Archive for Author merlinshope


Congratulations Gaston! Gaston was a stud…literally.  He was kept in an outside pen until his services were needed.  His life would have been pretty sheltered had his owner not died.  Authorities picked him up, and contacted rescue. Once in our care, he was fully vetted and neutered. His life just did a 360!  Everything was new and exciting, and with no prior experience on leash, he had a lot to learn!  An experienced chow handler was eager to welcome him into her home.  She has the time, dedication  and support of a trainer to help Gaston become the best boy that he can be!  We are happy that he will be part of a family.  He will be sleeping on a big comfy bed inside, and spoiled with lots of love and attention!  Congratulations Gaston! Your new life has just begun!

Poppy (Mamacita)

Congratulations Mama-Cita!    Best way to start the week! All her life, (approximately 11 years) Mama-Cita was used as a money making machine. Her puppies would be sold over and over again until her owner died and she was free. When  Animal Services picked her up, they found her in terribly neglected shape. Once she was turned over to us, we immediately had her awful coat groomed off and into the vet for a medical examination.  We discovered she is sadly heartworm positive with a heart arrhythmia. That meant she could not be spayed, and treatment options, exercise and vaccines were all limited. Poppy, as her foster family called her, turned out to be an incredibly sweet girl who would melt into your arms for love and attention. She enjoyed playing with her foster brother and sisters, but mostly loved any human contact.  She deserved to find a forever home where she would be smothered with happiness to make up for lost time. A few years ago, a lovely retired lady applied for a chow, however we didn’t have any available. We referred her to CCRCNY where she adopted a beautiful blind boy. She was ready to grow her sweet family and another gentle chow was exactly what she hoped for. Poppy fit the bill. She reached out to us and we knew Poppy would be in good hands and paws.  She will have a home full of kindness.  Her mom has already fallen in love with those big doe eyes that stare back at her with nothing but gratitude. Congratulations Poppy and your new family! 


Happy Thanksgiving! Happy Adoption Indy!

Both of Indys owners passed away one after the other leaving her in the care of their adult children. We don’t know the time line this happened but we do know they feared her enough to call Animal Services to come pick her up.  By this time, her coat was so filthy and matted, they had to sedate her and shave it completely off.  Once in rescue, we called our groomer for help because our hands would be left within grime and grease after petting her.  Our groomer scrubbed her down and washed away some of her neglected past and set her up for a fresh clean start. The next day, Indy was a happier dog and loving all the extra attention. This lovely girl was not one to be feared, she actually asked to be touched. It appears that most of her life, she missed out on physical attention and walks. Indy’s new family has no shortage of loving hands to give pets and scratches….and of course lots of walkies. They have the time and patience to help her along with leash manners and training. Indy loves chill-laxing outdoors and will have her own big deck to sit upon and watch over her new backyard.  Indy’s new family were anxious to hear the patter of paws around the house and re-fill their home with doggie love as only a furry-baby can do!  Congratulations Indy, your future just got a whole lot brighter and congratulations family to your new loveable member!


Happy Adoption Chili!
A bit of a ruff start…Chili was in a home where the owner’s boyfriend rough-handled him, specifically grabbing him aggressively by the collar or neck. When Chili had enough, he started to bite in retaliation. The owners solution was to dump her dog at the local shelter. We got a call about a lovely albeit badly matted chow who seemed quite friendly, except when you handled his neck area. There was no way they could get a collar on him. We accepted him into rescue, arranged transport and brought this shabby looking boy in. Once he trusted us, we carefully felt his mane which we discovered was a solid mass. Our groomer patiently shaved his awful coat, freeing his neck from the tightly knotted hair. You could almost see the relief in his smile as we massaged his neck and chest. We managed to get a collar on, but he still was a bit leery despite enjoying the neck scratches. By the time he recovered from his neuter, he was almost desensitized to moving a collar on and off. He was ready to find his forever home. His forever family was excited to meet him, and preparing for his arrival.
Their beautiful girl Mitsu was missing her friend after she crossed the Rainbow Bridge a year ago. They waited patiently for the right companion to come along, and was hopeful Chili was it. This young handsome boy would certainly cheer her up and be a welcoming addition to their sweet family. Mitsu and Chili acted pretty “chill” around each other…but since his arrival HOME, they have been inseparable! We’re happy that Chili will never be mishandled again, and only enjoy neck rubs and Mitsu kisses! Happy adoption day Chili & Congratulations to your new family!


Pepper had no idea what he did, that was so terrible for his owner to dump him at the shelter.  Based on his behaviour and the intake information, he was deemed “rescue only”.  Forever Homes Rescue stepped up and committed to him.  When their volunteer finally coaxed him out of the shelter, he relaxed a little but he was still untrusting and very unsure.  They took him to the vet for entropion surgery and the removal of an extra dew claw.  They did all they could to help this boy, including contacting a breed specific rescue. For that, we are thankful, and particularly thank Sara Saintbury.  Dawn met Pepper several times and understood the little ques he gave that told her he was a good boy. Sara believed in him too, but just couldn’t crack his tough shell.  Everyone agreed, his best option was with Dawn, so we accepted him into our rescue program. His report said, “not good with other dogs” and he was heading to a house where he would have to cope with three, including Diesel. Diesel was a big tough male who went a little crazy at the sight of another dog. Dawn’s been working diligently with him but bringing another male in the house might be too much. Too much fun that is!  Diesel surprised everyone when he instantly made a new friend!  Raisin and Peach didn’t mind having another handsome boy to boss around either. Not only did Pepper crack the pack, he made it better. He comforts the dogs if he thinks they’re in distress, he brings Diesel’s energy down instead of up in uncertain situations and after Peach’s passing, has made his way into Dawn’s heart to help it heal with a little less pain.  He’s a completely different dog now than when he first came into rescue. He’s not perfect, but he’s perfectly loved.


A very long over due post…
Cindy’s happy ending according to me, Debbie, her forever mom.
Cathy originally adopted Cindy to a fellow who lived up the street from us.
She became well known around the neighborhood because she would dig her way out from under the fence and roam the streets freely. She often found her way to our house where she’d stay until picked back up.
Cindy and her sister Jet were surrendered to me after a friend spotted Cindy walking along the train tracks! Their owner was facing copious amounts of life changes and the added stress of an escape artist dog just became too much. Cindy’s adoptive prospects were grim since she scared just about everybody she met.
Late one night, the dogs got excited by the front door likely over a bunny. The barking escalated and I hollered from my bedroom. I got up after a Yelp and sent all 7 dogs out back while I cleaned up a bit of blood. One by one I brought them in for inspection. Jet’s ear had a tiny pierce but she was absolutely fine. What wasn’t fine was Cindy who was missing. She dug a nice hole in a matter of seconds and crawled under the gate. We panicked. Got dressed. Grabbed car keys. Both of us flew outside to find her. ….sitting at the top of our driveway. She looked at us with pleading eyes, I opened the porch gate and she happily came in. There was no other place she would rather be. This is her home, and she wasn’t leaving. It’s been at least two years and she’s never done it again. Cindy chose to stay and we love the scary little escape artist. This has always been your home.


With over 36,000 hits and looking as handsome as ever, OScar still didn’t find his forever home. This poor old boy just needed someone willing to join him on a couple lovely walks a day and a place to rest his furry head. He was no trouble, not demanding….really when he wasn’t walking, he was pretty much sleeping!
We reached out to a fellow who sadly lost his buddy (possibly to bloat such an unexpected passing) and asked him if he would be willing to to foster. He agreed and Oscar moved in. Several weeks later, we picked OScar back up to do some follow up vetting and hoped he still had a place with his foster Dad. As it turned out, Foster Dad was missing his furry house guest and anxious for his return! When he said those sweet words, “when’s my dog coming home” ….our hearts exploded with happiness! OScar had a person who cared, loved and missed him…and of course, a forever home! It’s a special person who opens their heart to an older animal and is willing to care for them for whatever time they have. OScar we are so happy you found your special person! And….you get to enjoy long country walks every morning and night around your amazing country property….a perfect life! Congratulations Bill & OScar!

Jack & Jill

Jack and Jill came back to us when their family had an unexpected life change. Fortunately there was a fantastic foster home available with a large welcoming family. All the extra attention, walks, and healthy treats helped them settle in quickly and comfortably. Soon they were playing and “talking” like they’d lived there forever. The foster family’s grandson was thrilled to have TWO REAL LIVE teddy bears! The rest of the family felt an instant connection with Jack and Jill, like they had always lived there. No one could imagine the home without the sound of their paws scampering around the house. Jill’s pure joy for endless strokes and Jack’s adorable chatter have definitely found a place in everyone’s hearts….and made it their home. Congratulations Jack and Jill and to your new family for a future full of love.


An adoption waiting to happen….and it did!

Poor old Ethel was in rough shape when she was picked up and brought to the shelter in Sarnia. For the next 2.5 months they nurtured her back to health, dealing with typical shar pei medical issues. When she was finally healthy enough to list for adoption, we were notified and immediately reached out to help. We assured the shelter staff our rescues go to the very best homes a dog could ask for.
On the morning of her scheduled transport, the shelter contacted us because Ethel woke up very ill. She could not be released and the vet was on the way. Later that day, our suspicions were confirmed, she suffered from Shar Pei Fever. Being at least 6.5 years old, and having ongoing medical issues including skin, allergies, ear infections and the inability to produce tears, she required a special home who could afford, cope, and care for her ongoing medical needs…and be willing to give an old girl a chance. We knew exactly who fit that bill! One of our biggest supporters has fostered countless dogs and adopted a total of 10 (ten)..YES..10 Shar peis from us. She readily helps the dogs often overlooked because of age, disabilities or exuberant medical needs. We made her aware Ethel was coming into rescue and she immediately stepped up to foster. Since provincial boarders were closed, Ethel had to go straight there. A baby gate was ordered and sent to help separate the resident male, Homer and the new girl if there was trouble.
Once our girl was well enough to travel, transport arrangements were made. She finally arrived and met her new foster mom who already loved her from afar. A safe introduction was made during a walk with the two peis and it was pleasant and politely smooth. That changed once they got home….it was party time! The rest of the evening was spent flirting or showing off for each other! Over the next couple days, they shared dog beds, toys and space. Always laying close to each other. It was an instant connection that nobody would have the heart to break apart! Ethel, you are one lucky Shar pei! You landed in an amazing shelter, found a great rescue, moved into a fantastic home and found love from your new mom and the handsome irresistible Homer! Well done Ethel!
Congratulations to Homer & Ethel and of course, our one and only Inez

Harry & Sally

Harry and Sally were found in Quebec on the side of a rural road looking lost and confused. Nobody claimed or inquired about them during their stay at the shelter… which was a good thing considering the pitiful shape they both were in. We were alerted about them and committed knowing the challenge we would face trying to home two dogs together. Fortunately we had an experienced foster home ready and eager to help. Unfortunately, we were not prepared for the distressing shape they were in. A trip to the vet revealed they both had ear infections, they both needed entropion surgery, full blood work, and heartworm tests. Harry had an ulcer in his eye and major skin issues. His uncomfortable looking patchy itchy coat might account for his grumpy, snarly attitude. He was also a bit protective of his girlfriend Sally whenever we approached. Sally on the other hand was shy and cautious. She definitely wanted to trust you as long as you had patience and move slow. It was clear the pair relied on each other for comfort and security. Their foster family was super supportive and took their time especially with Sally. Mr. Grumpy Pants started getting regular spa treatments otherwise known as medicated baths. He began to feel better and honed in on some of the attention Sally was enjoying. Both dogs transitioned from skinny, scared and skittish to happy, healthy and playful. One might believe they intentionally played tug of war with their foster parent’s heart strings…and guess what?! They won! Foster parents couldn’t imagine them leaving and made it clear they were part of their family now. Well done Harry and Sally! Congratulations, another foster success!

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