Whole Dog Journal's Blog November 1, 2018

A Glut of Puppies at My Local Shelter

Posted at 12:06PM - Comments: (67)

These puppies need forever homes - quick!

As I may have already said about a dozen times lately, I have been fostering some puppies for my local shelter. Usually, this is a matter of taking them in when they are quite young, getting them safely through whatever ails them – often a cocktail of internal parasites and tummy troubles – and socializing them with anyone I can drag over to my house to play, until they are old enough and healthy enough to undergo spay/neuter surgery. At that point, I take them to the shelter, weep as I kiss them all goodbye, and then watch the happy adoption announcements appear on the shelter website over the next day or so as they all find homes.

pitbull shepherd mix puppies

This bunch has been different, and I’m so sad and frustrated about it!

The shelter broke up this litter of 10 into two groups, and altered the four largest, healthiest puppies first; this happened two weeks ago. Those four puppies went up for adoption while I was out of town for six days, and every day while I was gone, I checked the shelter website to see who got adopted. Not ONE got adopted!

So when I got back, I picked up the puppies, bathed them (stinky from staying at the shelter), gave them a glorious morning of play with my dog Woody, and settled into a routine of bringing them to the shelter each morning when the kennels open for viewing at 10 a.m., and picking them up each day when the shelter closes, so they can spend their evenings running around the backyard and nights indoors. This way, they are nice and tired (and well-behaved) at the shelter, not whiny or barky or jumpy, and they don’t smell like they have been walking and sitting in urine. I also work with them for a few minutes several times each morning and evening, and they have “sit” on cue (and offer it every time you so much as look at them), and their recall is truly a delight…

Still no takers.

Then I made and posted a short little video, showing how cute they are, and posted it on the shelter’s Facebook page. Within a day, two of them got adopted, and I was psyched. And then... crickets again. I have been bringing the other two altered puppies to and from the shelter daily, and they are champions at hopping into the car and riding nicely – but we seem no closer to getting them adopted than we were two weeks ago.

And, here is the worse news: The other six puppies, who have been in the capable hands of a good friend here in town for the past few weeks, are being altered today. So we will be providing pickup and drop-off service for eight pups until these guys get adopted.

I think there are a few reasons for the slow adoption rate of this litter. First, the shelter has had a little glut of puppies lately. The last two of another litter of 10 pit-mix pups are also awaiting adoption. A litter of nine Boxer-mix puppies are already being shown on the adoption row, and getting altered next week. And there are several other individual pups awaiting adoption. My community seems to have absorbed all the puppies they can for a while; we have to reach out to a wider circle. (And to that end, I will be taking more portraits and videos of the pups and adding longer descriptions of them to the Petfinder.com page for the shelter.)

pitbull shepherd mix puppies

Also, this litter is of pitbull and, reportedly, German Shepherd heritage. The shelter staff saw the mom; she was a pit-mix, so they absolutely need to represent the pups as such, even if they don’t look very “pittie.” Most of the pups look more like German Shepherds … but they all have some variation of a brindle coat. I don’t know about you, but in my experience, dogs with brindle coats get adopted at a slower rate than the dog most people say has the hardest time getting adopted: black dogs. I just don’t see the black dog bias in my area –but we also get a lot of black Labrador-mixes around here, and people snap them up. One friend wondered if the pups’ brindle coats make them look dirty, and thus, off-putting. I don’t know!

I do know that people who like pitbulls or want one, generally want a pitbull that looks like a pitbull – and these pups look more like Shepherds. And yet, I wonder if people who might want a German Shepherd-type dog are being put off by the fact that the mom was a pitbull-type. It’s all guessing; I just don’t know! They are so sweet and so smart! What’s the problem??

Anyway, sorry for whining so much; I hope I won’t still be talking about these pups for more than another few weeks. My dog food budget can’t take too much more of this!

But on the other hand, I get puppy breath infusions daily. So there is that, and it does help compensate.

Comments (67)

Also, for folks who say they would adopt one but they aren't in your area, are there volunteers who can shuttle the dogs to their new homes and volunteers who can do a site visit and pre-approval? I've heard of pilots who will fly dogs to their new homes. Worth looking at for these special pups.

Posted by: HawaiiGal | November 9, 2018 11:31 PM    Report this comment

Nancy- can you amend your article on the puppies? If so move the info on how folks can meet the puppies into the article. Currently that info is buried in the comments and not all folks who might be interested in them will see it. The pups are beautiful! I feel even better about being a subscriber to WDJ when I see just how special you are.

Posted by: HawaiiGal | November 9, 2018 11:29 PM    Report this comment

By the way you are a rock star for what you are doing!!

Posted by: CindyL | November 8, 2018 5:42 PM    Report this comment

Use colorful scarves around their necks when showing them. Sometimes they just need a little color to bring out their beauty.

Posted by: CindyL | November 8, 2018 5:41 PM    Report this comment

I live in Washington State in a rural area and Shepard Crosses are always in demand. I know my local Humane Society continually is involved in bringing dogs from saturated areas to the Seattle area where there are adopters looking for great farm dogs.

Posted by: rainspirit | November 5, 2018 4:42 PM    Report this comment

I think you are dealing with a double whammy here: Pitbull mix puppies are everywhere. My shelter in Western New York imports a fair share out of the south along with beagles, etc. Sadly I have been seeing Pitbull Mommas being walked around the town where our shelter is. They reportedly are sweet with children but having one run at me and my Brittany every time I pass does not make me trust his electronic fence especially when his collar is NOT on. That dog must go 120 pounds. There are home insurance restrictions against Pit mixes as well as German Shepards and a few others. Finally, these pups are now reaching the 4 month old stage ?? My suggestion is to take them to a large store that sells pet products and offers puppy classes and have a special look and see adoption day that is well advertised in advance.

Posted by: Mike's Mom | November 5, 2018 12:22 PM    Report this comment

I have a beautiful, young brindle hound/pit mix and she is the sweetest, intelligent huntress/family dog I adopted through a local rescue group. If she had come into our local kill shelter which has practically a no-tolerance policy for pit-type dogs, she wouldnt be here today. Humans are some of the most bizarre beings on the planet, and I wish more people would look beyond physical characteristics. My dog was so anxious being caged, the smart folks at the rescue group knew shed shine if she went to the adoption event safely leashed, around other doggies, but not in the loud mix of barking, sometimes younger dogs. She was the last dog i saw in the lineup of dogs available for adoption, the least likely to be adopted, because she wasnt as cute, and she now lives an amazing life with her adopted brother Buddy, also a rescue, and her tail wags with happiness 24/7...

Posted by: AggieLP | November 5, 2018 2:20 AM    Report this comment

My dog came from a breeder. He was 14 weeks old, and I adore him. The breeder told me he would be "brindle." I LOVE brindle dogs. It is hard for me to imagine that brindles would be less desirable. This dog, now 14 months old, is as "brindle," as I am sky blue! I so wish he were, in fact brindle, but he's mine, and he's outstandingly wonderful. Perfect in every way. Just not brindle. These puppies are adorable. I hope they find loving homes very soon. God bless you for fostering them.

Posted by: Lulukay | November 4, 2018 8:49 PM    Report this comment

I love the brindle color, very unique. They're adorable with their floppy ears. I posted on my social media pages. Good luck.

Posted by: dman61 | November 4, 2018 6:23 PM    Report this comment

These look like wonderful pups! I would have guessed Akika mix, but who knows? They are good pups deserving good homes. I hope their homes find them soon.

Posted by: Comet's | November 4, 2018 5:21 PM    Report this comment

If I lived where you are, I certainly would have adopted one your pups. To me, they're adorable, brindle coats and all. I have had and dearly loved my German Shepherd, Malloy, in the past. The Pit Bulls, I know are just big love bugs. Knowing your background and having subscribed to Whole Dog Journal in the past, I thought you would find what I have to say of interest. Have had a bad year financially and had to do without for a while, so I didn't renew my subscription. Now my Rowdy, a Golden Retriever, passed on Sept 29th, so I am still grieving and hurting bad from losing him. It was such a shock. I was and am still devastated. He was only eight years old. He should have lived another 4-5 years or more. He was in someone else's care, as I was recovering from a serious illness. My landlord asked a neighbor to care for Rowdy. When I was better and could go to see Rowdy, he had lost so much weight, that I immediately brought him home. The person told me, he hadn't been eating. Her response was "well, the vets like them thinner". He was never in his eight years of life... fat. Took him home and he would hardly eat. Then he started eating again, only to stop a couple of weeks later. So after a month of this and seeing him gradually becoming weaker, I took him to the ER vet. The vet did the usual blood work and screening. The diagnosis was kidney failure. The vet told me, if I had I brought him in a few of months sooner, he might have been able to do something. His red blood cells were not regenerating and the vet told me he would soon die, not very comfortably and recommended Rowdy be put to sleep. My always 70 pounds of Rowdy, my beloved dog, who maintained that weight for his eight years of life, weighed 45.2 pounds when the vet weighed him. I am telling this story because I had never expected to get sick like I did. Also, I had never made any particular arrangements for Rowdy, if such a thing happened. I have now learned the very sad and hard way about this subject. I plan to adopt another dog soon, but before I do, I will have made proper emergency arrangements with someone I know well, loves animals and would give my dog the love and good care, it needed. Just thought and hope that other people who read your journal will take notice of this and be sure their animals are properly cared for, if they should become unexpectedly unable to do so. Thanks for letting me comment about this. Hugs.

About my hugs... I end all my posts and personal correspondence with 'hugs'. I believe that if my posts, etc. are shared, read by a recipient, perhaps the hugs will brighten their day. Plus the 'hugs' can be passed on and on, when shared. Thus 'hugs'.
I also believe there are people all over the world who desperately need hugs and even crave them. Through media like Facebook, these individuals can also partake of the good feelings that a hug can give one. By the way, I live in St. Louis.

Posted by: Sinply Barb J | November 4, 2018 4:14 PM    Report this comment

I am NOW 80 and have adopted three REAL Children and been the caretaker of over 30 animals in my lifetime and last year when I attempted to adopt locally I was rejected for "No Reason" except I did NOT meet their Standards ?? I must ask the question is a "No Reason" preferable to euthanasia? I will continue to pick my strays up and give them good homes as long as I'm capable but will NEVER support the Progressive, Holier than thou, adoption mills.

Posted by: carlcasino | November 4, 2018 3:27 PM    Report this comment

Weird!!! Why isnt my comment being Fully published??
It cuts off after interest.

Posted by: Stanleyhorse | November 4, 2018 3:06 PM    Report this comment

Yes! ...Oregon, Washington.. and Petfinder!!!! They are The CUTEST! Saying prayers there will be Much interest

Posted by: Stanleyhorse | November 4, 2018 3:00 PM    Report this comment

I wanted to adopt GSD from rescue in MD.They would not give me a dog because I did not have a fence around my acre property.I had a fenced in area for potty area.I also had a kennel to use for drying after bathing and safety at times . They wanted me to remove it before they would even consider giving me a dog. I have owned six German Shepherds who lived in my house Well I landed up getting a wonderful mixed breed from the shelter and buying a German Shepherd from a breeder. So much for saving lives when they are so picky.My insurance has allowed the GSD on my policy with stipulations.I had my mixed breeds DNA done and she is mostly lab and chow,with other breeds.SHE LOOKS LIKE A FIELD GOLDEN.They are not always what they look like.

Posted by: annied | November 4, 2018 1:29 PM    Report this comment

Brindles adopting slow doesnt surprise me. We have found that roan Brittanys are also more difficult.

Posted by: Elmer_Fudd | November 4, 2018 12:20 PM    Report this comment

I've known a lot of German Shepherd puppies and I would be very surprised if these were not 50% shepherd. We currently have a problematic shepherd who cannot abide unfamiliar dogs, so we are not ready to adopt again, but if we were, a G. shepherd/pit bull mix would be at the top of my list! I think such a dog would be an ideal mix!

Posted by: mutts-rule | November 4, 2018 12:11 PM    Report this comment

German Shepherd Breed Rescuer perspective here: German Shepherd adopters will almost always ignore available pit-mixes. I know it sounds like breed snobbery, but it's the school of hard knocks: we have a very hard time placing GSD-x anything (even lab-x-GSD!) in breed rescue, but pit would be exponentially harder. The breed personalities are so different -- and the breed perspective (which could be unfair) is that there's a magnified risk genetically unstable temperaments (you could get the worst of BOTH breeds...spooky GSD coming out during adolescence combined with flash-anger pit aggression at the same age). Or you could get the best of both (super-biddable confident working temperament combined with warm family nurturing and confidence)....but it's hard to know when they're little.

Even the body language they use is different (I cannot read pits well AT ALL in shelter environments, and the pit experts I work with similarly cannot read the GSDs I evaluate b/c the two breeds telegraph aggression radically differently...). Most GSD people will tell you they'd never live with a pit, and the pit people would say the same about GSDs.

You need a different marketing strategy that can get people to focus on the aptitude instead of the breed cross. Could you get some volunteers to help you get them all AKC Star Puppy certification?

Posted by: Magwart | November 4, 2018 12:04 PM    Report this comment

Have you considered getting in touch with some of the rescue groups located north of your location. Oregon, Washington and even as far as Canada do not have the over population problem California has of pets. The rescue I work with pulls anywhere from 10-30 dogs from the shelter each week and puts them on a transport that goes north and has a wonderful success rate with adoptions.

Posted by: Lelalou | November 4, 2018 12:04 PM    Report this comment

My homeowners insurance won't let me have any dog with any amount of "pitbull"... they don't like Shepherds, Rottweilers, Doberman, Mastiffs, and even the Bull terriers and a few others. Our city bans "pit bulls"

I happen to love brindle coloring and Shepherds

Posted by: Sheldon5656 | November 4, 2018 12:02 PM    Report this comment

Transfer the puppies to the humane society in Portland Oregon. That's where we adopted our half American Bulldog mix (x Boxer, Rotty and Staffy) from and she came originally from a rescue out of CA to Oregon via a bus that transports shelter animals to Portland.
Oregon is a dog friendly state and although there is still some breed discrimination I have found much less so here in Oregon. My homeowners insurance didn't even ask what breed we have.

Posted by: Girlinoregon | November 4, 2018 11:37 AM    Report this comment

Beautiful puppies, I wish we were closer and had a bigger back yard. We love brindle's and we have 2, one is a pit bull boxer mix and the best loving and protective dog we could have asked for, he has been a blessing. Baxter (boxer mix) is actually a rescue dog and was skin and bones when we adopted him. We brought him home and he has always been laid back and calm but he walked up to me and bowed his head between my knees to show subservience and I just leaned forward caressing him and rubbing is back and neck, just touched me at his loving nature. Baxter has always been this way, it is like he knows exactly what you say no mater what you say and what I have said all along has finally been proven, that a dogs mind works much the way a humans does. I actually believe they were put here for our companionship (mans best friend) if treated correctly, unconditional love and my shadow, LOL. Also I Believe that since baxter had pit in him but with the face more like a boxer the people that dropped him off were probably fighting him or made him fight for his food, you could tell something had happened to one of his eyes. Blue is suppose to be a pit boxer mix and also brindle but he is one year old versus baxter being 8, blue came from a home that well was less than a desirable place once we saw it. We picked him up when he was 9 weeks old but we could tell him and his litter mates had been neglected and not treated well since he turned out to be a very hyper and agitated dog. We have been working with him and as he gets older he is growing out of things slowly and has become a very beautiful boy with one blue eye and one half brown half blue eye. I became long winded over this but my boys are family, my children and the point is brindle dogs are very special and very beautiful and that is what we choose to own.

Posted by: baxterblue | November 4, 2018 11:22 AM    Report this comment

I have 4 foster pups the I got from a lady at 6 weeks. I work at a pet store and she has been a customer for years. This is the ladies second litter. I have been trying to get her girl fixed for 8 months. I have a puppy from her first litter ( what an amazing dog I will say) I dont let any of my pups go tell they are fully vax and spayed/neutered. I took my pups in to my local humane Society to be altered and the lady tried to put pit mix in papers now had I not known where the pups came from I gues you could say yeah they are put mix but in reality the pups mom is purebred English bull dog and dad is boxer/Dachshund/ bull mastiff. (Grandma and grandpa on sight as well. Grandma is the most adorable boxer/dachund looks like a boxer only no legs lol) basically what Im trying to say is so many dogs are miss labeled at the shelters there are so many breeds out there that have Brando and or boxy heads that if you dont know youre braids could pass is a pit. I wish dna test were more readily available because so many people are so scared of the stigma behind the pitbull but a lot of his dogs and reality I dont even that.

Posted by: Jpomrenke020 | November 4, 2018 11:22 AM    Report this comment

I would send their information and pics out to all good rescue groups withing a 3 hour drive and split up the litter right away if they can take any of them!! The other thing is to do adoption stands at shopping centers where people can see and meet the pups easily since alot of people do not want to go into shelters.
The idea of stating that they are pit mixes just because the mom is part pit is totally crazy!! A dog with so little pit is HIGHLY unlikely to exhibit and negative traits pits may be perceived to possess. That idiotic shelter policy needs to be discussed and changed. Is that a law that mandates that it be revealed?

Posted by: cinci | November 4, 2018 11:05 AM    Report this comment

Where are these puppies located?

Posted by: Gabp0804 | November 4, 2018 10:49 AM    Report this comment

Sorry, I should have said more...they should go to active people and require a lot of exercise and mental stimulation.

Posted by: deaconsmom | November 4, 2018 10:49 AM    Report this comment

Pups look more like Dutch Shepherd mix to me.

Posted by: deaconsmom | November 4, 2018 10:48 AM    Report this comment

First off all I want to say you are one very special person! I really think you should keep these 2 pups just kidding. I had a Shepherd mix whose mother was also a Pit and her name was Mya. She looked like a Shepherd but had the big chest and jaws. I walked her without fear everywhere. I loved that dog, she was among one of my favorites of all the dogs I ever owned and there were many. Mya had to be put down 11-14-16 because of hip and leg problems. I still miss her. I do have 3 dogs one of which is a Beagle the - hardest pup I ever raised.

Posted by: A Grateful Heart | November 4, 2018 10:38 AM    Report this comment

I know your pain! I have a really hard time placing brindle dogs (or anything that remotely resembles a pit bull), and cats in general! Adoptions have increased for black dogs and black lab mixes, so that is a positive. I wish the three companies that do offer reliable breed testing would provide a few free kits to test some of these brindle dogs... They very well may not be pits at all!

Posted by: Arkpetshelter | November 4, 2018 10:29 AM    Report this comment

I too would like to know where the puppies are located.

Posted by: BratKid111 | November 4, 2018 9:39 AM    Report this comment

Has there been any consideration given to transferring them to an area where puppies are harder to come by? Seems that may be an idea to consider, but the sooner the better.

Posted by: MeToo | November 3, 2018 1:30 PM    Report this comment

Those are beautiful puppies! The picture suggests their personalities perfectly! Alert, eager, loving! Granted, this is a large litter, so my solution isn't like to apply. But I took the puppy I was fostering to a local coffee house with outdoor seating! And let people interact with her one-on-one. One couple fell in come and had to adopt her then and there. Shelter settings can be intimidating, and make people feel worse because they can only help one dog, and so many are needy, so they just stay away. SUGGESTION: Can you walk one or two into a local pet supply store, with a cute little cape saying "I am available!" And then ask people give the pups a treat! Can you teach them a trick (shaking hands, or giving a high five!)? Can they get into a therapy program? The kind who relieve traveler's stress at the airport? Or keep children company in a reading program? These may not be the kind of pups who can just be left to sell themselves. My hunch is interaction is required! So their personality is on display!

On the positive side, it may be the public is becoming more educated about not over committing to more dogs than they can handle (or afford), just so one does NOT end up in a shelter. People are also to be commended for not getting a dog that's going to be left alone all day, which could get stressed, and cause trouble.

The people who are to blame are those breeding these dogs for guarding purposes, especially up there in the rural country. I know where Oroville is. They probably ended up with one litter too many and dropped them off!

Posted by: Pacificsun | November 2, 2018 11:31 PM    Report this comment

I love brindles! Unfortunately I already have 3 dogs (well, fortunately really -- they're all lovely!) so I can't take any more, but I'm sure now that you've spread the word even wider that these gorgeous pups will find their forever homes.

Posted by: sharonh | November 2, 2018 1:57 PM    Report this comment

If you have a paypal account and are still struggling trying to find someone to take them, email me and I will pitch in your dog food budget.

Posted by: gesiona | November 2, 2018 12:42 PM    Report this comment

I hope someone looks closely at these faces and gives them a good home. I have my limit of dogs, 3 and all rescues or I might ........ All dogs deserve a great home and these are sooo cute.

Posted by: Gramma Sandie | November 2, 2018 8:57 AM    Report this comment

After reading the article on the (lack of) relationship between behavioral characteristics and breeds in the current "All Animals" from the Humane Society of the US, I think it is a cruel disservice to mixed-breed dogs, especially those in shelters to assign them ANY breed name unless a DNA test backs it up. How many dogs have been killed ONLY because some (even well-meaning) person labeled them "pit bulls?"

EVERYONE should read this article.

Posted by: xz87zg | November 1, 2018 11:02 PM    Report this comment

We got our Layla at a shelter, most likely a kill shelter in Boliver MO when we lived in the Ozarks about 3-1/2 hours away. Layla was adopted at 13 months and is now 9 years old. Shes also now my service dog and the smartest dog that weve ever had the pleasure to call our fur baby. Layla is a Border Collie/Jack Russell mix. She can be fiesty at time and also completely patient with me. We pay $135/month for her insurance and shes rarely been sick and those were nothing major. Our veterinarian says she has the bone structure and spine of a puppy!!! We are very blessed beyond imagination!!

Posted by: Buelie | November 1, 2018 9:28 PM    Report this comment

Every state needs a state supported "Best Friends" like there is in Utah...Larger states need two. Society has become more self absorbed and many too stupid to realize the quality and value of canine companionship. Hey, this is the society that condones the killing of the most innocent, the unborn. This hypocritical society belittles the value of orphanages when, in fact, an orphanage would be a step up for many of today's children (especially those aborted). Sad isn't it.

Posted by: cantonst | November 1, 2018 9:05 PM    Report this comment

I can see where some wouldnt be attracted to the brindle markings(though they are stunning). One quick idea Ill pass along is: take some photos of the dogs wearing simple but cute bandanas and / or bow ties. There may be someone there who could volunteer to make them. If lucky, the accessories would create a warmer and more accepting image.

Posted by: K9NW | November 1, 2018 8:38 PM    Report this comment

And that is why we are failed fosters and have 9 dogs again...we live in the country where people think its ok to dump puppies rather than pay $25 at the humane society....
I hope this guys find their forever homes. They are total cuties!

Posted by: Flaquita | November 1, 2018 8:08 PM    Report this comment

I read your article and totally understand your frustration. Your shelter isn't the only one experiencing a puppy glut. The rescue I'm part of (Mendocino shelter pet rescue) is having the same problem. We have pups that are nearing the 6 month threshold. They have been in great foster homes and by now are house trained, crate trained and very well socialized, still nobody has stepped up. They're pit/lab mixes, looking more lab then pit. I get so frustrated with backyard breeders and pet owners who refuse to spay/neuter. They are creating and adding to the puppy glut.

Posted by: Misstfit | November 1, 2018 8:05 PM    Report this comment

Info for puppy adoption:

Northwest SPCA
2787 South Fifth Avenue
Oroville, CA 95965

Ph: (530) 533-7636

Posted by: CChantal | November 1, 2018 7:03 PM    Report this comment

I too have been frustrated with having to wait (a seemingly very long time) to get information about a dog I may be interested in adopting who I've seen on Petfinders. But I've come to understand that many (probably most) of the people involved in trying to find homes for these dogs are volunteers. They have jobs, families -- their own dogs -- and yet they try to carve out some time to help homeless dogs find a new, good life.

I once "fell in love" with a dog on Petfinders. Like match.com, who knows if this really would have been a good fit for me (and/or the dog), but I was smitten by his photos and the extremely engaging and well-written profile. It was like he had his own personal matchmaker working on his behalf. I emailed numerous times, finally resorted to pleading, and still heard nothing. Disappointed as I was, I moved on and finally found another dog to adopt.

The day before I was to pick up my new dog, I got a call from the rescue group who had my "dream dog." Reality check: I live in New York; the dog was in Nova Scotia. While I had figured out how I'd be able to get the dog from Canada (a plane ride up; a rental car back), the very nice woman from the rescue organization explained to me that they don't adopt dogs to people who live beyond their geographic comfort zone. Although I wanted this dog, the rescue group knew that they were not going to adopt him to me -- no matter what I said or offered.

So while I was frustrated, I think they were actually acting in the dog's best interest by concentrating their time in communicating with people who they thought might provide a good home for that particular dog. A dog, I came to learn, who had been adopted and was then returned. The rescue group made it clear that this was a challenging dog, but one who had great potential (just my kind of guy).

At that point in my dog ownership, the thought of returning a dog was as unacceptable as returning a child. When I adopt, it's for life. That said, the dog I did adopt ... let's just say, if I could find a good home for him I would. Maybe somewhere out there there's someone who wants a dog with serious health and behavioral issues, but I haven't met that person yet. So I've come to accept that my lemon dog is my dog and we're doing the best we can. He's gotten a lot better -- and continues to improve -- thanks to an internal medicine specialist, his dermatologist and trainers. And the patience and resourcefulness I've found that I never thought was in me.

In my case, no one knew the depth of my dog's issues (he was an owner-surrender and then a newcomer to the rescue group). But I've come to appreciate that sometimes people working to place dogs in their forever homes are not being remiss in not responding to every inquiry (especially if it's a desirable dog). They're just spending their time as efficiently as possible to find the RIGHT owner -- so they can move on to help place the next dog who needs a home. Because as we all know, there will always be more dogs in need of loving homes than there will be open arms and hearts.

Posted by: Phoenix, NY | November 1, 2018 6:48 PM    Report this comment

These puppies are in Oroville CA

They are truly adorable and should EASILY find wonderful furever homes.
Unfortunately, talk is cheap and the puppies are in need of a lifelong commitment from folks filled with love and compassion.
If you feel you have what they need then please set up a day/time to meet them.
I've rescued animals and understand what a harrowing experience this is.
Rescuers pour every once of love from their souls along with many times, their own personal finances in the hopes that little foster babies will find wonderful homes.
Nancy seems to be doing all of the above and then some.
We all need more like her.
Thank you Nancy for loving all fur babies that are lucky enough to 'bound,' 'pad,' 'walk,' 'run' or be carried through your door.
Rescue is pretty much a thankless job, but that's okay, just as long as we are able to find caring and loving homes for the more than deserving animals in need, then it's pretty much perfect...ŸŸŸŸŸŸ....

Posted by: CChantal | November 1, 2018 2:33 PM Report this comment

Posted by: CarolZ | November 1, 2018 6:47 PM    Report this comment

I'm not sure what to say.. I wish that I could both afford and handle another pup... but as far as the brindle coat... No idea why someone wouldn't want this coat.. I've always found it a gorgeous coat.. my Akita had a brindle coat.. sadly she passed in 2016.. she was only just shy of 7 years old.. I miss her.. she was a "papered" akita.. I rescued her from a back yard puppy mill.. but the guy I did get her from did seem to make sure they were cared for and in good health.. of course I had our vet check her out... dna testing all that.. not so much for the "Breed" but any congenital health issues as at that time I had No clue really about akitas... but she was gorgeous.. If I could I'd adopt one of these babies to be my other furbaby's companion!.. I admire your committment to these puppies! Bravo and Good luck getting them into forever homes!

Posted by: KimW | November 1, 2018 5:51 PM    Report this comment

Since so many bully-type dogs can be easily mislabeled, would there be funds to DNA test (I prefer Embark) one of the puppies? Perhaps one of the new owners of the adopted ones may be willing to do this? If nothing else it would confirm whether or not they are indeed part APBT, or Staffordshire, or any other brand of bully, mastiff, boxer, etc. It might be a small expense for a big payoff of adoptions if potential adopters knew exactly what their mix is! This won't help with any breed restrictions for insurance or rentals, but if the adoption paperwork lists APBT as a mix, than it's moot anyway. But if DNA testing does not yield APBT results...could help. Just my two cents :)

Posted by: Simbasmom | November 1, 2018 5:17 PM    Report this comment

Brindle dogs are some. Of. the best dogs you could own.Thats the only color coat I pick. I have three dogs now all brindle, There's, Bovine, Buela,Babygirl.2 pits and a mini dautchound she runs the House. She's way more aggressive than my pits .ps could you mail me the lite brindle pup in pic. Thank you.

Posted by: Bueford | November 1, 2018 4:49 PM    Report this comment

They are absolutely adorable. What beautiful faces! All the shelters around here are full also, mainly due to rescuing both dogs and cats from hoarding situations. And not only from this state, but neighboring states too. The flooding and loss of homes in the area hasn't helped any either. Do any of the TV stations - local news/talk shows - have spots for pets needing homes? You might ask them for help. All the local stations here have weekly spots for the shelter animals. Two stations have cats on Saturdays, dogs on Sundays. Good luck to you.

Posted by: Cindie M | November 1, 2018 4:46 PM    Report this comment

Panosteitis was a rude awakening for me! I have raised 4 German Shepherd Dogs from young puppies, and until the fourth, had never heard of it. I had no clue why my 4 month old baby was limping. Yes, we played and he ran around like a crazy baby, but there was no reason for coming up lame on both front legs. It was the vet visit that explained what was happening. With the diagnosis and NSAID we went home. But thats not the end of the story. My acupuncturist is also a Dr of Homeopathy. She suggested that I give him Symphytum officinale, a homeopathic remedy specifically used to promote healing of bone trauma. I really think that helped so I didnt have to give a lot of medication that could upset his stomach.

Posted by: Jettsmom1229@gmail.com | November 1, 2018 4:40 PM    Report this comment

I've read and experienced 1st-hand too many aggressive, bad experiences with pits and pit-mixes in our area and at a nearby dog park to be willing to ever adopt a pit bull or its mix. They are strong. Once they bite, it is all but impossible to get their jaws unlocked to let go of their prey (be it another dog or child in the household). Our friend's Amer./Eng. bull dog mix (sweet dog) was attacked by a pit bull. The owner of the dog being attacked and the pit's owner both hit the dog and pulled, trying to get it off of the bull dog! The pit turned around and bit its owner. The bull dog ended up with 10 staples in its neck. NO pits should be allowed in ANY dog park. Responsible pit owners keep their dogs at home or on lead.

Posted by: Pakayakers | November 1, 2018 4:03 PM    Report this comment

They look more boxer/shepherd me. Adorable.

Posted by: svick | November 1, 2018 4:01 PM    Report this comment

I can't have a dog with any pit genes at all because my homeowners insurance provider considers them uninsurable. I'd have to hunt for another provider that will cover us if we adopt a pit but I don't think I'd find one. It's irrational and unfair but it's reality. And I think this is getting worse, as I recently had to answer a questionnaire from my insurer asking about several breeds other than pits, including German Shepherds and Boxers. This indicates to me that they will place even more breed restrictions on their policies in the future.
I've also had some bad experiences with shelters who say that they want, not only adopters, but volunteers. But where I live it can take a year to get to the point where the shelter will allow you to have contact with their dogs, even to walk them on a leash on shelter property. And adoptions are so complex and time consuming that many people just give up. I understand the need to screen both adopters and volunteers to protect the dogs, but at what point does it become too ridiculously complicated and time-consuming to serve the dogs? I've also been subjected to bait and switch, where the shelter will say on the phone or email that they have a certain dog or type of dog that I could adopt while keeping my homeowners insurance, but when I arrived no dog matched either my requirements or the statements made by the shelter. While there are some shelters and rescues that do a great job there too many others that need to improve.

Posted by: SuziQz | November 1, 2018 3:25 PM    Report this comment

Hi Everyone, thanks so much for your interest in the pups. They are located in Oroville, California -- about an hour north of Sacramento at the Northwest SPCA. Here are the kennel ID #s for the six boys; the two girls will get another day or two following surgery before they appear for adoption.

Because we don't allow links here in the comments, you will have to go to complete the URL in your browser. Go to NWSPCA "dot org", click on "adopt a pet," then click on "adoptable dogs", and then look for their ID numbers:


Posted by: WDJ Editor Nancy Kerns | November 1, 2018 3:11 PM    Report this comment

These pups are adorable! Ive always loved the brindle coats!
Unfortunately, many landlords dont allow either Pittys or GSH, b/c their homeowners insurance goes up for the breeds listed as a no no on them.
I am allowed to have a dog, but only a smaller (up to 30 lbs) one. And need a low shed, b/c my go to doggie friend is allergic to several that are not. I never kennel any dog I have. They are spoiled wonderfully & no cost has been resisted for any Vet &/or specialist needed surgery or therapy.
What I have found sooo unbelievably frustrating is shelters that are not easily accessible, that have dogs people would love to adopt, dont bother even replying to inquiries!!!
I saw one that they say needs adopting by a patient owner, who is willing to train him @ 3, including being better at house breaking. Not the top of lists for desirable adult dogs.
I have experience with training, plus I groom my own dogs. I have called twice & emailed the Milford MA animal control, Plus contacted them thru Petfinder twice, for a week now!
Not so much of an acknowledgement! (Other than PF telling me they see Cooper in my future, so they can sell me stuff)
Its a 2 hr ride from me & I would love to meet this needy little one, BUT I dont know if hes in a shelter, foster...nothing. They dont say. The pics are confusing, as he looks like he may be in a shelter, but then hes in a car. So Im not driving up there for nothing to see nothing, b/c I have zero clue about where he even is.
This is incredibly rude & inconsiderate toward those of us good hearts & great, Forever homes, who DO want to adopt from shelters & bad situations. And are willing to take on more challenges in them.
This is not my first time being ignored by a Petfinder post. I liked it much better when people could use it for their dogs they still had, over having to deal with just shelters, rescues & fosters. At least those people actually got back to you!
So, as I wait for replies from shelters that obviously dont put priority on the animals they have behind bars waiting w/o much care given, I cruise CL in all the NE states, looking for what I want & hoping I can beat out others doing the same. So far, not much luck there, either.
Im not giving up though. My last baby I got at 7 from CT off CL & she had almost 10 wonderful years on the Beach with us. My dog prior, was off PF, when private people were still allowed to post. Came from NYC area & was the most challenging little abused boy I ever had. But once he learned not everyone was going to abuse him, he blossomed beautifully. A decade of mistreatment slowly fell to trust. Very rewarding for us both!
Unfortunately, I just missed out on another CL doggy this AM, who was in Eastern MA, 2 1/2 hrs away. Dogs like I am seeking are not an easy find. So I am willing to work with one, in order to have him/her w/us, forever.

So the frustration continues & I will try contacting PF yet AGAIN about Cooper. Its beyond me, how so many dogs just sit for months, when great, loving, forever homes are also waiting months.
Ive seen the same dogs listed on PF since last year!!! WTH is up with THAT???

No wonder so many use CL...which I personally consider a very dangerous way to rehome any pet. Even a hamster.
All I need is 1 reply to say OK off it though. They can have a lifetime of updates & Pics, if they want, too.

Millions of dogs & cats die needlessly each year, b/c of not spaying or neutering. But of those, I shudder to think of how many died b/c shelters, rescues & fosters refused to reply to people genuinely interested in rescuing one of their dogs. :/

Posted by: DewLuv | November 1, 2018 2:40 PM    Report this comment

These puppies are in Oroville CA
They are truly adorable and should EASILY find wonderful furever homes.
Unfortunately, talk is cheap and the puppies are in need of a lifelong commitment from folks filled with love and compassion.
If you feel you have what they need then please set up a day/time to meet them.
I've rescued animals and understand what a harrowing experience this is.
Rescuers pour every once of love from their souls along with many times, their own personal finances in the hopes that little foster babies will find wonderful homes.
Nancy seems to be doing all of the above and then some.
We all need more like her.
Thank you Nancy for loving all fur babies that are lucky enough to 'bound,' 'pad,' 'walk,' 'run' or be carried through your door.
Rescue is pretty much a thankless job, but that's okay, just as long as we are able to find caring and loving homes for the more than deserving animals in need, then it's pretty much perfect...🐶🐱🐰🐴🐦🐷....

Posted by: CChantal | November 1, 2018 2:33 PM    Report this comment

I am VERY interested in providing a forever home to one of the pups. Where are you located?!

Posted by: Tiffany H | November 1, 2018 2:31 PM    Report this comment

Where are these puppies? They look a lot like the Rotty-Pit mix two I had when my son was little (except these are more furry like my Shepherd mix.)
I love brindles!

Posted by: touchedbyanalien | November 1, 2018 2:13 PM    Report this comment

Nancy, Where are you located?

Posted by: David Sigmon | November 1, 2018 2:11 PM    Report this comment

Please tell me you dont take these puppies back to a kill shelter and not a rescue type shelter! Pitbulls and german shepherds both get a bad rap. They are not bad dogs by nature and if you take the steps to get them trained, they are absolutely perfect dogs. I hope these beautiful babies find a home soon! I feel bad for them being stuck back in a cage after being at your house. They must feel so abandoned. 😢

Posted by: Smom | November 1, 2018 2:05 PM    Report this comment

Those puppies are adorable - Have you contacted the Marin Humane Society? There are very few litters in this area and they are frequently looking for great adoptable dogs to put up for adoption.

Posted by: Zips Mom | November 1, 2018 2:04 PM    Report this comment

My daughter adopted a similar pup recently reported to be a boxer/shepherd mix. Ollie is so smart and came from a foster home where at just a few weeks he had already learned some basic commands. I hope your puppies find homes soon.

Posted by: Liz Newton | November 1, 2018 1:56 PM    Report this comment

Id like to know more information on these pups and their location, Id love to adopt !

Posted by: Lynnfont | November 1, 2018 1:51 PM    Report this comment

Where are these puppies? I would love to bring them home!💞

Posted by: Beagleland | November 1, 2018 1:43 PM    Report this comment

I would be willing to donate to getting the panel done
on one of your pups to see what their background really is. I definitely see the shepherd. Maybe when people hear
the percentages in the heritage they would be more likely
to adopt. One of my guys is part spaniel and that is exactly how he looks but on his maternal side it goes back three generations of purebred Maltese. Who would have guessed? So let me know if you want to test one of these guys and how much I need to send you. It might be worth it if you can let people know the full background.

Posted by: Debo | November 1, 2018 1:27 PM    Report this comment

These babies are gorgeous -- I wish I could take one. My rescue Golden Retriever needs to be the Queen Bee of our household --she doesn't warm up easily to newcomers. But I can help if you need help with your dog food budget -- please private message me -- and I can send you several bags of whatever you are feeding them. I hate to see you give them up!

Posted by: sheilajgw | November 1, 2018 1:25 PM    Report this comment

I think these pups are absolutely perfect! Their brindle coats are beautiful and I think it's a perfect mix of breeds, I wish I lived close enough.

Posted by: beckyd | November 1, 2018 1:17 PM    Report this comment

Where are these puppies? I am interested in adopting one!

Posted by: sealbeachcoldstone@gmail.com | November 1, 2018 1:17 PM    Report this comment

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