Orphans of the Storm® Both Bubbly and Shy Dogs

There are a few shy dogs (a couple of which are puppies) at Orphans of the Storm® who are still super sweet! They also have made some bubbly doggy companions who are already helping them come out of their shell.

Romeo the one-year-old Treeing Walker Coonhound mix wants to be by his person’s side all the time. He loves to give doggy hugs and will happily stand on his hind legs and hold you for as long as you let him. Romeo was a little nervous when we were making our way around the woodland preserve and was far more interested in snuggling than walking, but once he gets used to his surroundings he should be a much better walking companion.

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Romeo is a handsome guy

Romeo enjoyed romping around the Enrichment Park and even jumped over one of the agility hurdles after I demonstrated how to do it. He is a quick learner! Romeo would do a quick lap around the park and then come running back to me for more cuddles. He loves getting pet and will lean against you while you scratch his side. Come in soon to see if sweet Romeo is the one for you!

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Romeo putting his Hound nose to use

Apollo the nine-month-old Mountain Cur mix (not to be confused with the other Apollo) is a little shy at first, but once he feels comfortable with you then he shows you what a cuddle-bug he can be. Apollo can be a little hesitant on the leash, but after some words and pets of encouragement, he’s a good walking buddy. Apollo will put his front paws in your lap when you kneel down next to him or sit on a bench. He might even give you a quick, gentle doggy kiss!

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Apollo has such unique coloring!

Apollo gets along with other dogs and is currently sharing his kennel with Bubba (see below). Apollo has also gone to play groups and interacts politely with the other participants, but is also interested in getting attention from the people in the yard. Apollo is a sweet puppy who just needs to build up his confidence a little more. Come in soon to meet Apollo!

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Apollo getting used to walking with a harness

Bubba the three-year-old Mountain Cur mix is friendly with everybody. He greets every person he sees with an enthusiastically wagging tail and will be your new best friend in no time. He’s small enough that he can hop right into your lap and cover your face and hands in doggy kisses. Bubba will also roll over next to you so you can give him a belly rub.

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Bubba always has a smile on his face

Bubba likes to move at a quick pace and can pull a bit on the leash, but overall he’s a good walking companion. Bubba gets along with other dogs and is currently sharing his kennel with Apollo (see above). This happy-go-lucky guy is sure to bring a smile to his new family’s face. If you think that might be you, come in soon to say hello to Bubba!

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Bubba is eager to explore

Mr. Brown the seven-month-old Dalmatian/Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix arrived at the shelter with his brother, who has since been adopted. Mr. Brown absolutely loves play group and spending time with other dogs. He played a little rough when he first arrived, but the older dogs have taught him much better manners and now Mr. Brown is a play group favorite.

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Mr. Brown makes for an adorable Easter egg

Mr. Brown also loves people. He is very affectionate and loves to snuggle and give doggy kisses. He gladly joined me and another volunteer on the bench to get extra pets. Mr. Brown is up for anything and was even one of our Easter Egg-dogs who got decorated with (dog-safe) fur dye last week. If you’re looking for a fun-loving puppy, be sure to say hello to Mr. Brown on your next visit to the shelter!

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Mr. Brown is ready to give lots of kisses!

Athena the nine-month-old Mountain Cur mix is extra shy right now, but she already has a group of volunteers who love her and are working to build her confidence. She isn’t quite used to walking on a leash yet and sometimes gets carried from her kennel to an off-leash yard, but perks up once she’s free to romp. Athena also feels better when she has a doggy companion to walk next to or play with.

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Athena enjoyed the sunshine

Athena shows what a sweetheart she is once she has a few minutes to get to know you. By the end of our outing, she was coming over to me when I called to her and was giving me a couple quick doggy kisses. Athena is looking for a home that will give her the extra TLC she needs to become an outgoing puppy again. Stop in soon to meet Athena!

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Athena is tentative but loving

I also saw Barney, Big Boy and Mojo, Blue, Claire (Clarinet), Gracie, Jack, Peepers, Prince, Princess, and Sox.

The play group I attended this week included Alec (Aleck), Apollo the Mountain Cur, Brutus, Elijah, Gia (Pippa), Gracie, Huckleberry, Jack, John Boy, Luna, Mr. Brown, Prince, Sasha, Tom, Whizzer, and YoYo (Yeyo). There were also new dogs who haven’t been profiled yet: Clyde, Cowboy, Eastside, Freckles, Harry, Henry, Hippo, Lyla, Mazie, and Phoenix.

Orphans of the Storm Dogs: Athena and Mr. Brown

Bonus shot of Athena and Mr. Brown playing!

Orphans of the Storm® Dogs Who Found Their Forever Homes, Part XX

Here is a short but extra sweet success story! The previously profiled pooch Frisco, who now goes by Hadji, was adopted by the Leato family. Here is their story, and the most adorable pictures!

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Five years ago, we adopted Frisco (now Hadji) from Orphans of the Storm®. Without a doubt, Hadji is the best dog that has ever walked into our lives and our family would be lost without him.

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Hadji is very loved and has many roles in the family. He is a cat sitter, bus stop greeter, patient for his cousin’s “veterinary clinic,” imaginary princess, big brother to a miniature heeler, and a nap time buddy.

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We are very thankful to have found a piece of our hearts at Orphans. Thank you for all that you do.

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Orphans of the Storm Success Story: Hadji 20190403_152739

Thank you to the Leato family for sharing your story!

If you would like to share your own Orphans of the Storm® success story, please email meetthepooches@gmail.com. We never get tired of hearing all these happy “tails”!

Orphans of the Storm® Dogs Who Found Their Forever Homes, Part XIX

I have a double success story to share today! Margie and her brother adopted Francis and Randy, who now go by the names of Buddy and Cubbie. Here is their story:

My brother and I adopted “Francis” and “Randy” on February 28. We went to see Francis and even though I called that morning to make sure he was in Deerfield, he was taken to the Highland Park location. While we waited for him to come back, we looked at dogs who had just been brought in that morning from Tennessee. And there we found “Randy.” I guess it was meant to be to adopt them both! Francis is now “Buddy” and Randy is now “Cubbie” (brother is a Cubs fan).

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Francis/Buddy (L) and Randy/Cubbie (R)

Buddy was returned by a couple who said he peed in the house and barked when alone. Our luck that they couldn’t bother to train him. He has had a few accidents in the house but is getting better. He does bark when I leave him alone in the house to take Cubbie for a longer walk. He limps due to a swelling on his right leg that doesn’t stop him from much, but he gets a shorter walk than Cubbie does. Buddy is around 8 years old and is a pretty chill dog. He is the alpha of the two and barks when Cubbie bothers him too much or craves too much attention from us. Buddy immediately took to his doggie bed and sleeps there most of the time, half of his body off and half on. He likes attention (sometimes) and will put his paw on you if you stop before he’s done. He’s not into toys that much but has destroyed a few rope toys already, chewing them up.

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Cubbie didn’t stay at Orphans for long. We saw him the morning he came in and picked him up at the vet’s the next day. He tested positive for worms and fleas/ticks and had to take medicine. He is very smart and I had to figure out different ways to get him to take it. I had to fight with him to take the pills and he never once snapped at me. He’s about 4 years old and is a cuddle-bug. He craves attention and will nose Buddy out of the way to get it. Since he’s younger, he likes to play a bit more, especially out on walks when he should be doing his business. He will bark and whine at dogs going by but he just wants to visit. He whines when a neighbor walks by and wants to stop to be petted. We have met a lot of our neighbors this way! Cubbie doesn’t know what a doggie bed is for, he tries to play with it. He likes sleeping in a corner on the floor.

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Both of them must have had families. They can sit and heel and somewhat know some other commands, like “no,” “come,” and “drop it.” They are both very people-oriented. We had some friends over for lunch and after they got their petting in, they slept the rest of the lunch.

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Both dogs are the sweetest things and are bonding well. I don’t know how we lucked out getting two such good dogs!

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Thank you for sharing Buddy and Cubbie’s story, Margie!

If you would like to share your own Orphans of the Storm® success story, please email meetthepooches@gmail.com.

Orphans of the Storm® Dogs Remind You to Attend “Wags and Whiskers”

Help get those dog tails wagging and those cats purring by attending Orphans of the Storm®’s Annual Benefit Dinner, Wags and Whiskers. It’s this Tuesday, April 9, at 5:30 p.m. I hope to see you there!

Norman the two-year-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix is a happy boy. I haven’t walked such an attentive dog in a long time! Norman likes to check in often with the person on the other end of the leash. Sometimes he stopped and looked up at me to get a reassuring pet, and sometimes he’d just look over his shoulder at me as he walked. He can pull a bit when he’s excited, but for the most part he’s a nice walking companion.

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Norman checking in

Norman is also affectionate. He joined me on the bench a couple times and gave me some doggy kisses. He enjoyed exploring the off-leash run but wasn’t particularly interested in playing fetch. Norman does well with other dogs and goes to play group often. He was even enlisted to help a new puppy learn appropriate play group manners. Come in soon to see if Norman is the pooch for you!

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Norman investigating a toy

Sox the eight-year-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix is a super-sweet girl. Any time I knelt down to her level or she hopped up next to me on the bench, she covered my face in doggy kisses. Sox is also an excellent walking companion. She didn’t pull on the leash at all during our walk around the woodland preserve and was happy to walk at whatever pace I went.

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Sox is very appropriately named, with her four white socks

Sox loves toys, especially stuffed animals. She can happily keep herself occupied by tossing the toys in the air and gently chewing on them. She liked having at least two toys to alternate between. Sox is looking for a special, caring home. She was diagnosed with mammary malignancy when she arrived at the shelter, but her prognosis is good and she still has time to warm up someone’s heart and home. If you’re looking for a lovable senior, come in soon to say hello to Sox!

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Sox preferred the hedgehog, but the lamb was fun too

I also saw Barney, Big Boy, and Daisy.

And here are this week’s play group participants:

Play group 1: Brutus, Elijah, Hamilton, Huckleberry, Jack, John Boy, Lolabell, Luna, Maggie, Maya, Norman, Peepers, Pippa (Gia), Pony Boy, Prince, Quinn, Sasha, Trent, Whizzer, and Wombat.

Orphans of the Storm early April Play Group 1

We’ll need to add more puppy pools as the weather gets warmer! Elijah, Jack, and John Boy enjoying a break (with Sasha, Quinn, Maya, Jax, Huckleberry, Trent, and a couple others in the background)

Play group 2: Apollo, Elijah, Gracie, Hamilton, Huckleberry, Jack, John Boy, Luna, Norman, Pippa (Gia), Pony Boy, Quinn, Sasha, and Trent.

Orphans of the Storm early April Play Group 2

What a group! Jack, Maggie, Luna (?), Huckleberry, Pippa, Jax, Brutus, Trent (?), Sasha, and Elijah

Play group dogs who I haven’t profiled yet included Bodie, Cocoa, Jax, Mr. Brown, Polli, Rose, Rufus, Tiger, Tootsie, and Whiskey.

Orphans of the Storm early April Play Group 3

John Boy, Jack, Huckleberry, Sasha, Maggie, Quinn, Elijah, Pippa, and Jax

Orphans of the Storm® Girlie Dogs

Firstly, a reminder that the Orphans of the Storm® Annual Benefit Dinner is coming up quick–Tuesday, April 9!

I unintentionally walked only girl dogs this week, and they are eager to show everyone how sweet they are.

Mia the three-year-old Anatolian Shepherd/Pointer mix is super easy-going. She patiently sits and waits for her leash to be put on without even being asked. Once she was on the leash, she happily stayed by my side and didn’t pull at all. Mia is a great walking companion. She also loves attention. When I sat down on the bench, Mia put her front paws up next to me so I could pet her more. She always has the sweetest look on her face.

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Mia likes her walks

Mia was previously sharing her kennel with another dog who has since been adopted. Mia has also participated in at least one play group, and was very calm. She didn’t engage in actual play too much, but happily walked around and sniffed and said hello to the other dogs. So, there is a good chance she would do well in a home with another dog. Be sure to say hello to Mia on your next visit to the shelter!

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Mia enjoyed having a big yard to explore

Gracie the three-year-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix is a little skittish, but warms up quickly once she has a couple minutes to get to know you. When I knelt down next to her, she rested her chin on my knee and leaned her whole body against my leg so we could snuggle. She also hopped up and joined me on the bench later. Her tail started wagging the second I started petting her, and she gave me a few doggy kisses.

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Gracie just wants to cuddle

Gracie likes to walk at a quick pace, but doesn’t pull on the leash. She already knows the “sit” command and is ready to learn more! Gracie is a little on the skinny side, so she especially enjoys treats in return for her good behavior. Gracie has participated in play groups and plays nicely with other dogs. She is looking for a loving home with people who will help her come out of her shell. Come in soon to meet Gracie!

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Gracie with her little tail tucked

Luna the three-year-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix ended up at the shelter because her family could no longer care for her. But, that means she already has experience as a family pet and she gets along with children. She also seems to already have some basic training and will sit nicely when you ask her to. Luna has a special note, which is that she is allergic to chicken, so her new family will need to keep an eye on what she eats.

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Luna has the cutest forehead wrinkles (sorry it’s blurry)

Luna is very affectionate. Her entire body wriggles when you scratch her hips and sides, and she’ll try to sit in your lap. She also gave me lots of doggy kisses. Luna walks nicely on the leash for the most part, though she occasionally thinks the leash is a tug-of-war toy. Luna has participated in play groups and generally likes the “rough and tumble” kind of play, but settles down when she needs a break. Stop by soon to see if Luna is the one for you!

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Luna wasn’t quite sure about the rocks

Maggie Lynn the one-year-old Basenji/Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix found herself at the shelter because her owner passed away. She’s still basically a puppy, so she has plenty of energy and playfulness. Maggie Lynn wanted to run rather than walk when we were on the woodland preserve trail, though she did slow down occasionally to sniff and explore.

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Maggie Lynn coming over to say hello

Maggie Lynn will listen to the “sit” command, but if there is a lot going on around her then she gets a little distracted and pops back up. She’s always interested in what else is happening and who else is around, whether it be a dog or a squirrel or a person. Maggie Lynn loves going to play group and bounds right into all the action. If you’re looking for a fun, active dog, look no further than Maggie Lynn!

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Maggie Lynn has such pretty brindle fur

I also saw Barney, Blue, Peepers, and Wombat.

I’ve also helped with a few play groups over the last two weeks, and here are the participants (not all at the same time!):

Play group 1: Apollo, Brutus, Chevy, Dunkin the Red, Elijah, Hamilton, Hobbs, Huckleberry, Jack, John Boy, Loki, Lolabell, Lucy, Maya, Mojo, Peepers, Pippa (Gia), Sasha, Shyanne (Cheyenne), Trent, and Whizzer.

Orphans of the Storm March Play Group 1

John Boy, Jax, Pippa (Gia), Jack, Huckleberry, and maybe Peepers or Maggie Lynn

Play group 2: Brutus, Elijah, Gracie, Hamilton, Huckleberry, Jack, John Boy, Lolabell, Maya, Peepers, Pippa (Gia), Pony Boy, Quinn, Roxy, Sasha, Shyanne (Cheyenne), Trent, and Whizzer.

Orphans of the Storm March Play Group 2

Pippa is a designated “play group rock star” because she gets along with every dog (and obviously feels comfortable in groups, laying on her back!), seen here with John Boy, Huckleberry, and Elijah

Play group 3: Brutus, Elijah, Gracie, Hamilton, Huckleberry, Jack, John Boy, Lolabell, Maggie, Maggie Lynn, Maya, Luna, Peepers, Pippa (Gia), Pony Boy, Quinn, Roxy, Sasha, Trent, and Whizzer.

Orphans of the Storm March Play Group 3

Jax, Sasha, and Jack (who is another “rock star”)–and possibly Maggie and Whiskey in the background

Play group 4: Elijah, Gracie, Hamilton, Huckleberry, Jack, Lolabell, Lucy, Luna, Maggie, Maggie Lynn, Maya, Mia, Peepers, Pippa (Gia), Prince, Quinn, Roxy, Sasha, Trent, Turbo, Whizzer, and Wombat.

Orphans of the Storm March Play Group 4

Jax, John Boy, Jack, Sasha, and maybe Maggie in the back

Dogs who I haven’t had a chance to profile yet but who have also participated in the above play groups are Jax, Mazie, Penelope, Rose, Rufus, Tiger, Tootsie, and Whiskey.

Orphans of the Storm® Dogs Hoping Spring Is Just Around the Corner

There’s only a little bit of snow left around the grounds of Orphans of the Storm®, and the dogs and people are hoping it won’t stick around much longer!

Dumplin’ the one-year-old Catahoula Leopard Dog mix is a real sweetheart. She can be a little shy and skittish, particularly when she’s off-leash in the yard and there’s another dog on the other side of the fence, but she loves going for walks. Dumplin’ is actually very playful when she’s on the leash and does little hops and twirls when she’s particularly happy. She is a nice walking companion and doesn’t pull much at all.

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Dumplin’ was just a little nervous at first

Dumplin’ is an affectionate pup. She likes to snuggle and will lean against your legs while you pet her. She’s also happy to give gentle doggy kisses. Dumplin’ put her front paws up on the bench next to me so I could pet her more. She has pretty coloring and bright blue eyes, so she’s sure to grab your attention as you walk through the kennels. Come in soon to see if Dumplin’ is the dog for you!

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But Dumplin’ loves being close to her person!

Phoenix the two-year-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix is a happy girl. She wags her tail so hard that her entire body wiggles back and forth. Phoenix loves getting attention and is very affectionate. She gives doggy hugs and doggy kisses. Phoenix joined me on the bench and sat as close to me as she could without actually being in my lap.

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Phoenix never strayed too far from me

Phoenix is generally a good walking companion on the leash, but she does have the occasional burst of energy where she would rather run than walk. Phoenix has participated in a number of play groups, so she could probably go to a home with or without another dog. Many volunteers think she’s the absolute cutest. Be sure to say hello to Phoenix on your next visit to the shelter!

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Phoenix is ready to be your TV-watching buddy

Jesse the five-year-old Coonhound/Catahoula Leopard Dog mix is an easy-going guy and an ideal walking companion. I got stuck on some ice (I thought the woodland preserve trail thawed out more than it had) and Jesse patiently stood still and waited until I got my bearings again before moving on. He doesn’t pull on the leash at all, and walks at a nice pace with the occasional stop to sniff.

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Jesse has the most unique markings

Jesse is a good cuddle buddy. He will gladly stand right next to you as long as you keep petting him, and might nudge you if you stop before he’s ready! Jesse has gone to a couple of play groups and gotten along with dogs of both high and low energy levels. This sweet boy is ready to find his home sweet home. Come in soon to say hello to Jesse!

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Jesse is a lovey-dovey

Roscoe the three-year-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix is friendly with people and dogs alike. He loves going to play group and tried to pull me in the direction of the play group area instead of going for a walk around the woodland preserve. He’s more of the “rough and tumble” type, so he might be a little much for low-key dogs but great for active dogs.

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Roscoe is a handsome boy

Roscoe likes getting pet and particularly enjoys a good scratch under his chin. He enjoys sniffing and exploring in the yard. Roscoe can pull on the leash when there’s a particular direction he wants to go, and sometimes would rather run than walk. If you’re looking for an active new friend, be sure to come in and meet Roscoe!

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Roscoe says, “Yup, that’s the spot!”

Marley the one-year-old Shepherd mix still has plenty of puppy spunk. She absolutely loves having the freedom to run in a big yard and was flying around the Enrichment Park. When she’s on the leash, though, she’s actually quite calm and makes for a nice walking buddy. Her tail was up and wagging during our entire walk.

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Marley is such a pretty girl

Marley is a snuggler. She likes to give doggy kisses and tried her best to climb into my lap. She likes to lean against you while you pet her side. Marley had a short playdate with Jack but was playing a little rough, so she might do best as the only dog in her new home or with a dog who can keep her in check. Stop by the shelter soon to meet Marley!

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Marley says, “Oh, hello there!”

I also saw Barney, Big Boy and Mojo (who are no longer sharing a kennel but enjoy spending time in the yard together), Blue, and Cheyenne (Shyanne).

And I was part of two play groups this week, which included the participants Gia (Pippa), Hobbs, Loki, Lolabell, Lucy, Maya, Quinn, Ruth, Tyson, and Whizzer one day and Brutus, Elijah, Gracie, Huckleberry, John Boy, Luna, Peepers, Sadie, Sasha, and Wombat the second day.

Orphans of the Storm® Dogs Who Are Happy to Give You Lots of Kisses

Firstly, the Orphans of the Storm® Annual Benefit Dinner is just a month away! Mark your calendar for Tuesday, April 9 at 5:30 p.m. Get the details here and then call the shelter directly at 847-945-0235 to RSVP!

Secondly, it was my lucky day because all of the new dogs I met were particularly affectionate and so much fun to be with!

Luna the one-year-old Beagle/Spaniel mix spent some time in a foster home before coming to the shelter, so that means she already has experience living in a home. Her foster mom says that Luna gets along with other dogs and did well with visitors. She also says that Luna enjoys cuddling on the couch, which I could have easily guessed because Luna kept climbing into my lap and giving me doggy kisses!

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Luna being playful

Luna does a pretty good job walking on the leash, but every once in a while she gets a puppy spurt of energy and wants to run rather than walk. She politely sniffed Jack on the other side of the fence and enjoyed exploring the off-leash run. Luna is hoping for a home that will spoil her with lots of toys and a nice yard to play in. Come in soon to see if Luna is the puppy for you!

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Luna says, “Yes, hello, have you met my friend Jack?”

Gracie the two-year-old Labrador Retriever/Staffordshire Bull Terrier (or maybe some Weimaraner, based on her coloring) mix is a lot of fun. We spent some time in the Enrichment Park, where Gracie had a great time chasing after toys and proudly carrying around a tennis ball. Gracie is also super snuggly. She put her front paws in my lap whenever she got the opportunity and covered my face in doggy kisses.

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Gracie positively glows!

Gracie gets along with other dogs and has participated in a play group, which involved lots of bouncing around and play-bowing, even with dogs who are much bigger than she is. Gracie walks nicely on the leash and will be a good walking companion around the neighborhood. Be sure to say hello to Gracie on your next visit to the shelter!

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Gracie loves tennis balls

Sadie the three-year-old Mountain Cur mix is a sweet, happy girl. She genuinely knows how to smile and her tail is almost constantly wagging. Sadie gives people a friendly greeting whether she knows them well or not. She is very cuddly and will happily lean against you while you pet her, or attempt to climb into your lap. Sadie gives very enthusiastic doggy kisses too.

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Sadie smiling in the sunshine

Sadie has a little bit of a limp (she appears to be missing a toe on one of her front paws), but it doesn’t slow her down at all. She walks nicely on the leash and is happy to lead the way just a couple steps ahead of her person. Sadie is looking for an adults-only home where she can be the only dog. If that sounds like your situation, be sure to come in and meet Sadie!

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Sadie is happy-go-lucky

Irwin the two-year-old Catahoula Leopard Dog mix is a very handsome boy. Literally every volunteer and customer we passed had to stop and tell him how pretty he is. Irwin is a great walking companion and rarely pulls on the leash. He was mostly interested in sniffing and exploring along the woodland preserve trail.

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Irwin wanted a better look at the dogs on the other side of the fence

Irwin is currently sharing his kennel with another dog and politely sniffed the dogs on the other side of the fence with his tail wagging, so he could go to a home with or without another dog. Irwin likes getting pet, particularly on the side of his neck, and will stay by your side while you pet him. Stop in soon to say hello to Irwin!

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Irwin enjoys his walks

I also saw Apollo, Barney, Big Boy, Carlos, Carson, Claire (Clarinet), Huckleberry, Lolabell, Mojo, Pony Boy, Tom, and Vanilla.

Orphans of the Storm® Dogs Have Slip-n-Slidin’ Fun

A good portion of Orphans of the Storm®’s woodland preserve trail was transformed into an ice rink, which was a little challenging to walk across on two human legs but also slowed down the dogs! So we mostly stuck to the dry areas and had a better time, though some of the dogs were eager to give their ice skating skills a test.

Cookie the five-year-old Hound mix came from a family who could no longer care for her. That means she has experience living in a home and is ready to get resettled! Cookie greets people with a wagging tail. She’s a friendly girl who enjoys getting pet but who didn’t mind going off and doing her own exploring in the off-leash run.

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Cookie has such a sweet face

Cookie gets along with other dogs and has participated in a few play groups. She can be more actively playful or sit back and be calmer, depending on the dogs she’s with. However, Cookie isn’t a fan of cats. Cookie walks nicely on the leash and is a good walking companion. If you’re looking for a sweet girl to join your family, be sure to say hello to Cookie!

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Cookie investigating with her nose

Peaches the three-year-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix is as sweet as his name. He loves getting attention and will gladly stand by your side as long as you’re petting him. Peaches can pull on a leash a little bit, but for the most part does a good job with walking on the leash and likes to pause every once in a while to do some sniffing.

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Peaches using his very pink nose

Peaches likes other dogs and enjoys being part of play groups. He’s more of a “rough and tumble” guy, which can be too much for some playmates but perfect for others. He likes to say hello to people and dogs alike, and wants to know what everyone else is up to. Come in soon to see if Peaches is the one for you!

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Peaches says, “I know there’s a dog behind here! I know it!”

Loki the nine-year-old Beagle mix still has plenty of energy and spunk. He’s talkative, as Beagles are known to be, and will bark hello when you come to take him out of his kennel. He’s also a little stubborn when it comes to deciding which way to go on walks. Loki eventually follows his person, but will give a little “Fine! I don’t agree but I’ll still do it!” bark first. Overall, though, he walks at a nice pace and enjoys sniffing the ground at a quick pace too.

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Loki balancing on the ice

Loki loves the snow and that’s where his puppy-like personality really comes out. He rolls on his back in it, eats it, crawls across it with his (cutely chubby) belly, and doesn’t want to leave it! Loki also enjoys belly rubs and getting his ears scratched. He made me smile the entire time we were together. Be sure to say hello to Loki on your next visit to the shelter!

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Loki loving the snow

Anna the three-year-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix is a big, strong girl. She can pull on the leash a bit when she first comes out of her kennel, but don’t let that deter you. She does well on the leash once she gets settled in her walking pace, as long as you can keep up with her. Anna enjoyed snuffling her way around the woodland preserve trail and often kept her nose to the ground.

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Anna leading the way on our walk

Anna loves people and will greet you with a doggy hug once she knows you. She’ll also try to give you some enthusiastic doggy kisses. She doesn’t seem too fond of other dogs at this point, though, so she may do best as the only pet in her new home. If you like big dogs, come in soon to meet Anna!

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Anna stepping gingerly on the ice

Sherman the one-year-old Plott mix can be just a tiny bit skittish, but very sweet. He’s an affectionate puppy who likes to snuggle and give doggy kisses. He put his front paws in my lap whenever I was down at his level or sitting on the bench, and also hopped up on the bench next to me a couple times. Sherman is very gentle and seems to prefer meandering around the yard rather than romping.

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Sherman wasn’t a fan of the 40mph wind gusts

Sherman is a nice walking companion and didn’t pull on the leash at all. He was mostly interested in staying close to my side, but his ears would always perk up if he heard something. Sherman is just a lovey-dovey eager to find a home as sweet as he is. Stop by the shelter soon to say hello to Sherman!

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But Sherman was a fan of cuddling!

I also saw Barney, Big Boy (who is so snuggly and convinced he’s a lapdog), Blue (who loves to play with toys), Brutus, Carlos, Dunkin (who gave me a doggy hug), Evelyn, Hazel, Hobbs, Huckleberry (who is so affectionate), Lolabell (who walked much nicer on the leash this week), Maya, Mojo, and Tyson.

Orphans of the Storm® Dogs Playing for Life

Last week, Orphans of the Storm® was excited to welcome Dogs Playing for Life! Dogs Playing for Life is a program that travels to shelters around the country (and internationally!) to “demonstrate both the practical efficiencies of play groups for the rescue organization, as well as the emotional and behavioral benefits for the animals.”

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Bonus (who has since been adopted!), Leon, and Nando (with Roxy doing her own thing in the background)

Dogs are naturally social animals, but if you’ve visited or seen pictures of most animal shelters, dogs are kept separate in individual kennels. They get to socialize with the human staff, volunteers, and potential adopters, but don’t often get an opportunity to socialize with other dogs. Implementing play groups for shelter dogs has many benefits, including:

  • Dogs get more physical exercise during a play group than during a leashed walk
  • Dogs learn important social and communication skills
  • Staff can do more accurate assessments of individual dogs’ personalities
  • More dogs can get taken out of their kennels in a shorter period of time, meaning there’s a higher chance that every dog gets out every day and some dogs can go out twice in one day
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Nando, Bonus, and Leon

Dogs Playing for Life leads multi-day seminars that include a presentation and several days of hands-on training. At Orphans of the Storm®, more than 40 volunteers attended the presentation and almost all of those attended at least one of the six hands-on sessions. Several members of staff attended as well. We learned about different play styles, how to introduce dogs to the play group, and–most importantly–how to keep both the dogs and people safe.

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Bonus and Roxy

A key part of Dogs Playing for Life is that it really is all about the dog-to-dog interactions. There are usually only 2-4 people inside the yard with the dogs (depending on how many dogs are in the yard at the time) and they are mostly there to keep an eye on things. The people don’t pet the dogs or play with them in any way. They’ll correct a dog’s behavior if the other dogs aren’t correcting it themselves, but it is truly amazing (especially to me, who has only ever owned one dog at a time and has very little experience with multiple dogs in one space) how well the dogs communicate with each other and work things out on their own.

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Ruth ended up being a great “greeter” dog who welcomed new dogs into the yard

During the hands-on training, almost every dog at Orphans of the Storm® got to join a play group at least once. This includes dogs that we all thought didn’t get along with other dogs! Some examples include Barney, Cheyenne (Shyanne), and Tom. Successfully playing in a group is not a guarantee that these dogs can go to a home and spend all day, every day living with another dog–but it is still great to know that they are capable of appropriate dog-to-dog interactions!

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Ruth, Leon, and John Boy (sorry for the blurriness, I got snow on my lens!)

Play groups don’t only benefit the super-energetic dogs. Shy dogs, like Quinn and Ruth, came out of their shells and were playing in the course of just one group outing. Jax the German Shepherd (who I haven’t had a chance to profile yet) arrived at the shelter scared and overcompensated by barking at everything–but in the play groups, he’s a happy and playful pooch. When you just let dogs be dogs, incredible things can happen!

Orphans of the Storm® would like to thank the ASPCA and the Petco Foundation for bringing the Dogs Playing for Life program to us.

Orphans of the Storm® Dogs on a Snowy Afternoon

The snow started falling about halfway through my afternoon at Orphans of the Storm®, but the dogs certainly didn’t mind!

Turbo the four-year-old Hound mix is an energetic guy, hence his name. He loved romping around the off-leash run, following his nose behind the bushes, and exploring. Turbo would come running back to me every once in a while to quickly check in, and then be off doing his own thing again. Turbo can be a little bark-y around certain dogs but doesn’t pay as much attention to others.

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Turbo hitting the trail

Turbo likes to walk at a quick pace when he’s on the leash, but is happy to take the occasional break to nicely stand by your side and get pet. He particularly enjoys getting his chin scratched. Turbo is missing a couple toes on one of his back paws, but that certainly doesn’t slow him down. Come in soon to meet Turbo!

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Turbo says, “Yup, that’s the spot.”

Bonus the one-year-old Australian Cattle Dog mix has the best doggy smile I have ever seen. It’s impossible not to smile back at him. He always looks so content! Bonus is an easy-going companion. He is a great leash-walking buddy who doesn’t pull at all. He pauses to sniff every once in a while, but mostly just walks by your side.

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Bonus looks like he’s part-raccoon with his striped tail

Bonus is also affectionate. He joined me on the bench a few times and gave me some very gentle doggy kisses. Bonus loves getting pet and that’s when he really starts to smile, and even closes his eyes as if to say, “Ahh, so relaxing.” He did a little exploring around the off-leash run but mostly wants to be close to his person. Bringing Bonus home would be a big bonus for any home!

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Have you ever seen a more satisfied dog than Bonus?

Ruth the three-year-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix is new to the shelter and very shy and nervous. As of now, she doesn’t like when strangers walk right up and try to pet her without her getting a chance to get acclimated first. But once she feels comfortable with you, Ruth completely melts into the best lapdog and a great walking companion.

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Ruth is the cutest little baby

Ruth rubbed her side against my legs whenever I knelt down next to her. About halfway around the woodland preserve trail, I sat on the ground and she climbed into my lap and rolled over for a belly rub. When I sat down on a bench, Ruth put her front paws up next to me so I could keep petting her. Ruth is hoping to go to a patient home that will give her plenty of love and confidence so she can fully come out of her shell. Be sure to say hello to Ruth on your next visit to the shelter!

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Ruth just wants to be loved

JoJo the two-year-old Mountain Cur mix looks like a permanent puppy, and has a fun-loving personality to go with her looks. She had a great time running freely around the Enrichment Park and raced another dog along the fence. JoJo watched when I threw a toy, but wasn’t interested in chasing after it or returning it at that particular moment. Perhaps she prefers stuffed animals to rubber bones!

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JoJo with a snowy chin

JoJo happily hopped up on the bench next to me and gave me some doggy kisses. She loved playing in the falling snow and did some fun spins when we were out on the woodland preserve trail. JoJo gets along with children, so she could go home with a family. She is also already housebroken. Come in soon to see if JoJo is the one for you!

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JoJo is a pretty girl

I also saw Apollo, Barney, Dusty (who gave me enthusiastic doggy hugs), Gia (Pippa), James, Reyah, and Sasha.