Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Mister Wilson

Readers it's high time you met Mister Wilson!  Before I tell you a single word about him I just want you to look at him. 

No, seriously, look at him.

Mister Wilson is a Basset Hound/Chinese Sharpei mix, and he is magnificent. 

He is also a park of Gina's pack, a pack we've featured many times here on the blog. 

We've shared Moo Latte, Bella, and Dakota. It helps that both Gina and her daughter Schyler are huge animal lovers who also love to take pictures. 

It really helps that Gina is a photographer with a knack for animal photographs. 

Speaking of Gina's pack, with so many dogs already in her home (one of whom, Moo, has medical problems that wind up costing a lot for treatment) 

it seemed pretty unlikely that Gina would be taking in any new pets. However, she and her friend Shane have an ongoing joke/battle over exposing each others' rescue weakness. 

If Gina sees any Heelers in her newsfeed on Facebook through the many animal organizations she follows, she'll tag Shane, knowing Heelers are his weakness. Likewise Shane tags Gina when he sees any true "mutts" that make people scratch their head trying to figure out what in the world the dog could even be. 

And so that's how Gina first saw Mister Wilson. He was three years old and on the South Salt Lake Animal Shelter's Facebook news feed. 

When Shane tagged Gina and she saw that face. . . well what would you have done? 

She called Utah Friends of Basset Hounds, a group she's worked with plenty of times and through which she got Moo, and asked them to pull him as a rescue, after which she would foster him until he found a furever home.



I'll bet you can guess how that went.

The thing is, Gina feels sure that Mister Wilson picked her immediately upon meeting him. Whether she knew it or not, he did. He knew he was destined to be hers.

There was something else too-he was destined to be a part of her pack.  

He had an attitude about him, but in the best possible way. 

He was "chill and zen," and his entrance into her home and heart also changed the other dogs as well.

 The entire dynamic of the group slowed down in a good way. Little "tiffs" that would arise between Dakota and Moo went away. 

Isabella learned how to behave herself on walks. The whole group just mellowed. How could Gina do anything but keep him after that?

There was an issue though. He needed eye surgery for his entropion eyelids, a problem that's common for Sharpeis, as Wiley's friend Leroy also needed it. Basically their eyelashes and lids turn inwards and constantly irritate their eyes, even causing bleeding. 

 The cost of this surgery was daunting given their medical bills for Moo Latte, but with the help of both friends and strangers they raised enough money to have the surgery.
After that Mister Wilson officially joined Gina's household, following her everywhere and serving as her sidekick. Here he is hanging out under her desk at work. 

She takes him to all kinds of doggie events and fundraisers. 

He even won a hot dog eating contest at the Basset de Mayo party sponsored by the Utah Friends of Basset Hounds!  

This picture of Mister Wilson, taken by Gina, won two photography contests too! 

Of course Mister Wilson donated his winnings to the animal organizations his mom works with, because he loves to pay it forward.

Mister Wilson and Wiley have similar ideas about equality too. 

He also loves treats, and spends a good deal of time pursuing them. In fact Gina says he loves just about anything except getting his nails clipped, and carries on very loudly at the vet's office when he has to get that done. 

Mostly he just likes being with others, whether it's his sisters (fur and human),

 his mom, other dogs, or complete strangers. 

Gina is working on getting him to be a therapy dog, and she's also developing a calendar too. Just think of how great Mister Wilson is going to be as the Wrinkly Face of Rescue Dogs! It's his Doggie Destiny!

You can keep up with Mister Wilson in a number of different ways. You can follow him on Facebook here

You can see pictures of him on Instagram @pawprintsbyfox. I highly recommend checking out Gina's Instagram; she really has an eye for photography and you get great Mister Wilson pictures, like this one

 plus plenty of other fun photos.

Wiley and I want to thank Gina for taking the time to share Mister Wilson's story. He truly is a great face for all rescue dogs, and Gina's heart and home represent everything that's right about the Rescue Dog world! Readers, you can share your story with me anytime you'd like, and I'd be happy to share it on the blog. Just email me at pabibliophile@gmail.com.  Thanks!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Bark-friendly Beer Gardens

Hey there readers-I just wanted to throw together a quick blog post about my trip to Philly yesterday into today. Yes-I know I just wrote about Philly in two previous posts, but I am having a great time getting to know the city better now that our good friends Katie and Jackie are living here. So I came down for an overnight visit, largely because I wanted to visit a special "pop-up" beer garden I had read about, sponsored by the Philadelphia Horticultural Society

The girls and I went to South Street, where we spotted a pretty colorful pet store.

Philadelphia has a great Mural Arts program, and while this may not be a part of it, art like this certainly isn't a rare sight around here. 

We headed down to the Philly AIDS Thrift store where I got this awesome shirt:

Remember readers, I do need to keep a day job, since blogging (at least about rescue dogs) is not exactly lucrative. My day job is English Teacher, so I couldn't pass up a shirt like that. 

Anyway, let's be honest, you are not reading this to find out about my trip to the thrift store. If you were, you'd be interested to know I saw this there too!

AHHHHHH! Terrifying. Seriously.  

But my purpose of this post is just to tell you that the Beer Garden was very dog friendly, with water dishes out for the pooches, and lots of people with their pets.  I took some time enjoying this, a delicious beverage of lemonade, basil, and another ingredient that shall remain nameless. 

By the time I got around to socializing with some of the people and their pets, it was a bit dark to get good pictures. But this is Molly.  Molly was a super flirt, approaching everyone with her pretty puppy eyes, tilting her head from side to side. At the slightest encouragement I got many kisses from Molly.

While I was fussing over Molly, little Riley wanted me to notice her. She was also very sweet and gave many kisses and tail wags.  I wish I could have gotten a better picture. I'm hoping that if her mom sees her here she'll send in a better one and a picture of her other dog too. It's a cute lab mix but I didn't get to meet him/her; I just saw a photo. 

Riley was adopted through Operation Ava, an organization we just featured a few weeks ago! 

And of course, I would be remiss if I didn't share Rambo. He is an Aussie mix; his dad said he is mixed with an Old Time Farm Shepherd. 

I can never resist an Aussie of course, and speaking of Aussie mixes, here's my guy stealing Jenny's ball but trying to act nonchalant about it. 

Jenny's response? Well in this picture she is turning her head and front paws 180 degrees to glare in my direction (I knew she was inherently evil), while her back feet are still pointing towards the wall. And will you look at her tail? It looks like a ferret-like a whole separate animal!

Of course these two didn't join me on my trip. They're at home with Hubs, but I'm sure they'll both be at the door when I get home later today.

Don't forget you can email  me at pabibliophile@gmail.com with your rescue stories, and be sure to follow us on social media. 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Rescues Near and Far

Ok time to tie up some mental loose ends around here. I've been meaning to write about these things for the past month, but with prepping our house for the Adoption home study I just couldn't get around to it. First of all, I want to tell you about my experience with the Mid-Atlantic Great Dane Rescue League.   

They were at a local Walmart back in June, and like a little child I got ridiculously excited and almost forgot what I came to Walmart for in the first place. Part of what makes me so happy to see rescue organizations like these is that is helps to dispel the idea that in order to get a certain breed someone needs to go to a breeder. That is completely false. 

Thanks to the internet it is easier than it's ever been to get whatever breed you want via rescue, as long as you are patient if you have a long list of demands.  Even better about going through a rescue system like this is it eliminates other excuses people give for not adopting a pet, such as "Well you just don't know what you're getting into with a rescue pet," or "rescues are pets people got rid of for a reason."  

MAGDRL has an abundance of information about every dog because their dogs are fostered. They spend time in a home with dog-savvy people who know exactly what to take note of and share. 

Just head to their Available Dogs page and you'll see the kinds of information they can share, such as which dogs are good with cats, other dogs, kids, strangers, and even cows! 
 They'll tell you about the temperament, the health, and the training of each dog.

 It really is a perfect way to save an animal and a great way to get into rescuing if you're hesitant. Please check out MAGDRL and if you're local you can try to support their fundraisers.  

When they were at Walmart they were selling these goody bags for dogs and cats, and they were very reasonably priced.

 I got one for Jenny and one for Wiley, but since they are such divas they didn't want the treats, and they have plenty of toys,  I sent the bags to the Hillside SPCA when my friends Luke and Kim were taking their previous Hillside resident, Fanny, and her brother Leroy for a reunion visit with her shelter friends.

Here they are when they pulled up in the car to pick up the goods.

 Leroy was just a bit excited to see me!


I also wanted to share some pictures that were shared with me by long-time Friend of the Blog (and of me!), Katie. She works in Philadelphia for a company called Shutterbooth, from which people and organizations rent photo booths like the type typically seen over the decades at places like amusement parks and boardwalks. 

Back in June they worked at something called the Super Run, which is a nationwide charity race with a Superhero theme. One of the charities represented was called the City of Elderly Love. I'm sure you can guess what their specialty is, but just in case you need it spelled out: they rescue senior pets and adopt them out.  

I can't say enough good things about their mission. These animals seldom want anything more than to be comfortable and around humans, and for reasons beyond their control they wind up helpless and homeless, just like all the rest. The difference is people are far more reluctant to adopt an older dog or cat who may come with medical needs and a much shorter life span. If you are in a position to do so, head to their website to see how you can help.

And, just in case you think it will be too sad to see these senior pets, I'm letting you know they have a page they call Storybook Endings, which is exactly what it sounds like, shorter versions of the positive types of stories we feature here on the Rescue Dog Blog.

Ok, one last thing. Another longtime Friend of the Blog and friend in general, Lauren, came to visit the other night. Wiley hadn't seen her in quite some time and poor Lauren nearly got the skin licked off her face.  This picture is when he finally came up for air. 

Anyway, Lauren just got two new additions to her house full of pets. Her sister Kristen found some kittens, and because she couldn't decide which one she liked best she brought home two!

Meet Winnie and Pippa. This is Winnie.

And Pippa is the one with the darker gray coat.

Come on. You don't have to be a cat-lover to find these two adorable.

Speaking of adorable, here is your gratuitous adorable Wiley picture for today's post, as he sleeps on the couch, with a pillow and his beat-up tennis ball. He has it pretty rough at our house, doesn't he? 

And just so Jenny doesn't feel left out, here is a picture of her I took today. I feel like her expression here says "HA! I conquered all your silly toys human. Now surrender your arm to me for biting and scratching please."

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AND EMAIL YOUR RESCUE STORY TO ME! pabibliophile@gmail.com