Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Dogs Going Out


I am one of the fosterers filling in for Lesley and keeping you up to date on the comings and goings of sanctuary life.  I was there on Monday taking photos of the new collies that were admitted at weekend, in the hope of generating some interest in them, but before I had even arrived home to process the photos, Tilly, the black and tan, pictured here with Bella, had already had someone interested in her.  That was probably a good thing as she was such a whirling dervish that none of the photos came out that well!  I am not a collie person myself, but all of the collies at present in Freshfields care are such affectionate dogs that even I had the urge to take them home, especially Bella and Sweep.  To see more of the collies take a look at our flickr site: Freshfields Wales Flickr  Tilly will be a commuting dog having two homes: one in Cricieth and one in Northampton - lucky girl!

Bruno the delightful Jack Russell has also left for a new home.  We knew he wouldn't be here for long as he was such a lovely young dog.  We also have someone interested in the two Yorkies and young Jack.  And we have even had someone interested in the rabbits; here's hoping that the home works out. 

Sadly we have not homed any cats.  We need to get the cat side of the rescue more well known and to this end we have produced a poster showing some of the cats.  Could you help distribute these posters for us by printing them off and putting them up in shops, on notice boards, etc?  If so then please visit our website: Freshfields Animal Rescue and go to the download page shown towards the bottom of the home page.  You will need to register and log in to access the downloads, but that only takes a few minutes to do.  We would be extremely grateful for your help, and the cats who got homes would be even more grateful, as would those on the very long waiting list!

Monday, 30 May 2011

Left At The Gate!!!


Boss woman is taking a break from "blogging" today, so short and sweet(Well Maybe!!)  from me. Please bear with me whilst I tell you about yesterday. Myself and a few friends packed up the vans and traveled to the Wirral for a White And Long Coat German Shepherd Charity Event which was running in conjunction with a Companion charity show. All proceeds going to CANINE HEALTH CONCERN RESEARCH INTO CANINE EPILEPSY. Another very worth cause. A great day was had by all, despite the fact there were no toilets!!! We took Finlay, who I'm sure you know was rescued by Freshfields from Abergele pound in 2007, and Misty came with her new mum Sandra. (Misty was the white bitch rescued this year, mother to Teddy pup) Sandra was absolutely delighted that Mist won Best Rescue in show and was also placed 4th in the class for white long coated German Shepherd bitches. Our standard coloured/coated dogs also did well and I hope the organisers were successful in collecting as much money as possible for their charity.

Anyway back to Freshfields...as the staff arrived this morning they were very distressed to find a Whippet tied to the fence on the track. WHY? There really is no need for it...and how long had he been there? I hope to God that he hadn't been there all night, it doesn't bear thinking about does it! Luckily, after some frantic phone calls he is now in a foster home and apparently Whippet Rescue have homes waiting for dogs. Here's hoping this is a new beginning for him! There's also hope of a new home for Bruno the 8months old JRT that was admitted last week. So again,here's hoping that when his prospective owners go to see him in his foster home they all get on a treat, we'll keep you updated!
Sadly not may animals have been re-homes over the weekend, but I was really pleased to hear that Stripey cat (Who by the way is black and white!!!) has finally found a home. You've been with us too long...All the best Stripey cat! Talking of black and white cats, the little hissy black and white kitten is still with us. The rest of the litter have gone and she's sadly alone. She would really benefit from finding her forever home now, and I'm sure in a safe, stable environment she would quickly become a sweetie. Anyone???
There has been one admittance into the cattery today. What was suppose to be a "Starving, unentered Stray" turned out to be in reasonable condition and is neutered! Let's hope someone will soon miss him and find him with us at Freshfields!
Cheers ..Rhian (On My Day Off!!!!)

Sunday, 29 May 2011

In Which I have a Decision to make.

William is a  little better today after his scare and the physio lady Gillian is calling on Wednesday to start work with him. I would like to know more about his health as I have reason to believe this has happened before in his previous home and  I should have been told about it at the time we admitted him.Had we been in possession of the correct information we would have not brought out the lady from Derbyshire to see an infirm horse, and even more importantly William would not have been put into a situation which could cause more damage.. We have put him on Painkillers  for a couple of days and are keeping a close eye on him .Several years ago we admitted a most handsome horse called Boston who arrived from Dorset having been overworked by his owner who hunted him regularly. (that in itself tells a story of how compassionate the owner was!)Unwanted due to his not being fit to be worked, his future was grim until a kind lady rescued him and sent him here. Boston was in the same condition as William, he had damaged his back and was in great pain , however we called in a physio immediately and  eventually Boston recovered enough to be homed  for light hacking only. His new carer continued with his treatment and Boston is now a healthy fit animal. With luck William too will recover his health though until we know exactly what damage has been done we will not know if he will have to remain at the shelter for the rest of his life.

More summer grazing has been offered to us and it has been decided that either Morris and William or Dids and Buster will benefit from this, the physio would have to start Williams   treatment here and continue at his new summer home if we decide  he is to go.
We thought we were going to be short staffed today and two volunteers have turned up unexpectedly  which is a great relief as we were worried we would not manage if it was a busy day with visitors. As it happened we had no visitors at all but  I know Sue was glad of helper Josie assisting her with the cattery cleaning . Rosie was helped by Andrew who is the husband of another volunteer Kim.Thanks both of you, we really needed extra hands today.

Sunday:






The little black cat Mac which was unwell is still poorly but brighter and happier today so I am hoping he will make a full recovery although of course with this virus it can be recurring, therefore he will need a very special home with no other cats. When he is better I will put out a special appeal for him.
It has been ultra quiet this weekend for adoptions. If anyone can help advertise our cats please let me know.I will do some posters for them today and they coulkd be placed in shop windows/office notice boards etc. Considering we are the only cat shelter in this area, our adoption rate is not good at all, yet we struggle  to accommodate the sheer numbers of unwanted and homeless felines we are constantly being requested to take in. Of course when the kittens start to appear it is even harder to home adult cats and this happens every year.


So many cats are brought in after their owners die and our two latest ' orphans' are Old Bill(who isnt actually that old) who is 7 years old and Felix a 7 months old youngster. Felix came from a local home and was unneutered, when we took him for his operation the Vet discovered he had a grade three heart murmer.He is a happy youngster and ihas made himself totally at home in the cattery, on the other hand Old Bill is most unhappy at his change of circumstances., he has lived in a flat with an elderly owner so is unused to being around other cats. As his owner died in february the cat has been living a lonely life being fed daily by a relation but having no company though  judging by his expression on the photo I took ,he would prefer to be back there, lonely or not.It is sad when animals lose their homes isn't it? I hope Bill will soon realise that we are ok people here and that we will be endeavouring to find him the sort of home he is used to.

All my foster homes are now full with dogs, cats and kittens, we desperately need a few more.Is there anybody out there who can help?If you use facebook or twitter can you spread the word please.
We have taken in three more collies from the pound and have had to overload Rosie in order to get them out of there, pictured here on their arrival. All are females, one is outgoing, one timid and the third a basket case, terrified of her own shadow. The very shy one is very young, maybe 8 months old at the most so she should come round with Rosies care and experience of the breed.
I have been thinking very deeply about continuing with this blog.Yes it is hard to find time to do it regularly but more than that I feel restricted in what I can say and what I am unable to say.When I began I wanted it to be like a diary of life here at the shelter and to be truthful about my perceptions and feelings. I find now that I am having to constantly think about upsetting people by the truth and it is becoming harder to let the words flow. There have been two incidents recently which have brought this to a head and to be honest  I have been wondering if it is worthwhile spending the time doing the blog if  I have to sit and think"well I cant say this / mention his name/say how I really feel etc"
Of course I have an obligation to the charity to steer away from anything which could result in a backlash and  that is quite right but even so there are people who are happy to  use my words against Freshfields and I do not want the blog to turn into something which is far from truthful and lacking in personal input .

Maybe I just need a break, if I decide to do this I will find someone else to carry on for a while whilst I recuperate from writers block! Even amateur writers like me can  suffer from this! I am lookingforward to a day off onWednesday when I will be going on another birding day with "The Biggest Twitch" , this time to South Stacks in Anglesey. Roy from the Caernarfon shop is joining me, he needs a day of relaxation as well - he is always working for the animals and it is easy to say there is no time for leisure but I think everybody needs  to stop and take stock of how much 'me' time they are having or not as the case may be and if necessary redress the situation. As I am always being told I will be no good to anyone least if all the animals if I crack up. The cracks are definitely showing  and not just on my rapidly  aging face,  so  I am going to heed this advice before there is a full scale meltdown and my brain goes into bipolar mode and the stress causes the visage surface cracks to turn into full scale earthquake proportions!

Ps: just heard that Cassie  the cross dachsund I fell in love with is already enjoying her new life,  now I know that I made the right decision allowing her to be adopted.

Collies:  on right 6 yrs old bella,
Above top. Rosie
Above left: Tilly

Friday, 27 May 2011

Champ goes to School




I have been away In Liverpool for a trustee meeting and returned last night.I always stay overnight because it is too tiring doing it all in one day.
I returned to find that everything is ok at the shelter(always worry that something major will go wrong when I am not here) and Bud the beautiful Golden Retriever which was admitted on Tuesday and is being fostered by retriever lover Gail has already been homed. In fact my mailbox was full of enquiries and Mei says the telephone has never stopped with people wanting him. He was brought in by people who said he had been dumped on them by their sons girlfriend who had an asthmatic child.As soon as I advertised him the phone started ringing and my mailbox was full of enquiries.Within 48 hrs we had done a homecheck on prospective adopters which passed and he was out almost as quickly as he came in! It is wonderful for Bud but I do wish there would be as good a response to other NON pedigree dogs I advertise. It seems that the pedigrees still are on the most wanted list with the exception of the bull breeds of course.

Tracie , the lady who has come down from Derbyshire to see the horse William has just had a fright and we are all very upset. As soon as she climbed on him, his back legs collapsed and he was clearly in pain. He obviously has a back problem and it needs to be addressed as soon as possible.The only reason we considered sending him to a home where he could be lightly ridden was because his owner said he was completely fine and even I as a novice could ride him! This is clearly not the case and the next step is to call out Gillian the chiropractor who has worked with our horses previously .In the future one of the girls will try the seemingly fit horses before we allow anyone to ride them.In retrospect we should have done that anyway but we will not make that mistake again. Poor William.

Today we or rather the dogs ,had their first training session with Vicky, an animal behaviourist who is going to work with them to try and sort out their problems.Vicky Small runs a very well named business called' Small Steps' and works with all sorts of problem animals. Her first client here will be office terrier Champ who shares his space with Lucy, neither are totally trustworthy with strangers or even some of the staff so I am hoping Vicky will be able to work wonders with them.If the results of the first hour she has spent with them are anything to go by, I have high hopes - she is pictured here with her first client Champ .We all thought she was far too young to have any experience but she is in fact 27, married and has been doing this work since she was in her teens. Lucky girl to look so youthful though she tells me that she is often turned away when she tries to buy a bottle of wine in her local supermarket! Well you cant have everything Vicky!  I will ask her about Paddy who has developed such a territorial streak nowadays , only Mei dares to enter the house which is a problem when I am away.I want the staff to have the confidence to at least be able to let him in the garden when I am not there to do so and right now there is no chance. It is not as if he is a small dog, the sheer size of him is intimidating and I want him to behave well around strangers at all times. see Vickys website http://www.smallstepstraining.co.uk/

One of the two young cats which were admitted as strays from Machynlleth is quite poorly, he has been diagnosed with collici virus which is a very debilitating infection and he is in isolation being treated for this at the moment.He looks so sorry for himself. From not so good news to great news -elderly white cat(the one which had ear cancer) Eric and Roo his Siamese friend failed to find a home through our advertising pleas but eventually supporter Netta and her husband, from Shropshire , who have big hearts and are great cat lovers have offered them a home for the time they have left which may or may not be that long at all. It truly is wonderful news, I was beginning to think they would end their lives here and that is not what any of us want for any animal.Incidentally the other white cat which was brought in has also had to have her ears amputated for the same reason.This is so common and with both of these cats , the owners had either failed to notice or did not want the expense of veterinary fees? My own cat Holly has been fit and healthy ever since she had an operation to remove her ears though admittedly nobody seemed to want her after that and maybe that is why these cats have not caught anyones eye?

The rain has finally stopped so I am going to venture out of the office to have lunch.The fields badly need rain but without much sun the grass is still not flourishing. It is late in the year for us to be still subsidising the horses feed with hay and hard feeds, by June we usually have half the horses out in their summer homes and enough grass here to satisfy the remainder. We have held back moving some because of the change in weather but they will be going in the next week or so and then maybe, just maybe the grass will shoot up here and we can stop feeding expensive hay to our resident equines.Fingers crossed.

Sunday, 22 May 2011

Cassie and I Part for Good.




According to Netta, one of my supporters, some regional administrators of freecycle ban the advertising of pets so it seems this areas admin team has neither compassion nor ethics! Have no fear, I will not give up my campaign to stop this happening.
Yesterday when my friend collected the cat advertised as suitable for a farm, she was horrified to discover the cat was matted so badly she will require a Veterinary Surgeon to anaesthetise her to shave off the coat.As she was collecting her, a neighbour came out and asked her if she wanted HER cat as she wanted to get rid of that too. I have told her to go ahead and she is returning today to pick that unwanted animal .We are overflowing with cats here and it is becoming urgent for us to rehome some if we are to help mpore of the cats on our ever increasing waiting list.If any readers can help by advertising them in local shops or offices I would be very grateful.Maybe we could offer 'buy one get two free!' ONLY JOKING.
I wonder what people thought of the recent media coverage of the man taking his pony everywhere - on train, pub, etc.personally I did not think it funny at all, I was outraged that a pregnant pony should be living a life like this. I hear that the RSPCA visited and cannot do anything, presumably because the pony is well fed, I really dont know though I do know that the present law concerning animal abuse is far from ideal and often they have their hands tied as to what they are legally allowed to do,nevertheless it is hard to understand how it is deemed acceptable for the owner to try to take a pony on a train and a hospital etc and I believe he was offering the pony for sale for £200 and how did the animal obtain the cuts round her head? At least now the authorities are aware of the situation and with a bit of luck she will be bought by someone with more sense and decency.

My dear little Cassie went to her new home yesterday, I liked the new people very much but was still upset when they drove off with her,I could not bear to watch! I am silly allowing myself to become so attached to her, there are so many others in need of my care but the heart is a strange thing isn't it? I suppose it is like meeting loads of unsuitable prospective partners but only an occasional one manages to break through the emotional defence barrier! Cassie really did steal my heart so I am on tenterhooks waiting to hear how she see photos of her enjoying life with Sara and Julian in Cheshire.

Sunday:
Stephanie, Jack and Williams previous owner came to see them and was pleased to know that there is a good chance of William (pictured here having a munch of hay)finding a permanent home.In fact the interested lady is coming to see him on Friday, she is known to us here and I know that if she likes him(and how could she not?) he will want for nothing.He is a handsome horse and apparently he is the great great grandson of the famous racehorse Nijinksky.Its a good thing he was not up to being a racehorse like his ancestor or he would never have become the pet he is now.He is another I have found myself becoming unduly attached to so it is as well he may be leaving us very soon.In truth I do not have the time to have lavish attention on my own horse and I can always potter round on Rocky should the mood take me.Alsoi pictured is a headshot of the very handsome Caradog, he is still a little shy but improving all the time, the farrier needs to do his feet and unfortunately he cancelled his visit last week.Still he will be out first week in June so its not too long to wait, farriers are like gold dust in this area!

A stray pup is being brought in later by a lady who found him wandering around a car park in Porthmadog.Vanessa already has Jack the cross GSD pup(have I mentioned him?)Pictured here the day he was admitted.He was admitted because he was one of a planned litter(dont ask me why)from a cross kelpie/GSd and he was returned at the age of four months. Why they would want to breed from mixed breed dogs?
You know I never wanted to breed myself(me personally , not dogs!) the thought of producng a mini me never remotely appealed to me, I wonder is that why I feel so strongly about animal breeding? No, the fact is I just think there are far too many unwanted animals already without adding to the numbers.Mind you that could apply to humans too! Food for thought!. Anyhow Vanessa is happy to take this one also, she said they will be able to keep each other occupied playing.Thanks Vanessa, you are a star!

Saturday, 21 May 2011

More Freecycle animals Are Admitted.


I have decided to do something about this onlineshop freecycle because in spite of writing to the administrators on several occasions I have received no response whatsoever and still more animals are being offered this way. This week alone we have admitted a Patterdale terrier and a cat. The terrier was advertised by someone whose email I recognised and realised she had returned a dog some weeks ago.What was she doing getting rid of yet another so soon after? I emailed her immediately and advised against her advertising an animal this way and she replied agreeing with me. A week later a lady turned up with a Patterdale she had obtained via the freecycle site! Yes it was the same dog so we have ended up with him. I am so annoyed but glad at the same time that this time he will have a better chance of finding a permanent home.He is a lovely little dog and if he was not good with the children I would say that it was because he was bewildered at being passed around from pillar to post though terriers and toddlers are not generally a good mix.In fairness to the lady who brought him in, she had been assured that he was excellent with children. Alfie is just 9 months old and a friendly nice natured animal who is just starting to appear more settled, he was very anxious when he arrived.
The second to be admitted is a cat which was being offered as a cat suitable for living on a farm.A friend of mine kindly offered to foster him until we had space as she was concerned he would fall into the wrong hands if he was to be rehomed through this site.
So far we have had dogs, cats and rabbits brought in which have been homed through freecycle and it has to stop.I am going to see if I can interest the media in it, its worth a try as the administrators of the site quite clearly could not care less and do not even have the decency to respond to my messages.

Whilst I am on a roll about irresponsibility, I was shocked and distressed to hear that yet another of our animals had been taken to a vet to be destroyed! Monty a 4 years old cat rehomed as a kitten narrowly missed being killed thanks to the Vet refusing to take the course of action the owner had requested.He knew the cat was a Freshfields cat and thankfully I was able to go and collect him.Not once in 4 years had this person rung and expressed an inability to cope yet without doing so she had made the decision to have a perfectly healthy cat put down.To say I was livid is an understatement.We have adoption forms which have to be signed saying that should the new carer be unable to look after the animal Freshfields reserve the right to have it back and unlike some charities we take them back.NEVER EVER do we say no. We take the future welfare of our adopted animals very seriously indeed .
Pictured here is a very relieved cross eyed Monty
who is such a friendly cat and deserved so much better.
I have just realised I failed to give an update on the case concerning the other two cats Marcus and Oliver which were also taken to a vet to be destroyed and have subsequently been adopted recently .
The person who had been 'caring' for them also adopted another cat from us and we have been trying to get in touch with her to get him back, unfortunately we have had no luck but attempts are still being made to do so. I have put Rhian in charge of this problem because I could not trust myself to deal with her in a professional way and Rhian although she too is very angry about it, has a calmer temperament than yours truly so is the best person for the job.At the end of the day we just want to have the other cat returned to us so we can rest knowing his future wellbeing is not in her hands.

Of the two colles recently admitted from a farmer,I discovered that they have been in a shed all their lives since pups , hardly ever(if ever) coming out!so it is small wonder that they were traumatised by suddenly being cast into the big wide world! Cadi the older is slightly more well adjusted - p[erhaps she has had some experience of being socialised and has in fact gone out to a home on a 7 day trial but Seren the younger of two is extremely anxious and agitated all the time.My heart goes out to her, she so wants to be loved but is scared of approaching people and everything that moves causes her alarm. I simply have not the time to spend with her and so she is going to stay with a suporter and behaviourist in lampeter until she can be put up for adoption.I am feeling in a high state of stress myself, I wonder would he take me on as well?

We may have a wonderful home f0r William one of the recently admitted horses, one of our supporters and fundraisers in Derbyshire has expressed an interest and it would be a fantastic home so Rosie is contacting her today with more details about him.
Yesterday I went to check on a local pony and I am very concerned about him.His owners have split up and there is now nobody living in the house , the pony is alone in the field, his companion having gone long since.He has a fat stomach(worms?) but his bones are sticking out on his haunches, a neighbour is keeping an eye on him and clearing ragwort from the field constantly as well as giving him fresh water but this is not her job to do so I have contacted the World Horse Welfare about the situation. The annoying thing here is that some months ago I was asked by the owners husband to take the two ponies to which I agreed only to have him ring and say they were ok and homes had been found! At the time I had room for them, things have changed since then otherwise I would have walked the pony here yesterday. If the Inspector needs help when he goes to visit, I can always offer temporary accommodation for the pony if needed.

At last a litter of kittens has arrived which are old enough to be rehomed, all the babies in foster homes have another 3 weeks before they will be ready, these are bonny 7 weeks old kittens - one has been adopted today and I think by the end of the weekend all will have found homes.

Friday, 20 May 2011

In Which I Decide to Part with Cassie

The animals did not go in to be neutered today becasue Rhian who usually does the vet trips in the morning, called in sick and as my car is in the garage being serviced we had to cancel.They will go in next week instead so Felix can hang on to his bits for a little longer!I hope Rhian will be ok, personally I think she has just got herself overexcited at the shock of being able to purchase tickets for the next George Michael concert later in the year!Apparently once they go for sale online they are sold out within the first 15 minutes and she was all of a dither worrying that she would not put in her bid in time.If you read this Rhian,take it easy and hope you will feel better soon.


Ember and Fred ponies have had their homecheck passed so the next step will be to arrange a date for them to go to their new home. I am so thankful some of the ponies are going out on loan, with the 3 newbies we will be short of winter stabling unless some are adopted on the loan scheme.There is someone else coming to visit next week with the view to having two ponies on loan so if that pans out it will work out well for the winter ahead.
Caradog and Freebie are still quite nervous though improving daily as they become used to us and William is just a sweetie, he loves human company and he is rapidly becoming a great favourite with me. Speaking of favourites I think I have found a home for Cassie the cross dachsund which has stolen my heart, there have been many who have wanted her but I think this home in Macclesfield may be the right one so pending a homecheck she could be leaving me this weekend.I am not looking forward to that! Not that any others could take her place but there are always others waiting for a cosy space in my living room and I had decided that it would be unfair of me to keep such a homeable animal when there are so many needing help out there. No sooner had I made that decision when I had a request to help with 2 elderly yorkshire terriers whose owners had been forced to move into rented accommodation so my knee will soon be occupied once again. There will be no time to miss Cassie and anyway I know I am doing the best thing for her future welfare.Why do I sound as though I am trying so hard to convince myself?

Friday:
The two Yorkshire terriers have arrived and made themselves complately at home in the house as though they have lived here all their lives.Not surprising really - they have been kept outside in a kennel in their last home. They must think this is the ultimate in canine luxury living! They are sweet little dogs and even though they are 11 years and 10 years I know there will be someone out there who will love them. I do need to get them neutered however as they are opposite sex and Freshfields does not approve of in-house breeding!They are quite old to be neutered but seem healthy enough and if they are to remain together there is no other option.I will obviously have them checked over by a Vet first.Maybe we could just have the male done?

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Left behind by Callous Owner.



Well surprise surprise the old spaniel was claimed by an elderly couple, the dogs name is Jenny and as we were about to clip her, the son of the owners is going to take the old girl to Rosie to have the grooming session she so desperately needs and he has promised to keep an eye on her condition  in future.Jenny is 14 years old and she  was clearly pleased to see a familiar face so although I was unhappy to see a dog in such a bad condition, with monitoring we all felt she would be happiest back in her own home.
Another cat was adnmitted after his owner died suddenly, Felix as he is named is not altogether happy to find himself with a  change in circumstances and no doubt he will be even less happy tomorrow when he is neutered!Sorry Felix but it has to be done!
An owner has turned up for one of the road traffic accident cats.Alfie as we called him(the tabby and white) has gone back to his real home and guess what his name is - ALFIE! How is that for coincidence? Sadly Purdey the little cat who lost her eye has since died of complications from what turned out to be severe brain damage, poor little soul.
2 More cats were admitted today after I received a telephone call from a neighbour who had been feeding them since their owner moved away and abandoned them.They are young black and whites and seem very bewildered as you can see by the photographs.What on earth causes people to do this, have they no feelings or kindness within them?It does make me mad.

Helen the manager of the Liverpool shelter sent up their van today, packed with goodies. We  were so excited to receive the donations of catfood plus other items like donated horse rugs and a large cat scratching unit which will be going into the feral enclosure to help relieve their boredom.They so love new toys to investigate and even a simple cardboard box has them entertained for hours(see photo)


Today we also took delivery of two mobile storage containers purchased locally and at last we have storagefor the animal feeds and for goods donated for the charity shops as well as providing space to store our sales goods and display boards. Now I can tidy the office which is for once empty of non office equipment.Bookeeper Veronica who willl be in work tomorrow will be both delighted and shocked to see everything cleared from our work space.
Incidentally regarding the two new horses Caradog and Freebie, Mei and I have now realised that these were the same horses we went to investigate 2 years ago after complaints about the conditions they were being kept in! At first I had not realised they were the same ones as it was a different village we went to but photos I took on the day have confirmed that they are definitely the same horses. At the time we spoke to the owners wife and was basically told where to go, nevertheless I advised her that she MUST move them to a better field which she did albeit reluctantly and in great annoyance at my interference. It just shows you that sooner or later animals like this come back into the radar eventually.

We have had another manic day with dogs so I am just waiting for our wonderful foster people to come and collect them. A farmer has turned up with two collies he no longer wants and a distraught lady who had bought a patterdale terrier in good faith, having been told he was good with children only to find out that he isn't!Actually he is only a youngster of 9 months and a friendly but nervous little dog so I think he is maybe just been overwhelmed by them.

It has been a lovely warm and bright day today and I was delighted to see clumps of bluebells in one of the fields, how these dainty little flowers have managed to survive the heavy footed horses plodding all over the area is amazing but they are not only surviving but apparently flourishing.Could it be that we may have the beginnings of a bluebell wood here!What a lovely thought.

Monday, 16 May 2011

An Old Spaniel Pulls at My Heartstrings.

We are all  still recovering from the hectic day yesterday.
 and hoping when the sponsor money all comes in that it will have made the walk worthwhile for everybody who took part and got soaked when the heavens opened!
Whilst we were gettting everyone organised to set off, little Bella pup was meeting her new family for the first time, she was a little overwhelmed and even her new canine pal looked totally bemused at all the activity going on around them.
Kellie collie was  returned from her home because of not getting on with the other dog in the home during the dog walk but she has been adopted again almost immediately
and we are hopeful that this time  we have made the right choice.
 Shortly after Bella and Kellie  left the shelter, a  neglected spaniel type was brought in, having been found near collapse in  Caernarfon. At first I was not sure whether she was a she or a he, her coat is so dirty and matted underneath and round her rear and she is very old. I decided to take her in the house and Paddy and Patch(and little Cassie) accepted her immediately (they are good dogs ) she was as good as gold all evening though was constantly staring at me and wagging her tail whenever I looked over at her.Oh No , not another dog  I fall for? I still haven't found the right home for Casssie though I will part with her to the right person. Honestly!
Tomorrow Rosie is going to have a go at clipping the old girl and then we can bath her, she will feel so much better when all that mucky hair is removed,poor old girl. What can we call her? It becomes hard to think of names when we deal with so many animals, the cogs in my brain start to slow down after a while! Of course there is always the possibility that an owner will turn up to claim her but I would want to know why she is in the state she is in before I hand her over to anyone. This gentle quiet  dog needs cossetting and taken care of in her old age and that has clearly not been happening. There may be a valid reason, such as her belonging to an elderly person who is ill or has died so I must not jump to conclusions at this stage but it is so upsetting to see a dog like this that it is easy to feel anger .
Two more cats arrived today from Machynlleth where they had been found (on separate  occasions)and taken to  Elinor who runs our Charity shop there,needless to say they did not arrive themselves having  caught a bus from mac to the shelter!I know the shelter is becoming known  for providng plentiful food and board and lodging for strays but I dont think the stray cat population has quite evolved enough to  find their own way here just yet! Trish from our Porthmadog shop has a husband Bob who is often called upon to collect animals from  outside our immediate area and he drove off this morning to collect the pair who are both black (oh no!!) but youngsters around 5 - 6 months.

Speaking of black cats I have heard that Oscar has made himself at home in South Wales and  his new people are delighted to be able to provide a forever home for him, they were filled with scorn at the person who returned him just 24 hours after taking him for jumping on a work unit and were only too pleased to provide their own work surfaces for his exploration of his new home.As they both said"Dont all cats do that?"Maybe there are some extraordinarily well behaved cats about but I have to say my own have never shown any regard to any pleas I may have made to them to restrict their movements, in fact they simply glared at me and carried on with whatever they were doing! Thats cats for you.
We are getting through so much catfood at the moment,its costing over £200 per week, frightening isn't it? I will have to start stocking up soon on kitten food as our fostered kittens will be coming close to homeable age and  will be needing spaces here. I think the first litter to come in will be about 5 weeks old now. They have been quite late arriving this year though it varies so much we can never be sure when the mad influx of kittens will start.
Time to take out my dogs now so I need to put on some waterproofs, it is still raining and dismal, oh for some sun!
PS: Just had  a call about another unwanted animal in Machynlleth, a collie cross pup this time, how annoying I didn't get the call this morning so Bob would have had to make just the one trip. I asked if the owner would pay petrol and she has agreed so Bob will collect her tomorrow.

Sunday, 15 May 2011

The Sponsored Dog Walk

It was a wet windy day for the Sponsored Dog Walk but these stoical people turned up with their dogs and completed the walk. We had hot drinks waiting for them and a local lady Jackie had kindly made cakes which were devoured  extremely rapidly! I am grateful to every person who has helped us raise funds for the shelter and would like to say a very Big Thank You on behalf of the animals here. There will be more photos tomorrow.It was a  busy day, not only with the dog walk but with a dog being returned, a neglected looking stray dog being admitted and puppy Bella leaving for her new home. More of this in next blog.

Saturday, 14 May 2011

Oscar finally Hits the Jackpot.

Thursday;
This afternoon I had a call from the North Wales Police who had been called to a house where the owner had been found dead ;  a Jack Russell dog and a cat were present in the house and the police needed  help to place them somewhere safe as they were closing up the house. The little dog was  ancient, both deaf and blind and displaying extreme signs of senility, she was totally unaware of what was happening which was a blessing. The cat was being fed by a neighbour and she is thinking it over whether to keep him or not so if she decides against it, we will collect him at the weekend.
I do not feel there is a quality of life for the dog,in my opinion she has been suffering for a while.

The two horses which were supposed to come in and then the owners changed their minds, have been signed over to the shelter  after an unexpected  visit from the owners today. They have realised that they are not in a position to keep the horses(they had been moved to a small patch of land adjoining their house)and that their circumstances are such that they need a place  for them as soon as possible.Vanessa is going in the morning to help walk the two  ponies up to the shelter -  it is only in the next village so not too far and Vanessa should be well used to it and fit enough after walking William and Leroy to their summer grazing last week, the walk took them a good two hours to reach their destination. This one should be a doddle in comparison.

Friday:
Rhian took the old dog to the vet for euthanasia, everybody felt sad at the circumstances surrounding her admittance and the  negative outcome but there was really no alternative.That does not make it any easier. We never become hardened to losing an animal no matter what the reason or age.
The new horses arrived and have settled in to the main herd with a good deal  of squealing and pushing about from the resident horses and ponies. The big fellow  Caradog is quite a dominant horse so is well able to look after himself in the already established herd and his pal Freebie simply tags along behind him. Both are healthy animals and I am hopeful we will be able to find a good home for them together. They desperately need their feet trimming, and fortunately the farrier is due to visit on Monday so that can be done quickly.
Saturday:
A good day today for Oscar the cat which had been here 2 years, was rehomed and returned the following day for jumping on the kitchen units. I had advertised him on the catchat website under the Top Cats section(for longtermers and difficult to home cats) and to my joy, I was contacted by a lovely couple from South Wales who travelled up today to offer him a home.How wonderful is that? He will be going to a real cat loving home and I feel that this is the right place for him where he will be happy and content for the rest of his life. I am looking forward to hearing all about his new adventure.
Handsome Boys Marcus and Oliver have also become Chosen Ones today, I am surprised this stunning pair have not been adopted before  but then again we do not have hundreds of visitors here to look at the cats. Mmm  - how can I change that situation? Perhaps I could send Mei out on the streets with sandwhich boards advertising the shelter!!! Somehow I cant see her agreeing to that idea| so I may need to come up with another plan. Damn!
PS: just decided Marcus and Oliver are NOT going to live with these people as they keep their two dogs in a shed and have a staffordshire bull terrier about which they have no idea if he gets on with cats!!! Apparently when they were told that the two cats will not eat cheap brands of food one of the women said "well they'll have to get used to it".!!   Actually Mrs, no they wont!
I may be desperate to find good homes but not that desperate to send them to the wrong home.

Another new horse has been admitted today.Stephanie who returned Jack due to a drastic change in personal circumstances had sold her other horse Will and the new owner wanted her to take him back.The reason - she had been jumping him and he had developed sore fetlocks, something which neither Stephanie nor her Vet(who is our Vet too) had seen in him previously. Knowing now that she would not be able to sell him and was unable to take him back she was hoping we could help. We had thought Jack would be delighted to see Will again but he totally ignored him, having taken quite a fancy to our mare Sorrell(well she is a pretty girl) Poor Will. Never mind, he is sure to pal up with one of the other horses before long.

When I went into my house to  have lunch there were two swallows flying around the kitchen.I had left the back door open for the dogs and they must have flown in by accident.I shoved the dogs out the room quickly and managed to trap the birds without too much fuss or trauma to them(there was more to me because although I adore birds, I am scared of handling them) Both flew off happily, they are so beautiful close up, I felt privileged to have seen them at such close quarters.

Little Chester the patterdale terrier has gone on a  7 day trial to a couple in Dolgellau, he is such a live wire we are all worried they may find him too much to cope with but fingers crossed. His problem is that he was not trained to behave as a young pup , he is now still only 7 months but it will be like starting from scratch.
 Just after the other visitors left , two nice ladies arrived and they have reserved Marcus and Oliver so the two boys  will not be here much longer and this time they will be going to people who are genuine animal lovers. Pictured here.I did want to put on a picture of Oscar but for some reason I was unable to upload it.Never mind I know the new people will be sending me some photos of him soon so I will wait till then.

It really has been a good weekend for adoptions, Tully and Sam ,two of the dogs I was frantically trying to place in foster homes just days ago have both been neutered on Friday and have been reserved already. Cassie remains with me(can I bear to part with her?)

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

'Cassie joins the Bedroom Bunchies'

Tuesday:
I received a frantic call this morning from a lady who said her cat had gone beserk and she had locked him in a shed.She told me that the cat was three years old and she had bought him as a kitten but that he had attacked her whilst she was feeding him(very uncatlike behaviour!)He had also scratched the 12 months old child the previous day.
I went round to the house, wondering what on earth was going to face me inside the locked windowless shed.What I actually found was  a large handsome black cat looking totally bewildered, he let me stroke and fuss him and pick him up, struggling only at the last minute when panic set in as he was placed inside the cat basket. The owner was virtually wringing her hands in agitation and insisted she was petrified of him! She added that she also had a four years old child, that would make the baby  12 months when she bought the kitten into the home and now there is another toddler crawling about. Cats generally are not keen on children of this age, they can unwittingly be rough as they grab on to the furry creature which tries to jump out of the way of searching hands. Perhaps this was the problem, if they are mishandled as kittens it can have a long lasting effect on their temperament. Time will tell, he is calm and quiet at the moment and has shown no signs of aggression towards us or the other cats with whom he is sharing a pen.
I have no problem rehoming animals where there are children but for the sake of everyone concerned it is best to have an age limit, we think pets should be introduced into a home when the  youngest child is school age or as near to that as possible. Once in a while I have made exceptions but not with a kitten or a puppy and not with
child as young as 2 or  even younger. The chances of the placement working out would not be high  and it is hard enough to find permanent homes. When we adopted this policy  around 20 years ago,we immediately noticed the number of returned animals decreased dramatically so the proof is in the pudding!

Wednesday:
A bit of a mad day, trying to find places for three dogs in desperate need of help.First was no problem, she was definitely for me - a little dachsund cross female I have named Cassie after my old Dachsund long deceased.PIcturted here in Meis arms. The staff atLiverpool used to call my dogs the 'bedroom bunchies!' because I always took the little dogs which were admitted to the shelter into the house and subsequently my bedroom!Nothing changes. This one was an unclaimed stray from a dog pound, she is adorable, only about a year old but she could be pregnant so needs to be checked out at the Vet.She has already made herself at home with Paddy and Patch.The second is another adorable terrier cross, Tully is 6 months old and there is already someone interested in him so he will not be in his foster home for long.Third is a collie female pup aged 4 months and   as we have several people after collie females she too should leave our care very soon, that is unless her foster mum falls in love with her? That is so easy to do and is usually why we lose our foster homes almost as soon as they begin to foster.The last foster person we lost was Kim who  kept the first dog she cared for, admittedly he was a stunner and fitted in so well with her own dogs she could not bear to part with him.Both Kim and her husband still help the shelter with transport and working hands on with the animals so we may have lost a foster home but gained two helpers instead so  I cant complain too much.

I had some good news this morning. The situation with my proposed book  has not been moving forward as  I have been trying to find a celebrity to endorse it with little success.The theory is apparently that the publishers are more likely to take notice with a celebritys name attached to the manuscript. I wrote to a few with no success but the one I really wanted was Paul O Grady because he is a fellow Liverpudlian and an animal lover ,was the first person to sponsor an animal at Freshfields and he has been good enough to feature the Liverpool dogs on his show. After weeks of waiting and feeling despondent that I was not getting anywhere, today I heard that he is happy to endorse it so now he wants to read some so he can decide what to say. I am so thrilled especially as he is such a busy person with a current television show.So many celebrities are unapproachable and it is good to know that some  are genuine.

Another three of our ponies have gone to their summer fields this morning. Our 'foals' (who are not really foals anymore but coming up to 4 years old) left us , unfortunately the box was not big enough to take the three so Celt and Shamrock went first and then driver Phoebe returned for Merlin who was most unhappy to be without his companions even for the short time it took to to take the first two and return.He was clearly distressed so he will be happy to be back with his pals now.

Monday, 9 May 2011

Gail is in The Wars.

Sunday:
A much quieter day today.A cat was returned after being  in its home for 7 months.Apparently he was bullying the other cats and even had a go at the family dog!It looks like Stevie will need a home without other pets. We also admitted a stray ginger female which I am sure will be claimed as she has been recently spayed, and a mother cat with newborn babies who hadd given birth under a tree.Mum is not feral but is very distressed and traumatised, I just hope she will not abandon her litter after the upset of being moved.It is not adviseable to move mums who have so recently given birth in case they reject their young and usually I advise people to leave well alone until the kittens are larger and more independent,  sometimes ,however, the situation is dangerous and action HAS  to be taken.In this case there was a dog which could have hurt or killed her and her offspring .

Monday:
Mum is settling and nursing her babies but she is still very very scared, it is possible to stroke her and fuss her so we know she is not feral but she needs a lot of reassurance, she will not be going out to a foster home as is normal with mums and newborns, we cannot take the risk of her having another upset and maybe rejecting her young.
A young Welsh Collie has been admitted,Sam is a true Welsh Collie and therefore does not look like the stereotypical collie most people know and love. He is 15 months old, an ex farm dog but one who has had experience in a home, he is a really nice quiet animal which Vanessa will be very glad to know as she is fostering him! See Sam left.
Poor Gail has been bitten today by Champ the Jack Russell so that does not bode well for his future in a private home does it? She is leaving early to go to the hospital for antibiotics, last time she had a nip, she suffered quite badly with infection and bruising which lasted for quite a while.
Both Mei and I love Champ but neither of us are in a position to adopt him, Mei has chihuahuas at home and of course as always I have a houseful. Champ likes female dogs but not males and I have a mix of both so that would not work. I guess he will remain an office dog who has to be put in a dog cage everytime people visit.He is happy with that and he certainly enjoys his life, he is particularly fond of our other permanent resident Lucy the 11 years  cross jack Russell who also has a propensity for nipping strangers. I would love to see all the dogs in private homes but the truth of the situation is that understandably most people will not consider a dog with behavioural problems.Its such a shame for these dogs, I wish I could get through to them that they are their own worst enemies.
Does anybody know anyone who can read tarot cards or tell fortunes? I want to do a few different things this Open Day and that was one idea I thought may go down well. I was always sceptical until I had my own cards read at a Liverpool Open Day and was virtually told everything that came true within the following  month including my move to Wales! That was particularly strange as I had never lived anywhere but Crosby, Liverpool and at the age of 50 was not expecting to ever do so.I have much more of an open mind about such things nowadays.Of course I was hoping that I would be told what everyone else seems to be told by pyschics - that I would be meeting a tall dark, handsome stranger but no such luck, she didn't lie anyway, I certainly never did meet one  or indeed anyone remotely answering that description!

Earlier on today I had another missed photo opportunity - my life seems to be full of them at the moment. There were three crows sitting on the back of  a grey pony called Ross, they had their beaks full of shedding horse hair and were obviously nest building and had found a wonderful source of nesting material on the back of the pony.He was grazing, totally  unconcerned at his extra passengers and their frenetic activity. Clever Birds!

Saturday, 7 May 2011

Five Animals Adopted Today.

We have had a busy day today and rehomed three adult cats and the two spaniels which is brilliant.I am so happy with the people who have adopted Jess and Sam , the gorgeous but obese Springer Spaniels. There is no doubt in my mind that this time they have truly fallen on their feet and will be very happy.They have gone to a family who have always had 2 Springers and these two will fill the large gap their previous dogs have left. Good luck to them all.

The first cat to go today was Max who has been here about 8 months, this lovely tabby and white came in with 2 other cats, all are 10 years and over so they have had very little interest shown in them . This might herald a change of fortune for the remaining two Apollo and Taz, who knows!
Rocky and Tiger were the next to go, at only 12 months we had thought these two would have been snapped up but nobody wanted to take the two cats together and we will not split cats which are very close and from the same home. So 5 months after their admittance they hit the jackpot and they have left us for a better life in sunny(and windy) Anglesey; speaking of Anglesey the much admired and obsessed over Kate(Im not one of the multitide) has been seen shopping (with bodyguard and minus William) in Waitrose! I wonder if it had been the month we had the charity box there, would she have slipped a coin into it? Call me an old cynic but somehow I doubt it.

   I received a call this morning about a Jack Russell which had been obtained 3 years ago from another rescue locally, he had been adopted by a childless couple who now had a baby and of course the dog was showing signs of jealousy.  It is understandeable that new parents panic and their first concern will be for the safety of the child but in many cases the situation can be avoided by understanding how the dog might feel.For years many dogs are beloved pets and can often be a surrogate baby for a young couple, then the real thing comes along and all of a sudden the animal which has been surroounded by attention and love all its life, is suddenly pushed out of  its prime position  within the family unit .No wonder there are problems, however with the right behaviour around baby and dog, this situation can work. My friend Diane had 2 beloved German Shepherds and when they were middle aged , she had her first child Jake. The visiting midwife threw her hands up in horror at seeing 2 big dogs in the home and people assumed Diane would immediately get rid of the dogs. Not so.What she did do is work with them and ensure that they did not feel left out, after all they had been the focus of her attention for 6 years and it was up to her to make sure the dogs and baby got along. Her actions worked and the dogs became the baby's keenest admirers. I am not stupid enough to suggest that ALL dogs will accept new arrivals into the household but I truly believe that with the use of common sense and a little understanding it can work in many cases and there would be far fewer dogs taken to animal shelters for this reason.It is one of THE most common reasons given for relinquishment of a dog. Cats too are given up but it is usually the family dog which suffers the most in these cases.



With regard to dogs being returned, a lady sent me a poem about rescued  dogs and although I am not a great fan of such things(sentimental poems, not dogs!) I do think that this one hits the spot and so I am publishing it here for everyone to read.


Baggage
From a Shelter Dog
Will You Help Me Unpack?"
Now that I'm home, bathed, settled and fed,
and all nicely tucked in my warm new bed,
I should unpack my baggage, lest I forget,
There is so much to carry, so much to regret...
Hmm...Yes there it is, right on top, let's first unpack Loneliness, Heartache and Loss,
And there by my leash hides Fear and hides Shame,
As I look on these things I tried so hard to leave,
I still have to unpack my baggage called Pain.
I loved them, the others, the ones who left me,
but I wasn't good enough for they didn't want me.
Will you add to my baggage? Will you help me unpack?
Or recoil from my things and take me right back?
Do you have the time to help me unpack?
To put away my baggage, and never repack?
I pray that you do, for I'm so tired you see,
But I do come with baggage � do you still want me?

By Evelyn Colbath




Friday, 6 May 2011

2 Cats lose one each of Their Nine Lives

Honey Lurcher  has been adopted, I can only hope that she does not miss her canine companions too much but her adoption means  that I can now take down the door barricades! Most of  the door handles have been placed upside down to fool those dogs like |Honey who are too clever for their own good but there was one handle which had not been changed and in order to stop her opening this and upsetting the cats, I devised a Cunning Plan. First I moved the exercise bike in front of the door and hung a shopping bag over the handles, then I placed the looped handle of a dog lead round the door handle and finally I pulled that taut, wrapped it round the bikes handlebars and finished off by clipping the end on to the shopping bag handles.Sorted! Only the trouble with this was that it not only prevented Honey from going through but  I was unable to leave the room myself  without taking fifteen minutes to take it all apart and that did pose somewhat of a problem when I needed to go the bathroom! The things I do for love!
I can scarcely believe that  the sponsored dog walk is almost upon us.(May 15 th) There are two hopes for the day.one is that people DO turn up and secondly that it is neither raining nor too hot.Both can make walking uncomfortable for both people and dogs.This week I must sort out the refreshments for the day, one lady is donating some cakes for the weary walkers  and the commercial coffee pot  we use for such occasions needs to come out of storage .Mion and friend Elspeth are busy now doing stalls for us at various markets around the area and a substantial sum will soon be paid off our ever burgeoning Vet bill.Next time I go there I can walk tall knowing the bill is finally being paid off. They have been very good to us but I dislike owing money and it will be a relief to know that we have almost cleared the outstanding sum and I will not feel guilty anymore about sending animals in for various treatments.

Today I collected 2 cats from the Vet Surgery. Both had been in road traffic accidents and as yet have not been claimed. The pretty little black and white female(now named Purdey_) has had a horrendous blow to her face and sadly one eye could not be saved but she is being brave as only animals can be and if not claimed I have no doubt she will 'sell' herself to someone nice. The other cat is a friendly tabby and white neutered male who has cuts and bruising to face and body but is otherwise unharmed.Lucky boy! He has been named Alfie and appears to be a nice natured animal and maybe the fact that he is neutrered gives him a better chance than most of being claimed by his owner. Both pictured here.Also pictured are Eric and Roo , days after Erics operation to remove cancerous tissue on his ears. If looks could kill! Clearly he does not feel he is looking his best and is affronted at my audacity.Sorry Eric.

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Cat and Bird share a Meal

This lovely middle aged white cat went missing for a month after being rehomed after her owner died.No doubt bewildered and scared at her change of circumstances she scarpered when her new person let her out the same day she arrived! Any cat person knows that this is bound to result in a  lost pet, we always advise that new cats should be kept safely indoors for at least three weeks during which time he/she can adjust to its new environment.Any less than that can lead to disaster. By the time she resurfaced her new owner was not in a position to keep her so she was admitted to the shelter where she has settled fairly well. We are a litle concerned that her ears may be cancerous so she has a vet appointment scheduled for an all over examination. This is so common with all white animals.Currently we have another white cat whose ears have had to be amputated.Roo the Siamese and his elderly friend Eric came in a few weeks ago and Eric has had to have his ears amputated .He is doing well though I do wish they would appeal to someone nice, they need to spend the rest of their lives in a home and not stuck at a shelter. Only now are they becoming friendly, they fretted for some weeks after arriving and it would be lovely for them if they were to be adopted.

The thrush photographed near the cats bowl was a true example of one of my (many) missed photo opportunities!Today  I witnessed this  cat and bird eating out of the same bowl . I rushed back to the car to get my camera, returned to see the cat Lucy(a Freshfields cat) who lives at a caravan site locally, had finished her meal and had walked away to wash herself leaving the thrush to finish off the meal.Apparently this has been going on for a while and Lucy has never shown any inclination to chase or eat the bird.Amazing.
Shortly after this episode  I was at the garage where my new old car was being given the once over and took this photo of a swallow sitting on the garage roof, not the best pic but as the old saying goes - god loves a trier!The car has passed its once over, well it will need some bits doing to it but generally the feeling was that it should do me for the next 2 years if I am careful with it(now that could be a problem!) I have got used to the automatic after some trepidation and it is a lot easier to drive than my Toyota Tank which is so heavy and hard work to get it moving and forget uphill, it didnt do uphill and slowed to an almost full stop if faced with the most gradual incline in the road.I will not be sorry to see it go.
A lady is coming to see Honey Lurcher tomorrow but I am unsure if she would settle without another dog for company, she comes alive with other canines and would become easily bored without the presence of another dog.As it is I have to have all the door handles in the house turned upside down, if I am not there she opens the doors to go exploring and that is simply too dangerous with other animals about.having said that she has shown no inclination to to harm my cats or even to chase them. Speaking of dogs chasing livestock I felt very sorry for Jan who runs our Llandudno shop and who has been struggling with a Utonagan she rescued. Like all Husky types they are hard to manage in most homes and have a propensity for wandering and not returning to command.Unfortunately the dog managed  to escape and was shot dead by a farmer who found her chasing sheep and a horse(whom she attacked). One cannot blame the farmer , any dog worrying livestock is at risk and I know Jan feels dreadful about the poor horse who ended up with an injured leg .The moral of this story is that Utonagans, and huskies are beautiful dogs but are totally unsuitable for most average homes.Out of all the dogs I have dealt with over the years, these breeds are the ones for which  I find the most difficult to find suitable homes. many want them but few will cope. I doubt Jan will want to take one on again.
Ps: The owner of the two horses I was trying to help has decided she does not want to part with them so panic over!I cant say I am sorry, it would have been an extra worry right now.

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Kai goes on Holiday.

Today I heard from the family who adopted Kai the Staffordshire bull terrier, it looks as though he is having a great time and I could not be happier for him.Pictured here camping with new family and having a romp in the sea. Lucky Kai. Every time we are successful homing a Staff I think how lucky that dog is when so many have no chance at all . I just love it when  we receive photos and updates on adopted pets,it makes all the hardships worth while. I hope Kai has a long and happy life with Phil and family. Ty the cross staff  who went to live in Devon has also sent me a lovely photo of himself with his new person and that too appears to be a good match, unfortunately I cannot show this because it was not sent via email but it has pride of place on the office wall now.

We have started sending the horses off to their summer homes and Callie and Freddie were the first to go this morning. They have gone to a home near Caernarfon, this is the third year Eifion has had ponies for the summer but this is the first time he has had these two and he was really looking forward to their arrival today.
Rosie has taken Old William and Leroy his shetland friend to graze on her property and the next ones to go will be our lovely youngsters Celt , Merlin and Shamrock who will also be going to a property in Caernarfon and this too will be the third year we have had the offer of free grazing there. What a difference this makes to us, to have the opportunity to use other peoples fields for the horses from May to October saves us a lot of money and gives us the opportunity to work on the fields whilst they are empty of equines.
This year the fields are in an even worse state than last year, the long, bad winter has taken its toll on the grass and we are anxious to start fertilising and resting the fields.Work will start on this next week - a long and arduous job!
I have a rather urgent issue to deal with, someone locally has 2 horses which lose their grazing land this weekend. can I help temporarily? I need to think this over very carefully, the owner is looking for a permanent placing for them ;It is not the immediate problem, but rather the longterm I have to think of. If I knew I could find a loan home for them before the winter it would be ok but if I dont then we will be short of stabling - unless some ponies are adopted on the loan scheme.We have two pairs of shetland ponies with no health or temperament problems and they are suitable for adoption but so far we have had no concrete offers. I will sleep on it and look at the case again in the nmorning though time is running out for them so a quick decision is of the utmost importance.

My car is on its last legs and I have  to find another quickly, a mechanic is looking one over for me, it is cheap and if there are no major parts about to fall apart then it should last me another 2 years if I am lucky. Fingers crossed it will pass muster tomorrow.If it does one of the first trips  I will be doing is  taking  Paddy on the beach, he cannot climb into my current truck and this one will be easy for him.He is really active at the moment and his wobblers syndrome seems to be causing him little bother so it will be good for him to go for a walk along the sea edge  at Dinas Dinclle our nearest beach.It might do me some good too. I keep promising myself that I will take up running again but there always seems to be something to prevent me doing so. In truth the only obstacle is ME! It will be my May resolution, starting tomorrow!Always put off today what you can do tomorrow!

PS: one cat adopted - Fudge the unclaimed stray has left us, his uncaring owners loss is anothers gain, he is a beautiful looking pale ginger and has   a lovely nature to go with it.
This time round he should be looking at a permanent home(can we ever be sure of that?) I really hope so, there has to be some faith in human nature or I would go completely mad - no rude comments please.

Sunday, 1 May 2011

A very quiet weekend which Improves by Sunday

What a quiet weekend it has been,With the televised wedding and the fabulous weather, few people have had adopting pets on their minds.Still it gave me the much needed opportunity to clean out my fridge and other boring jobs. I also went to Machynlleth yesterday to see Elinor who runs that shop to take newsletters and to discuss wording for a plaque in her husband Gareths memory.He was a great help to Freshfields , a truly nice person and we wanted to acknowledge that fact. We were pleased to see the shop was very busy with both locals and visitiors to the area,it is in a good spot opposite the Quarry wholefood cafe which is always packed and good for a bite to eat before making the journey back to Gwynedd.
The last kitten was adopted and as yet we have not been asked to admit any others and Bettys three surviving babies are still too young for homing.Betty originally had five but she lay on two shortly after they were born. We are unsure if that was because there was something wrong with them, she did not have enough milk for five or more likely that it was simply a tragic accident and the young mother was not experienced enough to be more careful. She did have a habit of rather clumsily throwing herself down on her blanket  Regarding  not having more adoptable  kittens.I have probably spoken too soon, whenever I write comments like this  suddenly the telephone willlstart ringing with requests to take the very animals I have said we do not have!
Picture is of Caspar and Honey shetlands and Heather and Paddy shetlands(Paddy is hiding) enjoying the sunny day.

Sunday:
Two adoptions today - Pictured below. Kai the young Staffordshire bull terrier and Bruno a 4 months collie pup . Please please let them both settle, I dont think I could cope with any more being returned. neither SHOULD be returned as the  person who took Bruno has had a collie previously and knows what he is taking on and  Kai is a nice dog albeit a strong one but when people have had this breed  they too know exactly what they are signing up for so fingers crossed for these two being success stories.

ps; Mei is pretty fed up as still has had no operation to relieve her wrist pain, now she has to try a splint for a month to see of she can cope with her wrist being immoboilised permanently! Apparently the best option she has is for for a fusion op but whether she will be able to deal with not being able to move it at all remains to be seen and if she does there is a 4 mionth waiting list for the op.That takes it up to 2 and a half years she has had to deal with the pain and seeing numerous doctors , being passed from dept to dept. So much for the National Health!