Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Pupdates at the Shelter ~ Alice

Goodness! It's been a busy week this week with adoptions ... I have some good news! Traveller has been adopted and so has Alice! I haven't even written out Alice's story yet so I'm going to take the opportunity to do so now.


Poor Alice was an owner surrender. Sometimes the going gets tough when people lose their jobs (and their house!) and unfortunately, the intact, 1 year old, female dog is one of the first things to go.

Alice is super friendly and very gentle. She is prone to excitement and submission urination so we had to be careful and quick when removing her from her kennel!

In the first few days, Alice had shredded two beds and stolen the hearts of many volunteers. We quickly learned which beds we could put in with her and which ones would end up in little itty bitty pieces! She was super stressed out in the shelter and did not do very well there despite the kennel enrichment provided. There are some articles about shredding that I've read which actually suggests that in a shelter environment, you should actually allow it (provided you give them appropriate things to shred) because it is an outlet for that stress. Interesting, no?

I'm glad she only lasted a week before being adopted. The family who took her home actually came to look at another dog but decided that the other dog was just "too much" for them. They went with the more quiet girlie, Alice - lucky for Alice!

Hooray for Alice!! Hooray for Traveller!!

Best wishes in your new lives with your new families. I hope they are your forever home and they give you all the love and affection you deserve.


Unknown said...

The thought of leaving something to shred to relieve stress just makes sense. One only needs to be sure it is safe. Jedi would seek out to go paper cups from the bakery - he shredded but did not eat them. They are a favorite toy here.
Kudos to Alice and her new family - they are so lucky and smart to have chosen her - or was it the other way around?

GoLightly said...

YAy for Traveller and Alice!

Funny, Flip is a chronic paper-shredder, she learned that in her kennel days, I'm sure. She's still hilarious about throwing her (now very dilapidated) bed around to get it JUST right for sleeping..
And if I leave paper towels available, they are in 300000 pieces when I discover my mistake.

It's a toally natural thing for a dog to do. They like to surgically dissect things:)

mruttle said...

I have a 9 month old Black Lab that shreds everything. we cant leave any peds in with him during work hours as they are gone when we get back on lunch break. Yet hes ok with a bed at night when hes sleeping in the crate.

Toys are also another matter as he kills them. We try to have a lot for him but a kong like toy was severly damaged in 10min. And most we have to supervise him with.

Wondering if you have any info on how to stop the bed chewing?

Unknown said...

I'm just glad to hear that Traveller and Alice got new homes. For their previous owners, giving them up must have been the worst heartbreak ever. But thankfully, the dogs were adopted by people who really wanted them and knew that they could care for them.

GoLightly said...

First off, your dog is still a pup, and will require supervision on any toy that isn't ridiculously tough.
I've had great success with nylabones (the super strong type called Galileo)) and deer antlers, a new thing that's been working great. Labs are a mouth driven dog. Give him "puzzle toys" that dispense food if he works at it. Do NOT use "kong-like" toys, use the more expensive, way tougher real Kong Toys. Worth it, because you won't have to surgically remove the toy from the dog, when he eats the pieces of toy.
Tough canvas beds are also a good idea. The soft fluffy types of dog beds beg to be destroyed. It's a dog's job to dissect things, you know.

Tire him out before you leave in the morning. He's bored alone all morning, gives him something to do.. Tire him out first, give him food puzzles instead of a meal, before you leave. Have the tough chew toys available at all times.
He might even be napping the next time you come home.
and remember, at nine months old, he is nowhere near mature yet. He's still a puppy. The mouthy phase will pass, but always let him have appropriate strong chew toys, so that he CAN work his mouth.

Good luck!

DogsDeserveFreedom said...

Great advice, GoLightly!! I'm a day late and a dollar short this time! LOL.

I love replacing a meal with a treat ball or puzzle. It means your dog actually has to WORK for his meal *gasp* The hard part with this is teaching the HUMANS that the puzzle/toy is a "replacement" for the meal - not a "supplement". Porky puppies drive me crazy ...

I usually recommend squeaky toys as well when working to teach bite inhibition ... I believe it helps teach them relativity when they are chomping down (what is a hard bite and what is not). It's nice if you have many different sources (you, other dogs, squeaky toys) teaching the same thing - it actually helps to provide you with consistency

GoLightly said...

arrrgh, DDF, I just saw another advert at my vet's.
12 month old black lab, available blah blah blah.
allergies. WTF. It took a year to become allergic?? Puhleeeeze. I hate seeing that, I do.
My older, shorter sister is very allergic to just about everything, including cats. She has two.

Squeaky toys squeaking makes my predator Flip's heart sing..
I would worry about ingestion of the squeaker, so i wouldn't leave the puppy alone with those either.. of course.

DogsDeserveFreedom said...

GoLightly ...

Didn't you read that memo?? Puppies are "Hypo-allergenic" but adult dogs aren't

It's not that the people weren't allergic before, it's that the dog had "puppy fur"

PAH> fuktards ... all of them. IMHO.

for anyone who can't recognize it, this is *Sarcasm*

Regarding leaving puppy alone with toys ... I would leave only inedible things such as Kongs if he will be alone. (REAL Kongs - not those other toys made by Kong)