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Saturday, September 15, 2012

Ruby's Story

A couple of weeks ago a small group of us headed to Chicago to learn more about how the Safe Humane Chicago Court Case Dog program works. If you are a regular reader of this blog, you know that Milwaukee has Court Case Dogs that have been locked up for over a year with no end in sight. We are interested in learning how to make their lives better.

The Court Case Dogs are held at Chicago Animal Control, so a rescue friend asked Susan, one of our group if she could do a favor and transport a dog that was on the kill list there. Ruby had been deemed "vicious and aggressive"  and had been turned down by other rescues so her chances of survival were slim to none.

We had a good chuckle on the way home.  It was ironic that we had been sitting on the ground getting kisses from the Court Case Dogs (pit bulls) but little "vicious" thirteen pound Ruby, sounded ferocious when you approached her crate. But as most rescue people know, small dogs get stressed quickly in shelters, and it is usually not an indication of their real personality.

Susan took Ruby home for the night. In the morning, it didn't take Ruby long to warm up to Susan and her husband and within just a few hours Ruby was sitting in an ex pen enjoying the sunshine and the company of Susan's other dogs on the outside. She had kennel cough but other than that she was a happy, wiggly butt little girl once she was out of that crazy madhouse of barking dogs, stress and people that were afraid of her.

Susan transported her to her new foster home that afternoon. Unfortunately, Ruby's health took a turn for the worse and she came down with a serious case of pneumonia. She had to be admitted to the emergency vet clinic where she stayed for two weeks. She again became very stressed. But who wouldn't when you are in a strange place, you have pneumonia and it hurts to breathe?

Please take a minute to watch the very brief video at the end of Ruby's stay at the clinic. This is Ruby with the vet techs at the clinic.

video
Vicious? I think not.

Maybe it's time to rethink shelter procedures for testing small, shy dogs. How many have slipped through the cracks because they were labelled something they aren't?

Ruby has recovered and has now been adopted and is reportedly doing great with the grandkids. She is one lucky girl! Thank you to the good folks in rescue for knowing that small, scared dogs rarely do well in a shelter setting and any determinations made on their temperament should be thrown out the window.

Ruby is very glad you were watching out for her.




6 comments:

  1. Ruby is thriving, in classes and loves everyone she meets now that she's in a settled environment! Great blog!

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  2. It is time to do away with 'personalty tests' in "shelters" altogether. They are grossly unfair, especially to small dogs, and any one with a brain knows it.

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  3. I think the only way to truly determine a dog's personality is to get them out of the shelter and into a normal home environment. This is why foster care is so helpful. I fostered a small dog that was lunging and trying to bite shelter staff, and within a few hours at my house he was jumping into my lap for kisses. He's very happy in a loving new home now. Of course, he still doesn't like the vet, but loves most other people. :-)

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  4. NO DOG IS VISIOUS...THEY HAVE TO BE HURT SCARED AND ABUSED....THEY ARE ONLY PROTECTING THEMSELVES FROM WHAT THEY KNOW AND WHAT HAS BEEN DONE TO THEM....ANY DOG WITH LOVE AND CARING WILL CALM DOWN AND TRUST AGAIN...ONLY TAKES PACIENCE AND TIME...

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  5. lol wow yea she is so scary! You it is just sickening that these days the kill shelters seem to not even care about the animals anymore! They label them wrong never give them the attention they need and never take the time to fully evaluate them. it is so sad! and the worst part is it is happening everywhere! I wish i had a ton of money and a huge yard acres and i could take them all and help them et good homes! they deserve the best and it should be our jobs to make sure that is what they get.

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  6. A trainer/rescue person labeled a dog in one of our training areas "vicious" and should be euthanized. Said dog came back to main sanctuary, did well with all including me, a complete stranger to her. AAUUGH! Why do even alleged professionals not understand context! Thank you all for seeing past Ruby's label and giving her a chance.

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