Reactive Rover Graduate

Well, we did it.  We completed our Reactive Rover course.  3 more credits added to Leroy’s training transcript.  Despite all his douchebaggery “reactive-ness” (more on that later), it was a wonderful class and we both learned a lot!  None of the dogs in the class were “cured”, but they all made great progress and worked very hard!  The owners learned about management, disengagement cues, calming signals, threshold, body language, and coping mechanisms. Reactive dogs come with a lifetime of training, management, positive social interactions  and boundaries.  It is an ongoing process.

Now where to start?!  Let’s get some of Leroy’s low points out of the way.

I keep telling myself that Leroy made progress and improved throughout the course. I know he did.  However, it’s very easy to fixate on the negative, embarrassing, overwhelming moments that we went through every single week.  Boy does this dog know how to look like an arse!  So here are some of our low points:

1.  Leroy tried to eat the stuffed demo dog.  Twice.

Photo by Opportunity Barks Behavior & Training

Photo by Opportunity Barks

Poor, innocent, stuffed Fluffy.  You fooled my dog- yes.  But you did not fool me!  While most dogs gave a realistic depiction of how they would react to seeing a real dog,  Leroy went above and beyond. 🙂  He of course threw his typical “reactive dog” fit, which includes a ton of  lunging, whining,  stress panting, and barking.  He finished up by charging Fluffy, aggressively smelling his butt (albeit this part is technically ‘good manners’, though not in the rude way he approached), and forcefully knocking him over, leaving him flopped and dead.  Rest In Peace Fluffy.

Oh wait, he was stuffed.  PHEEWWW!  Oh yes, and this happened twice (the only two times we approached Fluffy).  Talk about embarrassing- Keep it together, Leroy!

2.  Leroy went over threshold at least once every week (OK, probably more than once).  Every week during our first exercise, Leroy would “loose it” and go over threshold.  My 55 pound train-wreck of a pit bull would do his “over-the-threshold” things- screaming, barking, lunging, whining, more lunging.  I’ll say it again, embarrassing!

3. Leroy was vocal, vocal, vocal.  I am that parent in the grocery store with a child that is just screaming, and screaming, and crying, and screaming.  And I’m just looking at the fruit in the produce section.  I’m that girl.  (Note to self- abstinence is key).  Leroy really felt the need to vocalize about everything.  People are moving?  We’re in a new place?  We heard a dog?  We are bored? VOCALIZE, about everything!

4. Leroy tried to eat a few of our fellow classmates.  Mainly, the mini doxie, Theo.  I will give him a tiny, tiny pass.  Leroy never denies having a super high prey drive.  He likes birds, OK?  The Doxie probably just looked squirrel-like for a second there 😉  (Note- there were no dog-dog interactions in this class.  Mr. Doxie was at a safe distance at all times, usually across the room and behind five barriers)  We also had a moment with Serious the Husky mix, but that was a very challenging activity involving proximity and movement for both dogs.  Too much, too soon boys.  All considered, these were only mildly embarrassing.

So the Worst Puppy is at it again! However, I did say that we improved and learned a lot.  And we did!  Let’s move on from all those negative points and talk about the good.  *shakes off* <- I learned that move from Leroy.  After we do a stressful activity, he has to shake it off.  This helps to calm him.  Hooray for calming signals!  Let’s take a quick time-out for a cute diagram of dog body language that I found!

tano1

So since we are calm and ready, let’s move on to the high points!:

1. Leroy has three “go to” calming signals.  And as a high anxiety dog, he does these a lot.  He wants to be calm!  So for the whole Reactive Rover class, I watched him (and rewarded) his Head Turn.  This was especially important because after Leroy reacted at another dog, he would eventually give a very clear Hear Turn.  This was his signal that he was trying to calm himself and wanted to leave the situation!  After all that hoopla, he was ready to leave- Excellent!  Typically after we backed away from the situation, he would Shake Off.  Sadly this is not on the adorable diagram.  But it is a calming signal nonetheless. (Or it is a calming signal to my knowledge- I am not a professional!)  His third calming signal is slightly debatable.  It would be the I’ll Be No Threat, where the dog has his back to the stressor.  Leroy is food motivated.  Like, motivated!  So it’s possible that he was doing a combination of “I’ll Be No Threat” and “Mom, give me food”.  Either way, he got to practice looking at the food treat pouch me instead of the other dogs.  We learned things!!

Photo by Opportunity Barks

Photo by Opportunity Barks

2. Leroy started to “come down” faster, after going over threshold.  During the weeks at the beginning of Reactive Rover, Leroy would go over threshold and stay there for a bit (so to speak).  We often had to leave the room (on top of already being behind barriers) to help him relax and focus again.  He was pink as a Piglet from stress, panting, vocalizing ect.  But every week it seemed to take him a little less time to “get his shit together”.  Don’t get me wrong, he wasn’t laying quietly on his side for our relaxation exercises or prancing next to Mr. Doxie.  It was mild, but there was improvement.

3.  Leroy was less pink!  Leroy is a white pooch, and he basically turns pink when he’s stressed.  Pink eyes, ears, tongue, and skin- but there was a little less of that every week.  Possibly the earliest sign of Prozac starting to work, or a combination of going to the same place for the 5th+ time, or picking up on the routine and training- Leroy was not quite the Pink Piglet that he normally is in a stressful environment.  Whoop whoop!

4.  Leroy is a smart, focused, food motivated pup.  Gosh, when he is looking at a treat, he is a focused dog.  Sometimes when we’re in a new place, he gets so stressed that he doesn’t eat.  But I bring the good stuff to class, and he has always been happy to eat and focus to the best of his ability in the class setting.  When he is focused, he can do anything!  Sit, down, watch me, clumsily walk over agility markers, look at that, say hi, leave it (mostly), find it, walk nicely.  When there are excessive food rewards and we’re under threshold, Leroy is focused and can work very nicely!  Even with some minor distractions.  🙂  Good boy Leroy.

Photo by Opportunity Barks

Photo by Opportunity Barks

Stay tuned for more updates about what we learned and practiced in the class and what our next training activity will be.  Plus, a birthday this month!

If you have any questions about Tofu, becoming a foster parent, or the adoption process- you can email me (Leroy’s mom) at Casey@caseyheyen.com

Sponsor me here- Donate

Advertisements

Just For Fun

 

 

 

 

At LCPO, we rescue a variety of “Pit Bull” type dogs.  Dogs that would be classified as a “Pit Bull” in the shelter system can range anywhere from 30-100 pounds!  I thought we’d play a little game, just for fun.  How much do Leroy and Tofu weigh?!  Please make your guesses in the comment section and use decimals so we can tell who is the closest.  Ex- 66.2  I will include a few pictures so you can get a good look.  🙂

271

Short or tall?

Big or little?!

Big or little?!

Who is bigger?!

Who is bigger?!

Lap sized?

Lap sized?

A tiny little ball?

A tiny little ball?

As wide as a door? ;)

As wide as a door? 😉

Good luck on your guesses.  The winner will receive… well, my LOVE!  Yes.  And I will announce their name.  That sounds great, doesn’t it?!  Ready.  Set.  GUESS!

 

 

If you have any questions about Tofu, becoming a foster parent, or the adoption process- you can email me (Leroy’s mom) at Casey@caseyheyen.com

Sponsor me here- Donate

 

 

 

Things That People Don’t Like to Talk About- I Have a Dog with Issues

A few months ago, I talked about some of Leroy’s flaws and the difficulty that presented when I went on a vacation.  While he is of course the apple of my eye, he is also the most challenging dog I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with.  I am a dog trainer at PetSmart and have had enough fosters and short term guests to know- Leroy is not your average dog.  He excels at being the Worst Dog at Puppy School; but he typically is one of the smartest and often knows the most commands.  About a year ago, we started training class at Opportunity Barks.  We did one day of Real World Manners, but our amazing trainer Michaela was smart enough to know that Leroy had the whole curriculum mastered.  While it was hard for him to be in a new place around strange dogs, he buzzed past the Watch Me’s and Down’s with ease.  She suggested that we move into a Self Control class to work on well, self control.  He was, as I’ve become used to, the Worst Puppy in school.  But we enjoyed the class and learned a lot.  A year later, we are enrolled in Reactive Rover.  I had a brief moment of excitement- “HEY!  These are all of the Worst Puppies in school!  It’s a class just for them!  Maybe my baby Le Le won’t look like a ‘crazy Pit Bull’.  They will understand!”  Well,  my boy is still the Worst Puppy. 😦  He has epic meltdowns that involve whining, crying, barking, and lunging.  He did this all in Reactive Rover on Week 1, when he was shown the stuffed decoy dog.  Yes- stuffed.

And yes- this is the same dog that I call a “pretty gosh darn excellent foster brother”.  So how does it all fit together? How can he be so patient with fosters but so terrible with an innocent stuffed dog?  How can he be so good at his Sit Stays, but so bad at “keeping his shit together”?!  Well.. I’m going to get to the bottom of it all!

734117_438363402909842_733301993_n

The first thing that I want to explain is a fancy word called “threshold”.  When Leroy is trying to attack a stuffed animal- barking, whining, lunging- he is over his threshold.  I have been reading about this fancy word and I decided to email our expert trainer, Michaela, because I was a bit confused.  Here is her wonderful insight!

“Threshold” is used to differentiate between the state in which your dog can still “think” and respond vs. when arousal level makes it impossible for them to be responsive.  Neurologically, your dog is using a part of the brain and nervous system that goes with the basic “fight-flight-freeze” survival instinct.  If you imagine yourself, say, responding to a robber in your home, your body goes into survival mode (e.g. pumping adrenaline, etc) and relies heavily on action-not thought.  It’s a more primitive bodily reaction that is important to survival but which actually suppresses the decision making part of the brain.
As a dog’s arousal level rises, you see changes like muscle tension, ear and tail position changes, body weight forward, faster breathing, brief “stillness”, staring and targeting, etc…Once a dog goes “over-threshold”, he’s having a full barking-lunging meltdown, acting purely on survival instinct. Little can be learned in this highly adrenalized state because the “higher thinking” part of the brain is suppressed for optimal survival mode.  So learning must be done sub-threshold (that is, when arousal levels are low to moderate, but not over-the-top).
So, yes, Leroy is challenging because he goes over-threshold very quickly, once outside.  However, he’s making great progress at being able to “come down” more quickly in classes.  I hope this helps a bit!
So there you have it!  Threshold is like ‘fight or flight panic’.  It’s all just too much stress and stimulation for my little Pudding Face to handle.  Therefore he has his special meltdowns and looks like an arse.  😉 Another reason that Leroy has so much trouble doing things outside of his comfort zone is because of his past.  Leroy was a lawn ornament.  He was chained.  We can only speculate on how long and how severe his circumstances were, but we do know that he was found with the heavy burden of his past life.

When he was found, the chain was wrapped around his neck and padlocked closed.

Because of his past as a chained dog, Leroy struggles with something called “Leash Reactivity”.  This is actually a pretty common problem among dogs, but especially an issue with dogs that lived with the long term frustration of being at ‘the end of their chain’ every  day.  Imagine for a moment that you are given an 5 foot  radius to live in.  Then picture a sweet smelling flower, or exciting squirrel, or happy human face- standing right past that boundary.  I would not enjoy that.  So when Leroy is on his leash and I’m not letting him go any further, he feels severe frustration and aggression.  If I wanted to use my imagination a bit more, I would say that maybe his childhood puppyhood memories of a cold lonely yard come flooding back.  And he remembers how terrible it was to be stuck in one place without love or freedom or stuffed kongs.  My point is, I would be unhappy about being on a leash too.

Tofu was also a chained dog.

(pre-rescue) Tofu was also a chained dog

I was worried that Leroy’s general stress level and anxiety was one of the main reasons he was not making any progress.  So I talked to Michaela and she agreed that it was time to see a Veterinarian Behaviorist.  Most trainers or behaviorists that I’ve talked to seem to think that medication is very over-prescribed, and often used by people who are lazy not committed to training.  However, Michaela said that she supported my decision and hoped that it would help.  As it sounds, a vet behaviorist is someone who is both a certified behaviorist and trainer, and a fully registered vet.  The best of both worlds!  So we went to Dr. Reisner for a professional opinion.  Here is Leroy’s list of issues, written by a professional.

DIAGNOSIS:

  1. Generalized anxiety
  2. Resource-guarding
  3. Reactivity/impulsivity
  4. Fear-related aggression
  5. Tentative: Predatory behavior

Holy Issues! I knew Leroy was the Worst Puppy, but gosh.  Dr. Reisner said that she was very impressed with me and Leroy.  We are a good team.  He was a bit of a nut case during our consult (as expected, because it was a new place).  But he was a good boy and listened to my commands and hand signals while I talked to the doctor.  At one point I gave him the hand signal for Quiet- putting my finger to my lips (Leroy was whining like a baby about being in a strange office and not getting enough attention from the doctor).  Dr. Reisner said, “Does he know what that means?”  Leroy was trying very hard to listen to me because I had my trusty treat pouch, and he was sitting silently waiting for his reward.  I thought, “How silly, why would I be doing it if he didn’t know what it means!”  But apparently he proved to her that he is a very smart puppy, even though he was also being the Worst Puppy.

So what happens next?  Dr. Reisner decided that Leroy is in fact a good candidate for medication.  He is currently on 20mg a day of Prozac to help manage his generalized anxiety.  Prozac takes 4-6 weeks to become effective, so we haven’t seen any changes yet.  But I’m keeping a close eye on him for side effects or positive changes. Dr. Reisner also seemed to think that our training skills were really great- not that there isn’t always room for improvement.  This made me proud of my boy but also sad, as he was flopping around the exam room like a stressed and anxious fish out of water.  He was unhappy, as he usually is when we do something new.  He did not enjoy this or find it a fun adventure.  He was stressed.

Above all, I want my dog to be happy.  If he doesn’t like new places or new people or new anything, that’s OK with me.  If he can never happily go on a walk without thinking that the world is out to get him, then we won’t go on walks.  He can stay with me in his “happy place”, also known as my bedroom.  But at the end of the day, I want to know that I gave it my all.  I want to say that “Yes, I have a dog with issues.  I did my best to work through them and make him more comfortable in the big scary world we live in.  I accept him and understand his issues.  And I love him anyway.”

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

A big *thank you* to Michaela at Opportunity Barks and Dr. Reisner for all the help and support ❤

Vet Appointment! – The Bad

Well poor little Tofu has been having some skin irritation, she also needed to get another vaccination, and we wanted to check on her lazy eye- So, we scheduled a vet appointment! As a foster parent, I do not pay for Tofu’s vet care.  I provide her with food, toys, training, socialization,  love, structure, and confidence.  However, vet care is something that I cannot cover (as a student with big loans looming over my head).  I wish I could, and I hope to be able to in the future.  But for now, we thank LCPO for being so amazing and providing wonderful care for their puppies.

In case you didn’t know, Tofu is deaf!  But please don’t tell her, we don’t want her to be self conscious.  We’ve also realized that she has a lazy eye that may be resulting in vision impairment.  So sure, she’s a little “special”.

527914_425520020860847_639701743_n

You can see her droopy eye on the left.  She doesn’t seem to mind in the slightest!  But we wanted to make sure it was OK and that there was nothing we could do to help her.

Well sadly, the vet said that it did not appear to be a regular cataract.  She wasn’t sure what was wrong so she suggested we look into an eye specialist for our girl.  It could potentially be anything from a different type of cataract to a tumor 😦  And the best solution may be removing the eye.  We are going to watch it carefully and have it looked at it again in the future.  My poor foster girl has a few issues going on!  However, neither of us notice them very much.  Especially when there is cuddling or kissing involved. 🙂

Ok, you can notice a little during cuddling :)

Ok, you can notice a little during cuddling 🙂

Please send her some good, happy vibes to help her keep her eye and find an adoptive family. ❤  She is truly a doll!

If you have any questions about Tofu, Jora, becoming a foster parent, or the adoption process- you can email me (Leroy’s mom) at Casey@caseyheyen.com

Sponsor me here: All donations are tax deducible and benefit the rescue dogs of LCPO

Out on the town!

Tofu and I recently did some socialization and I am proud to report that she did great! She is a happy girl and she certainly enjoys to be around people.  We walked right across Broad Street in Philadelphia and around Temple campus on a busy Friday night.  While understandably a bit shocked by all the cars, people, lights, noises, humans, bikes ect., she was a champ!  We made a few friends and was a star student. 🙂

29000_512059662165687_920200598_n

Ma, where are we?

We of course had to do a little photo shoot while our brother, Steven was retrieving our dinner from the pizza shop 🙂

IMG_8713

It smells like food here. Do I get some?

I sadly was not quick and multi handed enough to snap any pictures while Tofu was making friends.  But trust me, kisses were involved 🙂

This was fun!

This was fun!

If you have any questions about Tofu, Jora, becoming a foster parent, or the adoption process- you can email me (Leroy’s mom) at Casey@caseyheyen.com

Sponsor me here: All donations are tax deducible and benefit the rescue dogs of LCPO

Busy, busy!

Sometime life becomes very demanding and unexpected things happen and you experience technical difficulties and you forget about your blog! Ok well I didn’t forget.  But I slacked off 😉  If you missed us terribly, you can always check out our facebook page.  I update pictures there a little more regularly.  And now onto some blogging!

Tofu has been doing wonderful!  She is really settling into our life and routine.  She no longer barks in her crate. Thank goodness because that was unpleasant.    I was a little bit convinced that this whole “deaf” thing was just a joke.  My roommates were informing me that Tofu would let out a few short barks when they would come home.  Well GOSH.. Tofu was downstairs, in my bedroom, and in her crate.  She couldn’t possibly hear them coming home! So with some help from LCPO’s trainer, I decided that she was barking for two reasons- 1.  Tofu was watching Leroy become more alert when someone was coming in the house.  She was then barking because she didn’t know what was happening, but she wanted to be a part of the excitement!  2. Tofu was feeling the vibrations from upstairs.  She was still settling into her new environment and confused at what was going on.  So I had to start covering her crate with a bed sheet to remove her visual stimulation.  She didn’t like this at first, but now she is a very quiet and content girl while I’m at school.  Although I knew that Tofu was still settling into her new home, I was worried that my neighbors and roommates would not be as understanding.  Thankfully she has accepted the crate as part of the routine and we haven’t heard much barking in weeks.  

58423_425964847483031_695999586_n

Tofu is also learning to run into the crate on her own when it’s time for food.  Leroy knows that when the lid of the dog food tupperware comes off, the things that benefit him most are running into his crate and waiting very patiently.  Nothing else will get him fed, but sitting in the crate will do the trick!  Tofu is starting to catch on to this game.  However, she still tries a few other things to see if they will get her fed.  First she tries watching me.  This is unsuccessful.  Then she tries running around the room and getting some of her excitement out.  This is also unsuccessful.  Sometimes she tries sitting, which is nice.  But it is ultimately unsuccessful.  Then it will CLICK, and she will run into the crate, practically knocking it over on the way in.  And only then, does she get her dinner 🙂

IMG_6781

If you have any questions about Tofu, Jora, becoming a foster parent, or the adoption process- you can email me (Leroy’s mom) at Casey@caseyheyen.com

 

Sponsor me here: All donations are tax deducible and benefit the rescue dogs of LCPO

 

Work-a-holics!

As you know, Leroy and Jora are on the “Nothing in Life is Free” training program.   They have stopped getting ‘free’ meals and are either using the puzzle feeder or doing training to receive every handful of food!  Jora had her first run in with the Wobbler today.  After a little coaxing and explanation (I played with the wobbler for 10 minutes until she got the hang of it), she was ready to get that breakfast!  Here she is in action!  

We also worked on a little more training through the morning and Jora is getting much better with her ‘Stay’.  There is a bit of an art to training two dogs at the same time but Leroy is very patient and helps his foster sister learn.  Here they are working for more breakfast! 

 

Any questions about Jora or the adoption process can emailed to me (Casey, aka Leroy’s mom!) at Casey@caseyheyen.com.  Please share her story with anyone looking for the perfect family companion!

 

Work Hard, Play Hard

 

Just a few moments of our daily life 🙂  Enjoy!

Any questions about Jora or the adoption process can emailed to me (Casey, aka Leroy’s mom!) at Casey@caseyheyen.com.  Please share her story with anyone looking for the perfect family companion!

 

TEN!

The ratings are in!  (and by ratings I mean my own non-biased, factual ratings) And Jora has been given the ultimate score- 10/10! She’s a complete babe 😉   She is ready for that lifelong commitment of. loving you unconditionally, making you laugh, and bringing joy to your life on a daily basis.

So here it is, laid out for everyone to see- the top ten reasons to adopt Jora 🙂

1. She comes “Home Ready”!

Unlike dogs that come straight out of a shelter, Jora has adjusted wonderfully and passed all her family-living tests.  She is house broken, wonderful in her crate (except that one time), great at snuggling in bed, doesn’t have separation anxiety, hasn’t eaten my couch ect.  She’s ready!

2. She is adaptable.

Jora can handle the times when I have a 9 hour workday and come home to write a paper- she gets less attention than she deserves and adapts like a queen.  Because as much as we aspire to walk our dogs for 2 hours a day, sometimes we get busy.  She can also adapt (and enjoy!) a day where we go to PetSmart and meet a million new friends, take a long walk at the park, wrestle with Leroy for hours (she does this every day), and have some time for training.  She can handle any type of lifestyle!

3. She is beautiful!

Seriously.  OK, looks aren’t everything.  But she is jet black with warm brown eyes and hiding a little patch of white fur on her chest.  She’s a cutie-pa-tootie!

4. FRIENDLY… to all 🙂

Jora is good with other dogs (big and small), good with cats, and she has never met a person she hasn’t absolutely loved.  She welcomes everyone into her life with a smile, tail wag, and full wiggle-butt excitement.  She wants to be best friend with our resident kitty, Major (although he’s not so keen on her).  And although she can be too headstrong when meeting dogs head to head, after a quick walk she will be great with them.

5.   Less-adoptable adoptions make your heart feel warm and fuzzy

While Jora is a catch by most peoples’ standards, her black fur does qualify her in the “less-adoptable” category of dogs.  She is also seen as a “pit bull mix” and that’s a whole separate group of the “less-adoptable”.   So although she’s a friendly Lab mix with lots of great qualities to offer, she is found in two categories that cause people to overlook her.

6. She only has ONE item on her Christmas list

No… not a forever family.  (That is my wish for her)  Jora wants a Nylabone.  She is such a wonderful and happy girl.  If she had just one Nylabone (and at least one loving human), she would be happy for every single second of her life.  Jora in fact has many Nylabones in her foster home with me… But the point is, she’s a low maintenance and very appreciative girl.   🙂

7. She is affectionate!

Jora will kiss your face, mouth, leg, ankle, arm, ear, tongue, mouth ect.  She loves crawling closer and closer to persons face and then excitedly kissing them until they force her to stop!  In fact, she was the star of the Hug-a-Bull booth at LCPO’s National Pit Bull Awareness Day.  She was beyond generous with her love.  Some might have even said she was a little loose!  I mean, the people only had to donate a dollar.  But she went all out!

After hours of hugs and kisses at the “hug-a-bull” booth, Jora was exhausted!

8. Jora knows when to speak up

Although Jora loves everything that moves, she will also give out a few warning barks when someone comes home late at night.  She knows to alert when she hears the door.  While we want our adoptive homes to consider Jora a lifelong family companion, it’s also nice to know that she can help scare off an intruder if the moment were to arise.

9. You will be saving a life!

Adoption saves a few lives in fact.  It’s as simple and wonderful as that.  Foster dogs are especially great because we were able to save Jora’s life, the dog that got her kennel spot was also saved, and we will save another one when she’s adopted!

10.  She’s the best dog up for adoption in the whole world!

This has been thoroughly tested and proven by her foster mom… You’re going to have to take my word for this, or meet her yourself.  🙂

Any questions about Jora or the adoption process can emailed to me (Casey, aka Leroy’s mom!) at Casey@caseyheyen.com.  Please share her story with anyone looking for the perfect family companion!

 

Bad Puppy

In general, Jora is past the prime of her puppyhood. And I am very grateful for this! I’ve said before that I am a ‘no puppies allowed’ foster. The first reason I have this policy is simply because I don’t have the time for a puppy. I am a full time MFA student, and I work part time as a dog trainer at petsmart. Therefore, I cringe at the thought of a puppy bladder that can’t be held for my full eight hour days away from home. I also train puppies, and sure they’re ‘cute’, but I like them for sort time periods where they aren’t chewing apart my things. I just am not a person that wanted that in my life! My policy is in effect because truly, I don’t have the time commitment needed for a puppy. So while many people might think I’m a big meanie, I say, “bring on the adult dogs!”

But I digress. When Jora arrived at my house, she was a complete puppy! My worst nightmare. So although she was the cutest little peanut ever, I was just waiting her out until she ate my shoes (check), drove Leroy nuts (every day), had accidents (duh), ate her own poop (this seems to be a personal problem that my fosters have), damaged a few personal items (why not) and won me over with her puppy dog eyes and loving personality (absolutely). So since I was not mentally prepared for this commitment, we had a rough few months. I would bring her to events and dream of yelling, “free puppy!”, until a nice family took her away. I also kept thinking of the only benefit in fostering a puppy- quick adoptions! (We of course are still waiting). So despite our rocky start, Baby J has grown on me as she has grown into a wonderful adolescent dog.

However! Sometimes we all like to get into trouble. 🙂

20121109-095236.jpg

Ripped up her dog bed (check)!


Any questions about Jora or the adoption process can emailed to me (Casey, aka Leroy’s mom!) at Casey@caseyheyen.com.  Please share her story with anyone looking for the perfect family companion!