Thankful to be Home

Our human family members spent the week of Thanksgiving in Tennessee. Cabana went to stay with some friends of ours, where she got to hang out with two chihuahua mixes, Scooter and Maggie. Cabana had a great time with them.

cabana laying on a reddish carpet, with two shaggy chihuahuas nearby
Cabana got a good report from our friends, and they taught Cabana how to catch treats in the air! It's pretty nice to come home to a dog that's even more trained than when you left.

In Tennessee, as probably in most parts of the world that are more rural than the Bay area of California, dogs don't seem as fortunate as the ones I'm used to seeing. When I went for walks in the morning there, I saw dozens of unfenced, unleashed dogs, hanging out in front of their owners' homes. As I approached, they would bark at me like crazy, sometimes running up to me, trying to make sure I wasn't going to enter their territories. I did my best to avoid eye contact, mind my own business, and continue walking along on the street. A few times, though, I did turn around when a dog got too close, barking at my heels, and tell them to knock it off and leave me alone. Good thing they did what I asked because I don't really know what I would have done if they threatened me further.

light brown and white spotted dog sitting behind a wire fence, he has a sweet and docile faceIt made me sad to see so many unsocialized dogs, dirty and scared. This dog behind the fence barked ferociously, even though his face is so sweet. His skin was covered with little nicks, maybe from scratching fleas or mange. He looked like he had LOTS of health problems. So, so sad.

The dog below barked at me for a good 5 minutes straight and was one of the ones I had to turn around and shush. But later that day, she ended up on my mother-in-law's front lawn. She kept barking at us and was skittish, but when we picked up a stick and threw it for her, she eagerly ran after it. We had made a friend! She didn't really want to be petted, but she loved playing fetch and would hang around for as long as we'd play with her. It turns out this dog is a stray that goes from house to house, getting fed and played with by the neighborhood kids. My daughters thought she was great and wanted to bring her back home to CA with us. It was a nice thought, but not too realistic!

standing on a leaf-covered lawn, a mostly white dog with a black patch over one eye and ear, black ear standings up while other white spotted ear flops downI'm so thankful to be home and thankful to have Cabana back. We went for our walk this morning, stopping to play at the dog park--ahh, nice to get back into our daily routine. I'd say Cabana is pretty darn thankful to have us, too!

Becky  – (November 27, 2010 at 1:06 PM)  

Missed you. Welcome home! Oh that breaks my heart to think of a dog without a home. Wish all dogs could have the great life that Cabana, Cricket and so many enjoy.

Lisa, Ellie and Hosta  – (November 27, 2010 at 1:21 PM)  

Oh, how sad all those poor unsocialized puppies. Definitely makes you grateful for the ones that are socialized well!

The Thundering Herd  – (November 27, 2010 at 2:30 PM)  

Ah, yes, living in Western North Carolina (not sure how close you are), we see a lot of dogs whose living standards need to be higher. But, there has been tremendous progress.

That is also why I am such a huge advocate of Sarge's Animal Rescue Foundation which is focused on rescuing as many dogs and cats as possible from our local animal shelter. Between their work and HAWA (the local low-cost spay-neuter program), they have tremendously reduced the euthanasia rate.

Lots of progress yet to be made.

Raiser Erin  – (November 28, 2010 at 1:28 AM)  

I used to live in Tennessee in the summers with my mom. We ended up with our dog, Mickey, because she bought a house and the owners couldn't take him and left him in the kennel run in the back. They said the woman's brother was going to come get him, but he never did. So we ended up with Mickey who wasn't very well socialized at all. He barked at everyone who came towards the house and acted very aggresive (he even terroized the mail woman until she started giving him treats everytime she passed, he liked her then and would do his dance when she came by). We had an electric fence around the entire yard so he could only be talk and nothing else when he was out. We had a hard time training him to like people and trust us, but we did it.

Kari in WeHo  – (November 28, 2010 at 2:10 PM)  

Welcome back home. Those dogs make me sad too :(


Mango  – (November 29, 2010 at 4:01 AM)  

It does make one sad to see dogs who are not well socialized or cared for. Where my sister lives, out in South Dakota, so many dogs are just tied up outside all year round. Very unfortunate. Glad you were able to ward off the barking dogs.

Mango Momma

Brittany  – (November 30, 2010 at 5:54 PM)  

Welcome back!

Dogs that are not treated well always make me really sad. I want to take all of them and give them a nice home.

Lauren  – (November 30, 2010 at 6:50 PM)  

I live in a suburb of Nashville and there are a ton of unsocialized and just not well cared for dogs around here too... It breaks my heart. I rescued Claire from the Nashville Humane Society when she was a puppy and I'm so glad I did. Not only is she a huge blessing to me, and not only do I love her more than anything, but I would hate to think where she might be if she hadn't chosen me...

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