Rosie’s Recovery

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You would think that anyone who saw this face would fall instantly in love with Rosie, but there was a time when she was treated with very little love.

Rosie came to us from the Manchester Animal Control.  She had been brought to Bolton Vet neglected and malnourished.  She weighed only 17 pounds and was unresponsive.  They worked hard to keep her alive, though it was not always assured that they would succeed.  But she made it through and, once she was stable, needed a place to complete her recovery.  So, she came to the Our Companions Sanctuary, where we could slowly help her build back her weight and her strength, and assess any behavioral problems her ordeal may have caused.

 

 

It’s a testament to a dog’s resilience and capacity for love, however, that Rosie’s emotional scars were few.  She was a resource guarder, and couldn’t live with another dog or cat, but with people, she was nothing but affectionate.  She loved attention, love to hug and kiss, and made quick friends with everyone.  And she surprised us all by being one of the few dogs we’ve had here who was happy and well mannered with all ages of children.

As Rosie’s body recovered and grew up to an appropriate 45 pounds, we nurtured her mind and spirit as well.  She went to training classes and out on field trips to local state parks.  And she worked with at-risk youth as part of our Buddy Project.  She became a volunteer favorite, at least when she wasn’t untying your shoelaces or trying to sneak a treat from you.

And, as often happens here, it was just a matter of time before the perfect family for Rosie walked through our doors.  They had no other pets, which worked great for Rosie.  However, they did have two toddlers, which would have usually meant that we would not have a dog for them.  But Rosie’s love of little kids made her a perfect match for them.

Rosie now lives in a loving home with a family who will make sure she never knows the kind of hardship she previously experienced again.  And in return, she’ll give them no end of fun, laughter, and adorable, soft-eyed head tilts.

Congratulations, Rosie!

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It’s all coming together now!

Here’s our latest update on the construction here at the Sanctuary.  The new buildings are really coming together now!

 

We’ll start with an updated wide view of the Sanctuary:070417a

Check out this gorgeous cat building.  The catios are really taking shape!  The doors have all been installed and include kitty doors for access to the outside playscapes.  Inside, you can really start to see how the place will be set up.  Most of the infrastructure is in place and we’ll have walls up in no time.

And, of course, there’s also the two new dog cottages.  They are also moving right along.  We can already see some pups snuggling on couches and barking for their dinners.

We’re looking forward to sending more updates of this exciting project soon!

Thank you for your support!

The Big Build!

It’s time to check in once again on the progress of our next phase of construction, this time with your adorable canine guide, Lucy!

 

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Lucy is keeping a close eye on the progress.
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The new cat cottage is taking shape!
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Just imagine a room full of happy kitties.
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Look at all those catios!
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Dog Cottage #6 is nearing completion.
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Rear view of Dog Cottage #6.
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Hard at work on Dog Cottage #5!
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Taking a “big picture” view!

Summertime is feline fine…

…especially for cat sanctuary resident Archer.

Archer 041817d.JPG    Incredibly handsome he’s a confident, curious and social guy with an easygoing personality-  making him an ideal candidate for a leisurely harness stroll on a beautiful sunny day.

Calling it a stroll may have been just a little bit of a reach- but a cat sure knows how to relax and enjoy each moment of his day.

Archer 041817g.JPG and honestly we can’t let the dogs have all the fun around here!

Closing in on summer also means that the flowers    .  . . . . .

and feral colonies are in full bloom.

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And we’ve picked some irresistibly cute kittens to brighten up the inside of our cat cottage:

First there’s our adorable little boy band: JC, Joey, Chris, Lance and Justin – that can barely take time out from playing for some photos.

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And to round out our rough and tumble boys -we have our little angels:  Jaclyn, Farrah and Kate.  Did someone say photo shoot?

Of course when they’re not posing -they can be a rough as those little boys!

And not always as graceful as our little angels should be:

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Unless of course they are sleeping – then they are always little angels.

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wait -did someone say photo shoot again?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A couple of looks back at some of our previous guests.

-an update on a kitten rescued by our own OC staff that was found with a badly injured leg that  later had to be amputated.Lumi 121216a

Little Lumi was so nervous when he first arrived.

But soon he grew comfortable, confident and made quite a few friends

still he just  wished for a home of his own:

His prayers were quickly answered when a family that adopted Emery from the Sanctuary came looking for a feline friend to keep him company.emery 110216

Visual problems for Emery made it a little difficult for him to “fit in” and make friends with other cats at the Sanctuary.

But Lumi was happy to have Emery as his new Besty and the two became fast, inseparable friends.  WARNING – this video may be too graphic for some!

 

**A quick footnote on Lumi & Emery – mom & dad shared their story on the blog with them and they wanted to send along a thank you to us-   for us, a happy kitty is the best thank you ever!**

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Another update on Maise -a pregnant kitty that sadly lost her litter of kittens in utero but still kept her great personality-

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A sweet confident kitty that was happy to teach her new canine sibling a little respect in her new  home.

– Maise wants the bigger more comfortable bed

– then that’s what Maise gets! Maisie

Cats and Dogs

Always good to get it straight who’s boss right from the beginning.

 

Until next time–justin 060317d

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Happy dreams….

 

 

 

Princess Hera

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Adorable Hera wears so many different hats here at the Sanctuary – literally and figuratively!  Not only is she our resident supermodel who rocks the cutest outfits you’ll ever see, she is also our resident couch potato/chicken lover/ sandbox digger/face kisser.  This sweet little lady has been with us for just about three years and has truly captured all of our hearts, even if it takes us each a while to capture hers!  Read on to see how very much she is loved by everyone here at OC.

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“Hera is soooo cute and is so adorable in all her different outfits – she is like a real life Barbie doll anyone can dress up!”

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“Hera has the sweetest, saddest, most soulful eyes that make you melt.”

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“When Hera looks at me with that sweet face and wags her tail, my heart melts.  She is the best snuggle-up-on-the-couch-and-watch-TV-with buddy EVER!”

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“Hera is the sweetest, most affectionate girl.  I feel so lucky to know her.  She would be the perfect addition to any family!”

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“Hera acts like a silly lab, rolling on her back and getting belly rubs.  I love when she wags her tail when she sees me!”

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“Watching Hera play with her puppy friends is such a joy.  She is so happy running around in the yard!”

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“Hera is the sweetest, gentlest girl.  She gives the best kisses!”

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“Earning Hera’s love is one of the most rewarding experiences.  Once she knows that you are her friend, you will see a spunky, playful, and ever loyal personality emerge.  I promise that it is worth the effort!”

The Start of Something Big!

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We’ve started construction on Phase Three of the Our Companions Sanctuary.  Everyone’s favorite foreman, our own Hera, is closely monitoring progress for us.  Here’s some photo highlights of the work so far.

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A new shed for our yard care equipment.
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Let’s move some dirt!
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Building the foundation for a new dog cottage.
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Putting an addition on the garage for food storage.  We’re going to have alot more mouths to feed!
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The foundation for a new cat cottage.  Check out all those catio spaces!

Remembering Dusty

To the sanctuary regulars who read this blog, you’ll be quite familiar with the story of Dusty. He was a long term cat resident at Sebastian House, arriving at a whopping 22 pounds and with a handful of additional medical problems to boot. He was a sanctuary favorite – a constant presence in the living room, always happy to snuggle up next to someone on the couch, or loudly meow at their feet. Occasionally he could be tempted to play with his favorite wire mouse toy. After living here for three years, he passed away peacefully after a sharp health decline. The volunteers who love him shared some of their many Dusty memories and photos. You can see the many lives he has touched during his stay. We will miss you, Dusty.

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Dusty snoozing – from Michele G.

 

“Father Dust (my nick name for him) will be terribly missed. He took care of the kittens & new comers to the living room crew. Showed them ‘the ropes’ and all of the affection they would allow. God bless Dusty & OC.”
Alex
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Dusty checking up on Cheetah after she comes back from the vet.

“Our dear, sweet Dusty. He was beyond sweet and loving. I’m was privileged to know him. He would greet me as well as others when we walked through the front door. He was a great uncle or grandpa to all the little kittens that spent time in his presence. He was also just a terrific cat to sit with while he slept. He was so loved…but we got so much more back. I have tears for him now, but there are so many memories that he will not be forgotten.”
Sheila

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Dusty looking dashing in pink – taken by Paula.

“I’m so sorry to hear about Dusty. I got to visit with him on Saturday and it was clear his quality of life was going downhill. We will miss Uncle Dusty but as I told him on Saturday, he still has a special job to do – now he’ll get to keep an eye on Maisie’s kittens. 🙂
Thank you for keeping us updated, and thanks to you and all the staff for being there for our beloved sanctuary pals.”
Susannah

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Showing off all the meanings of “husky.” Taken by Mandy.

“Thank you for sharing Dusty’s last moments with us. I wish I could have gone out to spend time with him before his passing. He will be missed. I know he was a part of Riley’s early days sharing his living room with those mischievous little ones. So sorry for your loss. Please find comfort in knowing how much you impacted his life in such a positive way. Even if he didn’t find his forever family he had a wonderful extended caring family of staff and volunteers.”
Lynne

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Dusty spooning with Riley’s brother Chickpea.

“I know you must be in a lot of pain right now. I’m so sorry! Although I didn’t have much time with him, he was a sweet, sweet boy that I will miss so much! The living won’t be the same without him! Having said that, thank God for all of you and what everyone at OC does. You are all a marvel to me and I admire all of you so much! Thanks to all, Dusty had a happy, content life filled with love and compassion! None of us can ask for more than that.
I WILL MISS HIM GREATLY!!!”
Darcie

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Dusty joins a Brownie troupe.

“How very sad I am right now to hear of Dusty’s passing. I know Dusty had a number of physical ailments over the past several years, but he always showed his grit against these challenges and I was not aware his health was currently in a downward spiral. Given the multiple issues he has had to fight off, and his senior age, it was probably inevitable his life was coming to a natural end.
Last month I brought two plush hearts in to the Sanctuary, and though I try not to have favorites among my feline charges :), the pink one was for Tabby and the red one for Dusty. I wanted to let our most senior residents know how still special they are to all of us.
I will definitely miss him.”
Barbara

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Snow Angels

Some admit that they are most definitely NOT a fan of the winter weather. The snow and wind are enough to drive in the most durable of people. Some even look at the social media pictures of others skiing down steep hill’s of fluffy white snow and think, ‘not me, pass the cocoa’. Dogs aren’t too different so while some relish the glorious and sparkly foot of white that sits on their yards others prefer to cozy up and wait for the sun to shine and the flowers to bloom. The sanctuary enjoys a good mix of adventurous snow lovers and other “cocoa” dogs. Some of them even go out with our wonderful volunteers and enjoy the company of a snow angel or two…

When the storm is done howling and with a little encouragement, the dogs don their coats and walk the paths that have been lovingly shoveled and snow-blowed for them and most find that there is a bounce in their step and their inner puppy is quickly unleashed. Enjoy the peek into the winter wonderland that we are currently enjoying!

As you can see, we not only make snow angels here, we rescue them as well!

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Lucy taking a break with her snow angel
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Hera on Watch Out Point

 

 

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Beautiful Sunrise!

 

Looking back and moving forward

Well,  the holiday decorations have come down and the new year is underway.

In the cat cottage we saw a lot of happy adoptions in 2016 and can look back and celebrate our many successes with a smile. . . .

from finding homes for some of our more reserved, “shy” cats :

  Chrissy, Heidi and Cheddar….

Cheddar, now Gracie, hardly took any time to come out of her shell.  Within two weeks, she was spending short spurts of time on Jane’s lap and now spends at least an hour at a time curled up on a lap multiple times per day.  She even wandered into the dining room on New Year’s to greet company and did some head-butting of stranger’s hands!  Jane and James had expected her to take longer to warm up, but are thrilled that she’s coming around to them so quickly.  She doesn’t have access to the entire house yet, but is comfortable in their bedroom, living room, and dining room for the time being.  They just love her!

-Boots and Ticker are now Scout (Chrissy) and Honey (Heidi).  At first the girls were so scared it was hard to give them names based on personality, so we went with “family” names.  But now, oh boy, their personalities have emerged. Scout has to explore everything with Honey right behind her.  Actually, Scout is my first cat to tightrope walk across the drapery rods.  And the top of the 55″ tv.  Honey is very sweet, likes her treats, and was the first to give me head butts and whisker kisses. And has gorgeous honey colored eyes.

to saying a fond farewell to some of our friends that decided they  wanted to hang around for just a while:

Elizabeth, Dillon,  & Veronica……

Here’s a photo update on Elizabeth, now Bells, who also happens to be FIV+ , from her new owners with an awesome caption- Can we clone these guys a million times over!!

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Dillon:    He warmed up to Tom and Brittany so fast, they didn’t even know what to do with it.  He greets them happily when they get home from work and is playful, snuggly, and extra lovable!  He has not swatted or hissed at them once.  He did go through a short period of attempting to eat the popcorn ceiling, so they had to take down a high shelf, but he has otherwise been the picture perfect kitty companion!  He is even starting to come out of the bedroom to stare at company from a distance when they do have friends over!  J I’d say that’s pretty impressive for our skeptical guy.  They absolutely adore Mr. Dillon and can’t believe how easy he’s been, given his history of being somewhat difficult.  I guess he just needed to find his people!

Hi Lady!!! 6 months wow!! Miss V is just fabulous! We are currently snuggled up watching The Grinch. Photo to follow.  She most definitely is beyond spoiled. She totally rules the house and knows it. She hasn’t had any health issues at all and we’re now comfortable enough to trim nails (as long as there are treats nearby to bribe). She really is the perfect cat! I’m so lucky! 

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Fondly remembering our kitties that were extra special:

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Mason:

….Wow, 6 months already.  We kinda feel like he has been here forever.  He loves the fireplace and when it is going…he uses his ramp a lot but is super clever on how he gets around.  I am often surprised when I come home, which room he is in and on what he is lounging on.   I think he loves just having places to go.  He eats but believe it or not he does leave food in the bowl.  Both cats share the eating zone and take their turns.  They snuggle when they want too, just like normal cats.  They also snuggle with humans when they feel the need too.    

Monty – who was blind

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Monty is doing very well!
It’s hard to believe he’s only been here 6 months; it feels like he’s been in the family forever.
He and Moira get on well, in fact their beds are together in the living room (they match their beds, naturally)!
He’s still as happy and affectionate as ever and grows more confident in his environment every day. He recently discovered he can jump onto the bathroom sink so that’s a new favorite hangout spot.
He goes for his first vet appointment in a few weeks for a check up as we haven’t had any health issues arise. He eats well and uses the box without problem.
Overall he’s one of the happiest cats I’ve met and he definitely brings us lots of joy.

And the several lucky kitties were able to leave here with siblings -or friends they made at the Sanctuary:

Siblings Clover & Dandelion- Friendship formed at the Sanctuary: Higgins, Tetris & Jupiter…..

Rosie and dad have really bonded. Omar is still doing things on his terms and that’s ok. Higgins loves everyone which includes our family and friends. At feeding time all 3 boys are right at our feet singing up a storm. Too funny.
Wishing you, your family and everyone at the sanctuary a Merry Christmas.

Pikachu and Luna- arrived together and were able to leave again together.

The very lucky kitties who were out the door as fast as they came in:

Molly, Nefertiti, Poppy and Emery…

And so many others that left us this year.

chickpea:

Chickpea is settling in nicely!  We did keep the name Chickpea, as Chris thought it suited him fine.  He and Homeo are very active together and sleep together too.  I do give Homeo a stern talking to once in a while as he teaches Chickpea some bad habits….like climbing on the railing above our living room. Crazy cats!

So far, Chickpea has only pulled two ornaments off the Christmas tree. One was a snowman that he ripped to shreds, thankfully, it wasn’t something I was worried about losing!  I’m really looking forward to Christmas morning and opening presents with the boys. J

Snickers, Snookey, Sprinkle, Barry, Dandelion, Clover, Buttercup, Barry…..

Finally,  one special tribute to our friend Harvey- He arrived at the Sanctuary rescued from the street in terrible condition-

once it was discovered he was in kidney failure we knew he had already arrived at his forever home – his “family” at the Sanctuary kept him loved, comforted and happy until he received his kitty angel wings on December 11th and left us with only his happy memories….

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Looking forward so many new faces have already joined us this year:

Apache, Gum Drop, Juniper, Luther, Charlotte…..

Luther, Lumi, Newton, Freyja……

Already some new friendships are forming:

Lumi – a kitten rescued by our own staff was found orphaned and injured so badly his hind leg needed to be amputated.

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He has now wound up with several step-siblings and one very special friend in Apache -a “mature” kitty that had such severe dental issues he had all of his remaining teeth removed -except for one.

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Of course – a special tribute to the rest of our current guests still waiting:

Albus, Cheetah, Dusty, Tabby, Hazel & Pippi- And looking forward to finding their homes this year!

“What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything?”
Vincent Van Gogh

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Hello 2017!

 

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GOODBYE 2016!!!

 

Some of you are happy to see 2016 come to an end and some of you are choosing to look back on the year with all of it’s wondrous and fond memories. The dogs can say the same thing, some of them had a remarkable year and some of them are looking forward to the opportunities that 2017 have to offer. Regardless of the group that we may focus on I think it’s safe to admit that 2017 is going to be a great year and we are ready to welcome it with open arms (and paws!). Here at the Sanctuary we always love to take a moment to reminisce over the past year by looking back on the dogs that we have been able to help.  Some of them have left for their happily ever after and some are still gracing our doorways but one thing holds true, both staff and volunteers are delighted to call them “family”. These dogs have created so many smiles and stories through their interactions with those that spend time with them that they have unwittingly sewn an invisible string of love connecting us all. These dogs are the embodiment of love and we are lucky to have them in our lives.

Welcome, 2017 and all of the memories that you have in store for us.

 

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Is that you, 2017?? WELCOME!!!