Sunday, July 26, 2009

Success Story: Buzz Light Year

Buzz Light Year came to live with us almost a year ago and he has become a wonderful addition to our family. After having worked in dog rescue for several years I had been exposed to many personalities and breeds of dogs. I knew when the time came to adopt a second dog the choice would be very difficult. So many dogs had come through my home and our rescue program that I wanted to take home with me permanently.

I was attracted to the border collie personality as I was currently competing in agility with my shar pei mix (‘Lucy’) and was looking for a new strong trial partner. I needed a dog that would get along with all types of dogs, so I could continue in my foster work. I needed a border collie that would be okay with my husband and future children. Since we were planning on a family at some point.

Buzz caught my eye because he was the most gorgeous border collie I had ever seen (then again I am kind of biased now).

I contacted his foster mom and we chatted for a bit about him. Buzz was a stray from Everett, WA who had shown extreme kennel stress at the shelter. His foster mommy had only had him a short while but was patient enough to send me regular updates on his personality as it began to evolve in the process of recovering from the stress of the shelter.

We made the decision to drive over to the west side of the state Thanksgiving weekend to meet him and see how he and Lucy got along. As expected Lucy and Buzz got along fine right from the start so we all piled in our car and drove home.

I was SOOO excited to finally have a ‘forever’ dog again. Many a times I had brought new dogs into our home but this time he was for ‘keeps’. I didn’t have to say goodbye to him.

Buzz has the perfect personality for doing all the things I love to do with my dogs. He is a snuggler, loves to chase balls and Frisbees

Buzz is especially happy if I throw a stick in the river.

Buzz’s first agility action shot – hope this makes you chuckle as much as me.

Buzz is not quite ready to compete in agility yet but his focus has come such a long way since he came to live with us and I began working with him. He loves to work for me and is learning more and more how to ‘learn’. When he first came to live with us he would shut down right away if he didn’t understand something but now he is learning it is okay to try things in order to get my praise.

Now, almost a year later, I so adore our new boy. Our little family is continuing to grow and we are expecting our first baby shortly. Buzz is my prized border collie, the dog who will someday win ribbons and accolades, my prodigy dog, my agility partner and apparently a dog who will always be a source of humor, amusement and joy as I continue to work with him.

I cannot thank the shelter and rescue folks enough for getting him out of the shelter and into a home environment. I know the work done by his foster mommy in the beginning was helping to lay the groundwork for him to become the great boy he is today.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Success Story - Star

Star came home with us November 11, 2001 after being pulled from a Washington State shelter where time was running out for her. After months in foster care when the best adoption option came available, Star crossed the Canadian Border and became our beloved family member.

That was the beginning of our journey and one of the luckiest days of my life. Star was accepted immediately by our Doberman “Jazz” and after Jazz's passing, Star assumed the role of helping train our new puppies. My shadow, my team mate, Star and I have trained, played, travelled and slept together. One time, when approached by an out-of-control meth addict, Star placed herself in between and would not let him touch me. This is the only time she has shown aggression since she has lived with us.

Adopting Star has been life changing and we now have three Border Collies and have had several rescues come to us for re-homing. We have also taken up sheepherding and hope to compete in 2010 sheepdog trials.

Star’s Accomplishments:


Agility Association of Canada = 18 titles including her Bronze and Silver Awards of Merit
3rd place BC Yukon Regional Agility Championships 2007 and 2009
12th place Canadian Agility National Championships 2007

North American Flyball Association = 7 titles
United Fli League = 2 titles

Star is a gem and we want to thank Janet Legg for letting us adopt her.

Janet says: "I knew early on that Star was loaded with potential, needing a special home where she could reach for “the stars and I want to THANK YOU, Shauna and Tim, for providing Star that exceptional home where she could live up to her dreams.”

Tim and Shauna Helson
Campbell River, BC
July 2009