Friday, September 25, 2009

St. Sergius, Doubts and a Puppy

Silverwalk is a small, private, licensed dog sanctuary in Cape Girardeau County, MO. It specializes in Beagles, other hounds and senior dogs. There are always dogs needing adoption and sponsorship. Please see our website for more information about Silverwalk and our dogs needing homes.

Doubts arise any time after I make a decision. Is this the best for the dogs? Is this the best for me? Is this the best for our community? Did I pray enough about this before plowing ahead? GAG! Today was my birthday - September 25, St. Sergius's Feast Day. He is considered the Russian St. Francis as animals came to him, too. He is very beloved in the Russian Orthodox Church. After reading about him today, I am very happy and privileged to share a day with him - though mine is a birth day and his is the day of his death or transition to heaven.

Earlier this week I visited a friend who had a puppy. This puppy had been found in a Wal-Mart dumpster - with the lids closed! A blessed employee by the name of Margie was out to doing some work when she kept hearing these noises. She looked all over and around the dumpster, finally looking into it. There she found this wonderful, gorgeous, very self confident 8 week old puppy (today, my vet guessed her at 10 weeks). Her name is Margie on behalf of her rescuer. She came to Silverwalk to be adopted out, to help my non - existent bottom line; my tax preparer simply pulls out her hair over me and my non - income on behalf of Silverwalk, though we have been getting more donations this past year as our name and reputation gets out there, which goes back to my introductory sentence of quibbling once a decision has been made. All this has nothing and everything to do with Margie as Margie, I have decided, will be my dog, the puppy I was going to get when I no longer had rescue dogs - HA! Like that will ever happen.

I have had three more requests this week to take Beagles. One will be sponsored till she is adopted, others were puppies and two were from a clinic who takes in a gazillion puppy mill dogs for the state. I know I am not alone; I work with lots of great rescue folk. As a foster home, I know the dogs I foster will come from shelters/pounds where they may or may not have any better chance. At least I will be able to help those most in need. Margie will not take up room for a foster. Nope. Which is why I am mulling over two dogs - one from a friend in Morse Mills and another needing a home, sponsored, from a shelter in AR. God bless those who search and pray for rescues to take in the dogs they love and know they may well lose....

Margie is home. I don't know squat about puppies except they have to eat, pee and poop more often than older dogs, so I got Ian Dunbar's book on puppies (hey, why not go to the guru of positive reinforcement!) and a folder from my vet today after they got to ooh and aah over her. And I still want my Bloodhound....and to save all the dogs in the world...and cats....and horses.... Welcome home, Margie!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Changing Focus, not Activity at Silverwalk



Silverwalk is a small, private, licensed dog sanctuary in Cape Girardeau County, MO. It specializes in Beagles, other hounds and senior dogs. There are always dogs needing adoption and sponsorship. Please see our website for more information about Silverwalk and our dogs needing homes.

You all will be the first to know for certain. Silverwalk is giving up its license as of January 31, 2010. It will still exist, however, as a foster home for other entities such as Marion PAWS, Safe Harbor, the Humane Society of Southeast MO, Recyling Rover and others. I just don't want to cont. dealing with the additional paperwork of licensing (though that really won't change much as I will need to keep it up for the fosters - HA) but mostly, I have too many dogs and now have to say "no" too many times. Silverwalk will continue in rescue, community education, cooperating w/sister rescues/shelters but now will not be able to take in or adopt out dogs who have no "sponsoring" entity. Safe Harbor has graciously agreed to "sponsor" my orphan dogs - those who have no sponsoring agency so I can make this transition w/o endangering them or myself. Thank you, Safe Harbor Board!

That being said, I still have no room - I have 18 dogs and no one else :). I do have dog walkers, thank God, who have made a huge difference in the lives of my dogs especially Farrah. Oxford has a sponsor taking care of his monthly meds and special food! I have dogs participating in CGC classes - 3 of whom have passed: Spanky (my personal rescue dog who is no longer starving but fat), Lady Bird (never went to class - just passed the test - she is so smart) and Shiloh (adoption pending...?) with Scout cont. in the next class. He is not yet ready to test but boy, he loves his Auntie, loves going to class, wants to walk daily (and needs to - he pulls relentlessly - I need a gentle leader for him) but is so much more relaxed and happy these days.
The photos above are of him in the evenings at home :).

Basically, Silverwalk is going back to what I was doing before getting my license but will only be adopting dogs under the aegis of other agencies, which I did for Safe Harbor w/Peaches and Sunshine.

What do we need? Sugar Bear needs a sponsor for her heart worm treatment. And we need adopters - I would like to adopt out as many as possible before January. I also need opinions on keeping dogs outside only in a family who promises to be very attentive. I have such a contact but have never had outside dogs. Let me know what you think! Please....

Thanks to all for your support as some of you have hung in there w/me during this decision making process over these past months.

Friday, September 11, 2009

In Remembrance

We Remember 9/11, 2001-2009. My brother & co. in Baghdad.


Silverwalk is a small, private, licensed dog sanctuary in Cape Girardeau County, MO. It specializes in Beagles, other hounds and senior dogs. There are always dogs needing adoption and sponsorship. Please see our website for more information about Silverwalk and our dogs needing homes.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Dog Wise

Silverwalk is a small, private, licensed dog sanctuary in Cape Girardeau County, MO. It specializes in Beagles, other hounds and senior dogs. There are always dogs needing adoption and sponsorship. Please see our website for more information about Silverwalk and our dogs needing homes.

This week has been much better dog wise all around. Scout is getting his confidence built up by attending CGC classes w/Shiloh, who is completely confident. Both are being handled by others to help w/socialization, esp. for Scout. He is now a trouper. He will need to go through class one more time at least before sitting for his test but wow, he is coming along. Quite demanded to go w/Lady Bird on her walk this evening. Did very well even w/scary machinery in a yard and a train going by. YESH, Scout.

Lady Bird is almost, not quite, a different dog. She is NEVER loose or off leash unless in the house. When she starts to ratchet up in the house, I ask her to off (as she is usually on a table looking outside the window!), then kennel - she knows the drill and I do not make it a punishment but a time out to help her relax. We have been walking faithfully and yesterday, we walked past the house of her nemesis 3 times - the second time was her most reactive but by they third, she was relaxing and watching me for her treats! HA. So, she, too, is coming along. I have to be careful to attend to the dogs who don't demand or need such indepth interventions but still need loving and training.

Yesterday when I was napping in the afternoon, I picked up my Sheltie Princess Sheila. Sheila was a puppy mill momma and is not always wanting to be held; brushed and petted, yes, but relaxing in a lap is hit and miss. Well, I lucked out and got her on a "hit" day. We all went to sleep w/her comfortably and warmly on my lap :). She is such a sweet dog but don't cross her or look at her food too closely (if you are another dog, that is).

Have had many inquiries to take in Beagles but not so many to adopt *sigh* Just don't have any more room or money. Will be incorporating as a MO non profit this fall before renewing license and hopefully, will become a mission outreach of Christ Episcopal Church in Cape Girardeau, MO which will give Silverwalk 501c3 status to help with donations. My goal has always been not only to rescue and rehome but to train and work the dogs who come to Silverwalk so they are better than when they arrive. The CGC classes are helping tremendously as well as the opportunities to socialize at adoption events at Bucheit's in August and Petco every month. My dogwalkers have made a tremendous difference in the confidence level of several dogs, especially Farrah. My soon to be foster Courtney will be taking in Chip and Monk, giving them a chance for much more socialization than I am giving them here - though Chip will walk on a leash and Monk will let me pet him in the yard :).

Have a great week - hope to update you all more often but my goodness, the days fly by!