|Now that she's had her official intake evaluation; here's the 411 on Raegan:
Raegan is a passive gal with a soft temperament, very loving & affectionate, a real "cuddler". She doesn't know much in the way of basic obedience commands aside from 'sit' and even that is inconsistent. Given that she's still close to being a puppy and was found abandoned and roaming in the Tucson desert, survival was the priority, thus there wasn't much opportunity for learning.
She is a little tentative with new things..there is so much she has never experienced, however, she is eager to investigate and explore and her confidence increases every day. The more she is exposed to the world around her, the greater her comfort zone will grow. She will readily approach an unfamiliar human and watches strange dogs intently, showing no aggression but much interest and curiosity. We cannot wait to open up this sweetheart's universe.
Rae walked nicely on lead, simply followed her leader without pulling, yet would benefit from leash work. She is a calm gal, very gentle taking treats. She does manifest some behaviors typical of an untrained puppy such as jumping on her humans when she wants their attention; an easy fix. She was very thin when picked up at 59 pounds but has gained some weight. Raegan will also be seeing our vet for her comprehensive medical check-up including blood work, fecal, physical exams and weigh-in.
Raegan is spayed, crate trained, current with her vaccinations and micro chipped. She will require basic training and ongoing socialization to make up for all that she has missed out on. Her age is between 1 and 2 years, we've put her at 15 to 18 months.
Stay tuned as we continue to learn more about her.
UPDATE: Raegan had her medical work-up and was shown to have a mild case of Giardia (intestinal parasite), the result of foraging for water in all the wrong places while surviving life in the desert. She will be finished with her treatment on Saturday when she will begin her medication for Valley Fever for which she tested positive. She showed a titer of 1:8 and will be tested again after 3 months of treatment.
She was negative for Ehrlichiosis (tick fever), all organ function & thyroid, as well as all other blood values normal, including her white cell count. Her exam found her heart and lungs to be strong. She weighed in at 60lbs, an increase of only one pound since intake. Given what her little body has been fighting, it's no surprise. We're working on fattening her up a bit and closely monitoring her progress.
Her original showing was canceled, just to be safe, as she had a fever at the time, and has been rescheduled for the weekend after Thanksgiving. If all goes as expected, Raegan will be placed in her foster-to-adopt home on a trial basis. We will know after two weeks if she's a keeper.
Needless to say, Raegan's vet bills are mounting; any help with her ongoing care would be tremendously appreciated.
Her status will continue to be updated here.
UPDATE: At SW GSD Rescue we believe that to really know a GSD, ya gotta live with em, which is why we insist on trying to foster available dogs for a period of time prior to adoption. We learn their temperaments, their drive & training levels and what issues they might have. This enables us to work with them and to better match them with their humans.
We managed to temporarily place Raegan in a home setting for a few days. This shy somewhat quiet "wallflower" had no trouble taking over the house; it seems it didn't take long for her to find her 'inner dog'. She is already becoming a confident gal, investigating everything and having to learn what is O.K. and what's not. She chased a feral cat out of the yard at top speed and without hesitation..we doubt that kitty will be paying another visit. Unfortunately, she had the same reaction to the house cat.
Raegan did leash work and daily walks while away, with measurable improvement each day. She's a high energy youngster, very responsive and smart. There's still lots of learning ahead, it's great that she is a very willing participant in the process. She clearly has had no formal training at all and will require school along with ongoing socialization. She will not fit well in a home with a lot of alone time.
We're uncertain about very young children, older kids should be OK. She's kind of like a toddler herself; into everything, which requires supervision while she learns the ropes. NO cats, another (male) dog OK (with a staff intro). Some training experience preferred and must be comfortable administering her VF meds, one pill twice a day.
UPDATE: We had decided to keep our little girl close to us until her 1st re-test for Valley Fever, just to ensure her health and confirm we're on the right course in that regard.
She saw our Vet on Friday, Feb 18th and weighed in at a perfect 66 lbs, temperature normal and the best news, her VF titer is now NEGATIVE! It's rare that we see such early success, however, her initial infection was low and her immune system strong. We will continue her meds on a reduced frequency (once a day) for a month or so just as a precaution, although Raegan is now the picture of health, full of energy, and ready to meet you.
Cats are still very much in question. If at all, it would have to be a calm, very dog savvy & friendly kitty, no multiple cats. Raegan has a fair amount of prey drive, as do most shepherds, and a "zoomer" would not work. She is pictured here with our 2 tester cats; they know dogs and what pushes their buttons..they're even good at intimidating some dogs so Raegan is simply not taking any chances. Bottom line, it would have to be the 'right' cat.
We're still seeking a foster or foster-to-adopt for Raegan.
If you are interested in fostering Raegan, please read about OUR FOSTER PROGRAM and submit a Foster Application (found on the Foster Program page).
WE WOULD LIKE TO EXTEND A HUGE THANK YOU TO RAEGAN'S SUPPORTERS FOR THE HELP WITH HER VET BILLS FOR WHICH WE ARE SO GRATEFUL.
Adoption fee $375.00.