About The Dogs 

 
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Penny

Rescue Story:  Brought home on 8/27/15. Four days before that, I found her in an alley in northwest Baltimore City while volunteering with a friend’s TNR organization. I fell in love with her immediately. We did the responsible thing and took her to the shelter for a 72-hour stray hold. (From a health perspective, sometimes I wish she hadn’t gone through the shelter so I could have made more of her health decisions on my own.)

Current Age: approx. 8 years old

Likes: Carrying things in her mouth, especially slippers, shoes and socks. Everyone she meets! Adventure. Car rides with her head hanging out the window! Sleeping. Snuggling. Burrowing under the blankets. Snuggling with Neno, even if she won’t admit it. Cauliflower – she goes crazy for it!

Dislikes: Fireworks and other loud or otherwise startling noises. Sitting on cold surfaces.

Best "Trick": Penny is a retired life-saving blood donor through Blue Ridge Veterinary Blood Bank.  Howling at ambulances. "Place" and "down." 

Health Issues:  Penny is our first allergy dog, both food and environmental. We’ve been intermittently battling skin issues with Penny since bringing her home. I’ll be sharing more about what we’ve learned, the testing we’ve had done, the supplements we use and her diet.

Lessons Taught to Her Humans: It’s ok to live and love again. When we brought Penny home, Lucy was very sick, living only 7 more weeks. It was emotionally difficult losing and mourning Lucy while having this strange new dog in the house. I struggled with moving on at first, but it didn’t take long for Penny to open our hearts.

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Neno

Adoption Story: Brought home on 3/26/16. My husband saw Neno in a Facebook plea for dogs at Baltimore’s BARCS shelter and immediately fell in love. We arranged for a meet & greet a few days later, and Neno came home with us that day. It took several weeks though, before we met the “real” Neno. 

All we know about his past is that Animal Control removed him from a bad situation. He was a very shut-down and fearful guy at first. Any household noise – dishwasher, washing machine, furnace kicking on – would cause him to “pancake” and hit the ground. It took months before he would walk all the way across the kitchen floor. We are proud of the progress our boy has made so far, but there's still more work to do.

Current Age: approx. 4 years old

Likes:  Walks! My husband, Tim. Loves his Penny-girl! Chewing his ball. Laying in the yard chewing his ball. Laying in bed chewing his ball. Oh, and chewing his ball. He makes up games for himself where the ball is hiding in a blanket and he has to find it. Exploring the backyard. Chasing squirrels. Laying in the sunshine by the front door while watching the world go by. Running 100 mph everywhere he goes. 

Dislikes/Fears: Car rides or leaving the house for any reason. He’s also not thrilled about any new person coming to the house. Loud, new or unusual noises. The world is a scary place to Neno.

Best Trick: High 5

Health/Behavior Issues: Neno has a penchant for eating objects. When we adopted him, unbeknownst to us, he came with numerous pieces of a steel-belted radial car tire and a plastic object in his stomach. He had surgery to remove these objects in June 2016.  Then he had a 2nd surgery to remove pieces of a rubber toy in December 2017. Maintaining Neno’s gut health is a challenge and he receives Pepcid with his meals for the indefinite future. Neno is also the most anxious & fearful dog we've had and we are experimenting with different ways to help him feel more secure in the world.

Lessons Taught to His Humans: There is nothing more special than earning the trust of a dog. Patience. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to dogs. Slow improvement is better than no improvement. Covered trash cans are a blessing.

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Lucy

Adoption Story: Brought home on 7/12/2004. Was approx. 8 months old at the time. For years, my husband wanted a female brindle pit bull. We bought our house on July 1 and a few days later I checked the website for our local shelter. On the first page, was a female brindle pit bull! We brought our girl home as soon as we could, even though I still wasn't too sure about the whole owning a dog thing. It didn't take me long to fall in love.

Liked: Everyone she met! Midnight belly rubs. Sour flavored anything. Snuggling with her daddy. Patrolling the yard against squirrels and rabbits. Walks. Going new places. Rides in the car.

Disliked: Squirrels in her backyard. 

Best Trick: Lucy had a great little repertoire of High 5, lay down, roll over, etc. She was also a lifesaving blood donor through Blue Ridge Veterinary Blood Bank.

Health Issues: Low-grade heart murmur her whole life. Lucy suffered from "happy tail syndrome" and we had to have her tail partially amputated in 2011. Other than an isolated bout of pancreatitis (2008), her health history was unremarkable until she collapsed in 2014. Over the course of several weeks, she suffered with episodes of tremors which then progressed to seizures. It took several months to get her properly diagnosed, but Lucy suffered from an unusual cancer called insulinoma. This is a tumor in the pancreas which over-produces insulin, in turn causing blood sugar to drop, which led to the seizures. (Think the opposite of diabetes.) We had quite a journey over the course of 18 months. I will be sharing many of the lessons learned and mistakes made along the way.  Lucy's journey with us ended on 10/14/15.

Lessons Taught to Her Humans: The power of unconditional love. Sometimes I feel like I was a Grinch before Lucy came along, and thanks to her, my heart grew 3 sizes. If it wasn't for Lucy, we wouldn't have these other amazing dogs and there would be so many amazing people whom I wouldn't have otherwise met. She sparked my passion in life and I always hope to do her proud.

 

Kahlua

Rescue Story: Brought home on 12/1/2005. Was approx. 4 years old at the time. Informal rescue. Found by a Good Samaritan in Baltimore City. This Good Samaritan was an acquaintance of my father who arranged a meet & greet for us. We did everything wrong when introducing a new dog to the house, but luckily Lucy & Kahlua became inseparable best friends for the rest of their lives.

Liked: Loving everyone. Being a homebody. Being a little ornery at times. Cleaning Lucy’s ears. Snuggling. Instigating wrestling matches with Lucy. Chasing rabbits with Lucy. Napping in the sunbeams. Waking me up everyday 2 minutes before the alarm clock went off. Chocolate – there were several incidents over the years.

Disliked: Leaving the house for any reason caused intense whining. Loud voices. Loud noises like thunder and fireworks.

Best Trick: Sit - if you caught her on a good day

Health Issues: Ruptured both CCLs. I'll be sharing more about Kahlua's non-surgical alternative treatments.  Mast Cell Cancer (but we didn't have a diagnosis until it was too late). Kahlua's journey with us ended on 3/1/15.

Lessons Taught to Her Humans: To appreciate living in the moment. To regulate intense emotional outbursts (arguing).