This is a rescue dog! We found Wiley at a no-kill animal shelter called the Hillside SPCA in Pottsville, PA. He joined our family in July of 2011. Rescue dogs make the best pets; I would know. My family has had pound puppies my whole life and I am a better person because of it. This is a place we can share our stories and spread the word: get a rescue pet!
This time of year brings graduation to mind, at least for me it does. I have attended probably at least 25 graduations in my life, but considering I'm a teacher that makes logical sense. Consequently I couldn't help but think of doing a graduation-themed week, and I have had this post and the entire upcoming week all planned out for weeks now! Today we will talk about Wiley's experience with the end of the school year, and then we will feature alumni of the Rescue Dog Blog all week!
As I briefly mentioned on the Rescue Dog Blog Facebook page a few weeks ago, I decided to take Wiley to the senior class picnic to continue with his socialization training.
Wiley has a lot of anxiety about anything new, and his vet suggested gradually exposing him to the world. It's been two years and this is the first time he's ever been around so many people who just wanted to see him.
Now Wiley is no dummy, and apparently when a bunch of smart pretty girls and some cool guys want to pet him, he is going to be compliant. I'm pretty sure he's smiling for both Lindsay (above) and Katie (below).
Most of the picnic had been moved into the cafeteria because it was pretty warm that day, but I didn't want to take him in and violate any health codes. However he was quite interested in whatever was inside. I think that was mostly due to his intense fear of wide open spaces. I'm happy to see his head up and back as Janie and Dennis pet him. It's much better than his previous move of putting his head down and cowering away.
When Luke and Lauren walked out, he was very excited when he saw a face he recognized, Leroy's dad. He did the classic hard lean into Luke's legs right after I snapped this picture.
But eventually he mostly wanted to leave. In the picture below he's gazing longingly in the direction of the car.
And I got a lot of puppy dog eyes looking up at me.
Between the heat and his toleration of the petting strangers, I thought he deserved to be able to go home if he wanted to. I was really pleased with how everything went.
Now, before I wrap up, I want to thank Amy for taking a lot of these pictures. I realized it would be impossible for me to take good pictures while handling him, and she was gracious enough to take my camera (see below) and get some great Wiley-level shots. (And no-that's not a short joke Amy. Although if the tiny little shoe fits. . . .)
Luckily Luke offered to take a few pictures as well so Amy could get the 15 minutes of fame she deserves.
I also want to share the two pictures below. In the first one I think Wiley is wistfully wondering where all the time has gone, and trying to imaging where everyone will be a year from now.
In this picture I was just trying to see what he would let me put on his nose and how ridiculous it could get all for the sake of a baby carrot. Now that I know how much he'll let me do, I plan to pursue this avenue in the future.
Ok, so this week we will have different alumni each day. If you think you remember everyone I bet you'll be surprised to see some of these faces. We have new pictures and new stories of our Rescue Dog Blog family. And speaking of sharing alumni, I thought I'd start by sharing this perfect picture of Cameron and Bogey on Cameron's graduation day. Thanks Cameron and best of luck!
Schedule some time each day to check in here, use this week to get a picture of your pet to submit for next week's Oral Fixation Photo Share, and don't forget to email me with your rescue stories too. firstname.lastname@example.org