Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Dog on the Blog: Bouncer Enjoys His Life on Our Farm, and Is Glad to Be Alive!

This is Bouncer. He came all the way from Alabama to live at Smiling Dog Farms. Our friend, Sonya Smith, from Two by Two Rescue, saved him and made a valiant effort to prepare him for adoption. But it was not to be.

When you look into his sweet, innocent face, you can easily read what a loving baby he is -- to people.

But Bouncer has the same problem Rudy has. (See blog, August 4, 2008) He cannot tolerate other dogs -- or cats or chickens or any other animals. When he sees them, he goes into an appoplectic tirade. Bouncer cannot be placed for adoption because he would be dangerous to dogs and cats in surrounding homes. And it would be dangerous for Bouncer if he harmed someone's pet, because authorities are quick to kill dogs for things like that.

Bouncer shares one other thing in common with Rudy. He is also a "terrier mix". You can see what a beautiful boy he is in this photo, gazing off into the horse pasture.

We used to build play yards with a common fence between yards. There would be other dogs immediately on the other side of the fence from Bouncer. He used to pace up and down along the fence line, partolling, just watching for another dog to come too close!

The photo of Bouncer in his play yard shows the new construction model we use for our temporary housing. The play yards are all separated by at least 4 feet from other yards.

There is something about that extra space between him and other dogs that has brought a peace to Bouncer's little heart. He no longer partols the yard, but now calmly observes the other dogs and all the goings on at the farm. He enjoys his days barking at the roosters and squirrels and napping in the sunshine.

Bouncer is a happy boy. He is a favorite of the workers here, who furtively slip him more than his share of treats! When it is his turn to sleep in the bed with us, he just soaks it all up, nudging us to please rub his tummy one more time! He gives exuberant kisses.

Living in his play yard is not as idyullic as living inside the house, laying on the sofa, watching Oprah every day. But that was just not in the cards for Bouncer, or for most of our babies. His life beats what the alternative would have been! The one thing all our dogs have in common is that if they had not come to Smiling Dog Farms, they would be dead!

There are those who believe that dogs should not live outdoors. They will tell you "some things are worse than death", implying that living in a play yard here at the farm is somehow worse than being killed.

I dont think Bouncer would agree with that. I think if Bouncer could talk he would probably tell you that he enjoys the freedom of moving around his play yard at will. That he enjoys his cottage however primitive and spartan it may be, because Ricky built it just for him. Dogs (unlike humankind) understand and appreciate things like that.

Bouncer would probably tell you that he looks forward to his treats -- dont tell -- of donuts and pastry and cookies.

If you look at Bouncer's expression, I dont think you see a dog who wishes he was dead.

Jay Hellerich, executive director
smiling dog farms
a 501(c)3 corporation
wharton, texas

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