Our Weekly Falmouth Enterprise Column
By Pamela Alden Kokmeyer
Friday, February 24, 2017
At the risk of sounding as trite as the poetry of Rod McKuen, we'll go ahead and say it anyway: making the difference in just one dog's life is making a world of difference. Especially in that dog's life. We refer here to Jack. You see, Jack was adopted, and we're still grinning. We bet he is, too. This senior terrier has found a terrific home—the home he needs and deserves.
So now we turn our attention to our other star boarders: Juneau, Buster and Cara.
If you happened to chance on Juneau in his kennel, you might hear him howling softly to himself. Like a man of constant sorrow.
Juneau, a 7-year-old boxer, ignores the facts of his spacious two-room "condo"; soft blankets in yellow, blue and pink; a small babydoll; a peanut butter-filled Kong; plenty of high-quality kibble; extra-special coat and leash; and lots of attention. No. Juneau would insist he's just like that man of constant sorrow.
This flashy fawn boxer is a stunning creature. He's graceful, energetic, sweet, loves the gals (both human and canine) and the guys, walks well on leash (although he is strong), and doesn't destroy his possessions. He's quite the beautiful dog.
Potential adopters should do their homework about the boxer as a breed. Typically, they remain high energy most of their lives and really need regular exercise, gentle and consistent training, and protection against wildly fluctuating temperatures, both hot and cold. If you think you can offer these qualities, we encourage you to come down and say hi. Heck, come down and say hi anyway. He loves company.
Buster is the 9-year-old smooth-coated fox terrier with a big attitude and a bigger fan base. Last week we shared the observations of one volunteer who had taken him home for the weekend. She saw, as have others, that Buster is a completely different dog away from the shelter. We already knew his leash manners were wonderful, but we learned he is quiet, respectful, very affectionate and even more grateful for a taste of the life as a pet.
This week we learned something new. When confronted with a big scary world of unpredictable strange-dog encounters, Buster minds his manners, minds his business and minds his handler. As a reward for his very good behavior, he got to jog along the bike path and loved every step. In short, she described him as a gentleman throughout the walk. Buster, your new family will come along soon. We just know it.
Cara is a study in contrasts. This little 3-year-old podengo mix, who weighs about 40 pounds and is the color of a chocolate Lab, is both shy and bold. With people, she is shy, timid and easily startled. With dogs she's another creature entirely.
The presence of other dogs, especially young active dogs, sparks something in her and she will play, run, race around and fairly dance with happiness. Like a regular dog!
Her ultimate home should have another active dog and a fenced-in yard. But before we get there, we need to find a foster home for her. She is facing orthopedic surgery and will need a quiet, steady, constant presence during the early recuperation period. By the time you read this, we will know more about the logistics, after a consultation with a specialist. FFD, of course, will pay for everything associated with fostering her.
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Even though the snow is gone, it's still worth a reminder about the salt used on the roads after a storm. The salt is toxic and dangerous for pets, and some dogs react quite violently. After any exposure outside after a snowstorm, please remember to wash your pet's paws with warm water to remove any residue. And look for places to walk your pet that have not used salt, unless you know it's a pet-safe formula.
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Remember our calendars are only $8 each and remember our tote bags are only $3 and $5 each. Useful products for you, a little revenue for us to operate our program—everyone wins.
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If ever you've considered becoming a foster home with us, now would be the time to explore a bit further. It seems that in the past few months especially, we have found ourselves in need of foster homes more than ever. The reasons are many and varied but we attempt to match the dog and its needs with the foster family and its abilities.
Some dogs need a quieter environment than the shelter can offer; some need medication on a regular basis outside of our operating hours; some need recuperation from surgery; and others just need a break. For some dogs at the shelter, it's their first time ever away from the security of family, and they simply close up emotionally in a shelter environment.
We will take care of all expenses and offer the support you need. You provide the hearth and heart.
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We are at the shelter seven days a week: Monday through Saturday from 10 AM to noon; Sunday from 3 to 5 PM; and Monday and Thursday afternoons from 3 to 5.