About a month or so ago my sister sent an application into Golden Rescue to adopt one of their special needs or older dogs. She originally applied to adopt an 8 year old male who was blind, but his foster family was hoping to place him with a dogless family (guessing to keep him safe) and there was already a possible match. Over the past few weeks we’ve continually checked the website for new possibilities and saw Dawsen (aka Clancy). Dawsen is a 20 month old rusty coloured male golden with mild epilepsy. He is loving and highly food motivated, but needs to be taught everything about being a proper family pet. Dawsen wasn’t taught much by his original family, except for how to sit and wait for meals and to behave in the crate. These are useful skills, but he wasn’t really given the chance to be a puppy so is now grasping the opportunity with both paws.
We first met Dawsen about a week ago when his foster dad brought him and his own goldens (Truman & Julie( to meet us at a park in aurora. He was well-behaved at the visit, walking on his flexi without pulling and interacting with Canyon and Cessna appropriately. He didn’t pay much attention to us, but you could see his desire to be friends and to get to know our dogs better. Brandi called the volunteer responsible for her case and began the adoption process. On Monday she got the call that she was approved and we set up a pick-up date for the following evening in Huntsville. After about half an hour of filling out paperwork and learning Dawsen’s routines we put him and his stuff into the truck for the 4 hour drive home. He was an amazing traveler, just settling by Brandi’s feet in the front and then easily settling in back when we decided to transfer him for more space. He didn’t once try to jump on or bother Phoenix who was lying in the back seat – we can no longer leave him home alone with his IVD diagnosis – and he even gave Brandi several licks on her hand that wasn’t holding the kibble.
We arrived at our house around 1:00am and made Brandi a bed on the couch with a dog bed beside her. Before going to sleep though, we let Dawsen and Canyon play while the other 3 of my gang were in the bedroom with Huib. They got along well, sharing toys and playfully chewing on one another’s face. During the night Dawsen settled well and slept with Brandi’s hand on his back – guess he liked the human contact. In the morning we all woke up and fed our respective dogs and then gave them a chance to play a bit before heading back to sleep – again Dawsen slept well beside Brandi. Around noon we woke up and I got out the grooming tools and brushed Dawsen well before spraying him with some vanilla coat freshener. He lost a lot of hair and had several knots in his tail, but I think the next time we brush him he’ll feel a little less stressed about it and maybe stop mouthing. A bit later we let the dogs play outside before Brandi packed Dawsen and her stuff into the car and they headed home.
Dawsen has now been with Brandi for 72 hours and they are doing well. He is so calm and easy going for his age and as long as she takes him for a short walk in the morning and at night he just lays by her feet and plays with his toys or sleeps. He has eaten some Kleenex, gotten into an ashtray on the coffee table (left by Dad) and eaten Branden’s (her cat) food a few times, but otherwise he’s been quite a nice house guest. This afternoon Brandi took Dawsen for a drive to get a baby gate from Canadian Tire and then to do a little grocery shopping – he settled easily in the back of her truck and didn’t once move into the front to investigate. So far I think they are enjoying one another’s company and with time they will figure out what works and what doesn’t.
Stay tuned for further updates on Dawsen as he learns his basic obedience commands and becomes a forever member of our extended family.