Rescue Dog’s Name
Evey & Gulliver
Where Did You Find Your Dog?
Evey (pronounced like the letters E-V, also known as Eves) would not let me leave without her. I came across her as the only female out of a litter of ’Free Lab Puppies’, which were actually six months old by that time. I had always thought my first dog would be a male lab, but there was something about this little girl that made me feel like I could not leave her with the family advertising these puppies; I needed to literally save her. Unbeknownst to me at the time, Eves was a bait dog for dog fighting, and this cruelty has affected her ever since. Gulliver (also known as Gull) took a long time to find. Working full time made me feel guilty about leaving Eves at home by herself all day. But with her heartbreaking past understandably affecting her interactions with other dogs, I needed to find the right addition for me AND her. The biggest criteria was to find a docile dog, since Eves is very dominant and protective. After searching online for more than eight months, I came across Gull’s page on petfinder for a local shelter. I went to see him, and he was the only dog in all of the outdoor kennels that did not bark and jump, and go crazy when people walked by. I took him out to play with just me first, and then he met Evey. Things were tense at first, but I could see they were both what each other was looking for. From the first day, Gulliver wanted nothing more than for Evey to love him, and Evey wanted nothing more than someone that could stand her pushing them around!
Tell Us About the Moment When You Knew that You Two Were Meant for Each Other.
While Evey does not exhibit physical scars, the emotional and psychological damage from being a bait dog has stuck with her. Upon meeting new people and dogs, Evey is extremely aggressive – growling, barking, raising fur, lunging. However, as soon as I leave, she is the dog I see at home – excited, calm, friendly, an overall happy dog (she LIVES for doggie daycare!). Thanks to an amazing dog guru that observed her, this aggressive behavior towards others when I am with her is thought to be because she now feels the need to protect ME, seeing me as her savior and not wanting anything bad to happen to either of us. She is an incredibly smart dog, which adds to my belief in this theory that she is purposefully defensive when she feels the need to be. We work daily on how to handle people and dogs we don’t know, and have improved to the point where once she knows someone, she is never aggressive towards them again. It breaks my heart to know that she is exactly the type of dog that would have been put down immediately at a shelter because of her aggression. But this makes me evermore grateful to have understanding and supportive family and friends that never gave up on her either, and continue to help her acclimate. Having said all that, she now spends her days lounging in the sun and bossing her man Gull around. Once she started doing that, I knew she and I were soul mates! The shelter couldn’t say why Gulliver ended up there. He was housebroken, did not bark, showed zero aggression and was docile, just an all around chill dog; someone had dropped him off with no tags and no explanation. I had kept my eye on him online for several weeks before meeting and adopting him. Since the day I brought him home, he has been nothing but everyone’s best friend. He loves big and sloppy kisses, making new friends out and about, barking as loud as he wants (he was very good at waiting until he we were home for good to reveal his vocal range), and following Eves around like the puppy he is. While I’ll never know his previous life, he does show signs of neglect and abuse. He cowers if someone lifts something overhead too quick and has moderate separation anxiety. To help with this, I’ve invested in five… yes, five… rubber pigs that he ADORES. They are his babies that he lovingly carries around the house and lays them on his bed before we sleep every night. He never flings them around like the dog toys they are; he is incredibly gentle with all of them, just as he his with everyone he meets. He is the definition of happy.
How Has Your Hero Changed Your Life?
Eves has taught me that this quote is true ”Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle” (Plato). Beyond her battles of residual dog-fighting trauma, Evey also battles with an identity disorder: she is not really a black lab. Looking at her, it’s hard to believe, but according to her DNA test, she is actually half Catahoula Leopard Dog, half Dingo… the girl can’t catch a break! Gull is crazy happy all the time, as we all should be. We should not allow our past to dictate our current happiness, but instead find big things and little things that add to our lives. Like five rubber pigs and four-legged soul mates. As if he couldn’t be any happier, he was ecstatic to find out he’s not just another shelter dog… he’s a designer** shelter dog. According to his DNA test, he is actually half Chocolate Lab, half Australian Shepherd!