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I never got a chance to take any photos of CeCe because she was adopted almost immediately but here's an excellent update her owner recently sent in:

"Anything I've ever done that ultimately was worthwhile...initially scared me to death." I'm not sure who said it, but she must've rescued a pound dog.

My beloved dog Blazer died in June, and my home hasn't felt complete since. So I decided that, even though I could never love another dog the way I loved Blazer, I could at least open my home to a dog in need. But when I brought CeCe home from Animal Services, things weren't all sunshine and roses. Like so many pound dogs, she had a very rough start to life, and it showed.

At only a few weeks old, CeCe was dumped at a rural shelter in Ohio, where she spent most of her young life in a state of stress, surrounded by other unwanted, troubled dogs. Luckily, between the kind soul who runs the shelter and took her in, and James at Toronto Animal Services, she arrived in Toronto in January as a 5 month old puppy, scarred both physically and mentally, and scared of almost everything and everyone. A few hours later......I arrived and took her home.

The first time I took her to the dog park and 2 puppies tried to play with her, she turned on them quite aggressively, and I thought, "Oh crap. I've made a huge mistake." So the next few weeks were spent working on training: meeting new dogs (hey - they can be friendly!), meeting new people (hey - they give me treats!), walking all over the city, and getting used to all of the scary sights & sounds. Eventually, she began to blossom, and the puppy within began to come out as she discovered friends and toys, and enjoyed a calm, loving and stable home. It wasn't easy, and it was a lot of work, but she is the BEST puppy I could ever ask for, and an absolute lovebug. And smart as hell! She already knows "sit", "down", "stay", "crawl" and "rollover." She's sweet, gentle, and intuitive, and she has the best puppy stink I've ever smelled. Even the cats are starting to forgive me for bringing a puppy into their home....

I didn't think I would ever love another dog after my Blazer died, but this wriggly little creature is worming her way into my heart, kiss by kiss.

If anyone reading this is thinking about adopting a pound dog, please remember that the first few weeks might be difficult, but if you stick it out, the reward is limitless.

More photos of CeCe here.

14 Comments to “Update on CeCe”

  1. What a beautiful dog - and bless your beautiful heart for opening it up and persevering through hard times with her.

  2. Lynn says:

    Beautiful realistic story. Sometimes I think we brush over some of the issues that some dogs can come with--whether they come from the shelter or elsewhere. It's not always easy and fun and I think this story was a wonderful example of what bringing a dog into your life can be like. I'm so glad that the writer got CeCe and was so prepared to help CeCe become the wonderful dog she's becoming.

  3. kelly manis says:

    Awesome! My eyes are misty. So glad I got to meet her seven years after we first me. Look how she's connecting the universe.

  4. NK says:

    Heartwarming and great pictures! Nice to know there is yet another advocate for the Pound Dogs out there!

  5. Anonymous says:

    Beautiful story. Bless your heart and I think Blazer would want you to give her the love and care she needs. I too lost my girl in October and haven't yet had the guts to get another dog. I had 2 and still have my little guy, just moved etc., sooo maybe it's getting close to "choosing" that pound dog in need.

  6. Yvette D says:

    Wow, thanks everyone for the's really nice to hear it from other dog lovers. :) And yes, Anonymous, I think you're right - Blazer would want someone to look after his cats and breathe stinky breath on me in the morning....he would definitely approve of CeCe. <3

  7. CC says:

    This is one lucky pup... a mum who's a professional dog walker and an auntie who makes her pots of organic turkey stew. Yet somehow, WE ARE the luckier ones.
    Welcome to the fam CeCe.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Thank you for doing the hard work to get CeCe socialized! It's so wonderful to see these stories. I have a shelter beagle that had a very rough start (pet store dog adopted too young and then given up by first owners, and oh, beagle, so difficult from the word go!) and had a lot of people telling me I should return him, but I didn't listen and I have the most wonderful dog I could wish for now that I've done the work.

  9. Yvette D says:

    I believe that things have a way of working out for the best. :) If anyone's interested in seeing more of CeCe, here is her album of photos.....I update it regularly. Thanks again for everyone's well wishes for CeCe....she continues to flourish every day.

  10. Fred says:

    Thanks for the excellent photos, Yvette. I've copied the link into the main body of the post. Looking forward to following CeCe's progress.

  11. I am that "rural" shelter and I say thank you so much!!!! Your story brought tears to my eyes, I so wish all the homeless Ohio puppies could find so much love. James made an amazing placement!

  12. If anyone is interested in the ongoing Story of CeCe, here is the next chapter: I've sent away her DNA sample to find out what secrets her genes are hiding!

  13. Fred says:

    Please do let us know what the results are when you get them back. I'm thinking about doing a DNA test on one of my dogs as well but I'm not sure the testing would include "monkey".

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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.