|An email to our friend, Uzi, in southern California to request a local home visit, brought us a surprise -- she was just about to email us about a friend of hers who knew a young family in northern California that had a young (just over a year), male white GSD that they were looking to rehome. The family had acquired Buddy from a breeder when he was just a pup and had paid a good deal of money for him but, as all shepherd puppies will do, Buddy began to grow.
The family knew nothing about the socialization and/or training needs of a German shepherd, so as Buddy became more active and required more attention, he was relegated to a small area of the backyard after the family bought ANOTHER puppy for inside the home that could be more easily handled. Our hearts broke for Buddy as we saw him, penned away from his family in the backyard.
What we have been told so far: Bubba is about a year old; unaltered. He currently lives with an 18 month old toddler and now a new puppy and does well with both.
According to Lori, "He loves women. He's scared of his male owner but will follow me anywhere. He's great with other dogs. I believe he is potty trained but will pee a bit if he's nervous/scared, and mark if other male dogs are around. He's a bit shy/nervous around new people, but very sweet if he knows you.
The owners are currently frustrated with him and are keeping him in a small area on the side of their house w/no attention and no exercise. I go say hi to him and give him treats when I'm outside. On the rare occasion they let him out of the backyard, he knows where home is and doesn't stray too far (though he did run to say hi to me down the street at the mailboxes once). He is not leash trained, but I don't think it would take long. He responds well to encouragement and/or correction. If left alone without entertainment, other dogs or people, he will do a lonesome howl (until I tell him NO, then he'll usually stop). If a stranger is in the area, he will give a warning bark. The little bit I've interacted with him, he seems very trainable."
We immediately put things in motion to get Buddy safely to us. Our thanks go out to Lori who saw this boy and reached out for help. She picked up Buddy in northern California and brought him to Uzi, who drove all the way to Bakersfield to pick him up. Buddy will be spending some time at her home where he will be neutered and then given some time to recuperate before being brought to Phoenix in search of his forever home.
UPDATE 4/7: Buddy has been picked up in Fresno and is on his way with Lori and her dog, Taz, to meet Uzi in Bakersfield.
Lori and Uzi met at the Kern River in Bakersfield and the dogs got to spend some time playing in the river. Looks like our boy is a water dog!
Buddy has arrived at Uzi's house and is settling in just fine. According to Uzi, "He's scared but sweet."
UPDATE 5/4: We drove to California today to meet and pick up Buddy. We definitely weren't expecting such a big fella! He has definitely grown since the initial pictures we have of him!
We had been told that Buddy was not good with men, but he had definitely bonded with Joe who has been feeding and taking care of him these past couple of weeks. He lay near him when he was in the room, and when Joe left, Buddy got very upset and wanted to follow. We saw no aggression whatsoever in this beautiful boy, just uncertainty.
We are still awaiting word from our insurance company to see if our vehicle will be repaired or totaled. In the meantime, we're attempting to find a temporary vehicle with which to continue our rescue mission. We'll do the best we can for the dogs we love.
UPDATE 5/13: Our insurance company has decided that our van is a total loss. We are understandably devastated by the news. In just a cursory viewing of the damage, the adjuster was already at $11,000 and he admitted that he couldn't check underneath the vehicle where there was undoubtedly more damage.
Buddy's ideal forever home would be with someone who has the love and patience to show this boy that the world is not such a scarey place. How about you?
Adoption fee $325.00.