Saturday, June 23, 2012

Update: June 10-23, 2012

Visit to AC; notes by Wendy Thiessen, Tauna Ready, Eva Belendez, Marjorie Jackson, Dulce Garcia, Gloria Medina Zenteno and Lynn Rodriguez 
Angelica Wurth and Amos in the backyard at AC

We spend most of our time working with the dogs in the back yard at the boarding facility. Thanks to recent rains and plenty of watering, the grass sod we planted there is growing in well. Wendy will mow with her push mower soon if she can.


Cooper was evaluated last week by our dog trainer and behavior consultant, Dulce Garcia. Cooper did well and did not show any signs of aggression. This is very good news; the vet who initially treated Cooper when he was found thought he may have been used as a bait dog because of all the scars on his face so we have been concerned about his temperament and  demeanor. Dulce’s evaluation enables us to work more with Cooper to socialize and train him so he can eventually find a home.

Cooper seems to enjoy the company of people but doesn't know how to interact with them appropriately. He has learned to jump and mouth for attention. He does have a lot of energy and will do best in a home with no children under the age of ten. Before going into a foster or adopter's home, Cooper will have to meet his new siblings first. His behavior is manageable and with the right program, he will improve.  As far as Cooper being out in public, because he will be under a behavior modification program he needs some restrictions. Before taking him out, please talk to Dulce or email her at for more information. Dulce has prepared a complete report on her evaluation that is available for potential fosters or adopters.Otherwise, Cooper is doing well. Wendy bought raised beds for him, Derek and Amos and Cooper just loves sleeping on his raised bed!

Raven is a little selective about people so we need to handle him with care. If he knows you already, he is more willing to cooperate. For now, we can spend more time playing with him in the yard. He likes walks and attention but can be skittish. Don’t get your face too close to him and don’t touch areas other than his head and back without being careful. Let him see you coming when you pet him.

He has a skin condition that the vet thinks is caused by the stress of living in a kennel. We took him to the vet recently and had him checked out. The vet prescribed medication for the condition but the medication can only be used for the short term. Raven looks better but until he is out of boarding, the skin condition will probably continue to bother him. He is apparently still having trouble with his feet. We trimmed his overgrown nails recently and that helped but he still has difficulty walking; he will walk okay for a bit then start limping. Raven loves to get his thick black coat brushed. Sometimes we find him in the outdoor kennels but because he is a big black dog with thick fur, he needs to be kenneled inside as much as possible!

Izzy at Dock Dogs at Discovery Green
She seems to be the happiest dog at AC because she is usually doing exactly what she likes but we probably need to separate her from the other dogs on occasion. A volunteer had Derek in the backyard and was playing with him; Izzy kept stealing his toys. The two started to play a little too rough so we broke it up and put Derek back in the kennel. On a positive note, Estelle Mack took Izzy to Dock Dogs at Discovery Green on 6/23/12. These types of outings are excellent for her and also get her exposure so she can find a permanent home.
Wallis outside!

Wallis ready to go back to his kennel

Volunteer Tauna Ready had been spending extra time with Wallis and has been able to get him out of the kennel twice. She’s been going in the evening when it’s quiet which is a perfect time to let him out. He actually touched his nose to the beggin' strip she was offering; he is going to be such a cool dog if he ever opens up.  We’ve never heard him bark and wonder if he can. Wallis is making slow and steady progress; he is a timid dog who was in a terrible accident before we got him so we are being patient and have high hopes.

Dulce had a good suggestion for working with Wallis, which is to make him work for food. With timid and fearful dogs, she recommends being strict about feeding time; with Wallis, if we don’t overfeed and try to feed him when we are working with him, we might get a better response. When dogs are overfed they will do training only for treats; however, treats make them gain weight. If they can work for their food, we can monitor weight and not add any extra pounds. 
Derek and Rachel Gonzalez
 Derek went to the vet last week because several volunteers have noticed he didn’t seem like himself; he’s been tired and aggressive with some of the dogs. Thank you to Eva Belendez for taking him. Dr. Palmer did a complete work up on him: fecal, blood test, checked his temperature.  All came out great.  Dr. Palmer thinks that the tiredness may be a combination of his paw being sore and the heat (when we found him, Derek had a bullet in his paw from a gunshot wound).  She explained that black dogs heat up faster than other dogs so we need to keep an eye on him when he is outside or on walks.  She gave us a week’s worth of pain medication in case it is the paw. Some of the volunteers are seeing worms when he poops but he has been treated and we hope he is just pooping out dead worms.

Derek recently got into a fight with Amos so the two should never be out at the same time and should not be kenneled near each other.
Amos has a great personality

Amos was supposed to go into foster but it didn’t work out so he is back at AC. He has an injury from his fight with Derek that we are keeping a close eye on; it should almost healed but he keeps scratching it. He walks pretty well on a leash but watch out for his drop and roll move on every available patch of grass. He doesn’t always pay attention to commands but he has a great personality. 

Amos has recovered from sarcoptic mange and the vet has given him a clean bill of health. He still has skin issues that we are treating but practically every dog living in a kennel has some type of skin issue. The remedy is finding them a home. He also suffers from sores from lying on the concrete floor so Wendy bought him a raised bed that we're sure will make a difference.
Kiddo’s personality will only begin to shine when she spends less time with Izzy. Since Izzy’s owner Estelle Mack has been taking her out more, we have an opportunity to work with Kiddo alone. If possible, separate Kiddo and Izzy when working with Kiddo.

Kiddo's was dumped in the Hardy Street and Cavalcade area of Houston earlier this year.  She was lost and confused but obviously smart since she found a safe place to hide and caring people who fed, watered and eventually rescued her. After vetting and spaying, she has been living at AC.

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