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.
Interns are an amazing integration to making the Sanctuary work to its full capacity and we enthusiastically welcome their help and expertise! We’ve recently had to say goodbye to our Fall UCONN interns and we want to thank them all for their great work this semester! Not only were they a huge help with the day to day chores but they also played a big role in the progress that many of our dogs have made over the past few months. This progress has ultimately lead to the adoption of a handful of our dogs! They did many field trips with our dogs (who doesn’t like going off and having fun!) and assisted in executing behavioral and training plans. For example, they worked very hard on Gordie’s and Aspen’s training and even took Gordie, Aspen, and Brody to class some weeks. This was a very dedicated group!
We wish them all the luck in the world for their futures in animal care.
Thank you Brittany, Carolyn, Natalia, and Tiffany!!
What, more than anything in the world, makes for a happy German Shepherd? A job, of course! And our Jessie was no exception. Jessie came to us from a local animal control office, where she had been found stray. She was not spayed, had a touch of frostbite, and worst of all, had a heart worm infection. We took her in at the sanctuary, knowing that our staff and our volunteers made us well equipped to guide her through the arduous recovery process.
Once Jessie arrived, she quickly won everyone’s hearts with her endless affection and lighthearted demeanor. And boy, did she love to work. Like any good herder, she always kept a close eye on her flock, namely the staff and volunteers. She loved meeting and working with the other dogs and made some great friends. Her most valuable job for us was as Henree House hostess, since she could always be counted on to graciously greet any visitor, even small children, and put on a little show. She also excelled as a Buddy Project dog, helping at risk teens learn dog training skills. But I think her favorite job could best be described as “tennis ball herder.”
While Jessie loved all of these jobs, she was definitely missing the one job every dog aspires to: life long companion to a person of her own. That person finally came along this summer. Tim had a traumatic brain injury that had damaged his short term memory. He was moving into a new home and, while he had great human caretakers, there was one vacancy he needed to fill: a dog to help him through the rough spots and make his life complete. And we had just the girl for the job. Jessie and Tim bonded immediately and after a few visits with her, we knew it was the perfect match. Jessie is now permanently employed, giving her guy unlimited love and support, and of course, chasing down every tennis ball she can.
Jessie is the picture of canine grace. And she has an inner beauty to match. Attentive and affectionate, she never saw a face that she didn’t want to kiss, and her belly is always available for some rubs.
Jessie came to us from a local animal control office. She was sighted running loose in the town in winter and, though it took some time and several attempts, they were able to catch her and bring her in. Once they had her safe and indoors, they saw what a joyful teddy bear she was.
Unfortunately, she had a few health care concerns that needed addressing. She needed to be spayed, her skin and coat were in poor condition, and, worst of all, she had a heartworm infection. We took her in to the Our Companions Sanctuary and, with a little TLC, she quickly blossomed.
Now, Jessie is a volunteer and visitor favorite. With her health concerns behind her, she tears around the play yard fetching tennis balls, and has a great time with her doggie friends, Hera and Brody. She’s well on the way to her fairy tale ending.
Lucy is currently our only sanctuary guest interested in taking full advantage of the pool accommodations that we provide all of the pups at the sanctuary. She just can’t get enough of it! We hope that her playful antics help to keep you cool on this sun-soaked day!
Take time to splash around and then be sure to wrap up in a big towel and relax in the air conditioning!
At last, it seems that summer might be here! The pups (especially our pool fanatic, Lucy) have been enjoying some lounge time in the 80 degree weather and the cool sensation of a frozen Kong in order to keep cool. We hope that you have some relaxing plans ahead of you over this long weekend but if you choose to get out and enjoy the fine weather then we encourage you to come take a tour of the Our Companions Animal Rescue Sanctuary! The Sanctuary is open to the public every Saturday from 1pm-3pm and we would love to meet you!
We’ve gotten our first report back from Piper’s new home! She’s doing great and settling in to a much deserved life of love and care after her rough beginning. Read her whole story here: https://ourcompanionsblog.wordpress.com/2016/04/02/piper-the-indestructible/
“Our family is so happy to welcome this little girl into our family. We have re-named her Abby and already she responds to her new name! She joins our cat, Sophie, who really wants nothing to do with her, and two goats, Firefly and Paprika, who are both very curious about her.
She has adapted well to our routine. She has learned to “give paw” and we are working on “stay” with some success. She will soon be going to school to learn even more. In keeping with her recovery from surgery, we take short walks, which are always an adventure since she would love to chase every bird, chipmunk and squirrel she sees.”
Here at the Our Companions Sanctuary, we’re always seeking ways to give our dogs the most normal and home-like life that we can. One thing that goes a long way toward that goal is the “field trips” we take them on. Being located in Connecticut’s Quiet Corner, we’re very lucky to have a number of trails and parks in the area that our staff and volunteers can bring our dogs to for some exploration and adventure. And as the weather warms, it opens up so many possibilities to give our pups a fun day away from home.
Meet Piper, the indestructible dog. Piper has been with us at the Our Companions Sanctuary since January. She was caught by the animal control officer of a nearby town where she had been running loose for weeks. She was scared and, even worse, had suffered major damage to one of her hips in some kind of accident. But she was very social and friendly, so we took her in and started the process of getting a good assessment of her physical and emotional condition. As soon as she entered our home-like environment, she blossomed into lovable lap dog ready to shower volunteers and visitors with snuggles and kisses. Her physical needs were much concerning, though. There was some concern that the damage to her hip was going to cause her to loose her leg. However, after consulting several veterinarians, we found that we could get her back to healthy mobility with a single surgery and extensive physical rehabilitation. So that’s what we chose to do. Piper had her surgery in late February and we got right to work on her physical therapy. It has been tough work for us and for her, and has included not only several exercise sessions every day, but twice weekly trips to a canine physical therapist. She’s been a trooper through it all and her recovery has been amazing. Within days, she was beginning to use her foot for walking and, after just a month, she’s back to taking regular walks with our volunteers. The doctors have been so impressed with her and with the dedication of our staff and volunteers to her rehabilitation. She still has quite a journey ahead of her, but she’s well on her way to a happy healthy life.