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Sanctuary: Years of care, not days, weeks, or months

Each morning when I enter the rescue, I’m faced with anxiety because I fear I will find one of my sanctuary dogs had passed overnight. Before I flip the kennel lights on, I can already visualize their lifeless body still curled on their bed. Then the same exact emotion will overcome me; deep sadness and then anger that they even once felt abandoned. I have this list in my mind of who is passing next, just to prepare myself for a day that is to surely arrive: Gertrude, Dudley, Opal, Vilk, Riffy.

Aside from my seniors, I have the “Use Caution” shepherds. These are the types of GSDs I’m usually asked to accept. Truth be told, I have a deeper bond with my sanctuary dogs, because I have invested more emotionally and trust was earned with all of them.

I’ve accepted that with so many people breeding dogs, stores selling pups, and shelters adopting for a very low adoption fee, that the sanctuary dogs are never leaving.

People don’t have to put in the months of work when they purchase a pup. They don’t need to spend hours dedicated to developing trust or accepting their behaviors and making accommodations for the dog. It’s just easier and simpler not to deal with so many issues. Quite a few, almost 90% of people require a dog that is good with children and other dogs. Even if an interested adopter doesn’t have kids or other dogs, most still require they get along with both. I get it, children need protected and most people who want a dog already have one.

We live in a world of instant gratification however, and with this, we sometimes lose the reward of unwavering dedication. Dogs don’t understand vacations, divorces, our to-do list, job changes, and personal goals. They are innocent. They are simple. We’re the complicated species with conditions and limitations.

The boy in the video is Arie and he is a sanctuary dog. He enjoys shredding blankets, mouthing his metal bowls, chewing on the fence to apprehend a ball on the other side, slinging his Jolly Balls at his cage door, and scaring visitors with his horrendous cage presence. And he is mine all mine for as long as that may be.

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