Wanted: Forever Home For Awesome Happy Tails’ Dog

This is a medium sized, black dog – one of the lake dogs that I get to play with every August when my family goes on vacation.

She’s sweet tempered,  likes to fish, and her name is Lulu.

Once upon a time, before she became a lake dog, she was a stray that got picked up and taken to an animal shelter. She got lucky because the family who adopted her saw her sweetness … and thought she was beautiful too.

She could have been a victim of something called Black Dog Syndrome. BDS is a false perception that people looking to adopt dogs from shelters might not know about.

It’s worth taking the time to understand because once you know about Black Dog Syndrome,  you’ll start to see dogs with black coats in the dog runs at animal shelters. You’ll want to find out if they are as sweet tempered as Lulu.

And, you might want to take one home with you.

In fact, if you live within easy traveling distance of Happy Tails, the Ontario County Animal Shelter, and you are an active family with prior dog experience, you might want to click through the links in this blog post so that you understand what BDS is.

And, after you’ve done that, you’ll want to read about how Happy Tails was asked to partner with an amazing program called Pet Connections that’s one of the programs offered by the Ontario ARC.

It’s a lot of reading but if you’re that perfect family, I know you’ll take the time to click through all of these links. Because once you’ve done this, you’ll know about one more sweet tempered, medium sized, black coated dog.

His name is Brutus and this is what he looks like when he’s over at the Pet Connections office waiting to go outside for a walk.

Here he is again, outside on the grounds of the Ontario ARC being groomed by some of the folks who participate in the Pet Connections program.

Brutus has learned how to do lots of good things since he became part of the Pet Connections program.  He knows how to sit, down, walk nicely on a leash and he’ll “give paw.”

He’s one of the happiest dogs I’ve ever spent time with. He’s playful, attentive and energetic.  If you’re looking for a running buddy, Brutus is your guy!

Once upon a time, Brutus was running loose.  Just like Lulu, he was picked up and taken to an animal shelter.  While other dogs got adopted, Brutus sat in his run and waited for someone (other than the folks at Happy Tails)  to discover how special he was.

Along came Gail Furst who manages the Pet Connections program. She saw Brutus’ potential and that’s how he became the very first dog to star in this program.

Brutus didn’t disappoint her or any of the participants in the Pet Connections program. That’s because he was what I like to call “a diamond in the rough.” The diamond part of him is what Gail saw – his sweet temperament and eagerness to please.

The “rough part” is the socialization and learning some manners – all things that Brutus didn’t get before he started coming to the Pet Connections program. His rough parts have been smoothed over and in that process, Brutus has started to trust the people who have been working with him.

Dogs that have been abandoned lose that ability to trust. One of the biggest advantages of the Pet Connections program, for Brutus and for other dogs like him, is that they can learn to trust again; trust that they learn because they are responding to consistent, positive behavior from people who love them. Their potential gets to be shaped by people who understand dog behavior. And, the end result (in a very short time) are dogs that become more adoptable.

Once dogs learn to trust, they want to deepen that relationship – they start to bond. Thanks to everyone involved in the Pet Connections program, Brutus is at that place. He is so ready to bond with that special person or family. Please, don’t let Brutus fall victim to Black Dog Syndrome. He’s already captured the hearts of so many of us. Maybe he’ll be that once-in-a-lifetime dog that will capture yours.

Housekeeping notes: I’m a volunteer for the Pet Connections program and this post represents my own ideas, thoughts and opinions. If you are interested in finding out if you and/or your family are the right match for Brutus, please contact Happy Tails.

PS If you are reading this post and you live in Monroe, Ontario or any of the other counties in the Rochester and/or Finger Lakes region of New York, please use the share buttons on this post to help me tell Brutus’ story. Help me help Pet Connections and Happy Tails to find Brutus’ forever home.











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