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Sunday, February 8, 2009

Boxer Foster

We have recently decided to become a foster home for the Blue Ridge Boxer Rescue organization. They do not have a "shelter" and rely completely on foster homes for their rescue efforts. Our first boxer came to live with us just about a week and a half ago. I was a little nervous. We have three female dogs in our home, and this was a male boxer/pit bull mix. I have one dog that is dominant, strong and independent among our dogs. I just wasn't sure this would work out but we talked about it as a family, cause this isn't something I can do alone. And we decided to give it a go.

His name is Charlie Brown.
We let Charlie rest for the first day, just the stress of moving, a new environment etc. We wanted him to be well rested before he even began to meet our dogs. OK so with our boxer Cinnamon, a little growling, easily corrected, no problem. Our lab Lady really has no interest in meeting new dogs, I mean she will meet them but she is old and has no intention of exerting herself with play. So that went well. But with our husky, Sugar. Charlie tried to lunge at her and bite, and she him etc. Both were on a leash so that was easily handled. I immediately began contacting people for advice. We didn't want to just shuffle Charlie around and we wanted to do this right. We decided to try the "Nothing in Life is Free" training techniques. What an amazing turn around. We started slow, gave positive reinforcement for each good behavior, and built on our success having Charlie sit for everything.

Charlie is a transformed dog. Just watching him roll on his back and expose his belly to Sugar is wonderful to see. He gave up his need to be dominant after only about a week. Of course he wants to play and Sugar really has never played with any of our dogs so she is not interested. Charlie does like to play with Cinnamon. He is such a wonderful dog. He is only a year old so has so much energy. Loves to run and play fetch. He enjoys walking on a leash. And then he gets tired and curls up on the floor at my feet for a nice nap. He is totally house broken, YAY!! and has not even attempted to mark a corner. I think he will make a family a wonderful pet. He LOVES people. Loves to be petted and will sit all day long if you are scratching his back. He knows the command sit, and is well on his way to learning down, smart dog. And so handsome. You can't see it in the picture, but his skin has black spots. You can barely see them through his fur, but you can see them on his belly. Too cute.

Blue Ridge Boxer Rescue only adopts to NC, SC and parts of VA, but if any of you live or know anyone who lives in this area and are looking for a wonderful companion, please go to the web site and fill out their adoption application.

It is so rewarding to be helping out a boxer and family find each other. Originally Charlie Brown came from a shelter. Don't know who would give up such a wonderful dog.


MangoChild said...

What a satisfaction knowing how much Charlie Brown has grown and how he is so loved. I have never had a dog, but I've been musing over it and have had training fears.... your story shows how well it can go :-)

Deanne said...

Thanks for sharing your story, and the link. I am bookmarking it for any future fosters we have that might need some extra help.

I hope Charlie finds a permanent loving home soon, and that you don't miss him too much when he goes. That's the hardest part of fostering, saying good-bye.