, breeding, my need, their need, breed-type, availability/timing....