3/28/06: Patty has made the start of the long journey from her beginnings in Kansas as a breeding female in a puppy mill to a rescued foster Golden in northern Minnesota and soon to a permanent home as a loved member of some wonderful family. Patty's life up to now has not been filled with the health and love that she so deserves, but she is a resilient, beautiful little female who is going to offer some family lots of love and attention and in return she should receive the same. Patty is very shy and easily scared because this is a whole new world to her. She has not been exposed to all of these things that we think as normal, everyday occurrences. As a dog that has up to now lived in a cage all of her life, something as simple as a brown paper bag being opened up can scare her.
Her new family will need to have patience and lots of love to let her know she is safe and secure as she discovers her new surroundings. In return for love and patience, her new family well have the joy in showing this wonderful dog what it is really like to be "just a dog", to show her the little things in life that dogs so love; playing ball or tug of war, taking a walk in the woods and smelling all of those good things out there, discovering squirrels, rolling in the grass, taking that first step in a lake and maybe discovering that she loves to swim!
Stay tuned as Patty finds out about the good life.....
Patty is doing wonderfully and is slowly coming out of her shell. She has figured out that she really likes to get petted and whenever there is a dog getting petted she will also come up to me for some of that lovin' too. She is also getting to know the other dogs and how they interact with each other. Just a couple of days ago when foster boy, 05-127 Oakley, and resident dog, JoJo were playing, she crawled up to Oakley and turn over on her belly and asked if she could play, too. It won´t be long and Patty will be playing with the dogs. She is still shy around humans, especially strangers, but she doesn´t run and hide in her crate anymore. Even now when I bend over to pet Patty she will most likely crouch down, for an instant, then remember that I only do good things and will stand up straight for some petting and hugs. She even jumped up on the bed the other morning and laid down next to me to get some loving before it was time to get up. You have to remember that Patty came from a puppy mill where she probably had very little contact with humans, so this is all new stuff for her.
We went to the Vet last week and she handled the outing rather well. I had expected to have to carry her but she willingly walked with me and only hid behind my legs a couple of times. Patty came to Minnesota already having been updated on shots and spayed, but she did have ear infections. I knew that the medicine that came with her was not going to get rid of the infection so I made an appointment for her to see my Vet. She has a bacterial infection in her ears and we were given medicine to help clear that up. We did get some other bad news, Patty has bottom eye lids that roll inward when she closes her eyes, called entropien. She will need surgery to correct the lids and that is scheduled for April 18th. At that time she will also have a large wart (almost the size of a half dollar) removed from her butt/tail area. Patty will be so much more comfortable once her lids are fixed, she will no longer have to squint or want to close her eyes at the end of the day. After Patty´s surgery and her recuperation time she will be ready to meet new families interested in adding this sweet girl to their family.
Patty is a small, medium golden colored girl who weighs in at 54 lbs, which is a good weight for her. She doesn't have much for feathering, I don't know if that is the way she will always be or if she has been shaved at an earlier time before coming to RAGOM - only time will tell.
Patty is going in for her eye lid surgery Tuesday, April 18th. Her eyes will be so much better and she won't have the discomfort and irritation her rolling eye lids cause. Patty has made great strides the last few weeks. She no longer needs to run to her crate many times in each day because there are fewer and fewer things that scare her. She sleeps upstairs with the rest of us and doesn't have to be coaxed to come up on the bed for some cuddling before bedtime, many times she is already on the bed waiting for her time of laying with me and getting some loving before lights out. The other dogs are teaching her to play and she has become just as rough and tumble as the male dogs here. Unfortunately, the resident dog, JoJo, is also teaching her all about barking at the passers by - not one of those habits that I would like her to learn.
She is getting more and more confident each week, she is still shy around people she hasn't met, and will crouch down or step away. She is not likely to come up to a person she does not know unless there is another dog getting petted by that person, she is usually then brave enough to approach in hopes that she too will get petted. Patty is shy but she craves the human touch - I guess she has to make up for lost time for those years she spent in a cage having puppies.
As you can see by the pictures I have added to her site, she has some hair loss around her nose and eyes and other markings on her face. Patty had Canine Puppy Strangles (Juvenile cellulitis) when she was a puppy. This disease affects puppies at about five weeks of age and is not contagious. It is a painful disease that causes swelling of the lymph nodes, swelling of the skin and often wet, oozing sores. Almost all pups recover but permanent scarring, lack of hair production and pigment changes can be a reminder of this nasty puppy disease. The affected areas are usually the head, neck and ears. Patty may have some hair loss and scarring but she is still a beautiful girl to me.
Patty is recovering nicely from her eye lid surgery and from having a growth removed from her butt/tail area. I had originally thought that Patty had a large wart on her butt, but when the Vet looked at it she discovered it looked like it had been a wound that had a big growth on it. She now has a big bare spot on her rear with 7 or 8 stitches in it. The Vet also had a closer look at her face while doing the eye surgery and the Vet thinks that Patty also has some bite scars on her face. Poor girl has not had the best start in life - Patty is a lover, not a fighter, but she must have been around a dog or dogs that were not very nice.
Patty is still shy about new things, but now it is only a temporary thing that usually lasts a couple of seconds. Last night I was working on my old desk that is ready to fall apart. When I would start up a tool like the sander, she would run towards her crate but would come right back, never even reaching her crate. She is slowly getting used to the strange noises around her. Patty is feeling safe here and so she is able to overcome her fear easily.
Next week Patty will have a busy week - she'll be going to the Vet to have her stitches removed and also going to her first obedience class. Patty will not be participating in the obedience class but will be attending as an observer. This is a great opportunity for her to meet other dogs and people & get her socialized. Even though she will not be participating in the obedience class we'll be teaching her everything we learn in class - at home though - in her safe environment.
If you would like to help defray the cost of Patty's surgery, please send your donations to:
Retrieve a Golden of Minnesota, P.O. Box 5567, Hopkins, MN, 55343-0492, or go to the Network For Good web site (copy and paste the address below into your browser):
Patty is doing great!!! It is so exciting to watch her grow and feel more confident and safe in her surroundings. Patty went to the vet this week and had her stitches removed - everything looks good - now she just has to grow some hair back! Patty is becoming more and more assertive with the other dogs in the house, I've even seen her curl her lip when her foster brother, 05-127 Oakley, was wrestling with her outside. She was letting him know that he can't be so rough with her.
Patty went to her first Obedience class on Wednesday. I belong to a great dog club that allows me to bring rescue dogs to class for free, however, Patty isn't actually going to the class. She is just observing the class; learning and seeing new things, new dogs, and especially new people. When we first entered the building - it is a noisy arena type building - she immediately crouched down because she was scared. We just stood there for several minutes, people came in and out and stopped to talk, soon she was up and ready to proceed. She sat through the class just fine and even didn't get scared when a woman came up to her, talked to her and give her a couple of pets. I think in a couple more classes, she might be ready to join in.
Patty and I have been playing with each other more and more now because she's feeling safe enough to engage in play with me. She is still sometimes stiff when I roll her around but she loves to get touched, so she always asks for more!
Patty is ready for her new forever home. She needs a home with another dog, as she learns from other dogs - she has learned that jumping in the van is OK, learned that coming when called is OK, learned that getting brushed is OK and most importantly learned that she can trust me and be safe with me. Patty is a gentle dog around humans, although she does like to put a paw on me occasionally when she feels that she is not getting her fair share of pets. She takes treats ever so gently and just melts in your arms if you pet or massage her. Patty's new home will have to be patient as she learns to trust you and feel safe with you. Her new family should continue to expose her to this new world of hers, but do so in a way so she can feel safe with you and if she becomes scared, that you can patiently help her overcome that fear. Patty may never be that outgoing Golden that most Golden Retrievers are because of her sheltered life in a puppymill, but she can be a normal dog around people that love her and she will be willing to experience new things with people that she trusts and loves.
If you think you have the patience and love to give this sweet little girl and would like to make sure the rest of her life is filled with only good things and lots of love, please let RAGOM know.
Patty continues to come out of her shell. She is still shy around new people but it doesn't take long for her to come up for pets if another dog is there. She and the resident dog, JoJo, play together very nicely now - it is so great to watch them chase each other around the yard. Patty rarely goes into the crate now to seek safety. At feeding time, she is fed in the crate, so it is a good way for her to learn the command "kennel up". She also allows me to touch her when she is eating - before she would back away until I walked away from her.
Patty has gone to several obedience classes and seems to want to join in. At the last class, I had 06-187 Shadow in class, and whenever I would use my happy voice to praise Shadow for doing good, Patty would pull on the leash to want to come and join us. Patty understands the happy voice but doesn't really understand any commands yet, except for "come", which she usually obeys. Now that she is comfortable in my home we will start working on commands with her. The first one we will work on is "off", as she likes to put her two front paws on me when she is trying to get in the best position for some pets. Last night she even climbed into the chair and decided to walk across the end table to get to me so she could get some attention - the silly girl!!! It is definitely time that she learns what "off" means!!! We are also going to work on the command "sit". My dogs have to sit nicely if they want to get a treat or want to get their meal, but I have not enforced that rule with Patty yet, as I wanted her to feel comfortable with me before working on commands - but it is time. More next week .......
Patty continues to blossom. It is very rewarding to see this little girl come out of her shell, each week we get to see something new from her. This week the dogs got to take their first outing to the lake - and fun was had by all!!!! Patty's foster brother, 06-187 Shadow, ran right for the water and in he went, with the rest of the dogs following. Patty was a little hesitant but did walk into the water - she follows my dogs' lead - so when JoJo decided to explore more of the water, Patty followed. They both ended up going swimming - Patty would run out of the water and jump and kick her heels up like she was having a great time! We threw the ball in the water for Shadow but Patty doesn't get to play ball much because her foster brother pretty much hoards all tennis balls. My friend took Shadow to a different part of the shore line and I was able to throw the ball for Patty and JoJo - although I just threw the ball a little ways in the lake. They both went after it and Patty would be so excited when she got the ball - she didn't really know what to do with it so she would drop it as soon as she got to shore, but she sure did have fun playing. When you have a dog that was raised in "normal conditions" this would be no big deal; but to see Patty take to the water, get very excited and have a great time - it makes my heart swell for her and reminds me why I like to foster Goldens. She is such a sweetie and I want to find just the right home for this special little girl. To me, Patty is a beautiful little Golden; if you look past the scars on her face, you too will find a loving, gentle, beautiful creature.
Patty went camping in Wisconsin with my family this past weekend, and had a blast - running in the woods, swimming in the lake and sleeping in the van with me. On Sunday we went to the Twin Cities and she met a family that fell in love with her. Patty now has her own forever family; Judy, Joel and canine brother Kirby. I'm so happy for sweet, gentle Patty; the first part of her life might not have been too good, but for the rest of her life she will be loved and cared for. Who could ask for anything more?