adoption

Wendy and her rescues (part 2)

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“I learned about the horrible things being done to Greyhounds after they were retired.

They were shooting them, putting them in hot trucks leaving them to die,  and abandoning them after cutting off their ears to remove their identifiable tattoos.

One day in 1993 while I was waiting to cross a street corner, a dog was leaning on me.  I asked the owner if it was a Whippet, but she answered no, it was a rescued Greyhound.   I said, I want one, I want to rescue a Greyhound.  She told me about the program at AMC (Animal Medical Center), where they used them as blood donors and then adopted them out.

2 days later I got Gracie.  She was the first of 3 Greyhounds.  I knew she was a Bodhisattva (enlightened one).  She had a gentle spirit and was an old soul–maybe it was the way she looked at me. She had a peaceful knowing way about her.  When they brought her in the adoption room she approached me, making eye contact immediately without fear.

She knew we were supposed to be together.

I can’t think of any moment that stands out, but all my time with her was extraordinary.         Everyone seemed to think so too.

We had each other for 8 years.”

Sam, the dog that was meant to be with Marcia (part 2)

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“It took a year to break Sam’s separation anxiety.  He’s not crated now, and he’s okay on his own.

I have those best moments every day.  Like this morning: I got to sleep late.  I looked over and saw him lying on his back, belly up.  Knowing that he trusts me and the process that we went through how much he is healed.

We were both broken in a way.

I was his fourth home in 3 months.

I was adopted too.  I went from the hospital, to foster home, to adopted family.                   Sam and I had a similar journey.

Watching him go from a place of abandonment and lack of trust to a place of real trust and acceptance is an everyday joy.”

Sam, the dog that was meant to be with Marcia (part 1)

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“It’s really crazy.  I wanted a dog for 20 years, but job-wise I couldn’t take care of one.

I got laid off and was free-lancing from home.  I was daydreaming of having this imaginary dog.  He went with me wherever I went.

One afternoon I was walking with a friend in Central Park for exercise and I told her, you are going to think I’m a nutcase, but I’ve been having this imaginary dog.  We started laughing and 20 minutes later we came upon a woman sitting on a bench with a puppy that looked like a dandelion of puff.  He was just a little ball of fur.  My friend said, you should ask if you can pet him, so I did.  The next thing I knew I was holding him and petting him.

The woman said, he’s actually up for adoption.

The foster family that had him wasn’t a good fit for several reasons.  The biggest was that he had terrible separation anxiety.  When I picked him up from his foster home, the doorman told me they were gone of long periods of time and he would bark for 10 hours straight.

I had to break him of his separation anxiety.

I started to carry him around in a little chest pouch.  We were together 24/7.  I started the separation very slowly.  I made it into a game.  I would close the bathroom door and open it quickly.  I gave him positive reinforcement and a treat before he had time to get anxious.   I extended the time every day.  I always did it as play to make it less scary and build trust.

I wanted him to know I was always coming back.

The first time I left him alone it was for 4 hours and he cried.”