Sponsored by: Data Recognition Corporation
Meet Hunter! This handsome 10 year old Golden Retriever is energetic, affectionate, and happy. Hunter is housetrained, neutered, has no known health problems, and seems much younger than his age. He is by no means a "senior citizen" and is physically fit and playful. Hunter has had a life filled with many changes and is ready for a forever home to spend his golden years. I'll summarize his life as we know it.
Hi! It’s me, Hunter! I am having a great time being in a real house again. You see, when my family gave me back to RAGOM in November I had to go to a boarding place for a couple months. I was waiting there for just the right foster home: one without little kids, little dogs, or cats. I think I found the right place because I am very happy here and my foster mom, dad, and fur siblings love me!
Let me tell you what I’ve been doing here for the last four days. One night I went to a doggy spa and got bathed, groomed, trimmed and fluffed. My foster mom barely recognized me when I got out. I smiled when she said how handsome I looked! Another night I went to the vet to get weighed and checked. I am 79.1 lbs and a perfect weight for my height. The doctor said I am healthy and my heart sounds really good. My blood tests and stool sample were normal so I am in good shape for an old guy. They couldn’t believe I am ten because I am very spunky and lively.
Speaking of spunky, my foster mom is busy trying to find games to keep my clever mind occupied when we aren’t outside playing fetch. I have a green ball that she hides treats in. It is guaranteed “indestructible”. I still haven’t figured out how to get the treats out, but I am working on it! I found out that if I pick it up and bounce it a treat might fall out. So I bounce it and watch. That’s fun! This morning I was a little bored and mom said “Hunter, go get your bone”. So I got up, walked into the other room and brought my bone back to her. Aren’t I smart?! I think I would be a good detective dog! Hee, hee!
I’m glad it’s a weekend so we can play a lot and do some fun things. Tomorrow Robbie, Katie and I are hosting a dog party. I miss my play group at the boarding place, so mom said I could have a party. Yippee!
Got to go now. We are going outside to make snow angels!
Greetings from Golden Valley!
Hi! I wanted to tell you about the party I had on Sunday. It was so much fun! The weather was warm and sunny and perfect for a party. Mom and Dad invited three people and their dogs over. That made a total of five people and six dogs! My doggie friends that attended were: Chaz, Cinder, Bishop, Robbie, and Katie. We all got along great and shared toys and ran around.
Mom and one of her friends took turns sledding down the steep hill in the yard. They had a blast! The dog pals had even more fun chasing them and then giving them kisses when they got to the bottom of the hill. Everyone laughed!
I ran around more than the younger dogs at the party. I made sure I was in the thick of the action at all times! I like dog parties! I hope my foster mom and dad will let me have another one soon!
Almost time for bed. I'll have my foster mom send the next update. She is getting to know me better and said I am really sweet and very smart! I like snuggling and playing with my foster parents. We love each other!
Bye for now!
Hunter has been with our family for almost two weeks. Every day we love him more and he amazes us with his intelligence and curiosity. He has already learned the word “off” when shown a tasty treat, but still thinks he should help us cook, do dishes, and take food out of the refrigerator. He wants to be right “in the thick of the action” whether we are outside playing or in the house getting dinner ready. Hunter is proving himself to be quite domestic and wants to help in the bathroom by rearranging the soap tray or changing the toilet paper roll. At times his intense curiosity gets him in trouble and he ends up back on the tether and gentle leader! He doesn’t seem to mind though because he gets to follow us everywhere!
Our handsome gent is enjoying his stardom as the Golden of the Month! Thank you RAGOM for selecting Hunter for the front page! We won’t let his celebrity status go to his head though. People are amazed when we tell them that Hunter just turned 10 years on January 12, 2008 because he certainly doesn’t act his age. Last night he behaved like a puppy and chased his tail in circles. Then all of the sudden he grabbed it, hung on and continued to play “ring-a-round the rosy” with his tail in his mouth the whole time. He stopped as soon as he saw the camera pointing at him! He doesn’t want the word let out that he is still plays puppy games!
We will continue to work on teaching Hunter some more manners and convince him that we really do not need his help cooking or cleaning. He is a very sweet dog so it is hard to get angry when he gets into mischief. He’ll learn though because he is eager to please us and very proud of himself when he does!
It has been a joy getting to know Hunter. His curiosity and zeal for life sets him apart from other senior dogs we’ve known. Hunter will make the right family a perfect companion and friend!
Thanks, Hunter's foster mom/sledding pal and foster dad
Hunter - you are a wonderful boy. I love you!
We are hoping for warmer weather here in Minnesota so Hunter can have longer play times outside with us. We get cold, but Hunter doesn't seem to mind these freezing temps at all! He has a fabulous soft outer layer of fur and thick undercoat. He loves winter! He buries his head in the snow, fetches tirelessly up and down our hill, sniffs animal tracks, or lounges in the snow and chews on sticks. He doesn’t want to go inside unless his humans go first.
Hunter has proven himself to be counter surfer extraordinaire. Nothing seems to be out of his reach. He had a pizza party Friday night with fur sibling Katie after he pulled our dinner down from the top of the microwave. Hunter gave two paws up to Papa Murphy’s sausage pizza! He ate all but two slices of a large pizza within a matter of seconds! Katie finished off the last two slices after foster dad intervened. Then foster dad thought he was really clever by hiding a box of Dots candy behind his keyboard. He thought Hunter couldn’t see or smell them. Wrong! When he left the room Hunter climbed on the chair and helped himself to the candy- box and all! Too cold to go to the store and get more pizza and Dots. It was leftovers again for dinner that night!
Hunter tried to redeem himself with foster dad by snuggling with him every chance he got and wherever he could find him: on the bed, on the couch, at the computer, in the basement. Sweet smiles and lots of doggy kisses later the two old guys made up. Best friends again! Now let's just hope we can enjoy pizza next Friday night before Hunter finds it!
"I still love you Hunter even after you ate my Papa Murphy's pizza and candy."
Hi everybody! It’s me Hunter! My foster parents think it’s pretty cold out for playing fetch, but every night I give them kisses and “let’s go play” smiles and then we go out in the backyard to play ball. I love to be outside!
My foster mom said I have developed the “fine art” of peeling tennis balls! She keeps telling me they are NOT oranges and do NOT need to be peeled! Heh, I’m a curious boy and want to find out what’s underneath that pretty green covering. After I get the “felt” off I must see what’s inside the middle. Mom said “Hunter- can’t you just retrieve the balls and stop being so curious?!”
Well this week we ran out of tennis balls because I dissected each one. Mom went to the store and asked the sales lady to show her the most indestructible ball they sold and guess what? She found one! It is a really hard rubber ball without felt and they fit perfectly in the Chuckit ball launcher. These new blue rubber balls are great! I run and fetch until foster mom is too cold to play anymore. I don’t need to peel these balls- I can see what they’re made out of!
This week I got to have “free roam” in the house. That means I get to look out the window at squirrels, chew nylabones, and sleep while my foster parents are at work. I have been really good every day. I proved to foster mom that I can be trusted and don’t get into mischief. She told me that I am a sweet boy and learning manners.
I’ve been dreaming about a forever home of my own where I can spend my golden years. I need a home where there are no small children, no cats, and no little dogs. I like big dogs, so a fur friend would be fine. I can be trusted while my parents are at work. Even though I am 10 years old I still like to play fetch and run fast! I have strong muscles in my body that I want to keep in good shape. I’m “buff” and want to stay looking good! E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to come over and meet me in Golden Valley. We can go outside and play!
Hunter has been doing great this past week, except for a few episodes of counter surfing. I guess he’s trying to tell me that I’m not tidy enough! One of the RAGOM home visit questions is: “How do they think they (the applicant) would react if they came home and found the dog standing on top of the kitchen table?” This question must have been added to our home visit questionnaire by Hunter’s first foster family years ago when he was two years old! He is the type of dog you’d find standing on the table if you left something edible or interesting!
This ten year old going on two has kept us hopping! Sometimes he is too curious for his own good. He is not content to lie around and look regal all day long. He wants and needs aerobic exercise and games daily. Since this foster mom is not a jogger I have found that throwing balls down our steep hill is a good alternative and makes all three dogs happy. Hunter drops the ball on command and most of the time will set it right in my lap. What a good boy! He races down the hill after the ball and practically does somersaults at the bottom! It is hilarious to watch! After retrieving it, he races right back up and plops it back down in my lap or takes a break to eat snow while lying at my feet.
The icy roads in our neighborhood have dried up enough to make it safer for walking again. Hunter walks very well with a Gentle Leader and leash. He is very much of a gentleman and doesn’t try to stop and sniff or mark every vertical object. He apparently went to obedience school at some time in his life because he knows to sit and wait when I stop during our walk.
Hunter is young at heart and does some very funny things. I had a basket of laundry sitting out with a Bounce Dryer Sheet on top. Hunter put his head in the basket and rubbed his head back and forth across the dryer sheet. Maybe he was trying to freshen up for the ladies. He sure smelled nice when he was done. He makes us laugh with his silly antics!
Hunter is learning some more manners and our house rules. He is always the first of our three dogs to sit and wait while his food is being dished up. He is also the first to sit and wait for the patio door to be opened. He won’t rush out the backdoor if someone is leaving the house. He sits and stays. He rarely barks unless he sees a stranger too close to our property. And did I tell you that he loves to snuggle? He is a 100% Velcro dog. It has been a pleasure to foster this sweet senior boy and we are looking forward to finding that special person who will be Hunter’s soulmate.
Please contact email@example.com if you think you might be that special person for Hunter.
Hunter will be making his debut at the Eagan PetSmart on March 8th from 11:00-1pm. Come early if you want to meet this handsome fellow because he is bound to get lots of visitors!
Spring is right around the corner here in Golden Valley! We enjoyed some warm weather this weekend with Hunter. He loves to go for walks, play fetch, or just sniff every nook and cranny of our back yard. Hunter loves having a fenced yard so he can have the freedom to explore and run like the wind.
Hunter has made a lot of progress since he came to our home. When he first arrived he was very nervous when touched on his rear end, tail or legs. We aren’t sure why because he shows no signs of arthritis and is very physically fit. We have gradually gained Hunter’s trust and showed him that our touch is a good thing and he will not get hurt. Now he can lay next to us and snuggle on the bed and be totally relaxed. He doesn’t even seem bothered when our Lab squirms and kicks him in the rear end. A month ago he would have snapped at her.
Many people tell us they prefer female dogs over males. We’ve fostered many male dog and have found them to be more affectionate than many of the female foster dogs. They bond very quickly and become velcro dogs within days. Hunter is very affectionate and loves to cuddle. When we’re snuggling he will push his soft head right up to our face to give us a kiss. He will rest his head on a warm face and relish in our touch. Hunter will make someone a devoted companion for years to come. He is very healthy and has many years left to live and love.
We are looking forward to showing off our handsome boy at the upcoming PetSmart event on March 8. It will be a fun day!
Hi! It's me, Hunter, again! I had a busy weekend playing fetch and making snow angels. I like to play, play, play and don’t want to stop until my human friends go inside. My foster mom said I act like a three year old dog and have lots of energy. I can run up and down our steep hill in the backyard. I'm not your typical 10 year old dog that lays around and looks handsome. I like to have fun and be active!
I want to apologize to my fans who went to Eagan PetSmart to see me on Saturday. I was there, but only for 20 minutes. All those dogs and people made me nervous and mom had to take me home. She found out that I am “leash reactive” to other dogs. Many dogs are like that and we are going to work on this behavior. That means that I will get lots of treats when we go for walks! Yippee! Foster mom thinks I’m like this because I wasn’t exposed to new situations or dogs when I was growing up.
Another thing I wanted to tell my friends about is my early days before I became a RAGOM dog. When I was growing up I was neglected and lived outside. By the time I was two years old my fur was so matted that it couldn't even be brushed. I’m still a little nervous when I get groomed but I'm overcoming my fears. My foster family is gentle and patient with me and I'm learning that life is good! I can't wait until I find my soulmate. I know they're out there. It will be a friend that I haven't met yet. If you would like to come and meet me just e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and my foster family will arrange a date for us!
Spring is in the air and I am one happy dog! First of all I want to give a big thank you to my sponsor: DRC (Data Recognition Corporation) in Maple Grove, MN. I am truly honored! I am very excited because I get to visit DRC and meet lots of new people! Foster mom and dad will tell them all about RAGOM and how they help dogs like me find their forever homes.
This nice warm weather has been wonderful! Robbie, Katie, and I get more time to play outside and sniff for animals hiding under the shed. I saw some woodchuck tracks today by our wood pile! When I meet that bossy woodchuck I’m going to chase him out of our yard! There are lots of new smells now that the snow is melting. It’s still pretty slushy out, but I don’t care if I get dirty. When I come inside I let mom wash off my feet and dry my fur. I stand very still and then we give each other smiles and kisses!
My foster mom and I took a long walk today. I got lots of treats for minding my manners. I saw a dog across the street and I didn’t bark so I got a treat. I saw a dog behind me and stayed quiet so I got another treat. When mom said “Hunter, watch me” I looked into her eyes and then I got another treat! When I saw strangers getting out of cars I wagged and got more treats. I’m learning to be polite. I like going for walks! After our walk foster mom trimmed my nails. She was amazed at how polite I was! She was so proud of me that she gave me some more treats. My tummy is pretty full right now! Life is good!
I haven’t had any more pizza parties with Katie the Black Lab. In fact, I haven’t done much counter surfing at all. My foster family is very careful not to leave food within my reach. It’s hard for an old dog to resist temptations so one day I just had to try munching on a bar of Dial Soap with Green Tea & Vitamin E. It was so good I ate the whole thing! Foster mom told me “No!” and then taught me the song “I’m Forever Blowing Bubbles”. She thinks I have an iron stomach because I didn’t even burp!
It sure is fun being a RAGOM dog and having a foster family who loves me and is helping me become the best dog that I can be. It will be even more fun to have a forever mom or dad of my own. While I wait for that special person to adopt me I will work hard on being polite. I’m not quite ready to go to a RAGOM event yet, but you can meet me for a play date at my foster home in Golden Valley.
I hope to see you soon!
Hi there! It’s me, Hunter again!
Well, so much for spring fever! Looks like it’s winter again. The snow is piling up in our backyard and Woody woodchuck has gone back into his den. Dang! I was planning to catch him today. He is such a pest!!
I love playing in the snow so I can wait a few more weeks for spring and for Woody to appear again. In the meantime, I’m hoping that my foster mom will have another sledding party. She said she doesn’t mind making a fool of herself and letting us dogs chase her down the hill!
Next week I have an appointment at the spa. You know- shampoo, blow dry, trim, nails, ears, etc. Golden Retrievers require lots of grooming. Did I tell you that I shed all year long? Most Golden lovers know this, but just wanted to make sure you knew before you make plans to meet me.
My foster mom and her two resident dogs are heading up north for a few days to check on her cabin in the woods. I’ll be keeping foster dad company and have him all to myself! “Male bonding” he called it. We’ll hang out, play fetch, have a beer, and talk about guy things like fishing and hunting.
Time to go pester my foster mom to take us out to play. Did I tell you that she puts pheasant scent on our tennis balls? Then we can sniff and find them in the deep snow. After all, Golden Retrievers have been bred since the late 1800’s to be hunting dogs and have a very keen sense of smell. That also explains why we love carrying things in our mouths: we’re pretending we retrieved a pheasant or duck for our master!
Got to go sniff and retrieve now! Bye!
P.s.- I want to say a big Golden “thank you” to Data Recognition Corporation for sponsoring me and helping pay my medical bills. I am very excited and honored because I’m going there next week to meet my sponsors in person! I am a very lucky RAGOM dog!
I am so confused about the weather! Is it winter or spring? On Sunday I saw grass, went for a long walk, and laid on the deck in the sun. Today it’s snowing! Oh well, that’s okay, because I’ll play outside whether it’s snowing or sunny. I guess it doesn’t matter because I have a very nice warm fur coat. My foster mom thinks I am really funny to watch in the snow because I like to shovel up snow with my mouth. She said I look like a snow plow or a whale eating krill.
It’s time for another update about my life. Remember last week I thought I saw a woodchuck come out of his burrow? Well, Mom finally saw the critter for herself and she said it’s not a woodchuck, it’s a bunny! I’m really disappointed because I wanted to meet that big pesty woodchuck face to face! Bunnies are pretty fast and I’m not sure I can catch this one, but I will certainly try. I tried to chase some geese when we were on a walk, but Mom said “no” and made me sit still until they flew away. Next weekend I’m going up north and will probably see some deer, so I’ll keep you posted on my wildlife adventures. In the meantime, Robbie and I have fun chasing Katie around the yard. We bark at her while we run. She’s fast and feisty but someday we’re going to catch her! I almost got her today but then she turned her head and snapped at me! I hate it when the girls tease me!
I had one of the best days of my life last week! I got to visit my sponsors and friends at DRC (Data Recognition Corporation)! Wow, was that fun! I felt like a celebrity! You see, they have my story and pictures on the DRC intranet so I have become very famous. When we arrived at their office we “checked in” at the front desk and met the receptionist. Then we got escorted upstairs by Jenny, my new friend at DRC. There was a table in a big open area with a sign that said “Meet Hunter today at 1pm” and my picture was on it! Soon lots of people came by to meet me. It was like a dream come true to have so many people telling me how handsome I was, petting me and giving me treats. I was very happy! I met so many new friends that day that I can’t even count them all. I even got my picture taken with Mom and Jenny. Many thanks to Data Recognition Corporation for sponsoring me and inviting me for a visit! It was lots of fun and I hope I can go back there again some time! Next time I won’t need my mentor Robbie with me. I will be just fine by myself!
Hunter, Mom, Jenny, and Robbie at DRC
Hi friends! It's me, Hunter again, still trying to decide if it's winter or spring. I had a great time up north at our home in the woods over the weekend. The weather on Saturday was warm and spring like. I sniffed around in the woods looking for squirrels and deer, chewed on branches, and played fetch. Then on Sunday it snowed! That didn't stop our fun though. Mom didn't want to go out and play but my fur brother Robbie fetched her hat and scarf out of the basket so she said, "Ok kids, let's go out and play in the snow!" Away we went! Mom hooked me to a 30' tie out so I had lots of room to wander around and play fetch. I was even able to catch the ball in the air! After a long playtime in the snow it was time to drive back to Minneapolis. Robbie, Katie and I had fun riding in the back of car and looking out the windows.
RAGOM is celebrating senior dogs this week so I hope all of you had a chance to read about Boomer, Max and Dusty on the website. They are senior dogs like me. I really liked the last sentence of their story: "The sweetest and most tender friendship is one that is condensed into a shorter time, as if all the love over a lifetime is saved for the very end, the very best."
I'm waiting here in Golden Valley for a special friend to adopt me so I can share my very best love with them. Ask anyone who has ever had a senior dog like me and they will tell you that we are the most loveable and sweetest of all. Even if we are only with you for a few months or a few years, we will make each and every day special.
Maybe I'm the kind of dog you need to fill a void in your heart. I am devoted and very affectionate and you will never be lonely as long as I'm around. I am the perfect dog for a single person who needs a friend to keep them company. If you think I might be your soul mate then just e-mail email@example.com and they will try to make a love connection for us.
So many squirrels, so little time...
Playtime in the snow!
Greetings to all of Hunter's fans and a special hello and thank you to his sponsors: Data Recognition Corporation. I would like to take him back there for a visit. He really enjoyed being "King for the Day" and was treated like royalty by all his new friends.
Hunter has settled in really well in our home and he likes our two resident dogs, Robbie and Katie. Robbie and Hunter enjoy lying on the deck in the sun or sniffing for animals, but when Hunter is with Katie they like to run, run, run. Katie has successfully engaged Hunter many times in "chase me"
games but he still can't catch her. He makes us laugh because he gets mad at Katie because she is always just beyond his reach.
Squirrels, squirrels and more squirrels! Hunter can't wait to get outside every morning to start looking for them. He thinks he's a cat and tries to climb trees to catch his prey. Now we know why Hunter is such a physically fit senior dog: he has been chasing squirrels for the last 10 years! He also loves fetch and would play outside all day if we let him.
Hunter will be going to obedience class in May. I think the social interaction in a structured setting will be good for him. We can work on some of his grumpy reactions to other dogs on leash. Three of my coworkers are bringing their dogs so Hunter will have a chance to make some new "doggie" friends.
Thanks for checking on Hunter and let firstname.lastname@example.org know if you are interested in meeting this special Golden!
Spring has finally arrived here in Golden Valley and Hunter loves being outside as much as possible! The three dogs had a great time chewing on their giant marrow bones in the yard yesterday and got along very well. Hunter did not show any signs of resource guarding. When I asked to look at his bone he readily complied. After examining his slimy treasure I said “oh, what a nice bone!!” and he wagged his tail and looked very happy.
We had fun roasting marshmallows last night in our firepit. Hunter was a good boy and didn’t try stealing any food but laid happily near a chair and chewed on sticks. This morning he was up bright and early to check out the remains in the pit. He came back covered with ashes and a big smile on his face. I think he found some tasty remains! He sat politely when I washed his face and then gave me a big kiss. He is very affectionate and bonds quickly with people. Hunter will make someone a very devoted companion.
Hunter would love being the only dog in the family so he could be the center of his owner’s attention. He gets along fine with our dogs, but would rather be at our feet than interacting with his canine siblings. He is allowed free roam for the 8 hours when we are at work and doesn’t chew or have any accidents in the house. Hunter is learning the rules of our home. He no longer helps change the toilet paper roll and has stopped rearranging the soap in the bathtub. Once we train him not to help wash the dishes he will be a perfect houseguest!
Hunter’s forever home should be a quiet place with adults only and no cats. We think he must have lived out in the country at one time because he loves being up north and away from the bustling city life. He will need a fenced yard if he lives in the city but would probably not need one if he lives out in the country. Hunter’s recall is excellent and he learns commands very quickly. He is very intelligent and loves to learn. On May 6th we start Basic Dog Obedience One class so stay tuned to Hunter’s next adventure! We’re betting that he will be the smartest dog in the class!
One of the joys of being RAGOM foster parents is getting to know our foster dogs. Some dogs are fairly well adjusted and make an easy transition to a new home but others come with baggage and emotional scars from the past. Dogs who have been mistreated may be fearful and have a harder time adjusting. We try to help our foster dogs learn to trust and accept our love while we search for the perfect forever homes for them. There is nothing more rewarding than seeing a once shy, frightened dog now walk with confidence and his head held high!
We don’t know much about Hunter’s life between birth and age two but something bad happened to him, causing him to be very nervous around kids. The behaviorist we consulted said that Hunter was probably teased or abused by children when he was young. We do know that he was living outside and possibly on a tie out or in an outdoor kennel during his first two years of life. It’s sad to think that someone would knowingly harm a dog. Hunter is totally relaxed and happy around adults but very frightened when he’s near children. We are working with him to overcome his fears. When we go for walks we usually see children. Hunter gets rewarded with a treat if he can look at kids without reacting in a negative way. He’s learning that kids aren’t scary and we will keep him safe.
We’ve also discovered that Hunter is afraid of white styrofoam coolers. We had one on the counter in the kitchen and when he saw it he started barking and ducking his head as if someone was going to throw it at him. One can only imagine what nightmare from the past came to mind when he saw that cooler! Poor Hunter! I quickly put Hunter outside, unloaded the cooler and then put it out of sight. Who would have ever thought a white cooler would frighten him so much!
Hunter is not ready to attend public events yet due to his fear of children and crowded places so we don’t want to stress him out unnecessarily. He will be enjoying his days here in Golden Valley and available for arranged play dates. Contact email@example.com if you are interested in meeting our sweet foster dog.
Hunter attended the first class of Dog Obedience Level One last night. There were seven other dogs there. Hunter learned to lie quietly within feet of the little dog next to us. We were so proud of Hunter! He responded to corrections with the Gentle Leader, relaxed, learned new commands, and did a great job! Our teacher Chuck said to the dogs: “Today is the first day of the rest of our life.” How true! We know that Hunter isn’t too old to learn and will make someone a beloved companion some day. We will be working on our homework this week with Hunter and look forward to going back next week for another hour of socializing and learning with his new canine friends.
We would like to thank Data Recognition Corporation for sponsoring Hunter and giving him the opportunity to visit them in March!
A love story.....
Have you ever fallen in love when you least expect it? Well, this happened to me today! But not with a person, but with my handsome foster dog Hunter!
When I first met Hunter I knew he was a very special dog: affectionate, silly, intelligent, and at times challenging. After all, less than a month after we got him he stole and ate an entire pizza! I thought to myself: how could I possibly love a dog who would snatch food right in front of me, or munch the tops off my hostas, or eat soap and toilet paper? Love is a mysterious thing. Sometimes the most challenging foster dogs are the ones I love the most! It has been a joy to watch Hunter learn new commands, conquer old habits, and overcome fears.
Yes, today was the day I realized how much I love Hunter! Foster dad took him up north for the weekend. I called today to see how Hunter was doing and was told that somehow he had unlatched the heavy clip on his 30’ cable tie out! I expected to hear that he had run away into the woods. Foster dad said he looked outside and Hunter was lying calmly by the deck as if there were no better place in the whole world to be then near his family! At that moment I knew that I was in love with Hunter! It will be hard to say goodbye when he finds the perfect forever home; but I know there are other dogs like Hunter who need my love and a place to call “home” even if it is only for a few short months. The circle of love will continue and I am grateful to RAGOM for rescuing dogs like Hunter!
I’m sorry I haven’t written to you in a while, but I have been a very busy guy. I went up north a couple weekends and have also been studying a lot because I’m in school! I go to Alpha Academy. Foster mom said I am the smartest dog in the class! I graduate next week. I will get a diploma and a special bone from our teacher Chuck. When I see Mom bring out the special treat bag she uses for class I get super excited! I love going to school and seeing my new friends there! Their names are Otter, Tanner, Cody, Bella, Avery, and a cute little Australian Shepherd.
Another thing I love doing besides going to dog school is playing in the yard. The other night foster dad played fetch with Robbie, Katie, and me for one hour! We had so much fun! I was really fast and got the ball lots of times; sometimes even before Katie the Black Lab could get it. If you think a 10 year old dog is too old to run and play, you’re wrong! I love to play fetch every day. If it’s raining and we’re inside, I lie quietly on the rug and chew on bones. My foster family tells me I am a good dog! They also say I am very affectionate. I love being near them. The other day I tried to put my head on mom’s lap while she sat near the computer. I put my head through the opening of her chair and almost got stuck! She said I looked really cute but she couldn’t get her camera quick enough to take my picture.
Thanks for reading about my life as a RAGOM dog. If you think you’d be the perfect mom or dad for me please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and we can meet!
We will be going up north this weekend. Hunter loves to go up there and look for animals in our woods. The water should be warm enough for swimming too! Hunter is a very polite house guest and obeys the rules. The dogs aren’t allowed on furniture at our home up north and Hunter has never even tried to go on the couch. What a good boy!
Hunter continues to love playing fetch! It’s hard to believe that he’s 10 years old because he has more energy than our 5 year old Golden! Hunter has good eyesight and is very coordinated too. He can catch a ball in the air almost every time. I think we’ll try a game of Frisbee tonight!
These are the things that Hunter needs in his forever home:
- Dog savvy mom and/or dad
- Adults only
- No cats or small dogs
- Large breed dog friends would be fine but not necessary
- Fenced yard
A big thank you to Data Recognition Corporation for sponsoring Hunter. More updates after our weekend in the woods!
Never too old to learn!
That's our saying when we talk about Hunter! But who ever heard of a 10 year old Golden Retriever that doesn't know how to swim? We thought they could all swim the minute they jumped off a dock, but no way! If a dog hasn't been exposed to water at a young age, they might be more fearful of swimming. But with the help of good instructors they can overcome their fears!
I took Hunter out to a quiet local lake near our cabin. I tied his gentle leader to a thick 20 foot nylon rope and attached the rope to the dock. My dogs jumped into the water after a tennis ball. Hunter, thinking he should jump off the dock too, took off, landed in the water and started panicking! He flailed his front paws up into the air and had a look on his face that said "Help! I can't swim! Helpppppp!!!!" I couldn't help but laugh as I quickly hauled him back to shore with the help of his rope. He wanted so badly to swim out into the deeper water like my dogs, but try as he might, he just couldn't get the courage. I threw the ball a little further for him each time, but he would stop wading the minute he realized the water would be over his head. He cried and cried but just couldn't overcome his fear.
The next day I took the three dogs swimming again. Hunter wouldn't jump off the dock or wade past the shallow water. He cried and whined. But all of the sudden, after watching my dogs fetch balls and swim for 30 minutes, Hunter ventured into the deeper water. He started dog paddling toward a tennis ball! Then he picked it up, swam back to shore and proudly dropped it at my feet. He was so excited he started barking as if to say: "I did it, I did it! I can swim!!" I threw balls for him for another 30 minutes, each time a little further into the lake. He had so much fun!
Hunter was exhausted when we returned to the cabin and he fell asleep immediately. I noticed his cute feet doing the dog paddle while he napped!
Old dogs CAN learn new tricks. And they can learn to swim too!
Stay tuned for next week's update on Dock Jumping 101!
Walking around in shallow water
Following the swim team, but still too scared to take the plunge
Hunter overcomes his fears. "Look Mom! I'm swimming!"
It’s me- Mr. Handsome Hunter! Just wanted all my fans to know that I am sporting a new punk hairstyle this week. I have a “hot spot” above my left ear and the vet had to shave some of my head. Foster mom was so surprised at how well I behaved at the doctor’s office. I didn’t even flinch when I felt the shaver. After the vet finished shaving me and checking my owie she gave me a big treat! I’ve discovered that going to the vet isn’t scary like it used to be. Dr. K and Dr. E are very gentle with me. They give me lots of treats because I am so good! I am also wearing a stylish cone with a festive red, white and blue tie for the holidays. You wouldn’t believe it, but I can still play fetch while I am wearing the cone. Aren’t I clever?
I still love swimming but haven’t mustered up enough courage to jump off the dock. When I lean over and look into the water it seems deep and scary! Robbie and Katie said they will give me another Dock Jumping 101 lesson. They are very patient teachers. Once I conquer this fear I will jump off every time! You’ll see!
I’m sending doggie kisses to all my friends at Data Recognition Corporation! I sure miss all of you! Thank you for sponsoring me and I hope you and my other fans are following all of my summer adventures.
Thanks for checking up on me. I’m still dreaming about my forever home and hope to meet that special person soon!
Happy summer to everyone!
Did you know that I was one of the featured dogs on the RAGOM display board at the Pride Festival? Lots of people saw my picture and read my story. There was a photo of me swimming for the first time in my life! Thank you Shannon for choosing me to be one of the special dogs that weekend!
My foster mom and dad went fishing last week and my human sibling Emily took care of us dogs. Robbie, Katie and I had a blast with Emily! She took us for a fun adventure to Bassett Creek. We sniffed all kinds of good smells, walked through the trail in the woods, met other dogs, and then came to a pond at the end of the path. Emily couldn't let me off leash to swim (RAGOM rule) but It felt good to get my toes wet because it was a very hot day!
I met some of Emily's friends and they thought I was a really nice. Every day I had a snuggle time with Emily. She really loves me and doesn't understand why I haven't been adopted. I guess that's because my forever home will be a very special family and they just haven't found me yet.
Last night Dad played a fierce game of ball with Robbie and I. I was hogging the balls and Robbie didn't even try to grab them away from me. He respects his elders. Meanwhile, Mom is up north with Katie the Black Lab. I miss Katie (and mom too). I always give Katie a big kiss when we see each other. Shhh! Please don't tell her that I am in love!
Wish me luck with Dock Jumping 101 class this weekend. I hope mom can get a picture of me flying through the air like Superman!
Robbie: Good morning Hunter! Did you hear the big thunderstorm last night?
Hunter: Heck no! I was sleeping like a baby. A boom and a crack won't wake me up!
Robbie: Really? Gee, I was scared and started walking around the house to find a place to hide. The shower door was closed so I couldn't go in there.
Hunter: You sissy! Thunder and lightening won't hurt you, as long as you aren't out swimming or golfing.
Robbie: Very funny Hunter. I don't golf, but I do like to swim!
Hunter: Just remember if you hear thunder get out of the water and find a safe place. Nope, I'm not afraid of thunder or fireworks like you!
Robbie: Yea, but you were too chicken to jump off the dock.
Hunter: I know, but someday I'm going to go flying off that dock and you're going to think I'm Super Dog!
Robbie: I hope so.
Hunter: After my hot spot heals up I can go swimming again with you and Katie girl.
Robbie: Ok. What can we do now then? I'm bored. Heh- wanna ask Mom to take us out into the meadow to chase after balls? Your owie won't get wet out there?
Hunter: Ok bro! Let's go bug Mom. Give her a big cheesy smile and then the old "pant pant I'm bored and sad look."
Robbie: You got it! I'm an expert at those sappy expressions..... Come on Katie and Hunter. Let's go find Mom. IT'S PLAYTIME!
DOG TALK PART 2:
Hunter: Heh Katie- thanks for going swimming with me this week.
Katie: Sure, no problem. That was fun! Was I a good teacher for your Dock Jumping Class?
Hunter: Yes, but after one jump I was scared to go off the dock again. You make it look so simple.
Katie: It's easy Hunter. Just stand at the end of the dock closest to shore, take a couple deep breaths, and run like the wind after the tennis ball. Before you realize it you'll fly into the air off the end of the dock. Splash! You'll land in the nice cool water and then start hydroplaning toward the ball doing your fastest dog paddle ever.
Hunter: I'm too scared! That's why I stood at the end of the dock and barked at you. I was upset that I was such a chicken.
Katie: That's OK Hunter. You'll be brave someday. Remember in June you were too scared to swim out over your head? Look at you now! You go all the way past the weed line into the really deep water. Not bad for a senior citizen!
Hunter: Heh, watch it little Bo Peep! Show some respect to your elders!
Katie: Sorry Mr. Hunter, Sir. I'll give you another dock jumping lesson this weekend, OK?
Hunter: OK Katie. Thank you. You're a sweetheart, even though you aren't a Golden Retriever!
Greetings from the North Woods. Well, to tell you the truth I'm not really that far north, but about 150 miles north of the Twin Cities. I sure do love coming up here to my foster parents' cabin! Lots of wildlife, peaceful days, nature walks, and swimming. Speaking of swimming, I had another dock jumping lesson today from Katie.
I am still having trouble stepping out of my comfort zone and taking the plunge off the dock. The good thing is that I am no longer afraid to swim out over my head and I even got to a few tennis balls before the younger dogs. Who says seniors can't be fit and fast! Ha! I showed that Katie Girl a thing or two today about speed.
The scent of fall is in the air and that means that foster mom will be going back to work soon and we won't be able to go up north as much. Oh well, I guess that means more naps for me on the couch. Luckily we can still play fetch in the backyard in Golden Valley and maybe even have another dog party! I like parties, especially if there is food involved!
Well, got to go relax on the deck and dry off now. I am one wet pupper! The sun is coming out and as mom always says: "it's a nice day for dogs!"
Catch you later!
Hunter has been a busy boy this month! He’s gone up north several times to swim, had out of town guests, and also met some new dog friends. We have discovered that Hunter gets along fine with small dogs as long as they are given a proper introduction and he realizes that they are dogs and not prey. Below is a picture of “Shiba” who is owned by another RAGOM volunteer. This little dog is a white Shiba Inu who was rescued from a shelter. At first Hunter thought Shiba was a little white fox but once he was introduced on leash to this cute little girl he realized that she was just a small dog. He was then allowed off leash and they sniffed and became friends. Hooray for Hunter! Not one growl or snap or anything at the little one. Good boy Hunter!
Hunter went to a RAGOM volunteer meeting on Sunday. He met many dogs and was very well behaved. He loved the social interaction with his new canine friends. At one point during the meeting he snooped in someone’s open purse and pulled out a tennis ball. We had a good laugh! Hunter even got to be one of the demo dogs to show how to introduce dogs to one another. All went well and Hunter did a good job!
Our foster boy has come a long way since we got him in January. He now enjoys car rides, meeting new dogs and people, obedience training, and the great outdoors. He no longer eats soap or toilet paper and his counter surfing has diminished. Hunter will sit quietly while his food bowl is filled and will lie down on command during our mealtimes. We have a couple more months of beautiful weather ahead so we will be going up north for the weekends so Hunter can go swimming and explore the woods. He is in great shape for a 10+ year old dog and loves the water and exploring the woods!
Hunter’s furever home should have:
- No cats or small children
- Fenced yard if in the city
- Confident dog savvy owner
- Time to give love and attention
- Time for fetch and other games
- Optional: access to quiet lake for swimming/retrieving
Thanks for checking in on Hunter. He’ll be having another dock jumping lesson from Katie the Black Lab this weekend. Wish him luck!
Allie, Little Shiba, and Hunter
Greetings from the North Woods of Minnesota!
Hi! It's me, Hunter! Just checking in with all my fans out there. I am up north with my foster mom and foster siblings Katie and Robbie. The weather has been perfect: blue skies, 70's, nice breeze, and no bugs at all! What more could a RAGOM dog ask for? I know what else I would love to have: a forever home I could call my own. While I wait for that special family I am busy learning to be the best dog in the world!
Last weekend, as you may know, I proved that I can be trusted to be polite around small dogs and a big bunch of dogs. Today something very, very important happened. I know it must have been important because Mom started shouting really loud at the lake. I think the people fishing across the lake heard her. She said: "Hooray Hunter! Good job boy! You jumped off the dock for the first time in your life!" I guess that was pretty special and I am very proud that I conquered another one of my fears. In fact, I liked dock jumping so much that I tried it again and again and again! I ran to the end of the dock and jumped off every time Mom threw the ball. She said tomorrow she is going to bring her camera so she can get proof for all my fans to see!
Well, signing off from a very breezy, Breezy Point, Minnesota!
Hi everyone, it’s me, Hunter! I am back in the Twin Cities now because my summer of fun is over. Foster mom had to return to work. Now we can only go to our cabin on the weekends.
We had a busy week up north with many guests. First there was dad’s friend Frank and his dad. They spent one night and then left for a Canadian fishing trip. Then our friend Mari and her RAGOM dog Meg 07-171 came up with my human sibling Emily. It sure was fun having another dog visit us. Meg and I got along great. She is really pretty, sweet and kind of shy. I followed her around and gave her some kisses. I also smiled and winked whenever she looked at me. I wanted to make a really good first impression. Maybe she thinks I’m handsome!
One day Joan and Shelby, some RAGOM friends, came to visit for the afternoon. They wanted to meet me and Meg and watch us jump off the dock. I was super brave and showed off for them. Meg jumped off once but was too scared to try again. I told Meg that if she practices a lot she can overcome her fears like I did. I’ll give her a dock jumping lesson next time she visits us.
We also had fun up north exploring the wild prairie in back of our woods. We took a long walk in the tall grass and saw places where deer had been resting. I love going up to the cabin and can’t wait to go again!
Hope all of you are having a good week. Be sure to e-mail email@example.com if you think I might be the perfect dog for your family!
P.S.- A big hello to my nice sponsors at DRC!
Yes, it’s me, Hunter. I hung out in the Twin Cities this weekend so we made plans to do something different everyday! Friday night I hosted a dog party. I kept this one fairly small with only 8 dogs and 5 humans present. We all had so much fun that my next dog party will be a grand event but small compared to RAGOM picnic next weekend. Let me tell you about our party.
Liberty 08-410 and Molly, aka the Blond Beauties, bonded instantly and ran and rumbled throughout the evening. Sam 07-690 watched the ruckus from the sidelines or in a crate by the garden where he felt safe and secure. We all took turns checking on him throughout the night and poked our heads into the crate and gave him a high five. He was happy and enjoyed watching us run around.
Jerry Bear 08-175, aka Mr. Sociable, was the life of the party and it was obvious he’s used to being a “Party Animal”. Ha, ha! He schmoozed with all of us and got along with all the canines and people.
Meg 07-171 and Katie, aka Pretty Princesses, hung out with the humans for attention (or by chance a morsel of food found it’s way to the ground).
Robbie and I, aka The Kings, watched the young dogs act like fools and scolded them if they got out of line. At one point I told Molly to settle down and she laid in the hostas and took a much needed time out. Kids.... Got to love ‘em!
Saturday afternoon I visited RAGOM dogs at the Plymouth PetSmart. I met a lot of new dogs and people. I smiled and wagged the whole time. I saw the Blond Beauty (Lady Liberty) there and said hello. RAGOM folks were impressed at how sociable I was. My foster parents tell me I am like a new dog now and much calmer and more confident. I just needed someone to show me love and patience and help me become all that I could be.
I’m hoping Sunday will be a beautiful day so I can go swimming with Jerry Bear and his brother Lakota.
Thanks for checking in on me! Hope to see all of you at the RAGOM Fun Run and Picnic on September 20th. Look for me near the Silent Auction. My foster mom will be helping out there and I will be praying that I win something awesome!
See you next Saturday!
Hunter came to live with us on one of the coldest days in January. He was a senior dog who could be very affectionate and loving but at the same time hated anyone wearing a laboratory coat, would not allow anyone to brush his tail, and had absolutely no manners at all. All we could think is oh, no- this is going to be a real challenge to turn him around! Well, we have always liked challenging foster dogs and you can be sure that Hunter was one of them! But throughout the winter, spring, and summer we saw a metamorphosis take place in this handsome senior Golden Retriever. As he learned to trust and love us, a new dog emerged from his soul. His true Golden personality came out and his face took on a whole new countenance. He felt loved, secure and safe within our home. We fell as much in love with Hunter as he did with us! Our dogs Robbie and Katie welcomed Hunter into their pack. They patiently taught him to swim and dock jump this summer. This fall they will show him how to hunt for tennis balls in the woods near our cabin. Life will be good for all of us and I am proud to announce that Hunter has found his forever home with his foster family in Golden Valley, Minnesota!
A special thanks to Data Recognition Corporation for sponsoring Hunter and letting him be the guest of honor at their company in May!
Greetings to all of our RAGOM friends and families!
We just wanted to thank you for rescuing our foster dog Hunter 05-00-146 who we officially adopted two years ago at age 10 (almost 11). For those of you who have never known the love of a senior rescue dog, let us assure you that although your time with them may be short, they will give you the love of a lifetime- the best which is saved for last.
We don't know much about Hunter's early years before he became a RAGOM dog, but we believe he was abused and neglected at a young age. He came into RAGOM at age two and was so neglected that a brush couldn't go through his matted fur. After living with a couple different adoptive families, he came to us as a very anxious and misunderstood dog. Hunter has learned many things during his time with us. He learned to swim, play with other dogs, graduated from obedience class, but most importantly, he learned that people would no longer hurt him.
As you begin the New Year, we hope that you will consider adopting a senior RAGOM dog. We promise that you won't be disappointed!
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
The "T" Family
Greetings to all my RAGOM friends!
Hi everyone! Remember me? My name is Hunter and I am a senior adopted RAGOM dog who will be 14 years old in January 2012. I've been living with my adoptive family (my former foster family) for 3.5 years now and life is good! I had a clean bill of health at my last checkup. I'm slowing down a little but I still love to swim, chase balls and squirrels, snuggle with my family, and of course, chew on a good bone!
We've spent the summer up north and boy do I love it up here! There are deer, chipmunks, bunnies, and lots of birds to watch. We go on long walks and I can sniff where the deer have slept and try to find animals hiding in the bushes. I especially love the quiet nights when all I can hear are the owls hooting and animals stirring. I love my new life and want to thank everyone at RAGOM who helped rescue me.
If you have never adopted a senior dog like me you just don't know what you're missing. We old guys (and gals) will give you unconditional love and all we ask in return is for you to spend some Golden moments with us as we go through this last journey of our lives.
I hope I will be able to send you a greeting like this next year, but if my time has come to cross the Rainbow Bridge, please don't cry for me. I've enjoyed my years as a RAGOM dog. Instead of shedding tears, please help out another rescue dog in my honor and my life will not have been lived in vain.
Gentle kisses from your friend,
When we adopted Hunter in September 2008 we had no idea how long we would have this beautiful senior boy. But we knew that no matter how short the time, we would give him all of our love and cherish each day. Last week we celebrated Hunter's 14th birthday! Senior Goldens save their best love for last.
We love you Hunter! Love, Mom and Dad
Enjoying a beautiful summer day
Dreaming about Christmas
Happy Birthday Hunter!
On August 10, 2012, our beloved 14½ year old RAGOM dog Hunter was helped across the Rainbow Bridge. He was a happy dog all the way to the end and never suffered any pain.
We think Hunter got his namesake because he loves to "hunt". Anything that moved was fair game for him. Because he had a strong prey drive, Hunter had to be kept on leash up at our cabin in the woods. Once he jumped out of our car window to chase a squirrel! He was very agile for a senior dog!