29 Oct 11

Can Daniel’s Story Save Cider? ...

by Nancy E. Hassel, LIPetPlace.com

Have you heard about the dog Daniel that survived the gas chamber in Animal Control facility in Florence, Alabama?  He was put into the gas chamber with about 8 other dogs to be killed, and when they opened the door after gassing the animals, Daniel walked right out.  It’s an amazing and inspirational story, while it has happened before – it is very rare.  This adorable Beagle Hound mix was dropped off in a ‘drop box’ at the Alabama shelter – a box where people can just anonymously drop a pet off they no longer want (something seriously wrong with this policy).  Daniel was considered a stray and after 7 days, put in the gas chamber.  He now has hundreds and hundreds of adoption applications according to the rescue group, Eleventh Hour Rescue that brought him up to NJ to his now foster home.  And after his appearance on Good Morning America on Saturday, October 29, 2011 – he will surely have thousands of people that want to adopt him.

But what about the dogs and cats that are not labeled as a ‘Miracle’ and have been waiting for months even years in a shelter waiting for a home?  Recently, in the Pet Events Newsletter, I posted an amazing dog in his own right, Cider, who has been at the Town of Islip Animal shelter for ONE YEAR this month.  For whatever reason people over look this very happy, well behaved and handsome dog.  He looks to be part Lab definitely Pit and maybe a sprinkling of another breed.  I met him about two weeks ago, and while many of the dogs in the surrounding shelter cages were barking, as they do, Cider was calm, smiling, and wagging his tail the entire time.  His coloring is beautiful – and the shelter staff said he is such a good dog, and house broken to boot – which is not an easy thing to be, living in a shelter cage for a year.

So I ask those hundreds and thousands of people looking to adopt Daniel the miracle dog?  What about a dog or cat just languishing every day in a local shelter?  Most times it can be loud and intimidating to look at a dog at the shelter – but ask the staff or one of the volunteers to take the pet into a viewing room or outside to meet the dog – 90% chance you will see the best side of the dog once taken out of the shelter cage.

While Daniel’s story is amazing, if it helps just one person reading this change their mind and head to their local shelter to adopt – it will make Daniel’s rise to fame even better.

When I adopted my own dog, Max – an American Pit Bull Terrier from Out of the Pits, he was a small puppy about 3.5 months old.  He was scared, and nervous – and the foster and adoption people that were there said, “If you sit on the floor, it will make him less nervous.”  So I sat next Indian style to the person holding him, and Max, named Johnny at the time, looked at me, and as many people who ever adopted a dog, seemed to know I was there for him.  He crawled over to my lap, looked up at me and kissed my cheek and snuggled back down and fell asleep.  The lady fostering him and the other people in the room nearly all cried, saying, “he has never done that to anyone.  He has been so nervous, and really hasn’t gone to anyone.”  Which I found out to be true after bringing Max home and learning how fearful of certain people, noises and now living in a home.  But with a ton of socialization, patience and training – Max has been such a great dog, loves people is good with other dogs once he gets to know them and even got along with the duck that lived in my yard for over a year.  Max, for whatever reason was very easy to train, he was housebroken when I brought him home, was out of his crate at 9 months old, which I don’t always recommend – but he didn’t chew anything, eat things he wasn’t supposed to etc.  He loved and learned a ton from my Doberman and today at 10-years old; people stop me in the street to say hi to him.

So maybe you won’t be able to adopt Daniel, but you may just find your own Max at the local shelter, and help save a life, fall in love with your new best buddy and change the mind of those around you about shelter dogs.

For more information on Cider, go to the Town of Islip Animal Shelter located at 210 South Denver Road, Bay Shore, NY.  For other local Animal Shelter listings, click here.

Daniel & Cider

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