It's hard to believe that 3 years have gone by since our beautiful girl was rescued from a puppy mill. Once shy and terrified, she is now a confident girl that nudges the other dogs out of the way for pets and stomps her feet if we stop petting her too soon. She puts her head in our lap and closes her eyes, enjoying each and every minute. While she's still shy in new situations - such as when we go to the vet or the local dog food store - she has grown by leaps and bounds and most people are surprised when we tell them her history. She went thru 12 weeks of shy and fearful dog classes at the Canine Coach and it helped her tremendously. During the first week of class she hid in the corner and was frightened of everything. During the second class she was still hiding but was brave enough to take treats from the instructor. By the last class she was mingling with everyone and even learned some obedience! She can sit like nobody's business, knows down, stay, and has the best recall of any of our dogs (I never thought I would say that!) She will sit when it's time for dinner, and waits to dig in until we tell her to "eat it up". One of our RAGOM volunteers, Angie, put together this graphic a couple of years ago and it is one of my favorites - it shows just how far our sweet girl has come!
Life has been a lot of fun for Betty since she joined our family. She goes to doggy daycare, which has helped her trust new people and she has lots of fun when she's there. She's a great foster sister and always welcomes the other dogs into our home. She has been a great role model and teaches them how to chase the birds and rabbits from the yard - one of her greatest accomplishments! She loves to go for walks and is the first one by the door, waiting for her gentle leader to be put on. She absolutely loves going hiking and we make frequent trips to the state park each month. She also loves visiting her Uncle Gary and Auntie Jill. They own a lot of land and Betty is in her happy place there - not only does she get to spend time with her favorite Aunt and Uncle, who also love and adore her, but she gets to run to her hearts content and spend lots of time hiking around their property.
It doesn't matter what time of year it is - Betty enjoys life to the fullest! In the summer she loves to go camping and is always the first one to stick her nose in the fire pit while we set up camp - hoping to find leftovers from the previous occupants! We can always tell what she's been up to, though....
Betty loves playing outside and we spend lots of time out there whenever we can. We just can't say no when she bats her pretty little eyes at us and wants to go out and play. She missed out on so much before she was rescued that we want to make sure her days with us are nothing but the best.
We have grown close to the family that adopted Pearl, Betty's litter mate from the puppy mill. Although they live in Iowa, we have gotten the girls together twice so far and we have had lots of fun together! Pearl found a great home and we're looking forward to many play dates in the future!
About a year after we adopted her, our friend Devon came up to our house for a photo shoot. We expected Betty to be shy and I didn't think we'd get many good pictures of her. She proved us all wrong and was a complete ham for the camera! She couldn't get enough of it. Devon took so many gorgeous pictures and we will cherish them forever!
I know there may be a lot of people out there that are hesitant to adopt a puppy mill dog. I am grateful every single day that RAGOM brought this wonderful girl into our lives. Betty was rescued with 28 other Golden Retrievers, and they were some of the most scared dogs RAGOM has ever rescued. They were very close to being considered feral dogs. Adopting her has brought so much joy and happiness into our lives, and we would have missed out on so much without her. It's been an amazing experience to watch her grow and learn to trust, and we would do it all over again in a heartbeat. We love our baby girl!