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Harvey Foster Doodle, First Real Day

As you may have read, Harvey was one of the "3 Amigos". The amazing DRC doodle train rescued three sweet doodle boys and dispersed them to foster homes. I was not able to choose when Nina and I were standing in the parking lot of our meeting point, but somehow we each ended up with the "right" foster!

Technically, yesterday was Harvey's second day with me, but I've decided not to count the first day. He was soooooo scared that he had no opportunity to let the slightest glimmer of himself come out.

So....Thursday morning I went downstairs to let Harvey out of the crate and take him outside. As soon as I walked through the kitchen door, he picked up his head and wagged his tail. It didn't last long, but it happened so I knew it could happen again. A happy dog is in him, just buried down a bit. As much as Harvey hadn't wanted to get into the crate the night before, that was exactly how much he didn't want to leave the crate in the morning. Fortunately, I was able to clip his leash on him and gently tug him out. I noticed that he was trailing drops of urine as we walked to the door...and that he peed about 478 times on our walk.

Ah walking...surprisingly, Harvey walks BEAUTIFULLY on a leash. His leg muscles aren't what they should be, so he stumbles every now and then, but time and excerise will improve him.

Harvey spent much of Thursday getting thoroughly vetted, where they found him to have a raging UTI, an icky yeasty ear infection, and be 10lbs underweight. Within ONE dose of the ear meds he seemed a little happier. The UTI will obviously take a little longer, so we went on a crazy number of walks - like every 15-20 minutes (this started after he lifted his leg on the open front of a bookcase - fortunately he missed the books and just got a few easily cleaned picture frames. My nephew was very amused that Harvey had "peed on him", in the way only an 8 year old boy could be!)

That was the worst of it. Here are the AMAZING parts from day 1:

Harvey discovered the joys of "cream cheese treats" (which is how pills get delivered to dogs in my house).

Once I mixed in some shredded cheese, he ate about a 1/3 of his food. (baby steps)

He loves treats.

He started responding to my voice by looking up and coming over.

He came over and solicited pets and rubs - and rewarded me with a few tentative kisses on my hand.

He loves Callie and wants to be near her (he also tried to lick her pee - not sure what that's all about)

He started walking outside with his head held up and tail up.

He let my neighbor pet him.

He displayed some interest in the toys I put out - especially the tennis ball.

He gave me eye contact. Lots of it.

This is the part that KILLS me and one of the things that keeps me fostering. The smallest amounts effort make all the difference for these dogs. I know I write about fostering and my fosters a lot (I like to write, especially about doodles) and it's not so I can hear accolades (and I'm always scared that y'all think that), but because each time I feel lucky and so INCREDULOUS that these dogs respond so amazingly to ordinary every day care, because whatever monsters owned them before didn't provide them with these simple things...like a safe environment...food...clean water (even if so far Harvey will only take his from the toilet)...gentle pats and rubs...consistency of schedule and behavior so they can feel confident.

Hopefully I'll have pictures of Harvey soon...right now he's not a big fan of the flash (and I cut a bunch of mats out of his face, neck, and tail and he looks a little funny!)

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Comments

  • Oh Harvey, you are in the best of hands to show you what life is supposed to be about for a dood! You hang in there and keep being such a brave boy!! Can't wait for your photos and more updates!!
  • Harvey, you may not know it yet, but your life just took a gigantic turn for the better! Frannie, hugs to you and Callie for bringing Harvey into your home and your hearts.
  • Amazing story. It takes a special person to see the happy dog hiding under all that fear, medical problems and hurt. Without people like you and the other active rescue people on these boards these dogs wouldn't have a chance at a better life. Someone will love him, and treasure him -- but its because of the rescuers with the ability and patience to rehabilitate him and nurse him back to health. Giving him those first crucial examples of human kindness and decency to build his trust and confidence.

    Thanks for all you do. (Everyone at the DRC and IDOG) These dogs deserve a chance, and you guys give it to them.
  • Frannie, it sounds like Harvey is going to be a true sweetheart and that with tour amazing care and ,love he is going to be a wonderful doodle boy...Please keep the updates coming.. You are truly a very special person and I think Harvey will get to know that sooner rather then later. Of course Callie is going to be the big sister, so she will help the situation. Bless you...
  • It's truly amazing how these dogs are still capable of being so sweet and loving when all they have known is mean rotten humans. Dogs really do have hearts of gold. He sounds like he's going to do great under your wonderful care. I can't wait to hear more.
  • It sounds like it's going to be "baby steps" with Harvey, but you've already made some great progress. I think he must be starting to feel safe if he's soliciting "pets". I think Callie will be a big help with his "rehabilitation". What a great Doodle girl she is. I can't wait for the pictures.
  • Oh Harvey!! You're going to start to heal through and through as the meds kick all those icky health issues in the butt...and your heart starts to heal with all the love Frannie and Callie are giving you! Hugs and doodle kisses : )
  • Nina - I should have mentioned that he ESPECIALLY loves your liver treats!
  • Great job Frannie, if anyone can get Harv out of his shell, its you.
  • :) Hi Harvey. Here is a little cream cheese and a kiss from us. Take it easy little guy and see you soon.
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