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Whether you had a hand in this story or not, your help and support make these happy endings possible.
Katie has found her forever home

Katie was surrendered to the Contra Costa Animal Shelter in Martinez because "she wasn't getting along with the other dogs in her home." I couldn't find out any more details. We posted her beautiful face on our website and asked people without other dogs to give her a try. Her days were numbered cause the shelter was very full.

A man in Meyers Flat (northern CA) called me one day to ask how he could help Katie. He said he had an Aussie before and really wanted another Aussie girl to fit in with his two male dogs: a 100 pound wolf hybrid that is dog aggressive, and a playful Border Collie. We agreed that Katie would probably not be a good fit. His concern for her was touching. A week later I received a generous donation from him marked, "for Katie."

I decided to drive to the shelter to meet her. I walked her around the shelter where she encountered some dogs. She didn't pull on her leash. She gave me kisses and ignored the dogs. I took her to a foster home that had a nice, neutered male Aussie. As soon as they met, she attacked him. She didn't do serious damage, but it was scary and I certainly couldn't leave her there.

Another foster home without other dogs offered to take her. Katie went on walks in the neighborhood with her gentle leader on for extra control. We evaluated her with some well-behaved Vizslas and she actually played with them! YIPPEE…she CAN get along with SOME dogs! She settled in nicely and her foster parents adored her.

One evening, a neighbor with a 7 pound Chihuahua off-leash started crossing the street to meet Katie. Katie's foster mom yelled out that Katie is dog aggressive, but the man said "it's OK, my dog likes big dogs" and crossed the street. Katie and the Chihuahua sniffed noses OK, but when the Chihuahua started jumping around, Katie put her mouth on him and wouldn't let him up. Animal control was called and the Chihuahua went to the vet and Katie went back to the shelter under "house arrest or quarantine".

Katie stayed in isolation for 10 days. She was labeled a "dangerous dog" and we were told we couldn't visit her. I asked to keep her in quarantine in my home, but was told no. Her stay at the shelter cost $515. I refused to let them put her down. She is so great with people, has played with the Vizslas…I was determined to find a home for her.

Wanting to keep the peace in the neighborhood, I took Katie to Foster Home #3. This time, all's going well, but the neighbor's lab and Katie barked through the fence daily. Neighbors were complaining - she had to be moved again.

During a very dark hour, I called the man from Meyers Flat. I had nowhere to take Katie…every foster home has at least 3 dogs and her track record was dreadful. He proposed taking Katie. We spoke a long time about her history, how he might introduce her to his dogs, what would happen if they got into a fight, how far away his vet is, and who would help him if all three got "into it."

His positive attitude and his experience with dog aggression convinced me that I should give it a try. He picked up Katie and drove her to his home where he had his friends waiting. Katie went into the yard with her muzzle on. His friends stood in different areas of the yard with hoses. The two boys were let out of the house. Katie got her muzzle off in 3 seconds. Everyone had the hose nozzles pointed and ready…but guess what? Katie and Ricky, the border collie started playing, and Wolf, the hybrid didn't seem to mind much. No fights….not then, not that night, not the next day.

Katie's found her forever home and Ricky has his playmate and Wolf is OK with it.

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