Our local animal shelter has two beautiful labs - one yellow and one chocolate. And of course, these aren't the first labs to find their way in there. Just about every week when I go there's a new lab to meet.
(I know what you're thinking, and I can't have a second dog until my home situation changes. sorry)
I can't count on help from the local rescue because they already have too many and turn more and more away - they can't help it and I don't blame them. Still, I call local rescues to tell them about dogs I see every week. Sometimes they come and pull them, sometimes they don't. Unfortunately, the local lab rescue is one of those that is overwhelmed right now.
Why am I mad?
I go and walk dogs at the shelter and spend a little time with as many dogs and possible, not just the labs. What I notice time and time again is that the labs are typically not trained at all (okay, most dogs, but I have to admit, I tend to favor any labs. call me prejudiced). Meaning they don't walk on a leash, much less sit. And most of the time I see "owner surrender" as the reason, meaning the owner dumped them there.
Gee. I wonder why.
You know, you're asking a hell of a lot from a lab - or any dog for that matter - to "behave" and "obey" if you don't teach them how.!!!!!!
I walk my dog around my neighborhood almost every single day, and I always hear the same dogs barking from the same back yards with the same "beware of dog" signs hanging from the wooden fences. Why can't people understand that if you get a dog and throw them in the backyard to live and don't spend any time with them, or spend any time teaching them, you will end up with a dog you can't stand. And guess where that little guy ends up.
Yeah, that's right! Dead! (stupid [email protected]@'s)
(sorry, I just really needed to blow. thanks.)
But since I tend to try to figure out how to change things for the better, I think of ways that we (society) can minimize this. I remember the fact that not only have we not gotten a grip on the neutering/spaying issue while puppies continue to be born left and right, but also that there are organizations all over the country trying to figure out the solutions, too. But I'm still frustrated, nontheless. My hat goes off to all the men and women that work at the shelter here for they are better people than me. While they exercise great restraint, I'd probably punch every person that came in to dump their dog.
I could have written this post. I too walk dogs out at our local HS as a volenteer and very few of them have any obedience or walk decent on a leash. I also go for the labs first and give them a little extra time although if they have already been walked I try to take the others out first. As a Canine Coach (dog walker title) we're supposed to try to work with the dogs on basic obedience (sit, lay, leave it) but when they have been cooped up all day the last thing they want to do it sit when I get them outside. There is a chocolate girl at the shelter now she's adorable but has no manners and is VERY mouthy she ripped my sweatshirt last week and about got my pants too. It's no wonder she's not been adopted but it's not her fault her previous owners didn't show her how to behave. >
Apollo's original owners probably beat him as a puppy because he 'didn't know how to behave'. He got shoved from home to home and kept being given up. NO ONE wanted to teach him basic manners. I finally adopted apollo and he wasn't housebroken, had seperation anxiety, was a compulsive chewer, didn't even know how to sit, was TERRIFIED of his leash, and horrified whenever Sam (b/f) came near him. 2 months later he's a perfect gentleman. If his original owners would have just done their responsiblitity as a pet owner and been patient and taught him basic manners, apollo would never have been shoved between 4 different homes. Yes, it took ALOT of work and patience to fix apollo's problems, but that was because having a full grown lab peeing in the house is ALOT differnt from a lab puppy having an accident indoors. If his original owners had just taught him basics as a puppy, he wouldn't have had as much trauma in his young life.
Love,<br />Giuli<br /><br />
I'm with ya. I haven't dog walked at the shelter since I started fostering about 3 1/2 years ago but I agree it's rediculous. The first foster I brought home was a shelter dog..he was so "bad" in the cage people were afraid of him. Large black male PB lab...he just wanted OUT. I will never forget on my way out of the shelter with him another volunteer said "you're taking that one home good luck" : Once I got him home he was the laziest dog I've had (until my recent foster the fatty batty 6 yr old doll baby).
It's amazing at how many people just give up their dogs I'm still absolutely amazed about the family that gave up Sarah...because the daughter was afraid of her. Sarah is just a typical lab puppy, energetic, fun and very loving. Found out the girl was 8 yrs old. Nick, my son who is now 12, was afraid of bigger dogs when he was little. We got Max when Nick was like 3 or 4 and it did take some time for him to overcome his fear but in the end, that kid absolutely loved Max. I know we're not the best with the girls with exercising but they still get out and walk, play, fetch, etc. AND we are always teaching.. drop it, leave it, out, sit, down, stay, no........ to me that's just what you do on a daily basis when you have a pup.
I wouldn't give up on a kid and I wouldn't give up on a puppy/dog.
Yeah, Apollo's mom:
I think about Apollo and you all the time when I encounter someone with a "crazy" dog, or when I come across an poorly behaved one at the shelter.
I've never done what you have done, and I'm honestly too afraid to try. But man oh man, you really have a lot to feel good and proud about. Apollo's so very lucky.
Wow! Im really honored that you feel that way. Thanks.
To be honest, when I adopted apollo I wasn't planning on adopting a dog with issues. It just turned out that way, but everyone else had given up on him and I sure as hell wasn't gunna be added to that list. You'd be suprised. If you adopt a dog and they turn out to have issues, you find yourself not wanting to give up. It was a rough 2 months, but in the long run its NBD. Apollo is the BEST dog I could ever hope to have. He is SO EXCELLENT with the ferrets. He'll even let them bite him on the face and dangle! I don't know many dogs that are that patient with anyone, much less small animals! He's such a great dog. I feel for those that are going through issues with a shelter pup though, its not fun, and you get frustrated and wanna give up sometimes. But boy I am sure glad I did not give up. He's the best.
Love,<br />Giuli<br /><br />
I just heard of a law that is going to be passed in California, that goes along these lines...... you must get your dog altered by the age of 4 months. If you do not then you must show that you have a breeders permit. It is an AB bill and I can't find it online anywhere to be sure that it is true or not.
I am against it (although I am against backyard breeders) All of my pets are altered.