Saturday, July 17, 2010
The Weekly Berner Report - The details and boatloads of gratitude
I've been out of my mind the last month and particularly the last two weeks. I've been thinking the worst with regard to Alf's future (or lack of one) I truly felt, in my heart, that euthanasia was a better option than a shelter, for many reasons.
I absolutely have to get back east, and soon. I set a departure date for August 1st (for about the 12th time) this time I knew I had to stick to it.
I've been emailing and calling rescues all over the country and posting on forums for weeks. On Saturday a horse forum member (yes, I posted on a couple of horse forums, too) referred me to a rescue in Colorado, Big Dogs, Huge Paws (aka BDHP).
I emailed BDHP and received an email that same day telling me they would help Alfy! I was psyched. BDHP is actually a national rescue, the one I contacted is located in Colorado. Awesome! Lucky Alf is going to get out of this god forsaken desert! All their dogs are in foster homes, they've got a great program and as far as I could tell they do everything exactly as I would; better, no doubt
By the way, BDHP has a blog. I hope everybloggie will check them out and show them some love.
That same day, I called Sue, the rescue contact for the Bernese Mountain Dog Club of Watchung
Sue referred me to an international Bernese Mountain Dog mailing list. The email had barely been sent and I was receiving responses. The Berner people stepped right up and began networking to find Alf a home. Monday I was contacted by a woman in California wanting to give our boy a home. She comes with great references, including a well known, responsible BMD breeder/rescue. The family who will be taking Alf has one of her bitches. You've already met Sophie, a five year old Berner girl. Einstein, pictured below in the forefront, is Sophie's younger brother.
That's Sophie, in the back. Einstein, also pictured on our sidebar Berner rescue button, was a rescued Berner adopted by Alf's new family. Sadly, they lost him as a result of bloat.
We're pretty sure Einstein has his paws in this whole journey and has orchestrated Alf's destiny to help heal the broken hearts he left behind
Alf's new mom doesn't want me to speak of Einstein's abuse but of the love and joy he brought to their family. I'll only say this: Our Mr.B and Einstein stories' share some similar circumstances.
"...He was precious loving, and curious about everything. Even when he first arrived. He loved to walk. I would go early so he could feel the sun on his face. I used to tell him it came up to greet him. And at night, while on our walk when the sun would go down I would tell him it was kissing him goodnight.
He was so proud to walk with his family. He was curious even when I put that funny stuff on my face. I let him smell everything.Even my parfume bottle. He would curiously sniff, then shake his nose and smile at me. He loved riding in the car. My little navigator. He would jump in and head straight for the armrest. Front paws on armrest back legs on backseat. Then Right before I would take off, kiss for the driver. It was a ritual for him. I could not get in and drive without his kiss. As far as Einstein was concerned that is what made the car go. He loved Sophie and she him. In the morning he would go up to her and sniff,and kiss her on the nose while little tails wagging. It was one of the most endearing beautiful moments of our day.
If he heard a police car, fire truck , or ambulance, he would bark and howl. As soon as Sophie barked at noises outside or people walking by, Einstein would run up to her and join in. He would wait for Sophies cue and stop only if she did. It drove us bananas and made us laugh all at the same time. It was way too cute. He loved to cuddle. He would sometimes fall asleep right next to Sophie..."
Coincidentally, the adopters live in the same town as my sister, in California. My sister will go over on Monday to do a home check. (Side note: Yipeeeeee! Stumpy's going to the beach AND I get to see my baby S'tar)
As planned, Alf will go to the vets on the 21st and I will deliver him to his mom on the 23. We'll spend some time together, first at the park and then in Alf's new home. I'll stay in Laguna (yes, this lucky boy is moving to sunny SoCal!) for a couple of days to visit with my sister and make sure Alf settles in.
Blog land has been especially kind and supportive of Alf, throughout this journey. I know many of you have cried tears of happiness with each step forward and tears of frustration with every setback. We are so grateful for your advice, encouragement and help.
I'm grateful to Paula who blogs at Woof Whinny Whisper and Sandra who blogs at This & That for posting Alfy's search for a forever home on their blogs.
Alfy's was listed on Petfinder, thanks to The Huppie Syndicate
Although,RUFFF (Rescued Unwanted Furry Friends Foundation)was unable to provide sanctuary for Alf, they were more than happy to allow Alf to go to their vet and receive their discount for all procedures, tests and vaccinations.
They also provided advice and encouragement, throughout our journey.
I hope the members of the Berner-L yahoo group and mailing list know how much I appreciate their network, the support they provided and their encouragement. I extend my gratitude to the member that offered to foster,those that were prepared to make sure Alf had a great future and those that took the time to share his story, which resulted in this very happy new beginning.
Thanks, too, to that wonderfully crazy and hugely supportive Horse Forum, whose members referred me to BDHP and other rescues; and one member in particular who was prepared to give Alf a forever home, in New England.
I am so grateful to my neighbors and friends for keeping track of Alfy, and watching out for him when he was wandering.
And more than anything or anyone I'd to thank Alfy's new family for opening their hearts and home to this special boy. I am beyond thrilled for Alf! I wish Alf and his new family the very brightest future possible, days filled with love and laughter. I know Alf will continue to grow and respond to your kindness and love.
Last but never least, I must thank Stumpy. I'm quite sure she let Alf know, right from the beginning, that the two-legged that lived here was a sucker with an endless supply of treats, bones and chewies; that I was constantly buying pillows and chairs for canine comfort and that belly rubs and back scratches were given freely.
I figure when Stumpy first told Alf about her two-legged sucker, she did it in a bragging sort of way (all part of Einstein's plan); never thinking she'd have to share her treats, bones, chairs and pillows.
In the picture above we see Stumpy sulking because Alf has his own bone and doesn't want hers. Alf likes this. You can be sure he will plant himself right in front of Stumpy anytime there's a bone to be chewed.
One more piece of the puzzle falls into place: the vet who will be doing Alf's brain surgery lives in the same town as Cuzzin Fenway and my son! We'll also get to spend a couple days there,with Fenway,
(oh yeah, and my son) while Alf recovers.
The Berner (now known as Alphonso Bernard Jacob Scout Billy Bob Berner)is/was a semi-feral dog trying to survive in the Mohave Desert.He's ready for his new home and will be delivered there shortly
If you're a new visitor to our blog, the Berner's story can be read in the posts listed below, in chronological order. Updates are posted on Saturday.
#1 Who's been sitting in my chair?
#2 Runnin' with the big dawgs
#3 There's a Berner in my living room!
#4 He's everywhere!
#5 He's gone
#6 The Berner: coming and going
#7 Berner News
#8 The Weekly Berner Report (March 28 - April 3)
#9 The Weekly Berner Report (April 3 - April 10)
#10 The Weekly Berner Report (April 10 - April 17);
#11 The Weekly Berner Report (April 17 - April 24)
#12 The Weekly Berner Report (April 24 - May 1)
#13 The Berner (aka Alphonso Bernard Jacob Scout Billy Bob Berner) Report: May 1 - May 8
#14 The Weekly Berner Report: May 8 - May 15
#15 The Weekly Berner Report: May 15 - 22
#16 The Berner Report: May 22 - May 29
#17 The Weekly Berner Report: May 29 - June 5
#18 The Weekly Berner Report: June 5 - 12
#19 The Weekly Berner report: June 14 - 19
#20 The Weekly Berner Report: June 27 - July 3 (Experts weigh in, please)