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So I guess I have a foster dog.... At least he's BC!


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In August, I stopped by my grandma's house to pick her up for dinner one night. My grandma lives in an elderly assisted-living type of community. She had me come in to meet one of her neighbors, knowing that I'm a dog person, because she wanted me to meet the woman's dog.

 

Max was super cute and well behaved. I was surprised to see a Border Collie living in that environment and still so calm. His owner explained that she had recently acquired him from her daughter, who couldn't keep him anymore (or didn't want him, it sounded like). Max had been there a couple of weeks or so by this time and his new owner didn't know if she'd be able to keep him (landlord/financially/etc.). She explained to me that if it didn't work out, she would have to take him to the Humane Society to find him a new home.

 

I work at the Humane Society (part time, I had started only a couple weeks prior to this). That very day we had euthanized a Border Collie that failed his evaluation. Many herding breeds fail the evaluation, because the shelter environment is very stressful on them (and the evaluation is very, very tough). I told Max's owner that under no circumstances should she consider that an option and that if it came down to it, I would help Max find a home.

 

Well, last week I got a phone call. His owner had come to realize that Max was not getting the exercise he needed and that he needed a more active home. I hadn't seen Max since our first meeting, so I said I would come over and talk to them. I took my dogs along to see how Max gets along with others. It didn't go very well. He was scared & reactive to all of them. I wasn't sure if I was set up to deal with this, so I left him there that day. I returned the next couple of days to take him for walks with each of my dogs, individually. He made improvements very quickly and I knew it would work out one way or another.

 

So.... Last night I picked up Max and brought him home. We had some rough spots at first (Secret can be so snarky...), but now everyone is doing just awesome together. He even got to come to work with me today since everyone is getting along so well.

 

A friend of mine lost her Aussie a few months ago and is coming to meet him later this week. Hopefully it works out between them. If not, Max will need a home. :rolleyes: I hate that my town has such stupid limit laws (that I'm already over...), or else I'd probably just keep him. He's such a sweet dog! I'm looking forward to working with him while he's with me.

 

So, meet Max!

 

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He is very cute! I hope it works out with your friend. It was very kind of you to look out for him.

 

I know what you mean about shelters and shelter evaluations vs. border collies. A while back I had a foster dog who was a cheerful, rambunctious, and friendly one-year-old. She'd only gotten out of the shelter because one of the shelter volunteers had gone to bat for her. She ended up getting a great permanent home and being such a good pet that her owners went back to the rescue and got another dog from them! And later I came to find out that the shelter staff had used this dog cowering in the back of her cage and showing her teeth as the example of fear aggression in their video for volunteers. Quote: "She didn't kennel well."

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he's a good looker. i'm sure you'll find him a good home soon. i'm glad i'm not closer as i'm partial to lots of white and spots! i should say my husband is glad i 'm not closer!!

 

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Thanks everyone!

 

I've always wanted to try to get involved in rescue via fostering, but the Border Collie rescues "in my area" are all several hours away in each direction. Makes it hard to participate in all of the adoption events, etc. Max was such a doll when I met him the first time that I knew I couldn't turn my back on him. I figure it should be easy to find him a good home.

 

Here's a video I made of him running around with my dogs (and my cousin's dog) -- He's doing SO WELL with other dogs, but he does take a few minutes to warm up to new ones.

 

 

We are going to meet with his potential new owner tomorrow. Honestly, it will be hard to see him go -- But if she takes him, she has already asked if he can come over for play dates with my dogs. And she'd also like to get started in agility and will probably come work me with -- at least until the snow flies!

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I work at the Humane Society (part time, I had started only a couple weeks prior to this). That very day we had euthanized a Border Collie that failed his evaluation. Many herding breeds fail the evaluation, because the shelter environment is very stressful on them (and the evaluation is very, very tough).

 

Do you have contact with your local BC rescue? Do they get notified when a a Border Collie gets e-listed? Most of the dogs we pull from the county shelters have been placed on the e-list. Is there some way you can help get these dogs out?

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Do you have contact with your local BC rescue? Do they get notified when a a Border Collie gets e-listed? Most of the dogs we pull from the county shelters have been placed on the e-list. Is there some way you can help get these dogs out?

 

Our shelter is in contact with various breed-specific rescues and try to work with them as much as possible. I asked if that was an option for that specific dog (I, personally, also have connections) and was told no. I have no idea what the criteria are for dogs put on the E-list vs. transferring them to rescues. I sat in on that dog's evaluation and don't think that his problems couldn't be worked through (resource guarding), but I was told that he was a "liability."

 

Working part time, I'm not as involved in the goings-on at the shelter as I would like.

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No doubt it's stressful on pretty much all of the dogs who end up at the shelter -- But many of the herding types tend to crack under the pressure. We have a BC/ACD mix that got moved into the iso/quarantine unit the other day because he suddenly started to aggressively fence fight. I don't think he's had an eval done yet -- Not getting along well with other dogs isn't a big red X, but it's a sign that he is starting to bend to the pressure.

 

A large number of the herding breeds that come through the shelter are resource guarders. Our shelter has a strict policy against placing RG up for adoption. I have a hard time with this because I know it is an issue that can be worked through, but there are liability issues, I guess.

 

Some herding dogs make it through the evals just fine and do go up for adoption & find great homes -- These are dogs who were likely worked with at some point in their life and wound up at the shelter as an unclaimed stray or perhaps a surrender due to life circumstances. The herding breeds who are surrendered to us for being "too much to handle" or "needs more exercise than I can give them" (ie: completely untrained on both counts) are the ones who typically end up failing their evals. Breed rescues do take in dogs like this and work with them, but the shelter doesn't have the resources.

 

BTW, Max is still with me! The home visit last week went very well, but that home just isn't an option so long as their old, ailing dog is still in the picture. The wife is ready to say goodbye to him, but the husband isn't. I am not about to let someone put down a dog just to bring in a new one, so I had to side with the husband on that one.

 

I also called Max's first owner and found out some great info -- Turns out he's only TWO (6/16/08) and has done diddly-squat his whole life. Through some strange fate, it turns out that a friend of mine knows his littermate -- Max is out of "farm stock" with working parents and has at least one sibling (dog my friend knows) who works on a sheep farm. I thought that was cool!

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Thanks for the info. It wasn't obvious to me.

 

My BC rescue is doing well. He's still a puppy and could run and play 12 hours a day but the fact that he's not destructive and displays good behaviour for an adolescent male tells me he's content.

 

One thing I find baffling. If you read two lines about BCs you've been told that they need TONS of exercise. Physical and mental. I just don't understand people.

 

Hoping you are enjoying Max!

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