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Happy Tail: Black Dogs
Black Dog Syndrome. What is that you ask? Black Dog Syndrome is defined by Wikipedia as the low adoption and high euthanasia rate of black dogs in shelters. Black dogs are often the last to be adopted from shelter. It shouldn't be, Peg Schaeffer says. Somehow the public's attitude must be changed, she says.
Click on headline for complete Happy Tail. Then to continue reading more Happy Tail columns by Peg Schaeffer, including the next previous ones, scroll beyond the end of this column and links to others will appear. Each time you read another column, that list changes to allow continuous read as far back as you wish.
By Peg Schaeffer
Founder, Sugarfoot Farm Rescue
In November, 2008 I was at the shelter and there was a black Labrador Retriever with 3 puppies. She had had a litter of 8 puppies and they were dying one at a time. The 3 at her side were the only ones left. So I took her and the 3 survivors home. Unfortunately 1 more died but I was able to save 2. When they were old enough I adopted them to good homes.
The mom's name was Chantilly but I shortened it to Tilly. She was a good dog. Never a problem. I had her spayed and vaccinated but she was always overlooked whenever people came to adopt. But that turned out to be a good thing for me.
Tilly is always at my side. She's never in the way. She's well behaved. I rarely have to scold her and if I do all I have to do is raise my voice. She'll slowly wag her tail as if to apologize and stops her misbehavior. As good as she is when people come I know if I was ever threatened Tilly would be the one to come to my aid. She loves to ride in the truck with me. She'll jump in and sit in the back seat just happy to be with me. She never tries to jump out and if I let her out she never strays. I call her once and she's back in the truck. As I'm writing this she's sleeping in the Kuranda bed by the desk sound asleep. I know if I get up she'll raise her head to see how far I'm going. If I head up the stairs she'll be right beside me.
Tilly has "Black Dog Syndrome". What is that you ask? Black Dog Syndrome is defined by Wikipedia as "the low adoption and high euthanasia rate of black dogs in shelters. Black dogs are often the last to be adopted from shelter."
Whether due to poor lighting in photographs, being too 'plain,' looking 'mean' or difficult to see in their kennels, black dogs are statistically passed over consistently more than dogs of other colors or dogs with "markings." Statistics show that black dogs are euthanized in very high numbers.
Articles have been written in MSNBC, Time Magazine, Bark Magazine and USA Today about the crisis with black dog adoptions. Websites are dedicated to educating the animal welfare community and public how to recognize, and eventually change this phenomenon.
At Sugarfoot Farm Rescue 45% of our dogs are black, black with white markings, or black and white. None of them are bad dogs - for some reason they're always overlooked. Currently we have 3 different litters of puppies and 6 of the 8 are black. In the first litter there were 3 brown puppies and 2 black puppies. The two black puppies, Go-go and Puma, have not been adopted. Last week we posted a picture of "Pretty Polly" a black puppy, she has not been adopted. We got in another 2 black puppies, Loca and Mikey, and they haven't been adopted yet.
So don't miss out on a chance to get a dog like my Tillie. There are lots of black dogs here looking for a home and they'll all love you for it.
This is "Tyson" Keith's black Lab and his big helper. Tyson came in to show me the log he was carrying to help Keith bring in firewood. Everyone needs a dog like Tyson.
- Peg Schaeffer, President and Founder, Sugarfoot Farm Rescue
Contact us if you would like to help.
Peg Schaeffer, Sugarfoot Farm Rescue,
860 Sparksville Road
Columbia, KY 42728
Home telephone: 270-378-4521
Cell phone: 270-634-4675
This story was posted on 2015-02-01 16:56:15
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