When a transport came through this weekend for two Aussies, I couldn't resist helping. I don't get to do so many these days because I want to spend time with my dog, so I'm a bit more particular about which ones I do. I'm no longer allowing myself to be overwhelmed by the amount of dogs in my car, trying to limit it to just one or two unless they're older and more sedate. I wish I could help with them all, but it's just not possible these days.
Aussies are one of my favourite breeds, so I was thrilled to help these guys get to their foster home. Pops is an older, tri-coloured Aussie, they estimate 6-7 years old, though I think he could be older. Justice is a younger, Red Merle, Aussie, somewhere around 1-2 years old. The age guess seemed appropriate for him. His teeth were pretty white.
I met up with the transport at 9am this morning in Rochester. Despite a bit of construction, the ride out was easy. We got Pops out of the car first and easily into mine. He was an incredibly easy-going dog with a sweet face, amazing blue eyes, and a long coat. Unfortunately, he stunk. Horribly. He was in desperate need of a bath and his breath smelled like he had been eating fish out of Onondaga Lake. Just gross! I'm sure he's got some periodontal disease going on there and probably should see a vet about it, poor guy.
Justice was a bit more difficult. He got out of the other woman's car easily enough and trotted around with no problem, but he refused to get into the car (apparently he had been doing that all along, so it wasn't just my car!). Eventually, I just lifted him up into the car. The run sheet said he weighed 40-45 lbs, but I would be surprised if he weighed that much. He was very skinny. You could feel and see his ribs and spine far too easily. And his fur was completely shaved off, shaved right down to the skin in some places. He had been a mess coming out of the shelter and it was the only thing they could do. Poor guy was so matted there was no hope except to shave it off and start over. It made his head look strangely huge.
The drive back to Syracuse was easy. Justice curled up in the back seat and fell asleep. Pops took shotgun and curled up into a little ball. He was a bit more restless than Justice during the trip, but not horribly so. At one point, he crawled closer to me and then half rolled over, asking me to rub his belly. I gladly obliged. When the sun got too much for him on the seat, he crawled down onto the floor and fell asleep there. It was adorable and made for some silly photos.
I had some time to kill in Syracuse. I was some 15 minutes early and the guy following me was a little later than he should have been. I got Pops out first and let him wander around, get a drink, and managed to get plenty of pictures of him while he sat looking quite majestic. Then I tried to get him back in the car so I could get Justice out. He eventually got in the car, but Justice wouldn't get out. Poor Justice would crawl to me but if I tried to get him to leave the car, he fled to the other side. It was clearly a safe space for him.
While trying to get Justice out, Pops got back out. I hooked his leash around my handle for the mirror, went to the other side, where Justice was still huddled, and simply picked him up and put him on the ground. It went easier from there (though Pops was having none of it when I tried to get him back in the car). I ended up walking them together and eventually the three of us just plopped down on the grass. The two dogs were so not a flight risk that I actually dropped their leashes for a moment to take a few pictures. They simply lay there and Justice attempted to crawl into my lap. I finally put the camera down, sat in between them, and petted them both for a time.
I hadn't heard from the guy who was meeting me, so I took both dogs back to my car to see if he had called. While trying to get my cell phone, Justice simply hopped into the car like he belonged there and Pops followed. I ended up getting back in and then saw the guy drive by to a different part of the lot. I drove over and met him there.
I really didn't want to send the dogs on. I actually teared up when I let Justice go. He would make an awesome addition to our household and I think Dahlia would like his calm nature. He never once irritated Pops. He was just a good dog and so in need of some loving kindness. He's shy, but not aggressive in his fear of others. He wants to be with you, but he's just nervous sometimes. It wouldn't take much for him to grow into a great dog.
So now they're off to their rescue in Massachusetts. I hope they find a wonderful home soon.