I want to say a huge THANK YOU for doing what you all do every day. I am fortunate to have adopted a puppy from your facility in February of 2008. I thought that as we approach another winter of animals in need, you all might enjoy hearing our story.
Her name on your website was Tilly. According to your staff; she was one of 4 German Shorthaired Pointer (GSP) puppies found abandoned in the country. (who does that to little pups in the dead of Kansas winter?) I came to your facility (from Andover) after seeing the litter on your website. I grew up around GSPs and they are incredible dogs. I fell in love with “Tilly” in the first 20 minutes – she was smart, energetic (a GSP trait), and absolutely a love muffin. Then too, she took no guff from her larger brothers – she was definitely a girl who was up to any challenge. I adopted her on that visit, and life has never been the same!
Her name was changed to Gabby – and puppy obedience classes followed as soon as she was settled in our home. On advice of one of our instructors, we located and enrolled in agility classes. (she needed a job and we don’t “hunt”) That was the decision of a lifetime. This little GSP has taken me places I never expected and has achieved more than I could have ever dreamed. I had her registered with AKC in their PAL system which allows non-purebred dogs to enter performance events.
Gabby is now 7 years old, has 2 (yes two) agility championships (aka MACHS), too many agility titles to list here, has qualified for AKC National Agility Championships three times (participated once), and qualified for AKC Agility Invitationals twice. The AKC invitationals are for the top 5 dogs of each breed. We were able to attend invitationals this year (December 12th – 14th) in Orlando, Florida. I am thrilled to tell you that we made it all the way to finals in the 24 inch class and finished as the top GSP in agility (yes, #1 agility GSP!!!) While our final “run” was not our usual level of performance, we had fun; and that is what we were there for.
More than all the titles, fun, etc; I want to tell you what a special girl she is. Since I adopted her, she has been with me through some rough times. Her ability to snuggle on the couch one minute, and be ready to play, walk, practice or anything else, the next is amazing!
Thank you for my girl; she is one in a million and I am blessed to have her in my life. I know shelter work is not easy, you see many sad cases and your days are long, the rewards few.
I am including a link to a video that I put together of our recent invitational runs. First, you must know that the one thing Gabby still carries with her from her early days is a very intense fear of loud sounds, trucks, trains, etc. While some of it we have been able to work through, some is too deep and simply overwhelms her. When we went to Orlando, it was 20 hours driving over 3 days with all the truck traffic that involves, I wasn’t sure if she would even be able to rest enough to show. The event includes the Eukanuba confirmation / obedience / rally event as well; and is held in a massively large building with crowds / spectators everywhere. She was amazing, handling the pressure like a pro – and I am as proud of that as I am any title. We were asked by AKC to choose a song that describes our dog; I chose Brave by Sara Bareilles.
I think you will see by the video that she loves the game of agility, and was spectacular!
Again, we say THANK YOU!!!!!
We’re so sorry for the confusion. The video of Gabby is no longer available.