I know you and the rest of the Cooney Canine Clan are watching over us down here. By now you have probably watched the latest addition to the family as she gets acquainted.
I want to introduce her to you and tell you about some things I learned that are both frustrating and hard to understand.
But first, the introduction.
Last weekend we traveled to Louisville to adopt a rescue German Shepherd. We had a “meet and greet” with three that we selected from the rescue website. After an hour we came home with a beautiful black female – our new “four legs with a tail” family member.
You would like her. She is about three years old and was found wandering the streets of Louisville. No one knows how long she was on her own or anything about her background.
This is true of all rescue dogs and cats – and probably horses too.
Anyway, she grabbed Jade’s heart almost immediately. (Mine too, but we were looking for a new companion for Jade so she made the choice.)
In a way, she reminds me of you. Already, she shadows Jade wherever she goes. She chases your tennis ball and brings it back – but won’t give it back. She loves to ride in the car and the truck.
Now that we have her, we do have one problem – what do we name her?
Since she was found abandoned, we have no idea what her name is – if she has a name. So, Jade has been working on a name and can’t decide between Zeva and Parker.
I have no idea what Zeva means or where the name comes from – but it sounds German Shepherd majestic.
On the other hand, Parker, while less majestic, is a fun name.
Remember when you used to watch “Leverage” with me? Parker was the fun, blonde thief. She was abandoned and later rescued as a young girl. She was always loyal to her group but at the same time always a little uneasy with her new environment.
I think that describes our Zeva Parker.
Think about it and let me know what you and the others like. Meanwhile, maybe you can explain something else to me.
We started looking for a full blooded German Shepherd to adopt about two months ago. I was shocked and appalled at the number of both full blooded Shepherds as well as Shepherd mix dogs that are available for adoption.
My first choice was Leo. He was a three-year-old, male. While his name was not majestic – he was. The first time I looked at his picture I decided he was the one I wanted.
So, I asked about adopting him.
I could have adopted a child easier and more quickly.
In order to adopt Leo I needed to submit tax returns to prove I could take care of him and property tax receipts to prove we own our property. Then we needed a list of every veterinarian we ever used along with contact information. Then pictures of the house, the yard, the fence, etc. Three recommendations, a home visit, and on and on.
Since I wasn’t willing to share my tax returns, I wasn’t allowed to adopt Leo.
So, on to the next, and the next, and the next.
The next three did not respond to my emails or my phone calls – I’m sure it was the rescue people who ignored me – not the dogs.
Then I found Maxx.
Maxx was gorgeous. Maxx was majestic.
I emailed the rescue and asked if Maxx was available – He was, so I sent an application to adopt. I never received a response. I emailed the rescue again – with no response.
I thought rescue groups were looking for new homes where their rescues could become part of the new family.
I must have the wrong idea.
How can you determine if the potential adopting family is a fit if you don’t even respond to an inquiry?
Still, there were others.
Rescue groups in several states won’t adopt out of the state regardless of the circumstances. (Of course, at least three of them brag that they have had rescues adopted all over the United States. I guess Indiana is not considered in the U.S.)
Then came my biggest frustration.
I met Anna online.
Anna is beautiful. Anna is gorgeous. Anna is majestic.
Anna is you, only in a female body.
And, Anna is in Indianapolis.
Finally, I found the rescue I wanted to add to our family, so I looked at the rescue’s adoption requirements. One of the non-negotiable requirements is that the adopter live within 100 miles – give or take 10 miles – of downtown Indianapolis.
MapQuest says Patriot is 113 miles from downtown Indianapolis.
Those extra three miles must be important.
Six phone calls, three emails, and an application to adopt later, I still have not received a response.
I thought rescue groups want their dogs to be rescued. To be adopted.
Apparently not so!
I have to admit frustration started to set in. It seemed to me that these rescue groups are trying to force you to purchase a full-blooded Shepherd from a breeder.
I started looking at German Shepherd breeders that would have a young adult that I could buy.
Fortunately instead, we found Tier Haven Rescue in Louisville.
Like all the other rescues, Tier Haven had several full-blood Shepherds looking for a ‘furever” home. Like all the other rescues, their adoption requirements included contact information for the current veterinarian, personal references, and a little “German Shepherd” background history.
Unlike the others, they responded to our questions. They worked with us.
And, we now have a new member of our family – a new member of the Cooney Canine Clan. A new member of our family.
If only she had her name.
– Mike Cooney