The Animal Placement Bureau Blog

The Animal Placement Bureau is a volunteer foster care network with no paid staff and no sheltering facility. All of the dogs in our care live with our volunteers and become as much a part of their family as their own dogs. There is no time limit on our foster care system. When asked, "What happens if your dogs don't get adopted?" we are proud to be able to say, "They come back home with us until we find just the right home for them -- NO MATTER HOW LONG IT TAKES."

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Friendly Retiree Seeks Retirement Castle!

Wheaten Terrier Mix
50 lbs
11 years old

I am an owner-surrender, looking for a new place to retire. I had to leave my home after my person suffered a stroke and couldn’t take care of me anymore. I’m fortunate and really glad to have found a temporary home with APB, but can’t wait to find my permanent retirement castle!

I like to play ball, go for walks, and especially car rides. I enjoy playing with other dogs, too; I’ll just take myself out of the game for a break on the sidelines now and then. Basically, I get along with everyone, but I suppose I might accidentally knock over a very small child if the child isn’t too stable on his or her feet yet. My eyesight is a little poor, since I have minor cataracts. I get around well; just sometimes need to be called in the right direction. When I catch sight of a squirrel in the yard, though, I’ve got no problem chasing him, just like the old days!

My ideal home would be one with somebody who can spend a lot of time with me, even just watching t.v. together. I’m a senior looking for a place where I can enjoy a leisurely life and be a companion to you and your other pets, too. Come to meet me at the next Pet Parade!

Monday, May 15, 2006

Up Coming Events APB will be at in Grand Rapids, MI

Park n Bark Adoption Expo: Noon to 4pm, Sunday, May 21st, sponsored by PETCO at 3165 Alpine NW in Grand Rapids. Mulitple rescue groups showing available dogs. Free Dog Bite Prevention Coloring Books courtesy Kent Co. Health Dept.

The Rescue Road Show: Sat, June 24th, 11am to 4pm at Furry Critterz Fashions & Gifts, 5293 Eastern Ave SE (Eastern at Kalamazoo SE) Grand Rapids, MI Multiple canine breed and all breed rescues.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Meet Trixie

Trixie came in last Saturday, one of the last six dogs to come out of a Collector situation in Baldwin.
Her job was to stay outdoors and alert the old man to anyone coming around his mobile home.

Apparently this job she did for him didn't pay so well as you could count every rib she had and her backbone was extremely prominant. Our go-between driver, who had been negociating with the man, had to do some fast talking to get Taffy and Trixie away from him. Said he didn't know what he'd do without their guard duties being filled.

Trixie is a blue tic hound, according to the old man, she's supposed to be 8 years old, but we doubt that. We'll know more after her vet appointment this week.

She's a lover. More outgoing than Taffy from the get go. She will flatten herself to the floor if you reach for her, but she's quickly up and looking for food and attention. She lives to eat and getting her from crate to back door is tricky unless treats are obvious because she's off, nose to the ground, snooping, scouting for kibble crumbs which Mitzy Morgan, my pitty-piglett girl distributes daily at each feeding, some of which land outside the crate. Thanks to Trixie, vaccuming duties have been greatly reduced.

Both girls have gained considerably in just the week they've been here, eating a generous portion of Eukanuba Kibble, canned mixed in and topped off with puppy replacement formula three times a day. A sporting dog water supplement was added to their water the first few days, giving them extra potassium, minerals and vitamins as they were both dehydrated as well as half starved.

The woman who brought them out of the situation had been up there twice and never saw any food or water dishes for them. She saw the old man throwing pieces of snicker candy bars at them the first time. The second time, it was potato chips he was tossing around.

But he had told her that he couldn't afford to feed all those dogs. (Total head count in the beginning was over 30. Mostly small dogs living in the trailer with him.) Guess no one ever pointed out that dog food is much cheaper than candy bars and potato chips. He refused to let the outdoor guardians go at the first visit, but finally conceded to let her take them the second time.

Miraculously, Trixie and Taffy both seem to be in pretty good health for being deprived so long. Firm stools from the beginning, they've been wormed now and Trixie's coat is getting some shine to it. Teeth are in pretty good shape too.

It breaks my heart to think of these two girls living out there in the dead of winter, no body fat and just a dog house and a chain. But that is how it must have been for them. Trixie was said to be allowed in the house at times at least.

Over the past month, a total of 22 dogs have been brought out of his place. There are 8 remaining, that he wants to keep. Small ones like the chihauhaus and matted fuzzy ones that Julie, Lisa, Bellowood and ANSOL have divided up.

Meet Taffy

Meet APB's new foster dog, Taffy. She's an Aussie mix that arrived last weekend from a collector situation in Baldwin, MI. She and Trixie were this old man's outdoor "guard dogs". Their job was to live at the end of a chain and bark if anyone came around.

They were enshrined, one on either side of his mobile home. Living alone in the midst of 30+ dogs total. For some reason, all of the small dogs, which lived in the trailer home with him, were not adequate noise to alert him to anyone coming around.

Extremely shy at first, Taffy was so thin that she could be picked up and carried with one arm. I swear she weighed less than 18 pound Beethoven, Mike's retired trucking terrier. Because of the fur, it wasn't as apparent in these before pictures, but she was probably as much underweight as Trixie. Very food motivated, to say the least. She's come around quickly.

With in three days she was coming to me for treats and then just for hugs and pets. The tail came up about Wednesday. Until then it would wag furiously while still tucked tightly between her back legs.

Karen J came over Tue to take pictures and Taffy ran when she saw her and wouldn't budge, even for food, from the refuge she took at the far end of the yard. When Karen came back on Wed night and we bathed Taffy, Taffy, despite being unfamiliar with and disgusted by the bathing process, started coming up to Karen.

Story goes that Taffy is supposed to be four years old. The old man had her mother and one day when he went to feed her, he found her dead and this puppy, Taffy, crawled out from under the dog house.

Taffy is a very loving little girl. After her vetting is done and we work on her shyness and housebreaking for a bit, I think she'll find a home soon.

Well, shyness and table surfing, lol. Brought her and Trixie in a couple nights ago and was busy trying to crate Trixie who was more interested in finding food morsels that Mitzy tosses around the vicinity of her crate than she was being crated, when suddenly I see that Taffy is standing in a diningroom chair, licking my plate clean. Now each trip in the back door requires that she stop off and check out the table. We're working on that.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Introducing Your New Pet

Introducing your new dog to the rest of your four legged family can be difficut, but there are ways to make the transition easier. There is a ton of information available on the internet on how to increase your chances at a successful introduction.

If you are introducing a new dog to a resident cat, the general consensus is to provide the cat with a medium sized room that includes her food, water and litter box. One website recommended feeding the cat and new dog on opposite sides of the door, and slowly moving the dishes closer together (with the door closed, of course), and then, using two doorstops, allow the animals to view each other, and repeat the process mentioned above.

Swapping scents is also a prevalent recommendation. Wipe one pet down with a towel and place it under the other's food dish, on their bed, or in their favorite space.

Removing the cat from its room, and allowing the new dog to sniff around will give the dog yet another way to get used to the cat's scent.

First and foremost, avoid fearful or aggressive meetings at all costs. If these behaviors become a habit, they can be extremely difficult to change.

For face to face meetings, some suggest that you keep your dog on a leash, and have another family member pay attention to the cat while in the same room. Start out with lots of short visits. Always supervise visits and make sure there is always an escape route for your cat.

Some recommend that for overly timid or fearful cats, to place the cat in a carrier and allow the dog and cat to sniff each other or place the dog in a crate and let the cat loose to sniff the dog.

Baby gates are our friends. Use them to keep your pets separate when unsupervised until you are confident that they live safely together.

All good behaviors must be rewarded!

More information is available at these websites:

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Senior Dogs....

For Joey, and all of the APB seniors.....may there always be room in my house for the dogs that the world is "done" with....

One By One

One by one, they pass my cage,
Too old, too worn, too broken, no way.
Way past his time, he can't run and play.
Then they shake their heads slowly and go on their way.
A little old man, arthritic and sore,
It seems I am not wanted anymore.

I once had a home, I once had a bed,
A place that was warm, and where I was fed.
Now my muzzle is grey, and my eyes slowly fail.
Who wants a dog so old and so frail?

My family decided I didn't belong,
I got in their way, my attitude was wrong.
Whatever excuse they made in their head,
Can't justify how they left me for dead.

Now I sit in this cage, where day after day,
The younger dogs get adopted away.
When I had almost come to the end of my rope,
You saw my face, and I finally had hope.
You saw thru the grey, and the legs bent with age,
And felt I still had life beyond the cage.

You took me home, gave me food and a bed.
And shared your own pillow with my poor tired head.
We snuggle and play, and you talk to me low,
You love me so dearly, you want me to know.
I may have lived most of my life with another,
But you outshine them with a love so much stronger.

And I promise to return all the love I can give,
To you, my dear person, as long as I live.
I may be with you for a week or for years,
We will share many smiles, you will no doubt shed tears.

And when the time comes that God deems I must leave,
I know you will cry and your heart, it will grieve.
And when I arrive at the Bridge, all brand new,
My thoughts and my heart will still be with you.
And I will brag to all who will hear,
Of the person who made my last days so dear

Author unknown

Monday, May 08, 2006

And Baby Makes Seven

Meet Sadie and AC. Sadie is eight years old. She was found by her people parents on the side of the road as a puppy. They took her home and made her one of their family. She got to sleep on their bed and eat good food and get lots of pets and scratches. Meanwhile, her parents decided to start a human family.

When there were two human children and Sadie, her parents decided to get her a four legged brother. That's how AC joined them when Sadie was five.

Last year, Sadie and AC's parents had a third child. They decided that five kids (three human and two canine) were too much and that two of them had to go. Sadie was sure that because she had been there longer, she would get to stay, but that's not how things worked out. Sadie and her brother, AC were told that they didn't make the cut, and had to leave.

Sadie and AC's parents put an add in the paper advertising them for $5. Five dollars seemed like a low value for someone who shared three years of their life, and even more crazy for Sadie, who shared almost her entire 8 years with her family. Luckily, APB saw the add first and rescued them.

Sadie was very scared when she came into foster care. For the first few days, she would only come out of her crate to go outside and go to the bathroom. AC was a bit more friendly, but was constantly whining, looking for his people, but Sadie seemed to know that their people were not coming back to get them.

Sadie is extremely overweight, but her new diet will work wonders! Soon she'll be as svelt as her brother, AC. AC is young, happy, friendly and springy. He loves to "talk" and play fetch and chase.

There are countless dogs out in need of loving, nurturing homes like Sadie and AC. If you have a place in your heart for a dog like Sadie or AC or the many dogs rescued by APB, please check out our website for more information.