News from American Greyhound recapping August and looking forward to September

August Rescue Results
What a month!!
In August there were 18 adoptions and  35 arrivals for AG - 34 from Mobile, AL and 1 from a shelter.  We also had 7 dogs hauled for other groups.


This makes our year-to-date totals 129 adoptions, 143 AG rescues, and 15 hauled for other groups.
Last Dogs from Mobile

Early last month, we were notified that live greyhound racing would end on August 19 th at the track in Mobile Alabama, and would we be available to take in some of the dogs who would not be continuing their racing career.  Of course, as is our typical response when asked about something like this, we said yes, we'll do all we can do.

Shortly thereafter, some of our people began contacting the local media about doing stories and articles to raise awareness of the need for foster families to take in some of these dogs. We received air time in South Bend and Fort Wayne, Indiana, and Chicago and Champaign, Illinois.  And the outpouring of interest in adopting and fostering a greyhound was just a bit beyond overwhelming.  Since the beginning of August, American Greyhound has received almost 100 adoption applications and almost 100 fostering applications.  100 of each, not 100 combined.  Almost 200 people came out of the woodwork and offered a hand, and that, my friends, is a very good thing.

Now, to put this into some perspective, in a typical month, American Greyhound receives around 15-20 adoption applications and maybe 3-5 fostering applications.  So August 2017 has been nothing short of amazing.  However, due to all the interest in greyhounds as a result of these news articles and the resulting flood of applications, we have added 4 new people to process these applications.  And, we're still playing catch-up, though things are beginning to return to some level of normalcy.  

Our first trip to Mobile left Valparaiso, Indiana, at around 12:30 AM on Saturday, August 12, piloted by Diane Hubka, Megan Dinse, Casey Rinker and Pat Redman, pulling into the Mobile kennels around 4:30 PM.  They loaded 21 dogs onto the hauler and recorded the location of each hound in the trailer and by 6:00 PM they were back on the road to Valparaiso.

Early Sunday morning our new volunteers along with many of the old stand-bys began arriving at American Greyhound's temporary facility (my house) to prepare for the arrival of their new foster dogs.  Because of the large numbers of new fosters/volunteers, we decided to direct the lion's share of these dogs into these folks (nothing worse than telling people you need their help and then not giving them anything to do).  Well over 40 volunteers were there as the hauler pulled in. The dogs were quickly unloaded and allowed to stretch their muscles and relieve themselves, at which time we began processing the dogs. 
 
First they were tested for cat tolerance (huge thanks to Erin Snyder for bringing her "baby tiger" to test the dogs), then they were micro-chipped, tagged, de-ticked, nails trimmed, and sent off to the local dog-wash before heading home with their new (temporary) families.

Our plan was to hold off a week, process more applications and then head down the weekend of August 25, 26, 27.  However, things don't often go as planned.

During that next week we were notified that all dogs had to be off the property by that coming weekend (August 18,19, 20-closing weekend), and that the dogs that were to be held back for the September 7 th TGIE class would have to be picked up as well (Mobile, AL has been the source for all TGIE dogs since inception of the program so it's closing has TGIE working on finding other sources for their/our dogs).  So, rather than 20 dogs already vetted, arriving at the prison in September, each group would be responsible for obtaining their dogs, vetting them (spay/neuter, dental, shots up to date, etc) and fostering them until they entered the prison on September 6 th .  In conversations with GEM reps (Greyhounds of Eastern Michigan-another TGIE partner and a group we've worked well with over the past few years), they weren't sure if they could absorb that many dogs into their foster program for three weeks or if they would be able to have the vet work done in that time either.  So, after internal discussions, American Greyhound offered to place the GEM dogs into several of our foster homes, vet them at our veterinarians, and deliver them to the prison in Coldwater Michigan, on September 6 th (with GEM covering the costs associated with vet care of their dogs).

So, new plans were drawn up.  New hauler pilots were recruited.  And, the hauler was prepped for its 2nd voyage south in a little over a week.

In the early morning hours of August 19 th , the hauler pulled out of Valpo, this time piloted by Brooke Artley and Barb Coggins from American Greyhound and Gaye Ann Weaver and another one of her volunteers from TGIE, The Greyhound inmate Experience.  They arrived around 6:30 PM and began the process of loading the trailer with the 20 dogs and soon were on their way home.  Again, well over 40 volunteers and fosters were waiting on the dogs as the hauler pulled in front of AG's temporary headquarters (again my house).  And, again, the dogs were quickly unloaded, processed into our foster care, washed and were on their way to their (temporary) homes.

While I have mentioned many of the folks who have made this past month such a resounding success, there are literally too many to name them all.  But, I would like to point out a few others who have really stepped up and made a difference in how this massive transport of dog was able to work out.  

First, the Adoption Coordinators-Ashley Sammut, Sharon Larson, Christina Robbins and Sarah Laufenberg, our regular people who handle this job, plus Casey Rinker, Stephanie Jones, Nicole Graves and Barb Coggins who stepped into the mix and helped out as well. Good job knocking those applications out.  But, there are still more to go-so get back to work!

Next, coordinating the foster homes were Nicole Graves and Stephanie Jones.  Even though Nicole Lives outside St Louis, MO, she did a wonderful job handling the planning and logistics. And, Stephanie was Johnny-on-the-spot, testing dogs, assigning dogs to foster families, and running all over delivering dogs, picking up dogs, etc, etc.  Another good job ladies!  You guys get back to work too!

Next, we had some outstanding public relations.  Good job setting that up Stephanie Jones and Andrea Pelligrini (and I'm sure I'm missing someone here, and I'm sorry).  And, good job speaking with the media Sarah Laufenberg, Stephanie jones, Sarah Gasienica, Andrea Pelligrini, and newcomer Andrew Sullivan.  You guys-take a break!

And finally, the dozens and dozens of fosters families, and volunteers who got up early on a Sunday morning (and in some cases mornings), drove to Valpo (in some cases over 100 miles one way), and  helped welcome the dogs to their new life, THANK YOU.  YOU are what American Greyhound is all about and YOU are why we are so successful at what we do.

Since 2010, American Greyhound has brought no less than 45 dogs up from Mobile every year (we put 45 dogs per year into the TGIE program) and many years we have brought many more (this year 86 of our dogs have come from Mobile).  So, we have had a long history of working with Lil Buchanon at the Mobile adoption center and I for one will miss her helpfulness and friendly demeanor.  

But, life goes on and we have already begun working on additional hauls for later this month.  And, look for news of these upcoming hauls and the unique dogs they bring.  And, hey, if you've ever though you'd like to take a ride somewhere with us to pick up dogs, give me a call at (219)771-0892 or better yet, send me an email at president@americangreyhound.org .  You'll have a great time, meet some new friends and get a better idea of what it's all about.

Jeff Coggins
Picnic Time!

It is time again for our annual picnic!  It is one of my favorite events of the year.  The McKinney Family has been gracious enough to invite all of us (and our hounds!) to their home.  I love being able to socialize with other greyhound lovers and meet people I have developed an online relationship with.  My dogs love coming for the doggie pools.  They were huge pool hogs last year, I promise I will try to make them share this year!! 

Make sure you've RSVP'd to  Annette Martin at  amm1810@icloud.com
Blood: To Your Healthy Dog it's no Loss, to a Sick Pup it Means the World

I've been there when a dog needed blood and one of our hounds was able to provide that blood which made the difference in the needy dog's life.  It was a wonderful feeling knowing that a dog's life was saved because my dog was there for them.  And, a worried pet owner, who less than an hour before was afraid they'd be saying goodbye to their friend that day, is now ecstatic that their dog will be going home with them-maybe not today, but they will be going home.  It's just a tremendous feeling.

And, I won't lie, I've been there when a dog needed blood, which our hounds provided, but it just wasn't enough.  And though I won't get that warm feeling I got when the dog was saved, I'll still get a warm feeling to go with the sad one knowing that dog at least had the best chance for survival because my hound was there for him.  Still bums me out, but we know that we tried.

Now, I'm asking each of you who still has a young dog (less than 7-8 years of age) to contact me about adding your dogs name (and yours too) to the list of available donor dogs.  This way, when there is a dog in need, we'll have a much greater likelihood of finding someone who can get the dog to the vet and give that dog a fighting chance.

Interested?  Why not get in touch with me at president@americangreyhound.org

Who knows, maybe you'll be the next one who feels that feeling when your dog saves another.
Do You Want to Meet the Dogs?

Even though it was only 6 o'clock on a Sunday morning, as soon as I heard my mom, I was up.  I somersaulted out of bed, grabbed my new American Greyhound t-shirt, and I was ready.  My mom, my brother Elliot and I were headed to Barb's house to meet a hauler of dogs and puppies from Mobile, ready to start retirement.

After we stopped at Dunkin Donuts for some much-needed breakfast, we got to Barb's house. When we got there, we heard that the haul was around Fair Oaks Farm, so we had about 45 minutes to wait before the excitement started. Even though the haul hadn't arrived, there were still people in Barb's living room waiting for the dogs and puppies for foster or adoption. Because there were no dogs at Barb's yet, my mom, my brother Elliot, and I sat on the porch and talked with Annette. We know Annette because she fostered our dog Isaac. She told us all about what would happen when the hauler arrived and what would need to be done with the dogs before they could leave with their families.  She told us all about microchipping, since that was the main thing that had to be done. Then we heard commotion in the house. We went inside and heard that the haul was less than five minutes away! We were all so excited! Even the dogs that were already at Barb's house were getting a little jumpy.

The haul was coming down the street! We were all talking about how cute the puppies and dogs were going to be, and couldn't wait to see them.  When the van pulled up to the curb, the drivers got out and started to unload.  The puppies came out first because they had been riding in the back of the van.  They were so soft and snuggly!  Everyone took turns holding the puppies and giving them kisses. I wanted to keep a puppy, but they had all been spoken for before the hauler even left to pick them up!  Then the puppies went inside with the families who were going to adopt them because it was time to decide which puppy went to which home.  All of the puppies got great owners, and it was so fun to listen to their new names!  

Next, we turned our attention to the retired racers in the hauler. Some of them had done their business on their leashes and I got poop on my hand. Gross! They were coming out of their crates pretty fast and we had to put them in the turnout pen. It was really hot outside, and they had been in the hauler for a long time.  They put ice bags under the straw to try to keep them cool, but the dogs seemed very happy to get fresh air!  We took the dogs in the turnout pen where they could stretch their legs, get some water, and do their business.  It was so loud and really stinky with all of those dogs back there!  After all of the dogs were in the turnout pen and had gotten water and a little rest, we started taking them into Barb's garage one by one to microchip them.  When we would bring a dog into the garage, my brother and I would announce the name so my mom could get the paperwork together.  We even played music for some of the dogs when they came in.  Of course, Rocky had to be introduced with the theme song from the movie, and Copa walked in to Copacabana!   It was so much fun to sing and dance with the new dogs.   After a dog got microchipped, they got a new collar, leash, and muzzle, and then it was time to meet their new owners or fosters. It was so fun to see these dogs getting packed up and taken to a home to start their retirement.

It was a great experience to help out at the July 2017 dog haul. I got to see puppies, microchip dogs and just help wherever needed.  It was cool to see how our dog Isaac arrived in Valpo when he left Mobile and went to Annette's house just 1 year ago.   I would recommend helping with a haul to everyone who loves dogs and just loves to help out.

-Brody (in the red shirt)

Pup-date

On July 23, 2017, a litter of 7 puppies came to American Greyhound. The cute pups captured the hearts of many, and we wanted to give everyone a glimpse of greyhound life that rescue groups rarely see: puppyhood.

Angie, Doug, Alex and Lea h  write:  Life is wonderful with the new rescue puppies!  Kona (male dark red fawn) and Hilo (male white with with fawn ears), named after two big towns on the big island of Hawaii, are growing quickly. We are so glad to have two, as they are doing a great job of playing hard with each other and tiring each other out.  They are best friends and each other's toughest play buddies.  They are eating, sleeping, pottying, and playing like champs.  We had some initial gastrointestinal parasite issues, so a quick trip to the vet with a stool sample was critical, but they have tolerated treatment perfectly and are doing well! We already had three mature sighthounds, (two Irish Wolfhounds and a Lurcher), and they have definitely enjoyed the interaction with the big dogs, and really seem to be taking queues from the grown-up sighthounds. The greyhound boys are becoming increasingly people focused, and are now actively seeking out our affection and attention.  Raising any sighthound puppy is a lot of work, but we know from experience, the rewards will return in multiples!! We are having such fun!

Sharon writes: Days within Amber's arrival, I took in a 6-month-old greyhound runt with a knee injury and named her Onyx, so I ended up with two puppies after all!  I was originally turned down by the group who had Onyx because my yard isn't "fully fenced" (I have a half-acre and fencing it all is too expensive), so I applied to AG for a puppy and got Amber.  Once Onyx had been in a home for a month, the group reconsidered her placement, probably because Onyx had bite wounds and an infected skin tear from turn-out with their two Great Danes. I can see Amber grow every single day!  At three months, she now weighs 21.8 lbs, exactly twice what she did when she arrived.  She's averaged a two pound gain per week.  Amber is almost finished with Puppy Kindergarten and will start AKC S.T.A.R Puppy class this week.  She pesters her 5-year-old brother Salsa, and wrestles with her 7-month-old sister Onyx.  Amber is affectionate, energetic, expressive, mischievous, and absolutely delightful.  She'd love to see her siblings at the picnic! 
New in the Store

Stop by the AG store table at the picnic and check out the new colors and styles. There will be more than 6 new items to choose from that are not available at the website store.  Prices start from $10 T-shirts to $40 hooded tie-dye sweatshirts.  These new items have a limited on hand quantity but of course we will have our regular shirts available in youth and adult sizes.

If you should have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me.  
Sheri

Here's a sneak peek at one of the new items this is a fluorescent swirl
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