Saturday, December 31, 2011

Paws of Texas Rescue - GEM's story

Paws of Texas Basset Rescue are calling her GEM, one of the Texas Bassets rescued and brought into the veterinarian on Thursday.

From the Paws of Texas FaceBook page a very cool note from GEM:

"Guess what?! Today one of the people from Paws of Texas took me to the vet and he told me I'm pregnant! Then they kissed me and petted me and even trimmed my toenails. They said my nails were way too long...they did hurt when I walked. After the doctor, the nice lady drove me to a place where she bathed me. You wouldn't believe how dirty I was! She massaged my whole body with this good smelling shampoo. Yum! Everyone said my name should be Gem, and I love it! It will help me forget my horrible past. Well I'm pooped, night everyone! :-P"

The vet is concerned about Gem's weight, especially with her pregnancy. Currently, they have her eating puppy kibble mixed with canned puppy and baby food to help her gain weight.  She is also getting special vitamins to help her with the pregnancy. She hasn't known much of a life other than breeding and this will be her last litter, thankfully.  She has never truly been shown love or had a home.  Gem will remain in foster care until her puppies are weaned and she can be spayed.  The vet said she is about 1 month pregnant.  Hopefully, they will all find wonderful, loving, forever homes and Gem can begin to enjoy life.

This puppy mill produced over 5,000 basset hound puppies! 

Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers.

Friday, December 30, 2011

TX Bassets on their way to NY

Leaving the vet's office in Texas! Looks like they are ready to be New Yorkers!

These lucky 5 are on their way into a new life, to live indoors as part of loving families.  They look like beautiful houndies.  We have a 22 month old male, Austin, a 7 yr old male, Houston, and an 8 yr old female, Dallas.  Twin female littermates Abiline and Amarilla are 21 months old. The twins are small, only 30lbs!

They are stopping in Little Rock, Arkansas to meet their next transporter, then on to Nashville to meet Bob Richardson and the ABC van!  They are scheduled to be in Buffalo around noon on Saturday!

They've all been vetted in Texas, spayed/neutered and microchipped.  Hopefully all they will need once they get here is a good bath and an introduction to snow!
They are aroooing a big Thank You to ABC!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Texas Bassets Travel to NY

The ABC Basset Rescue Van is transporting the Texas puppy mill Bassets from Nashville to New York today.  Happy trails and safe travel!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Bassets Rescued!

View the Videos at  31 Basset Hounds rescued from elderly dog breeders and More than 30 Basset hounds rescued!

This Tuesday, ABC Basset Rescue of NY stepped up to the plate to take 6 of more than 30 Basset Hounds rescued from a large puppy mill in Boerne, Texas. The breeder, a local couple dealing with health problems and foreclosure, is going out of business. They turned to the Animal Welfare Society of Bandera County for help. The Animal Welfare Society put the word out to Basset Hound and other breed rescue groups across the country. Volunteers brought the dogs to the Hill Country Animal League office in Boerne to get checked out by a veterinarian, and rescue organizations were on hand to select the dogs to take in.

The local vet said they are in amazingly good health for so many dogs coming in from one facility. There are several that suffer from ‘cherry’ eye, or cataracts, and most have some teeth problems, but, generally, they are in good health overall. The news report said they are all AKC registered, with documented breeding lines. (These are the same puppies we find in pet stores in NY!)  The hounds range in age from 8 months to 8 years old. Four of the females are pregnant and are being taken to facilities that have whelping resources.

There are plenty of Bassets that need our help, so if you ever considered fostering or adopting, now is the time!

Currently, 5 of the ABC Bassets are at a Texas veterinarian getting spayed/neutered and micro-chipped. One with very bad cherry eye is undergoing corrective surgery. We will post pictures of these 5 as soon as we have them. They are 3 girls - Dallas, an 8-year old, and Abilene and Amarillo, 21-month old littermates - and 2 boys, Austin and Houston.

Check out the amazing videos of these beautiful Bassets as they are looked over by local vets and begin their journeys to new and better lives in their future forever homes.

If you cannot adopt or foster a Basset right now, please consider donating to ABC Basset Hound Rescue of NY, or becoming a ‘virtual’ foster family, to help out with the vet costs for these homeless hounds. Go to
http://www.nybasset.org/index.html to make a donation or to apply to foster or adopt.  Or you can mail a check to our PO Box 272, Buffalo, NY 14225.

These Bassets sure are lucky that ABC is there for them - help us make sure that we can be there in the future by making a small donation of either money - or your home. They’ll be grateful you did!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Buddy, The Basset Angel

We've chosen Buddy's story for this special time of year as it best shows the wonder of the Basset Hound. So often folks question why we work so hard to re-home Basset Hounds. Their reputation as a breed in the U.S. isn't great. They are stubbornly insistent on their own way (in loud voice), manipulative, and prone to a host of physical ailments. Perhaps the worst criticism of the breed is that they are difficult to housebreak and train. These traits can be found in most dog breeds as well as mixed breeds. However, Bassets, bred as the poor man's hunting dog (their masters didn't own horses to keep up with them), needed to work independent of man and together as a pack, with little or no supervision. In the working Basset, independence of thinking, persistence, durability, and the hound trait of loyalty and affection to its pack make the Basset the perfect hunting companion.

So perhaps these traits are a little more pronounced in the Basset, and hounds in general, than in other dogs. I'll never forget struggling with Apollo, my first Basset - and perhaps the most stubborn, pigheaded, persistent puppy that has ever graced the Earth. I'd had dogs before, and bought all the stuff about being pack leader and discipline, but none of it worked with Apollo. We brought in a professional trainer and paid him tons of money (he relied mostly on treat training), with disastrous results. Apollo loves treats, but he loves getting his own way even more. In desperation (not knowing about groups like ABC) I turned to a Basset Hound training manual for Dummies. I'll never forget the advice in that manual that worked was as simple as common sense itself. It said you can't discipline a Basset into behaving - you have to let him think the good behavior is HIS or HER idea. This is all that ever worked with my Bassets. Positive reinforcement, a little telepathy and love do the trick. Maybe that's the way we should train all breeds.

Sometimes I think Bassets are actually smarter than their humans. Usually, I've found that their way is the right way. We never had housebreaking issues - UNLESS they were left for too long a period of time. They will always pick the easiest wooded path. They are loud when they need to be to let me know some stranger is at the door, or that something in the house isn't quite right. They insist on sleeping on the bed, but I know that no one can get past them to do me or my family any harm. These are the very same traits that create such criticism of the Basset breed. In a secure, loving home their loyalty and fierce dedication to their humans' well-being is, quite simply, astonishing. They are affectionate to a fault, loyal, intelligent and loving - usually not only of their own family, but of everyone and every other animal as well. What would you pay for this kind of companionship if you could buy it off the store shelf? Any relationship between canines and us is a lot of work - at least in the beginning. And, it seems, in these times ‘a lot of work’ often results in a homeless hound. But the joy and happiness a Basset can bring to a household is worth so much more than the work it takes to get there!

Buddy's story shows how a secure, loving environment (not least of which includes a network of support like ABC that is responsive to the breed’s issues) allow the Basset's strengths to be an enormous help and positive influence in family life. Buddy came to ABC as a 3-year old untrained, un-housebroken, neglected and malnourished hound. He had not been neutered. He came from a broken home who had put a 17 year old in charge of taking care of him. His meals and walks were often forgotten, and he was 10-15 lbs underweight. And he was sick, with Lyme’s disease. This is the sad story of so many hounds that wind up in shelters that deem them un-adoptable. Thankfully, for Buddy and his forever home, he was relinquished to ABC Rescue. His foster parents Kandy & Tom did an amazing job of training him to get him ready for his new family, and ABC went the extra mile to treat his illness and support him through this learning period. For all that, I'll bet Buddy is an exceptional hound. At 3 years old it's much tougher for a hound to learn everything he needs to learn to live in the world of humans than it is for a puppy who doesn't have to unlearn bad behaviors.

Buddy's adoption listing describes him as a spunky 3-year old with lots of personality. If you had a bad day at work, no problem - Buddy will be there to greet you and brighten up your entire day! All he asks in return is lots of love & attention.  Guy saw Buddy's picture on the ABC website, showed it to his children - that, as Guy says, "was all she wrote."

Some things are just meant to be, and as Guy writes in his letter to ABC, Buddy came into their lives when they most needed him. Guy's family brought Buddy home on a Saturday and, sadly, Guy's Dad passed away on the following Monday. Guy tells the story best in the following beautiful letter he wrote to thank ABC for Buddy's life.

Jacob and Buddy

December 13, 2011

I just wanted to let you know what a wonderful addition to our family Buddy has been. I’d always wanted a basset hound but somehow it never happened. There on your website was a picture of Buddy. I showed it to my children and that, as the saying goes, was all she wrote.

Maybe all bassets are special. Maybe we were just lucky Buddy came into our lives when we needed him most. We picked Buddy up on a Saturday. That Monday, sadly, my father passed away. It was the first time my children, both of whom are commonly called “special needs” have experienced the death of a family member. It was particularly hard on my son. He and Grandpa always had a singular relationship. As hard as such a thing is to get through for a “normal” person, it would have been doubly so for Jacob. I’m not sure how we would have done it were it not for Buddy, but Buddy was there for him and made the difference. I will never forget the sight of my son, full of grief, burying his face in Buddy’s coat and sobbing, and the unbelievable tenderness with which this wonderful hound responded. He was so gentle and patient with Jacob. I don’t know how Buddy understood what was happening, but understood he definitely did. He provided solace and companionship not only to my son, but to all of us just when we needed it the most.

Buddy follows Jacob everywhere. When Jacob leaves for school in the morning, Buddy is there to say goodbye. When Jacob comes home, Buddy is there waiting for him. The joy on both their faces at this daily reunion is a pleasure to behold. In fact, the only one who ever gets kisses from Buddy is Jacob. Buddy’s tag lists Jacob as owner, something my son is immeasurably proud of, but the fact is, there is no owner in this relationship, there are only best friends.

Our most heartfelt thanks to your wonderful organization and particularly the Van Skivers, Buddy’s foster family, for all that you do for these special dogs.


Guy L.

What a wonderful letter and what better answer to “why rescue?”

As a footnote to this story, Guy wrote me a wonderful tale of Buddy in the midst of construction work he was having done at his house. I'm reproducing it here because it shows so well the independent thinking and passion of the Basset breed:

..."It was a big concern of mine that Buddy, who believes a Basset Hound, by definition, is an integral part of any activity, would prove to be too much of an overpowering presence for the men to actually get any work done. I assigned my daughter the task of keeping Buddy at bay. Buddy of course found this to be intolerable and vocalized, loudly, his opinion that without his superb managerial skills the project was doomed to utter failure. No doubt you can imagine the tension this caused for all concerned. Finally the decision was made by my daughter to give Buddy his way. Amazingly, for a human but not for a Basset I guess, it turns out he was correct. The contractor told me that Buddy is quietly content to sit out of the way and watch the work being done, offering helpful advice, (Buddy's supervisory skills are so great that he conveys his message with just a soulful glance at the right moment) along with a head that loves to be scratched whenever someone needs a break. Now the men working on the house want Buddy there watching them. They say "he's a real sweetheart". I fear Buddy's ego will be intolerably huge after this episode. He definitely has been sporting an "I told you so" look of late.

That's “Basset Hounds 1, humans 0."

I don't think Buddy's ego will suffer - he's probably always known that he knows best!

Yes, all Bassets are special and deserving of such a wonderful home as Guy and his family provide. Thank you Guy, Jessica and Jacob for adopting Buddy and for being his “best friends”.  Thank you for giving him such a wonderful forever home. Last, but not least, thanks so much to ABC for getting him there. We wish Guy, Jessie and Jacob, family healing and peace from the grief of their loss, and much love for the Holidays.  May you have many happy, healthy years with Buddy to enjoy.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Apollo Loves Christmas!

Apollo getting ready for Christmas and waiting impatiently for Santa Paws!  He wants everything!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Trixi's Thanks Giving

Happy Thanksgiving from Trixi!

Looks like she truly did have a very Happy Thanksgiving.  When you think about it, Trixi's journey from a Southern puppy mill, where she probably had hundreds of puppies, to a warm, cozy home is an amazing rescue story.

Trixi was one of the oldest of 34 dogs rescued from a Missouri puppy mill and brought to NY into foster care by the kind folk at ABC in 2009.  Her puppy mill name was Cotton Top, such an awful name for such a beautiful lady.  Her intake photo shows what terrible shape she was in.
Trixi was 10 years old when she came into rescue and, from her picture, looked like she just had puppies. Hard to believe anyone would breed such a lady for 10 years. She had a few teeth removed before she came into ABC but needed additional work. The vet found several more tooth infections and abscesses that went right down into her jaw bone.  She must have been in such terrible pain.  ABC supported her during this time and took her back to the vet and Emergency Room several times.  She was in hospice care at ABC for a while after uncontrollable bleeding followed the vet's trying to clean her teeth.  The vet even suggested putting a tampon in her nose to stop the bleeding!  Everyone thought she might die.  The support and kindness of her rescuers helped her and she was finally stabilized. 
Trixi at St. Patty's Day Pawty in 2010 sponsored by ABC.

This lady is a true survivor and you can see from her picture what a sweet, great lady she is. She has such a beautiful smile! Trixi was in foster care for a year with ABC and was adopted in December, 2010 by a wonderful, kind soul, Victoria. They recently moved to Texas and Trixi is enjoying her new life there in her forever home. So Trixi truly gives Thanks this year for the best 2 years of her life.  Trixi's new Mom Victoria says it best, "We adore Trixi! She is a very spoiled but such a deserving girl! We thank ABC every day for saving her and letting us have her. Soon it will be a year that she is with us."

Thank you ABC for hanging in there with Trixi! Her story offers encouragement and inspiration to all rescuers trying to provide secure homes for unwanted senior hounds.  And thank you Victoria for giving her the forever home she so deserves.

Keep smiling Trixi, we all wish you and Victoria many healthy, joyful years to come!