Happy Tail Update: Rojo!

Nothing makes me happier than posting positive updates about dogs who were recently rescued and are now doing awesome in their new home. A few weeks ago I did update posts on shelter dogs Patrice, Peanut and Kobe with emails I received from their new families or fosters. This time, I’m here to report on an adorable dog who was adopted from my shelter by my next door neighbors: Rojo!

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Because I live next door, I get to see first hand how Rojo (pronounced Ro-ho) is settling into his new life.  We’ve had a few fence line chats with him and my various temporary fosters, but the other night I headed over there to babysit his human siblings and I got to see just how great his digs really are.  His family has toys and kongs and beds and LOTS of love for him, and he seems like one seriously happy pup!

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In my post introducing Rojo I asked for advice about his excitable wetting. I am happy to report that his family says he is doing much better with that since they have been keeping arrivals very low key. He didn’t do it when I – an exciting new person – showed up, so that was a great sign (he did it last time I met him).

He’s also been attending classes at Your Dog’s Friend. YDF is my favorite training group in Montgomery County whose mission is to help keep dogs out of the shelter by offering affordable positive training classes ranging from basic obedience to agility to nose work, as well as free seminars and workshops about all things dog related. Rojo excelled in his first level of classes, and now does a fabulous “sit” and “touch” – both of which he likes to practice with his two sibs.

Speaking of, I think my favorite part of Rojo’s new life is his relationship with his human sister and brother. Not only do they adore him, but he tolerates all their kid antics (which are few and far between; they are fabulous around dogs). On the night I watched them, they prepared his bed for him so we could all watch movies together, as well as a kong treat for when the humans had ice cream.

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His family is still learning the ropes, like making sure his counter surfing skills don’t get too perfected and helping him keep his cool around other dogs (their next class at YDF is actually one that I am helping coach – which I will write about later – but that was a fun coincidence!), and they seem to love him even with all he has to learn.

Seeing Rojo as such a loved family dog was so rewarding. I don’t like to focus on an adopted dog’s past, but it’s crazy to think that just months ago Rojo was living as a stray without a bed or consistent food or anyone to love him. And look at where he is now! He’s a family member – a happy, happy dog.

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Kobe’s Big Break

You might remember the poem I shared a few weeks ago:

The air is crisp, my paws sense the cold concrete floor.
I’m encaged in metal that lacks an inviting decor.
Another season begins and I am still here.
Are my days numbered? I shiver in fear.
You see I live a sheltered life devoid of endless fun.
On most days I get no more than 20 minutes out in the sun.
Patrons pass over me cuz I’m a misunderstood breed.
Unfairly prejudged no matter my plead.
So I whimper and lick the lock on my door.
Oh why can’t it be your hand, your face? Rescue me, I implore.

This poem was written by an extremely dedicated and caring volunteer. He wrote it with all shelter dogs in mind, but about one specific dog in particular: Kobe.

Kobe arrived at the shelter in July.  While he quickly became a staff and volunteer favorite, he was overlooked time and time again because he was a plain old brown “lab/pit” cross (my monkey costume didn’t even help!).  He doesn’t like to play with toys, and he isn’t overly affectionate to people he doesn’t know, so he never really piqued the interest of adopters – despite his charming personality once you spend a few minutes with him. Weeks turned into months, and before he knew it, Kobe became our longest resident.

Kobe’s luck changed last week when two lovely ladies from Jasmine’s House stopped by the shelter to look at dogs to bring into their program. Kobe wasn’t even on their list, but the shelter’s Rescue Coordinator convinced them to take a look at him (which, in the end, was his saving grace).  The stars aligned for him that day – Kobe’s rock solid personality immediately won them over, and one meet and greet with the foster home later he was out of there. On Saturday, after four months of spending every night in a shelter kennel, Kobe became a Jasmine’s House dog.

The shelter took a toll on sweet Kobe, but not in the way it often does for dogs. Kobe is as sweet as the come and is great around other dogs, but he hasn’t gotten the opportunity to learn to be himself yet. He sleeps a lot, like he is trying to dream away all the trauma from his past life. He’s a dog that finds comfort in a human’s lap, and who has a lot to learn about being a part of the family. This all makes perfect sense considering his life before he was given up consisted of being tied to a tree in the back yard.  To come out so loving after all he’s been through is a true testament to Kobe’s personality.

Kobe is slowly learning the joys of being in a home. He’s realizing what it feels like to run in an open field, and to rest on a comfortable couch. He is learning what love and attention are like, and he can’t seem to get enough of it.  He’s even gotten his very own Sirius Republic snood to wear while enjoying the crisp Fall air.

Thank goodness for rescue groups like Jasmine’s House who give these dogs a chance at the love and comfort they deserve. Kobe is staying in a temporary foster for the week (which is where I got these great photos!) and then will head to his permanent foster on Friday where he will get to settle in and look for his forever family.  Everyone who fell in love with him during his time at the shelter is crying happy tears, especially when we see updates like this online:

Kobe is going to be a fabulous addition to someone’s family.  After such a bumpy road until now, I am just thankful that he’s got a fair chance now. In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I want to thank all the volunteers who loved Kobe while he was at the shelter, the Rescue Coordinator for making sure he didn’t get overlooked, and Jasmine’s House for giving him a second chance at love.  Hooray, Kobe!

If you’re interested in adding Kobe to your family, email me at peacelovefoster@gmail.com.