Dogs in Hot Cars: My PSA and Thoughts

I am already starting to see the comments on Facebook about busting windows out of cars to free dogs who are “suffering” in the heat. While I appreciate the fact that so many people care about the safety of animals AND I appreciate that not all owners consider their dogs family and take good care of them, I hope you will consider some things before you make a choice to “help” the animal.

1. Not all dogs are friendly!!! Let me say that one again… Not all dogs are friendly. You may NOT be helping the dog at all. If you are too close to my vehicle, one or both of our dogs will be barking. YOU are stressing the dog out, not the heat. At the very least, you’re not helping. Plus, if the vehicle was shut up tight and you stressed the dog, that would make the situation SO much worse. The author of this article is correct… A dog near death is not going to be barking its head off.

2. Some dogs are AFRAID of people. Letting a dog that is afraid of people free creates a serious danger to anyone that then tries to approach the dog to help or secure him. That dog could injure someone or be injured trying to escape the situation further. You could be the cause of a dog being euthanized when (s)he bites someone.

Personally, I have trained with my dogs in public places on days in the 50’s. I’ve parked at community parks and swapped my dogs out while working with each individually. #1 has happened to me before. A couple passed very closely by my car which was within 20 feet of me. My dog was seriously stressed by the proximity and began barking. The people continued to stare at him and even got very close peering inside. PEOPLE, dogs don’t want you in their faces!! Staring is antagonistic to even mild-mannered, stranger-friendly dogs (don’t even get me started on hugging them)… I’m putting it kindly when I say they were asked to move on.

Our dogs have water available while we travel, and we often use Ryobi fans to help circulate air for them. Our personal preference is to leave our windows down and/or hatch open if we are nearby because our dogs are always secured. A second option if I’m traveling with them and need to run an errand is to leave my car running.

All I’m asking is that you use good judgement. Visit the management of the store/location where the car is if you are so inclined, but please don’t attempt to release a dog without fully thinking about the consequences…

The original article that inspired my sharing (after the many bust out the windows posts last week) can be found here.


Making changes… (update on the new furry member of our family)

Things are actually going better than expected! The first day was truly the most difficult. Sorting out “family issues” of the furry kind and figuring out how things worked in the household. We also began house training and crate training. These are high on my list of things to accomplish with any new dog.

image

I am happy to say, we have only had one accident!?! She urinated on the rug going out to the potty area.  I must say I take all the blame for it on my own shoulders. It is MY job to pay attention to her needs until we get this sorted out. House training is simple! You, the human, just have to put in the effort. For some, that can be difficult…

Does she have some bad behaviors? Absolutely! Want me to list them? They are all things that can be trained away or corrected (and I mean in a gentle, positive way). She counter surfs, she jumps up (gently), she tries to chew the rungs on our kitchen chairs, and she has LOTS OF FUN wth Joe’s sneakers…  Shame on him for not picking them up anyway!

But seriously, it’s the funniest thing…  She gently grabs a shoe string and spins in circles letting them fling out away from her with the force of the spin. I could hear her upstairs romping with them while I was running on the treadmill this morning.  Time went faster, and I ran harder as I debated what else she could get into…  So funny!!!

My point is that it’s hard to believe anyone would throw her away.  It makes me sad.  Is she perfect? No…  Am I? Absolutely not!

She has learned to sit nicely and is well on her way to being house trained in 5 days (really we accomplished that IMO on day 2). We are moving on to other behaviors and bigger and better things already!  That’s progress!!!

It’s the story of human existence.  We all struggle…  Our journey lives in overcoming our struggles and finding successes where we can.  Sometimes one hour at a time, and sometimes one day at a time.  We make progress toward our goals…  For ourselves, our families, and even our furbabies!

image

What are your goals? What are YOU doing to progress toward those goals? Why wait? You never want to look back and say…  Where would I be if I had done “X” a day, week, or month ago.  You can accomplish SO much if you CHOOSE!  PLAN to make it happen, and WORK your plan!

Sadie puts in her “work” with me, plays until her heart is content, and can finally relax…  She doesn’t have to worry about what lies ahead.  I’ll do that for her. <3  Even if Sadie doesn’t know it yet, she’s already following my plan for her.  Things are going just about perfectly…

image


It’s off on an adventure we go…

So this is the story of a sad, little puppy (or what should have been a sad, little puppy).  If you’ve been following along on my personal page on FB, you know that we decided to rescue a young Australian Shepherd pup from a kill shelter in VA.  So that decision was where the saga began with this picture…

image

“Puppy” was posted by Buchanan County Animal Shelter and shared on an Aussie Rescue group I belong to. Her previous owner had dumped her.  She was abandoned for three weeks or better.  She was fed off and on during that time by a very sweet girl named Karissa.  Karissa probably meant the difference between life and death for Puppy.  On New Year’s Eve, when she was covered in snow and looked like she might freeze to the ground because she was so wet, the girl took her to the shelter.  She was hopeful that her owner could be found or that she would find a new home.  Little did she know that her owner had deliberately abandoned her, and the owner was notified by a FB friend that she was at the shelter.  For ten days, nobody claimed Puppy while we waited and checked in.  Instead, the friend posted, “idk if they want her so just give her a good home lol.” LOL?!?! Not so much…  It’s a kill shelter, genius!

Finally, the day was arriving when her hold was up and she could leave the shelter and travel to a new forever home.  We went with Harley (resident Aussie) and Liam (our little) and headed south to the in-laws in WV to visit for the evening and get a little sleep.  Then it was up at 3:00 AM and out the door before 3:30 AM to get on the road for the 5+ hour drive from their house to the shelter in VA.  It was so cold…  3* really?!

image

The sights we saw on this trip (the real story behind the post other than me shamelessly posting pics of the new pup)…  We traveled through a lot of small towns.  These towns had some things I had never seen before… Including products from a successful Shark Tank investment!

image1-e1421121170854-225x300

We arrived at the shelter and pulled toward the road to realize the bar was still across…  Nobody home.  Joe is frustrated and thinking that the people gave me bad information.  I told him it was cold and maybe the person was running behind…  That turned out to be correct.  The nice gentleman, whom I had been speaking with for several days on the phone, had stopped to get himself a breakfast biscuit at McDonalds.  😉

image

He ushered us inside, showed us the pup, and we started our paperwork.  She was very sweet but timid when we went back to actually get her out of her small 3×4 enclosure.  She smelled like something that had died months ago…  We leashed her and when we got her outside, she was off like a rocket…  Taking Joe for several trips around the lot.  She had a little help getting in the car, and off we went.

We now knew that we needed to get her a bath ASAP, get some baby wipes to keep us clean on the trip, and pick up some dry food similar to what she had been eating at the shelter.  We knew we would be making several stops so the Walmart that was on our way in was our first destination upon leaving…  But during the trip back down the mountain, we had to first check out the Appalachian Inn! Probably not your first choice in accommodation unless you were looking for a leanto perched on the side of a cliff.

image2-e1421120838234-225x300

Then we arrived at what claimed to be Walmart…  Unlike any Walmart I have EVER seen…  I will refer to it from now on as the high rise Walmart.  The signs say it is Walmart, but it looks like a 3 story building with a shopping plaza in the basement.  It wasn’t unlike the complex built in Morgantown, WV at Suncrest.  All I saw where storefronts (bottom level) and two more stories of brick.  We followed the road past the side of the building and realized what looked like a steel and beam construction project underway from the main road was actually a parking garage.  Sign says = Walmart Level 3!  What?!?

image

 

image3-e1421120903411-225x300

So we parked and headed up the escalator and at the third level we turned and saw what you normally have after two sets of sliding doors.  We had arrived.  Shopping quickly and heading out, Joe was quick to point out the mechanism for getting the buggy down the escalator with us.  Again, this was a trip of firsts for me. 🙂  Puppy went to the potty, and we hit the road again.

image5-e1421120939441-225x300

image6-e1421152103539-225x300

image

We arrived after several more stops and 5 hours back at the house for some puppy play, baby meeting, and a much needed double bath and quick groom.  All is well at our house today as we try to settle in to the new routine.

image8-e1421151834140-300x225

What adventures have you gone on that made you feel like a stranger in a foreign land?  Were they outside the US or right here on home soil?

PS…  I’ve asked and begged for name suggestions, and after meeting her we know her name…  It is Sadie (Robertson) Zirkle!  She is happy and perky!!  She probably has one of the best personalities I’ve ever known and is such a sweetheart.  The ability animals have to forget and move on and believe the best in mankind is truly amazing.  🙂