We live in a small village called Kibbutz Hanaton in the Galilee in Israel, about ten km from Nazareth. This last July, during a difficult heat wave that lasted all month, my wife and I noticed a Labrador hanging out around the community access road by the highway. We saw her every few days for almost two weeks, and noticed she kept coming back and didn't appear to have a home. Her ribs were beginning to show, and she was clearly suffering from the heat, so we took her home. We already had two cats and a dog.
We weren't sure we would keep her, and sent word around on the kibbutz that we had a dog for adoption. A big dog! We didn't know if she was a Lab or not, perhaps a Lab mix. She had some cuts and an infection from a flea infestation, so we took her to the vet who estimated that she was just over a year old. Her teats were showing, so she apparently had pups already, but where these pups were was impossible to say.
Needless to say, we fell in love with her within a day and when a family came to look at her for possible adoption, we said, "No! She's ours!" We haven't regretted the decision for one moment.
Our kids named her Na'ala, which in Hebrew means "Exalted". It also sounds like Nala, the lioness in The Lion King, and her tawny color is why she got this name.
Two weeks after we took her in, our other dog died of old age (15).
She is an amazing dog. We don't have papers to prove she is purebred Lab, but some friends of ours who have always had Labs say she is a purebred.
We figure she was abandoned. She is full of energy, and can be a handful so we think some uncaring person who couldn't handle her just dumped her by the side of the road. The shepherds around here use another breed of dog altogether for their sheep, goats and cattle. These dogs are much larger.
I never had a Lab before, but I feel particularly blessed that this amazing dog came into our family's life. She is great with the kids, and taking her for long walks keeps her energy level under control. Being a rural area, we just let her run off leash and she runs and plays herself out, only to reenergize within a a few hours. I think I'v elost a few pounds keeping up with her.
But, I sure can use some advice on how to train her. She is a quick learner, and she sits and stays on command. But, when she wants to go out her excitement gets the best of her and there seems to be no command to calm her down! Any advice welcome!
She is beautiful. Well done for the rescue. She will pay you back tenfold.
Always great to hear of a rescue going well.
I too have trouble getting my dogs attention when he is excited. Sometimes I can shake a bag of treats but be careful you don't follow with discipline as the dog could associate the two.
Long walks have become a nightly ritual for me and the dog.
Max's favorite place, a walk through a state park with the kids
Max Born February 2012, Adopted May 2012....
Welcome - Na'ala is beautiful!