You might consider this the sequel to my holiday post about getting my now 15-year-old daughter a new puppy for Christmas. If you recall, his name is Stinson and he’s now a nine-month-old Aussie Shepard.
So, we’re six months in. Made it through the snowiest winter in Salt Lake history (900 inches of snow up high), cold 5 am wake ups every day to get him potty trained, figuring out the right food, plenty of daily walks, runs and with the weather breaking, mountain bike rides. And along the way, lots of mud in the house via the snowy winter and wet spring, more fur than I have ever seen shed and trying to keep up with his incredible appetite. He is food driven for sure. Which makes training a bit easier.
But that’s all-table steaks. The usual stuff any responsible dog lover and owner deals with. And I won’t lie, I loved the dark 5 am walks in the snow. They proved a bonding time for he and I. Trust was built and a friendship between man and dog that gets stronger with each passing day. However, there were two areas that I was curious about as we embarked on having a second dog for the first time ever. And in order, they were:
- Would my daughter, who begged for a second dog for more than five years, live up to her end of the bargain by feeding and walking him.
- How would our eight-year-old Ruby adjust to this new and hyperactive pup?
I’m happy to report that both have met if not exceeded my expectations. Paige fully stepped up and has loved Stinson with all her heart. She feeds him 2x a day nearly every day unless she’s fulfilling a previous commitment via a school activity or sports. She watches what he eats and takes both dogs for a walk every afternoon. No easy task when you have two highly active breeds who tend to compete for her attention.
As for Ruby, it took a month or so. She wasn’t excited to start with and let Stinson know it with growls and baring her teeth to let him know who was boss. But I will admit, he rarely backed down. And his persistence paid off. They share a bed, play together all day and for the most part, Ruby has proven a motherly figure. Every once in a while, she will have to remind him who was here first. But six months in, and I’d call them best friends. She keeps him in line, he keeps her young.
So, would I agree that two are better than one? Heck yeah, I do. Stinson has brought us all closer together and along the way, we’ve all loved a bit more, worked a bit harder and bonded a bit stronger.
As many of you celebrated National Rescue Dog Day last weekend, which was created to honor the inspiring ways rescue dogs become a part of the human family, we wanted to also honor the amazing staff and volunteers that work in the shelters where animals are rescued. We have been fortunate to partner with many caring shelters over the years in supporting our Dog Beds to the Rescue program.
Just a few weeks ago we were lucky enough to deliver 10 beds to the Humane Society of Chittenden County Vermont. We met Emily Hecker, Sarah Schecter, and other folks along with the hundreds of dogs, cats and rabbits that are housed there on Kindness Court (no pun- that’s really the name of the street) in the bucolic mountains outside of Burlington, VT. The shelter is in Chittenden County, which is Vermont’s most populated county.
When we first arrived, we were greeted by Emily who then led us on a tour. The facility is spotless, and we were impressed right away with the conditions and housing provided for these animals. We learned that almost 96% of these animals are relocated to homes within 30 days.
The current facility was completed in October of 2002 and boasts nearly 12,000 square feet of animal care and adoption space, where they take in over 1,400 animals each year and welcome as many as 20,000 visitors annually. Most of the animals at HSCC are cats and dogs, but they also provide care and services for small animals such as rabbits, ferrets, and guinea pigs.
Within the last few years, HSCC recognized that people that had lost their jobs during COVID and were hit with tough financial situations and in some cases were unable to pay for medical fees for their animals. The HSCC launched a new program to help out in this area.
The Humane Society of Chittenden County’s main goal is to keep pets with the people who love them and the cost of medical care remains a top reason why pets are relinquished. To help members of the community avoid having to part ways with their beloved companions, HSCC's Rainy Day Fund was created to offer financial assistance or free services for Chittenden and Grand Isle County residents who are unable to pay for their pet's unanticipated emergency medical treatment. This service is completely donor-funded and truly makes a difference in the lives of people & their pets.
Three years ago, HSCC performed free surgeries once a week. Now, they perform procedures and surgeries at least three days a week with a trained veterinarian and staff. This program has ensured that pets can stay with their pet owners even when they become ill and need major surgeries. Within the past year, the Community Pet Clinic team performed well over a thousand surgeries and wellness visits. Animal care staff patiently cared for nearly 1,300 animals. It is truly a remarkable facility.
Another great aspect of HSCC is their educational programs. In 2022, 147 kids attended their Humane Education Programs: Camp Paw Paw, Animal Welfare Warriors, and Humane Heroes Workshop. At HSCC, they are dedicated to educating local youth about the humane treatment of animals, how to properly care for community pets, and the importance of the human-animal bond.
It really was such a pleasure to visit this animal shelter and as we continue to celebrate Rescue Animals, we also want to celebrate the people and facilities that make rescuing an animal possible. Thank you, Humane Society of Chittenden County. It is a pleasure working with you!
Keep in mind, HSCC is a non-profit organization. The free surgeries are funded by donations. It is a great organization to support. Click here for more information and to lend support: https://www.hsccvt.org/.
And to learn more about our Dog Beds to the Rescue program, please visit our website at Dog Beds to the Rescue! – 3 Dog Pet Supply.
The pandemic was a tough one for everybody. From the isolation, uncertainty, and the overall duration of what we all endured, the period from 2020 thru 2022 was full of emotional and physical roadblocks.
In my case life threw in a few added obstacles to contend with. Starting with a heart attack in June of 2020, another cardiac event four months later and a bout of pre vaccine covid just before Christmas, and my plate felt full. This maze of challenges was capped off with a divorce this past summer. So, no shortage of hurdles if you will.
That said, I have always believed the future is in the windshield. I don’t spend too much time looking in the rearview mirror after I’ve reconciled whatever situation I must deal with. And this past Christmas gave me the opportunity to truly practice what I preach by getting my 14-year-old daughter a new puppy.
Paige had been asking for a second dog for 5 years. But with everything I just mentioned, it was just not in the cards. I needed to get my physical and emotional health back in good order. Which I was able to do once the split was behind us.
About a month after her mother moved out, she asked if “we could get a second dog”. And an Aussie Shepard no less. We’ve only ever had “working” dogs via border collies and our current eight-year-old Border Collie/GSP mix. So, we know what we’re getting into. But this was more than just a kid wanting something in the form of a new dog. This was to be a component of our family healing process. For all of us.
So, in early December and after my daughter found a few Aussies she liked from breeders in the region, we drove to Orem, Utah in an early December snowstorm to meet “Stinson”. He was the runt of the litter and the last puppy left. He was spunky and then some. Brimming with personality and love he was all over her from the minute we walked in the room. And that was it. My daughter looked at me the way your kid does when what they’re asking for is coming from the heart. What her eyes said was “we need this dog”. That was all I needed. We made the deal and on December 30th, Stinson arrived at our home.
To use a Jerry McGuire term, he has completed us. Our eight-year-old dog took a week or so, but Ruby has proven to be a great mother to our little guy. And Stinson loves her and brings a joy to our home that has not been felt for the better part of four years. So, when your kid asks for a second dog, my vote is yes. I can’t imagine NOT having two dogs. It’s more of everything but mostly it’s more fun. Welcome home Stinson. We love you.
The story of the 3 Dog Logo:
My love of dogs and their impact on people has always been a main part of my life. I worked in product design and development for one of the best outdoor companies in America for almost 20 years. I had always had a desire to branch out on my own and put my talents to use. I felt like I had an opportunity to create a small business that could combine my love of dogs with my skills and talents. My brother Anthony gave me the needed encouragement and 3 Dog Pet Supply was born.
The original logo is a tribute to three of the most important dogs in my life.
Greta - The tall shepherd in the middle of the logo is a dog called Greta. She was a German shepherd that was our main family dog when we were growing up as kids. She was super smart and loving. She amazed me with her ability to protect us and know where we all where at any given time, yet she still was playful and happy throughout. I remember one of our neighbors coming up to us and asking my brother.. “Does your mother know where you are?” and my brother replied…”No, but Greta does” That was the type of dog she was.
Seve- The dog on the right is a female Chesapeake called Seve. Seve was a female Chesapeake Bay retriever who was the first dog that I had as a young adult. I was working as a high school teacher when she was a puppy, and I spent many hours training her in between classes. She was also highly intelligent and had a warm and loving personality. She was the first dog that I knew who could understand cause and effect on many levels. She would purposely behave in certain ways to produce a desired outcome. I lived alone with her for years and she liked that situation. When my future wife came into the picture, she would try all sorts of tricks to maintain her status as # 1 female in the pack. When Jan would come to visit, she would put on a show to try to dismiss her and regain the attention. She would take a biscuit from her and then throw it up. She would feign illness and limp around and try anything. She later saw how kind Jan was and fully accepted her into the pack.
Wally- The dog on the left in the logo is Wally as a pup. Wally was a male black Labrador retriever who was given to me by a friend who is a professional upland hunting dog trainer, Dan Lussen of Pondview Kennels. Wally was a pup that came from one of Dan’s all-time best dogs Sara. I had been around Sara for years and had witnessed her amazing abilities in the field on many occasions. She was unbelievably well trained and had uncanny ability. Wally showed many of the same attributes and was a real character. He had so much personality and his love for life was infectious and touched everyone around him. He was an accomplished hunter and probably the best dog that I’ve ever really known. I’ve been trying to find another dog like him ever since he died young at age 7 of canine cancer.
Of course, you can not replace a dog. Each dog has their own unique characteristics and personality traits. These traits are what makes these animals so special and endear them to us in all sorts of ways. I am always so excited to meet new dogs and to start the journey of developing another meaningful relationship.
Ps. The black lab on most of the dog beds is a female named Kiki who is Wally’s niece. The small yellow lab in some of the product shots is Mika who shares the same grandparents.
Yoshi came into our lives in 2013 and we’ve been thankful for every moment shared. Our little family changed in a big way when we got our little pup.
I was travelling often for work at the time and my wife was working from home. A new puppy seemed like the perfect addition to our little family. I didn’t have much time in my life at that point, working/travelling up to 16 hours a day, so I left it up to her to find the perfect pup. On our trip back from visiting family just after the Thanksgiving holiday, she couldn’t contain her excitement, and I was more than elated also. We stopped near Olympia WA and met the breeders. These guys were awesome, and only sold a few pups each year. There were two puppies in the back of the car, and one immediately perked up and waddled toward my wife and jumped into her arms. It was magic. Love at first sight. We met Yoshi.
I didn’t do much research on the breed before we met our new family member, but I loved the fact that they were the popular “meme” dog circling around social media. Since I work in the internet technology space, it seemed like the perfect pairing for me. Not to mention, about the cutest little dog I think I’ve ever seen. Here’s the meme that lit the internet on fire:
In the eight years we’ve loved Yoshi, we’ve had many life changes and moved multiple times. He’s been a constant source of love and entertainment. He’s got a real sense of humor and his antics keep us on our toes.
The Shiba Inu is a Japanese hunting dog and are generally smaller in size. Yoshi is a big boy weighing in at around 45 lbs. Side note, I asked him if I could write about his weight, and he was “good” with it. Anyhow, this breed is known for their independent nature and agility. If you are used to “training” dogs, you’ll surely spend more time training this breed than many others. If you’re okay with an independent friend, one that may have a higher IQ than most people, then maybe you don’t necessarily need to spend much time training. Either way, the experience will be unique and enduring. The result will be a friend that is as authentic as you could expect.
My wife and I don’t have kids, but Yoshi loves them! From small babies to toddlers, he loves meeting new little people. I can see the look of wonder in his eyes whenever a child approaches him. His tail becomes relaxed, and his eyes become glazed over with love. He instantly becomes the sweetest most docile animal you could imagine. We would recommend this breed as the perfect family dog with little kids in the mix.
Today, Yoshi works from home along with myself and my wife. We enjoy long walks, hikes and he loves chasing his two brothers around the house, a Persian and a Maine Coon cat. Sometimes it can get a bit rowdy and a whole lot furry. These guys know how to shed, and they do it well. Be prepared to vacuum at least daily, if you don’t like dog fur. If you don’t mind fur, then you’ll be entertained by how much and how often they shed. Trust me, you’ll love it.
Thanks for reading a bit about our family and our special friend. Yoshi recommends 3 Dog Pet Supply products and the bed featured above is by far his most favorite bed to date. We love it too as it’s easy to clean and fits perfectly in our environment. Thank you to the crew at 3 Dog Pet Supply for giving Yoshi a moment to shine and for creating well built and well thought product for among the most loved in our lives.
Just before Christmas of 2014 our beloved 14-year-old Border Collie passed away from injuries suffered after being attacked by a neighbor’s dog. It was a devastating loss and one made even more so by the fact that it was just before the holidays. On top of that, Anker moved back and forth across the country with us on three occasions. In short, he was our “wingman” and an amazing friend to our entire family.
I remember sitting in the diner a few hours after we sat with him during his final hours. Our children were in tears as were my wife and I. It was a week before Christmas, and we could not even muster the strength to put up our tree.
Shortly thereafter, friends associated with Rescue Rover in Salt Lake City, started sending us links to dogs in need of a home. Initially we felt it was too soon. But that feeling quickly went away when we got a glimpse of Ruby and her seven siblings who had just been taken in by a foster family just a few miles from our house.
We “visited” with the foster family and the dogs were gated in the kitchen. But one puppy found her way out somehow and dropped right in my lap. And we knew right away that this was meant to be. She had a way about her that was too much to resist. As with all good rescue operations, we had to go thru the process and fill out the paperwork. But shortly thereafter, she was home and we named her “Ruby”.
That was six years ago and she has brought us more joy that any of us could imagine. She ends up being part GSP and part Border Collie (no wonder we loved her right away) and in turn, became our new trail running and hiking partner. She seems to smile in an almost human way, and is the most positive creature I have ever met – be it of the two or four legged nature.
What we discovered is that we were not rescuing Ruby but rather she was rescuing us. Joy returned to our home and we started to feel like a family again. And one that was not complete without a dog in the clan.