Doggone it!

Rescue Doggos 1

Chapter Two

Continuing my search for a dog, the next rescue centre I tried was just how I remembered it, when I adopted Little Monkey, Madam and TJ from there many years ago.

Everyone was very friendly and very helpful. I got to walk round all the kennels and go in those that had dogs I was interested in.

Rescue Doggo 2 – Blackie

The first time I went there, I liked this dog, Blackie, and he liked me. But he was far too big. He just reminded me of my first boy, Jack. Happily, he was adopted not long after I saw him.

I also liked, Snowy, a white retriever cross, shown below. His story was that he had been owned by a gardener, but when the dog became infested with fleas and suffered an allergic reaction, losing all the hair on his back, the owner brought him in to be treated. The people here at the rescue centre sorted out all his problems, but the owner no longer wanted him back, so they kept him and neutered him, ready for adoption.

Rescue Doggo 3 – Snowy

Like I said, I quite liked him, but wasn’t sure. I could see that his teeth were bad, which meant I was looking at several thousand Rand straight off to get them sorted out and cleaned. Also, he had had a lump removed when they neutered him. Although it wasn’t cancerous, it made me think there would be more in the future and also that the dog was older than the 7 years that they thought. Finally, he was allergic to flea spit, which meant he was probably allergic to other stuff too, like many Golden Retrievers, particularly some gorgeous ones I know from dog class. This would mean special expensiveΒ food. Later I read the updated info about this dog on their website and they said that he got along fine with other dogs, if they knew the rules, and if they didn’t, he would show them! Reading between the lines, this dog would be more work than I was looking for at this time.

Rescue Doggo 4 – Snowy

So I was not totally committed to Snowy, but would have taken him for a walk to see. However, he was adopted while I was dithering – and I was fine with that.

I realised I was just not ready to adopt another dog yet. I needed more time to grieve for Little Monkey.

Rescue Doggo 5 – Chappie

In the meantime this same rescue centre organised a dog walk on my local green belt. Anyone could go along, make a donation and walk a dog, if they wished, with a volunteer. So my husband and I went along to support them. We ended up walking this little dog, Chappie.

Rescue Doggo 6 – Chappie

Though he was the right size, he was young, only about two years old, and also quite an anxious dog. You might not be able to tell from the blurry photos, but I calmed him down by getting him to sit and holding my hand on his chest.

Rescue Doggo 7 – Chappie

He visibly relaxed, but he was using up all my energy! So he wasn’t the right dog for me either.


I went back to this particular rescue centre twice more, looking for two specific dogs. One had since been adopted, but this Border Collie cross, Miss Feisty, was still there.

I was so sure that this would be the one that I prepared our home in advance, so she could come back with us. I got out all the dog mats and bedding, food and bowls. I took a de-flea tablet with me and many treats, and in the car I put the dog towels, safety harness, lead and collar.

Rescue Doggo 8 – Miss Feisty

They are so accommodating at this place that they said I could take the dog home for a week to see how it went before deciding. We got to see the young two year old Border Collie cross in a special play area. I did all my checks with her; things I do to assess the dog and her reactions to me, such as touching ears, feet; and other things. She passed, and even if she wasn’t overly affectionate, that was fine.

So I was all set to take her home, when the guy helping us suggested we take her for a walk on the beach*. Even better!

Rescue Doggo 9 – Miss Feisty

So we put Miss Feisty in the car, strapped her in and headed for the nearby beach. She wasn’t used to travelling in a car and turned round so many times that she twisted her lead into a knot! Once at the beach I got her out of the car and tried to walk calmly down to the sands, but she was super excited and pulled a lot on the lead. They use a harness with a double lead, so it is very hard to stop them pulling with this, but I did my best.

Rescue Doggo 10 – Miss Feisty

Once on the beach I walked around slowly so Miss Feisty could sniff all the seaweed and lovely doggie smells. Farther down the beach I could see other dogs from this rescue centre being walked off-lead. They all looked well behaved and calm. I didn’t want to let Miss Feisty off the lead, as she didn’t know me and I didn’t want to risk her running off!

As the large German Shepherd crosses approached us, I wasn’t worried at all, as I could see that they were minding their own business and quite calm. Suddenly Miss Feisty lunged at them, barking, clearly meaning to attack! This was much worse than Little Monkey, who would have reacted and leapt in the air out of fear, never aggression.

I corrected her instantly by turning her away and making her sit. Fortunately, the large dogs passed us by, no problem, but it would have been a different story had they decided to react to the lunge! My husband said, “Well that’s all right; you corrected her and she listened.”

Rescue Doggo 11 – Miss Feisty

But no. It is fairly easy to correct behaviour such as pulling on the lead. Wanting to attack other dogs is far more serious, as it’s the innate character of the dog and would take a lot of work to change. Ten years ago, I might have considered adopting her (though none of my six were this bad). However, I am not prepared to take this on any more. I simply don’t have the energy. So it was a no to Miss Feisty.


It is both physically and emotionally draining to keep going and looking at these dogs. It exhausts me. Many people won’t go to rescue centres because they feel so sorry for the dogs there. Yes of course I feel sorry for them and wish I could give them all a home, but it is much, much worse on the outside, as you can read below. All these dogs are very well cared for. They are fed, groomed, given veterinary care, have their behavioural problems addressed and are oh so loved. This particular centre has a high turn around and finds many good forever homes for its dogs and cats every month.

I haven’t given up and still view all the dogs available on their website. So far the dogs are either too big, too small, too young or too difficult.

I am looking for a calm, middle-aged dog, with minimal problems. Every rescue dog has some baggage, but it depends what exactly, and how much effort and energy is required to change the behaviour.

And I’d rather have no dog than the wrong dog.


So in the mean time I thought of something else to do while I was waiting for the perfect Doggo for me, and you can read about that in the next chapter.

If you missed the first chapter, you can read it here – Waiting for Doggo!




*There used to be grassy areas around this rescue centre, where you could walk the dogs and get to know them a bit better. The townships have since grown around the rescue centre, right up to the gates. We were advised not to walk there any more, as dog walkers had been mugged. So the beach it was.Β 

Another thing while I’m talking about the townships. Most of the dogs in the rescue centre come from the township. When you adopt a dog, you save that dog and also make room in their centre for another dog in need, which can be taken off the streets. They always say, you are saving two dogs by adopting one.

Sadly, the dogs they are rescuing these days are often severely malnourished and emaciated. With the economy so bad, people in the townships can barely feed themselves, let alone their dogs; yet they keep the dog, tied up in their yard, for security. The dog cannot forage for food for itself and slowly starves.Β 


36 thoughts on “Doggone it!

  1. samanthamurdochblog

    I am slowly but steadily catching up with everyone…
    The way you are going about your search is both methodical and emotionally intelligent and I absolutely applaud you for it. I wish more people would go about it in your way…I know just how hard it is to be without, but persevere. I know it’s been said but I will say it again – the right dog is out there πŸ’•πŸ’•xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. scifihammy Post author

      Thank you so much for your kind comment. πŸ˜€
      It isn’t easy adopting an adult rescue dog, as they often have problems, so I am taking my time. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  2. A Curious Introvert

    I loved that shot of Miss Feisty running and her name and was so hoping when I first started reading that she would be going home with you! I can imagine how draining and exhausting the search is and thankfully while you continue to search for the right dog, these dogs are receiving such great care and being adopted. I’m one of those dog owners that rashly gets a dog and at some point questions what I have done and although it’s difficult searching, I absolutely believe (and continue to hope weekly) that the right dog will be waiting for you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. scifihammy Post author

      Thank you so much for this. πŸ™‚
      Even with all my careful searching – I will Still say, “What on Earth have I done!” when I finally bring a doggo home. It’s just how it is till everyone settles in. πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

  3. thesecretblind

    I hope you find the right doggo ❀. You are so dedicated to understanding the rescue dogs which shows how lucky the right dog will be when he/she appears in your life. ❀

    Liked by 1 person

  4. spanishwoods

    Im actually so impressed with your calm, and totally rational thinking. It’s so easy to get emotionally wrapped up and forget the logical! This experience sounds so draining, but in the end it will yield the right dog, I’m sure of it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. scifihammy Post author

      Thank you so much for your kind words. πŸ™‚
      I will have the dog for many years, so it is worth getting it right, for both our sakes. πŸ˜€


  5. Garfield Hug

    I am with Pam…fate will pair you with the right dog! What an adventure you went through to find the “right” one – am glad you did not adopt the ones featured!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. scifihammy Post author

      Thank you very much GH. πŸ˜€
      Yes, it is important to get the right dog for you and your lifestyle, then you are both happy. πŸ™‚


  6. scooj

    You will find the right dog I’m sure, and I think you are doing the right thing by considering all aspects of behaviour etc. I expect you’ll just know when you find the right one.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. scifihammy Post author

      Thank you so much for this Tom. πŸ˜€
      Yes, it is important to get the right dog for us; as you say, it is a big commitment!
      Over here also, apart from many homeless dogs and cats, there are abandoned or abused horses, donkeys, cows, rabbits . . . The shelters do the best they can, but when the economy is this bad, they are often overwhelmed.
      Still, adopting even one dog will help. πŸ˜€


  7. Herman

    I’m sure you’ll find a new friend. Please don’t give up looking, there will be a lucky dog waiting for you somewhere.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. scifihammy Post author

      Thank you so much Herman. πŸ™‚
      Yes, I will keep looking till I find just the right dog for us. After all, it took a year to find Mr Spaghetti Legs! πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

  8. pensitivity101

    Oh, I thought you’d found one in Chappie or Miss Fiesty, but you are right, it is so easy to feel sorry for a dog in a rescue centre and make the wrong choice for you. I almost did that when I lost my first GSD and nearly got a black GSD called Queenie. She was beautiful and loving, our collie and she walked together, and I thought we had a match…… until they dropped the bombshell that she had hip displasia and would need an operation now and another in about two years. Neither could guarantee success, and I was not ready to take on a dog that may not have that good a quality of life in the interim. Also it was a condition to pay for the dog to be spayed (not a contribution, but the whole amount) and I just didn’t have that kind of money to spare. I felt terrible, but I had to be practical especially as I was working and the dogs would be left on their own during the day.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. scifihammy Post author

      Yes, it’s worth waiting for the right dog for you – and you for them. At least our dogs are already sterilised, which is included in the adoption fee, at much less than if you had to take them to the vets.
      A pity about Queenie, but she wasn’t right for you at that time.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. pensitivity101

        I got Kizzy shortly afterwards, a nervous five year old bitch that had been dumped and tied to the fence of a GSD breeders. I felt I could help her and donated Β£30 towards the next one. I took her with me when I left the relationship and lost her to mammary cancer Dec 1990. I like to think I gave her five good years.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. scifihammy Post author

        Aw That is heartwarming. It is not how long we have them with us, but their quality of life, and I am sure Kizzy had the best time. πŸ™‚


  9. Murphy's Law

    It is definitely an exhausting process checking out shelters looking for your next best friend. Not only does the dog have to be ‘right’ for us, we have to be sure we’re the right person for this dog.

    I agree with Pam, the perfect pooch will all but fall in your lap. Sending good wishes your way that that perfect pooch finds his/her forever home with you very soon.
    🐾Ginger 🐾

    Liked by 2 people

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