We would like to introduce you all to Heath. Mr. Heath came to us from Turkey and has required some extra time to get acclimated to his new surroundings. After several months with his foster family, he is now feeling more comfortable being close to everyone.
Heath is a 2-3 year old cream colored Golden with the cutest tan colored ears; because he was found living on the street we don’t know his exact age. We do know he is neutered, in great health and weighs around 60 lbs. Mr. Heath is not a very tall boy and he loves to eat, so he will need someone willing to help him keep his weight under control. If it were up to Heath, he would love a family that likes to run. Unfortunately for his foster parents, we found that out the hard way. Even though we have a fenced yard, our sweet boy Heath decided it was OK to work on the gate until he was able to get it open; needless to say, the chase was on. We are fortunate to live in a small town and our neighbors are willing to lend a helping hand, even without being asked. Heath is a very fast runner and thinks everything is a game, including chasing the neighborhood cats up a tree. Heath has a very high prey drive and will jump, chase and eat anything that comes within striking distance so a home without small animals will be necessary.
Anyone interested in making Heath a part of their family will need to take extra precautions to make sure Heath cannot escape. Foster dad has gone around the entire chain link fence and secured it to the ground using 2 foot spikes; all doors and gates are locked at all times unless someone is holding Heath’s collar or he’s on a leash; all visitors come in through the attached garage and the garage door is locked before the house door is opened. Sounds like a lot of precautions, right? It probably is, but Heath has zero recall and no fear of moving traffic. I guess that’s what happens after living on busy streets. Heath would not be a candidate for an invisible fence. Initially, Heath did not appreciate being touched near his backend, but that doesn’t seem to be an issue anymore. In fact, he really loves to be brushed and will sit quietly for as long as I’m willing to brush him.
Heath has a very funny personality and he loves to voice his opinion. If he wants to go outside, he will bark to let us know. If he wants to eat, he will bark to let us know. If he sees any small animals, he will bark to let us know. If he sees a car or truck or scooter going by, he will bark to let us know … get the idea? Heath is having to learn it’s not necessary to bark at us or give his opinion all the time. It’s taking practice on Heath’s part and a great deal of patience for his foster parents.
We can say he is a very smart little boy. He has learned our routine very well and has really become part of the pack. When he first arrived, you could tell he was apprehensive of the rules and how he was supposed to behave. So to lessen the stress we allowed Heath to eat and drink in a separate room, sleep in the living room in a kennel at night and restricted his access to a majority of the house. Now that he is more comfortable he eats in the laundry room with the resident dogs, sleeps in our bedroom without the kennel and has free roam of the house (while we’re home). We have not allowed Heath free roam when we leave for work and he honestly doesn’t seem to care. It will take more time for Heath to earn his way to total free roam. Until then, we have a regular routine in the morning just for Heath and foster mom. Heath will follow me into the laundry room and I get two treats … one he gets when he goes in his kennel and one after he sits and I say good-bye.
We have even done some babysitting, which resulted in 5 dogs running around the house. Heath loved the extra company, especially because one dog guest was the same age and energy level, so he got to play non-stop for a whole week. It took a few nips for Heath to understand humping was not an acceptable way to play. By day three, all dogs were sitting for treats like they had lived together forever.
Heath has a very special toy football that he loves to squeak. He considers it his full time job to drive foster mom crazy with the squeaking ☺, but he’s so darn cute.
We once had a large basket full of stuffed toys, until Heath destroyed, mangled or tried to eat the majority of them. He is now restricted to hard bones and rubber toys.
There is not a soft toy, blanket or soft bed Heath does not think he should put an end to.
All in all, Heath is a wonderful boy. He will require a family willing to give him extra time to adjust and who is willing to provide him with lots of exercise and training.
If you have already filled out an “Inquiry for Application” form, please send an email to applicationragom [dot] org with the dog’s name, RAGOM number, the name you submitted the Inquiry for Application form under and a sentence or two why you feel you’d be a good match.