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We've been out in Prince Edward County the last few days. It was Simone's first time there and we were all excited she would get to spend a few days in the fresh air, open spaces and quiet. All the dogs who have gone out there have loved it, some more than others, sure, but no complaints.

Smitten is in love with the County. When we're there, she never wants to come back inside. We call her in but she just stands in place trying to decide if maybe she should just run away into the woods and forget about regular meals and a roof over her head. She loves the cold, the snow, the fields, the scents. We were out on the property and she chased a big rabbit into the bush and we were afraid she'd get lost so we yelled at her and made a commotion but she mainly stuck around and eventually came back. I'm thinking about getting a GPS tracking device to put on her collar.

Simone, on the other hand, didn't like the country much at all. Ground was too wet, generally too cold outside, too dark at night. Everything was kind of scary. On the days it snowed, she'd only walk a few minutes away from the house we were staying at and then stop and want to head back. The first time I let her off the leash, she went berserkers and started tearing around like a lunatic - I'd never seen her run so fast - and I thought she was really enjoying herself but then I realized she was just anxious and didn't know what to do. She ended up standing in front of the door waiting to get back inside.

On one short hike, Simone walked into some rose bushes and a thorn poked her in her nose and she started to bleed. She looked quite pathetic staring up at me with her big buggy eyes, not knowing how to get around the nasty plant, blood dripping from her nose. I thought she was going to cry.

Over the next few days, Simone got more comfortable outdoors but she still wasn't thrilled about the idea of going out for walks, especially at night. She didn't like that at all, walking around in near total darkness (it was cloudy so no moon). Her trepidation rubbed off on me and when a tree creaked, she'd jump and then I'd jump and then we'd both be heading back for the security of the porch light.

We're going to have to toughen her up.

I'll be posting up some recent photos of the Prince Edward County area at the PECE blog over the next few days.

5 Comments to “City dog, country dog”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Toughen who up? *LOL*

    Seriously, love the pics and descriptions. I've had lots of dogs that didn't like walking in the dark. A GPS of some kind on Smitten might be a good investment in case she gets more courageous and follows a bunny too far into the bush.

  2. SA MVH says:

    Thank you to you for this wonderful blog which I became aware in the Summer of 2011. I go on every day to see a new picture or a new story. I love your blog and you for all the things you are doing for animals. Wishing you and your family the very best for 2012.

  3. Fred says:

    Happy New Year to you too as well!

  4. Anonymous says:

    haha - thanks for the laugh Fred. I'm afraid that I'm in Simone's camp. It's scary out there. :)
    All the best to you and yours for 2011. May all the animals waiting for a loving home find one soon.
    G and Cocasse

  5. NK says:

    Although I agree with Simone that it is scary out there at night I think her outfit alone might be ample protection - seeing her in her dungarees made me laugh out loud!
    Thanks for all the tears and laughter you have brought to all of us blog followers over the last year.
    We wish you every success in 2012 - and to all those wonderful workers at TAS and volunteers in general! No more homeless pets!

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A request

The reason for this blog is to help get specific dogs adopted from TAS but equally important is to try to normalize the idea of shelter dogs being just as good and just as desirable as any other dogs including those which are regularly merchandised by backyard breeders, puppy millers and those few remaining pet store owners who still feel a need to sell live animals. The single greatest stigma shelter animals still face is the belief that shelter animals are substandard animals. Anyone who has had enough experience with shelter animals knows this is untrue but the general public hasn't had the same experiences you've had. They see a nice dog photo in a glossy magazine and too many of them would never think of associating that dog with a dog from a shelter. After all, no one abandons perfectly good dogs, right? Unfortunately, as we all know, perfectly good dogs are abandoned all the time.

The public still too often associates shelter dogs with images of beat up, sick, dirty, severely traumatized animals and while we definitely sometimes see victims such as these, they are certainly not the majority and, regardless, even the most abused animals can very often be saved and made whole again.

Pound Dogs sometimes discusses the sad histories some of the dogs have suffered. For the most part, though, it tries to present the dogs not as victims but as great potential family members. The goal is to raise the profiles of animals in adoption centers so that a potential pet owner sees them as the best choice, not just as the charity choice.

So, here's the favour I'm asking. Whenever you see a dog picture on these pages you think is decent enough, I'd like you to consider sharing it on Facebook or any other social media sites you're using (I know many of you do this already and thank you for that). And when you share it, please mention that the dog in the photo is a shelter dog like so many other shelter dogs waiting for a home. If we can get even five percent of the pet buying public to see shelter dogs differently, to see how beautiful they are and how wonderful they are, and to consider shelter dogs as their first choice for a new family member, we can end the suffering of homeless pets in this country.