11/29/05: Meet Ozzy, a neutered 1 1/2 year old male purebred Golden. He’ll be microchipped shortly, so everything will be in order. Ozzy is the reason many of us become involved in rescues; a wonderful puppy (dog) is abused and thinks strange humans mean him harm and needs to learn to trust us. It is evident Ozzy really wants to trust people, but he knows first hand, bad things come from people, too. Belts and other things that snap and some strangers really frighten him.
Ozzy was initially surrendered to a humane society as a puppy last winter because he was gun shy; we’re thinking Ozzy was the lucky one! His collar was starting to become embedded into his neck and it was apparent people were scary. He was loved and coddled as a patient at one of the metro vet tech schools, neutered, tested for allergies (of which he did test positive to some foods and ragweed, but has been treated primarily with just a good dry dog food and an occasional Benadryl). He then was blessed to go home with a very loving someone from the school. They worked with him and taught him the wonders of the Golden life but with the addition of Ozzy, they were one dog over their limit … and got caught. Ozzy was loved and learned to love the parents, 4 boys, ages 7 to 16 and fit in with their 3 dogs and cats. Of course, his Favorite person in the whole world is one of the boys!
Ozzy is a beautiful dark golden color, with incredible eyes that tell you “please be gentle, I SO want to trust you!” He stands a very tall 27” at the shoulders (and is a little overweight), so is a very big boy. It does make it VERY easy to pet him without even bending over! He Does know how big he is though and hasn’t run into or stepped on the other dogs or us.
When Ozzy arrived last nite, he was scared of our world. When we got up this morning, he awoke a different dog - happy, silly, very puppy-ish playing in the season’s first snow, with an incredible recall – for me. We’ll be working on that response so it’s to all of us here and hopefully, to some willing strangers. We found he loves squeaky toys so expect to see some photos with his green and yellow football!
He’s quite reserved with people he doesn’t know and reacts by running away and hides (behind furniture or his human). He’s never given his former family any indication he would harm anyone, even when cornered – “just let me get away and hide” and if cornered, “Please don’t hurt me”! He seems to want to trust strangers but his experiences say “Careful! Be prepared to run.” He’s crate trained so we’re using that as his safe place. He also appears to be wonderfully housebroken; barking at the door when he needs to go out. He’s fine with everyone but our cat, who’s scared of strange dogs and runs; we think Ozzy would play the chase game if allowed. He is fine with our other dog savvy cat.
Stay tuned as we learn more about Ozzy and what his ideal home might be.
Ozzy is definitely making progress; today someone came to meet him and it took just a few minutes for him to warm right up and decide he wanted to stick around and be loved up! Oz will likely always see new things and people as a bit scary, but it has become evident that if his security blanket is with him (presently me), he seems able to handle almost anything! He doesn’t seem to have a mean bone in his big body.
He is wonderfully housebroken, not having made any mistakes since arriving a week ago, even though he was very anxious when he first arrived. He’ll gladly run to the door to let you know he needs to go out and if you don’t notice will bark. He’s not overly energetic (but remember, he’s still just a youthful 1&1/2). He seems very happy with 2-3 good romps outside for his daily exercise so seems a very manageable energy level. He will gladly chase a ball or his squeaky toy (although sometimes just prefers to carry it around). He’s a quick learner provided you make your expectations clear and is very treat and praise motivated. He is an observer and will watch the resident dogs do something and then follow suit (He thinks helping chase the squirrels from the bird feeders is a great job! As is running around in the snow being a snowplow – like the resident Corgi). He walks well on the leash and with just a gentle reminder, doesn’t pull. We’ll tackle nails and feet hairs this week.
His crate is a wonderfully safe place. All visitors have been asked to treat him as though he’s invisible since new people are still scary beings. Since doing this there’s no more alarm barking or need to hide (other than in his kennel). He is still hesitant of my husband but we’re hopeful that now Tim has become the treat dispenser, he’ll soon realize he really is a good human! (Not good for the overweight dog but hey, one thing at a time!)
Ozzy’s world has been a scary place with few people he could trust! Because of his fears, he likely won’t become the gregarious Golden. He’ll likely always see the world cautiously or reserved. It’s obvious that once you earn his trust, it’s yours forever (along with his love and that’s something he never tires of telling you … how Much he loves you!!)
Ozzy does guard his food from other dogs if they try to get into his bowl, so in the interest of safety for everyone, most of all Ozzy, his forever home should not have children younger than 12 (or old enough to understand his need for privacy when he eats). He thinks it’s just fine to eat in his crate though. Ozzy will likely always need a ‘safe’ place he can observe from, when people come to visit his home. He wants to be included but needs to know there’s a safe place he can watch from. Our guess is sooner vs later, his curiosity will overcome any fear and he’ll become a willing and friendly participant, especially when he learns with consistency that most strange people are GOOD! This will be in Ozzy’s own time; and we don’t know what that is.
What a fun and happy boy! It’s so fun to watch him blossoming!!
Ozzy went home with Ozzy's pick for "Man of the Year"! (I'm sorry I didn't get a picture.) Their transition is going wonderfully and Ozzy seems to know he's where he belongs; and with this new found confidence, we're betting even Ozzy's fear of strangers will become a thing of the past. Best Wishes Jeff and Ozzy!
Yeah for you Ozzy!
From Ozzy's forever family...
Ozzy came into my life 3-1/2 years ago. Ozzy was purchased as a puppy by a hunter, Ozzy is gun shy, the hunter tried to make him not gun shy. Imagine the worse, Ozzy went through it.
Luckily for him and me he ended up at Ragom. He now lives on a lake, with myself, Kippie, Jesse, Abby, a Yorki-Po named Frisbe, and a 19 year old tom cat.
He has come out of his shell, has learned to be a dog and lives the golden life that he deserves and gives us back a golden life as well.
We all love our Life with Ozzy and could not be happier.