One thing that makes Henry's case a little tougher is his size. Pam said it wouldn't be as big a challenge if he was only 15 lbs. Luckily, Henry is a "big fluff love" who "loves other dogs, cats, and especially people." Abby has done well in her new home so our foster mom Leslie wanted to provide an update on Henry for those following along to their stories. Special thanks also to first foster mom Stacey Fischer.
When we got him home he was a bundle of nerves, panting and pacing back and forth. He proceeded to throw his body against every (first floor) window and glass door that we had, even trying to escape through our wall-mounted TV which probably seemed like a window to him. He pulled several set of curtains out of the wall while trying to escape. For 24 hours, he did not sit or lay down at all, just paced and whined and panted. I think with all the stress of leaving his farm, changing foster homes, riding in transport and being separated from his sister Abby (fostered by Christi Oakley) that something just snapped in him and he couldn't take it anymore.
After a full day he did finally lay down and rest some. And slowly things got better bit by bit every day. We started to see this beautiful soul blossom and come out of his shell. He stopped panting, stopped pacing and leaned in for our love and affection instead of trying to run from us. He started eating after I began cooking for him and eventually allowed us to transition him back to just dry dog food. He stopped trying to push open the front door and just hung out in the front yard the two times he figured out how to unlatch the front door and knock it down. He just finally felt safe I guess.
I so wish I could keep him but I don't think we can do 3 very large dogs full time with 4 kids, too! Anyone who adopts this boy will be soooo lucky! Henry is our sweet sweet gentle giant! Anyway, wanted to share since a lot of folks have asked me for an update on Henry. Thanks for all the support we've received with him!
Kate Viar, CDR Shelter to Rescue Volunteer for Pickens, explains Henry's background:
This dog never lived indoors before he was in the shelter. He never saw a TV before, which explains his confusion and hope that it presented an escape route. He never knew love until he met Pamela Nalley, Tiffany Moore, Stacey Kenah Fisher and Leslie Forte. He needed patience and understanding, but I know it was not an easy road for any of [them]. And with each transition, his anxiety grew.... It was a lot for any dog to go through in the span of a few weeks, but especially for a dog as sensitive as Henry. Henry has received multiple applications, but we know it will take a very special family to help him through another transition and continue his progress. We don't want to set him or his adoptive family up to fail, so we need to make sure he is placed in the best home for his needs and personality. We are so thankful to [Leslie] for fostering him and making him a part of [her] family.
Dog Name: Henry
Suspected Breed(s): Great Pyrenees Mix
Age: 2 years old
Weight: 84 lbs
Observations with Dogs: Good. Foster home has 2 large labs.
Observations with Cats: Good.
Observations with Kids: Good. Foster home has children aged 10 months, 5, 8 and 10 plus nanny's 2 year old.
House Training Progress: Occasional accidents.
Crate Training Progress: Not a fan and is an escape artist, but he has not been destructive in his foster home once past the transition period.
Location: Foster home in the DC area.
Personality: Gentle, Quiet, Easygoing, Friendly, Loyal, Snuggler, Affectionate, Patient, Calm, Shy, Eager to please, Smart
Rescued From: Pickens County, SC
Additional Information: Henry is such a love bug. He is so calm and mellow. He is regal looking and has such a lovely temperament. He and his sister Abby (already adopted) were surrendered to a high-kill shelter for failing to herd goats and pigs. They lived outside and never knew love. Now Henry soaks up every ounce of love that is showered on him!
He is good with kids, not rambunctious, loves to snuggle and get attention, doesn't jump all over you and is just generally an easy dog to have around. He rarely barks.
Henry has difficulty dealing with transitions, so his new forever family will need to plan for an adjustment period of one to two weeks when he will be extremely anxious. Working with a trainer to help him through this transition will be a condition of his adoption. He also needs to go to a home with another dog, which can help ease his anxiety and build his confidence. He has settled into his foster home and is doing well, but change stresses him out.
He also needs a family who won't leave him for long periods of time initially, as he is anxious when his humans leave him. Again, a trainer can help with this.
Henry is a wonderful, affectionate dog who is well worth the investment!!!