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 Gracie, formerly Cher

Hi Shirley,

I am finally getting a chance to give you an update on Gracie (formerly Cher) for your success stories page and possibly the auction slide show. Photos are attached. Please let me know if you have any trouble with the photos, I'm not very good at this electronic stuff!

Gracie

We adopted Gracie (formerly Cher) in September of 2002 when she was about 8 weeks old. She is the love of our lives. She has been to training classes from puppy kindergarten through intermediate obedience. She does a terrific job for her age. She knows all of the basic commands and always waits at the door until I say "okie dokie" (her release word.) I think we will start doing some agility soon because she loves to run and jump and she never runs out of energy. She had a lot of fear issues at first, but with love, patience and training she has overcome most of them. She was also very weary of being handled, but with some help from a "T-Touch" class she now enjoys being petted and snuggles right up to us. She comes to work with me most days and gets to play with her best friend Dutch (a 7-year old German Shepherd - my boss's dog). Gracie is the "baby" of the office and the sweetheart, too. She weighs in at 32 pounds soaking wet and is at her full size. Most people we meet think she is a 5 or 6 month old yellow lab puppy. When they hear she is full-grown they always say, "oh your so lucky, she'll be little forever!" Little or not she's the sweetest dog on earth. Thanks for bringing her to us. By the way, we love her so much we adopted a sister (Bella, formerly Tinkerbell) for her through Save A Dog in September 2003! The two get along well and are always together. Life is a blast with two dogs!!

(Photos: Gracie in the best seat in the house - the green leather chair! Gracie and her brother Garrett on her 1st birthday - party hat and all. Gracie and Bella on "Squirrel Patrol")

Lisa A. Bilozur

Gracie's baby picture


Hi "Mom-Pam",

Today I thought I'd drop you a line and tell you how I am doing. I have been very busy over the last week getting to know my new family - Lisa (Mom), Mike(Dad) and Garrett(big brother?) - my new house and my new office (where I go to work with Mom.)

My house is just perfect. My new Mom and Dad put gates up on the kitchen doors so I can roam free anywhere in the room. They also removed anything that is too tempting for me to resist, such as the trash bucket and the recycling bins. They put out lots of nice newspaper for me to "go" on, but guess what!?! I don't need them anymore - I do all of my business outside! I have adapted very well to my leash. I also have a very nice crate with soft towels in it for me to take naps. When I am at home during the day I nap in the kitchen in my crate - with the door open. It is great because I can go in and out when I want to, but I am still safe in the kitchen. For the past couple of nights, after dinner and after my trip outside, I have been allowed in the living room for a little while. The only carpet in the house (the rest is hardwood flooring) is in the living room and it feels nice and soft. I have been learning to stay on the rug and not to jump up on the furniture. My Mom and Dad say I am a good girl (actually, they say it all of the time!) so I think I am learning really fast.

It is really fun to play with Garrett. He is a big boy (just turned 12) so he knows that he needs to be gentle with me because I am so young and tiny.

That doesn't mean we can't have any fun, though! He likes to play with me by tossing my chew toys and rolling me a red rubber ball, which I love to chase. He has also made up a funny song with my name in it. I love it when he sings it to me!

At night I sleep upstairs in Dad's office which is connected to Mom and Dad's bedroom. I sleep in my crate with the door closed (so Mom and Dad will know I am safe through the night.) I don't mind it at all because I have a special "fleece" bed and a soft baby blanket that I get to have only at night. I go to sleep for the night at around 11:00 p.m. and sometimes wake up around 4:00 a.m. to make a quick trip outside. Usually, I sleep through until 6:00 a.m. when I am up for the day (or, rather until my morning nap!) I only cried on the first night, and only for a few minutes.

Mom said I must be missing my brother and other Save A Dog friends. Now I am used to sleeping by myself - no problem!

When I go to work with my Mom it is very exciting because her boss has a BIG German Shepherd named Dutch that she also brings to the office. I love to play with Dutch because even though she is huge, she is very gentle. She even lets me rest right next to her for a few minutes at a time. I really like to do this. My Mom thinks it is because Dutch is big and soft and warm and that she reminds me of my dog friends from your house.

I love to ride in the car - always in my crate, of course. That crate is the safest spot for me. On Sunday my Mom brought me in the car to watch Garrett rollerblade at the outdoor skate park near our house. Of course I stayed in the car because I am so young and don't have all of my shots yet - if my Mom let me down on the ground I might get sick. In a few weeks I'll be able to walk where ever I want to. For now, I love walking and running in our fenced back yard. This also keeps me safe from the street and other animals who I know live in the neighborhood, but aren't as gentle as Dutch.

I will be meeting my neighborhood friends in about six weeks. My new doctor said that is when it will be safe.

Thanks for taking such good care of me and getting me off on the right start! My doctor said I have had excellent vet care when I was with you and that my new family is very lucky to have such a healthy, good, and of course, cute dog. I will come to a Save A Dog event as soon as I am protected.

Take care and thanks again,

Gracie (formerly Cher)

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