Happy Tails

Toby (ADOPTED!) is approximately 1 year old, and looks to be a herding mix of border collie, cattle dog, and Australian shepherd. He weighs 47 lbs. and is a shy and very sweet, without being needy. He loves being petted by anyone he meets. Toby loves to be near people.  When inside, he is never more than 5-6 feet from someone, usually resting beside them. He also meet other dogs well and is very polite. He plays well with his cattle dog foster sister, and gives the grumpy older dog in the house plenty of space. We have not seen him around children or cats.

It is clear that events in Toby’s past life have caused him to startle easily at loud noises and sudden hand motions. It has been a month since he arrived at his foster home, and he is improving daily. Toby is definitely a shy dog, but he seems to be getting happier and is slowly becoming more relaxed. His tail rarely tucks between his legs anymore, and now wags his tail a lot throughout the day - low wags.

When he first arrived, his tail was tucked between his legs in every new situation. He would duck his head when people moved their hands suddenly. He would panic and flatten himself on the ground or do a submissive pee upon hearing loud or strange new sounds, such as a coffee grinder. Being a very intelligent dog, he learns and figures out new things very quickly. After hearing it four times, he was no longer terrified of the coffee grinder sound.

Similarly, after going on just five leash walks, Toby would become very excited when he saw the leashes come out. He loves and does very well on walks. He has had no issues with walks or anything he has encountered on a walk. He is great in outdoor restaurant situations and busy places.

Overall, Toby is an easy dog to have in the house. He enjoys going into his crate to sleep, as it is his safe place. He doesn’t destroy anything, and he has no bad habits.  With frequent opportunities to go out during the day, he seems to be housebroken, and he does NOT do any marking pees. No herding, no mouthiness or nipping behavior. Toby does dig holes in the yard, just little ones, mostly just to have a cool place to lie in the dirt. Toby is also very quiet and his fosters have only heard him bark a few times. We must add that Toby has very expressive ears. They seem to perk up mostly when he’s very happy. They constantly move around, and go up and down minute by minute. Sometimes just the tips fold over.

Based on observations that Toby’s nervousness and stress have shown when he is inside the house, and he is most relaxed when outside in the yard or on walks, we would guess that he was made to stay outside most of the time, and severely punished if he entered the house. This is supported by the fact that he was unfamiliar with and startled by many everyday household sounds. For a full month in his foster home, Toby was terrified of crossing doorways/thresholds into the house. He will only go through a door on his own if no human was visible, and then he would go across at a full run. Once he got about 10 feet past that area, he was visibly relieved. For weeks, he got lots of encouragement, petting, congratulations after he’s through the door, but he was still so stressed by exterior doorways that he couldn’t eat a highly prized treat. However, if on a leash, he could go in and out without any stress. Also, he had no problems going through doorways inside the house. While writing this, I was just told that Toby finally can now walk in and out the backyard door, relaxed and happy. Huge progress!

Toby is basically a happy, but somewhat stressed guy, just adapting to his new world, and making progress each day. He needs quiet, calm household with people who can help him build up his confidence, and help him to relax when indoors. It would be best if someone could be with him throughout much of the day. Toby would also benefit from having another very mellow dog, or a good natured playful one in the house, to help him learn how to be a dog. Toby is so submissive, that we do not recommend him to a home with highly dominant or controlling dogs, where he could be easily bullied.  His foster mom told an example of how he would learn from another dog. She watched him learn to chew on a dog toy.  Toby was carefully watching her female dog chewing on a toy, and before he decided to take a nearby toy to begin chewing also. They chewed for several minutes, but the second the other dog stopped, Toby stopped too.

If you are interested in meeting Toby, please begin by completing our adoption form under "Adopt" on the blue bar at the top of this page, or use this link:  http://hittgv.org/index.php/adopt.  Please download and print the form to be completed. If you have questions about this dog, email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or leave a message at (707) 583-9583.

Aussie (ADOPTED!) is THE perfect companion. We are not certain of his age, but he is definitely an older gentleman, who at 51 lbs. could lose a few pounds. He is super sweet and friendly, and a little shy or cautious in new situations. Aussie is great with and adores meeting all people. He is completely thrilled when someone shows him some attention and love. On walks, he happily wants to meet everyone he sees. When he saw some older children (8-10 years old), he wagged his tail and wanted to run up to meet them.

Although we would consider him a lower energy guy, he has plenty of life in him. Aussie loves his walks, and is great on leash. He will stay at your side and does not pull. He also is big on playing ball with you. Aussie will run for the ball and retrieve it for you.

As a cattle dog, Aussie is a velcro dog who just wants to be by your side. Did we already say he is super loving?! We cannot stress that enough.  He will ask for petting and attention by trying to place his head into or under your hand, or touch your leg with his paw, to remind you that he is there and could use a pet. When you pet him, he will lean into your leg. In the house, Aussie is a perfect, well behaved, well mannered gentleman. He is a quiet, gentle guy, who seems fine when left alone for several hours. He does not try to get on furniture and he is completely housebroken.  Aussie is a little nervous riding in a car and does not seem to have much car riding experience, but he is a good sport and with some coaxing and help, he will get in.

When meeting other dogs, Aussie is fine and friendly. He is a little cautious when first meeting them, and will hang back behind his person at first. If the other dog is friendly, he will warm up to them. If a dog is hostile towards him, Aussie will just try to avoid them. He is currently being fostered at a home with two other medium sized dogs. We have not yet seen him around cats.

He was obtained by a good samaritan from a situation where he had been living in a yard at a vacant house, alone in a dog run with a bag of wet, moldy, dog food. We have taken him to the vet, and they have given him a clean bill of health. We are seeking people who will give this super sweet, loving senior the special attention and love that he craves. He deserves to live out his final years happily and knowing a wonderful home life.

If you are interested in meeting Aussie, please begin by completing our adoption form at this link: link:  http://hittgv.org/index.php/adopt. Call us at (707) 583-9583 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with specific questions.  


Juneau (ADOPTED!) is an approximately 18 month old, Border Collie and Samoyed mix, weighing 40 lbs. He loves meeting new people, which is great, because he is so handsome and has the softest fur that people cannot resist wanting to pet him. Our boy is very affectionate, and is big on giving kisses, and sometimes gentle nibbles. He loves belly rubs, and asks for them by sitting, licking your hand and then rolling over belly up. He will even ask for hugs sometimes, by sliding his nose and head under your arm to ask for petting or to be held. He will then lean into you when you hold him. Juneau also is very good with other dogs and loves playing with them. As with many rescued dogs, he has a long list of wonderful qualities, and a short list of items that will need work.

Although when he feels secure and settled in a home, Juneau is calm and well behaved, he can be anxious if his people are gone. With some basic obedience training, he would be the perfect dog for almost any home, except for his single tough issue of being left alone. He will whine, cry, and give out stress barks when he feels alone or abandoned. We are seeking adopters who can have Juneau with someone all day, and who are experienced with, or willing to learn, how to slowly condition him to be calm when his people are not with him. We believe that he may be an excellent emotional support dog for someone who needs a dog to be with them at all times. Juneau and his human would understand and could support each other, and slowly work to gain confidence together.

Juneau is generally a very happy boy, and is especially joyful when outside or playing. He is a moderate energy guy. When in the house, he is very calm and mellow for a young dog. When happily settled in a home, Juneau is also very quiet and rarely barks. He will occasionally give out a single short bark to get his foster sister’s attention to invite her play, or sometimes when on leash and seeing dogs approaching.

He is friendly with other dogs, although he can be a little pushy in his eagerness to meet, and may annoy some dogs. Juneau and the 3 year old, female, cattle dog at his foster home get along great. They do a lot of playing and generally follow each other around. He is very submissive with her, and will go belly up, letting her put her paw on him. But, at other times when they are playing, wrestling and chase each other around, they play as equals. Juneau does not show any guarding behavior at all.  However, he is a bit of a thief. He will try to distract the other dog by pretending to be playful, and when they look up or get up from their toy or chewy, he will snatch or steal it from them.

At his foster home, he completely ignored the cats he has encountered, both inside and outside. He also completely ignored a flock of wild ducks that were on the ground about 3 feet from him. However, when at a new situation, he did chase the cats. We believe he just wanted to play, but the cats ran and hid. In a new home with cats, he would likely need a slow introduction to the cats. We have not yet seen him around children. He should be fine in a home with older children, but he maybe too rambunctious for small children when playing.

While he has the white fluffy fur of a Samoyed, Juneau definitely has herding breed traits. He has herders’ Velcro dog nature to be where ever his person is. He will be beside you, and each time you move around, he will follow you, including into the bathroom. If you slip away for a few minutes, when you return he will celebrate with a big greeting. He also herds the dog toys from around the house, and places them all in an organized pile on his dog bed; and then lays down next to the bed to watch his toys.

Juneau loves to play fetch with the frisbee, and will bring it to you, but he hasn’t learned how to catch them yet. He loves both squeaky and chew toys. An obsession he has is drinking water from a garden hose. He loves it. Juneau also is a chewer, and especially when inside. He is learning which items are OK to chew on. As a strong chewer, he will need chew toys that won't break his teeth (stuffed Kongs, bully sticks, flexible Nylabones, etc.).

Juneau is great riding in a car, and enjoys car rides. When walking on leash, he never pulls and pretty much heels when walking. Sometimes when in new or unusual situations or when seeing a dog he wants to meet, Juneau seems to get “information overload” and will bark, whine, and jump in place. This has been happening less as he has more experience meeting dogs on walks.

He is very eager to please, extremely smart, and a fast learner. Juneau does NOT try to get up on any of the furniture. He knows sit, and will come if a treat is involved. He can be stubborn too, such as his persistence about putting paws on counter and dining table (but does not beg for food), and wanting to greet people by jumping up on them. Occasionally, the puppy in him will grab a shoe to chew on, but he will give it up, when handed a toy in exchange.

Juneau is still a pup, who had almost no training before his current foster home. We believe that Juneau had been left outside most of the time, before being at the shelter. His fosters now have him pretty much house trained. At this point, he won’t go out the door by himself to let you know he has to go, yet. His adopters will need to continue managing and teaching him what is OK and what is not.

His fosters have been crating him during the day when they are away. He is not yet trained to go into the crate and does NOT go in on his own. Once inside the crate, he will whine a bit to tell you he is unhappy, but then settles down. If he is very tired, he has no problem being in the crate and left alone.

This dog is being fostered in Santa Cruz, CA.  If you are interested in meeting Juneau, please begin our pre-approval process by completing our adoption form at this link:  http://hittgv.org/index.php/adopt.  Please download and print the form to be completed. If you have questions about this dog, email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or leave a message at (707) 583-9583.

Pumpkin Spice (ADOPTED!) is the sweetest, most adorable, loving and friendly 29 lb., and 10-11 month old package!  She loves everyone she meets. Our girl looks to be mostly red heeler, and border collie. She greets her people by giving cattle dog hugs - standing on her hind legs, she gently wraps her front paws around you.  Pumpkin wants to be close to people, and thinks she is a lap dog. Cuddling on the couch with someone is a favorite thing for her. She likes to rest her head on your lap or chest. At her foster home, her favorite person is a 7-year old little girl. The two of them cuddle together and jump on the backyard trampoline together.

As a social pup, Pumpkin also loves other dogs, being with them and playing with them. When playing, she likes to herd the other dogs around, by nudging and guiding them back. Pumpkin also learned how to jump up and down on the trampoline, and taught the other dogs how to play in it. When resting inside, she likes to be touching one of the other dogs in her foster home. If the other dogs are resting and she isn’t tired, she will seek out one of her people to follow around.

Pumpkin is still a young pup, with some very smart and energetic herding/working breeds in her. She has plenty of youthful energy, and needs a lot of opportunity to run and play throughout the day. Also, her very observant, curious, thinking brain could use a “job” or just things to keep her busy. Occasionally, when inside the house and feeling playful, just for fun, Pumpkin will grab something that isn’t a dog toy and run with it. If you catch her doing it and tell her “drop it,” she will.  At this point in her life, she will need continued supervision management throughout the day. This is NOT a dog for a home where she is left alone during the workday.

Pumpkin does have her own personal likes and dislikes. Although she and her canine foster sister llke to chase squirrels in the tree, Pumpkin is afraid of rabbits. We have not yet seen her around cats, but her fear of rabbits could be an indication of how she might react. She also hates water. Pumpkin will run from the hose, and hates getting a bath. She will try to jump out of the tub.

Our girl does NOT have any food or resource guarding at all. However, she is a fast eater who wolfs down her food. Her fosters are using a special bowl to slow down her eating speed.
Pumpkin is a good watch dog. When strangers come to the house, she will bark 2-3 times to let people know. She will also place herself between strangers and her 7-year old girl. She will not, however, do this for her adult humans.

Her fosters are working on crate training her, and making some progress. Pumpkin sleeps in the crate at night, but needs to know that others are also there in the room. If crated at night, her crate should be in the bedroom with people and/or other dogs. If left completely alone in a crate, she will whine and may rip up her bedding. She also seems fine when left alone in the crate during the day, when in same room with another crated dog. If she is super tired after a lot of exercise, on her own, she will go into her crate to nap.

In the morning, when Pumpkin is let out of her crate, she is ecstatic, and the first thing she will do is greet you by wrapping her front paws around you for a cattle dog hug, before heading outside for her morning pee.

Since Pumpkin is still very much a puppy, who is only just learning appropriate behavior, her new adopters will need to continue to work with her.  She is pretty much house trained, but sometimes when she is busy or having fun inside, and then feels like peeing, she forgets.  Her fosters are also still working on leash walking. As a pup, Pumpkin still wants to chew on her leash. While Pumpkin has not yet realized that she might find food on the counter, she has been found sitting on the kitchen counter looking out the window. When playing outside with the other dogs, Pumpkin also loves to dig for fun, especially when with one of the other dogs.

She is also a little mouthy, and will playfully nibble at your hands and/or arms when playing with you, or to let you know she wants something you have (her toy). When told to stop nibbling, she will stop. For this reason, if in a home with children, the should be 7 years old or older, respectful of, and know their boundaries with dogs.

Pumpkin would do best in a home with another dog. Because she is young, very busy, and still has several issues that need work, Pumpkin is NOT for a first time dog owner, or people who are too busy to supervise and manage her activities.

This dog is being fostered near Yuba City, CA.  If you are interested in meeting Pumpkin Spice, please begin our pre-approval process by completing our adoption form at this link:  http://hittgv.org/index.php/adopt.  Please download and print the form to be completed. If you have questions about this dog, call (916) 893-9517; or email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or leave a message at (707) 583-9583.

(ADOPTED!) We are looking for a loving home for our beloved Umi. He is a 7 year old, cattle dog mix, 63 pounds.  Umi is social and is wonderful around people. He meets new people and is comfortable with them immediately. He gives tons and tons of kisses, especially to your hand as he is getting a walk. He is happiest when trekking outdoors but loves a good cuddle indoors too.  Umi is great on a leash, he does not pull and is extremely happy to go on walks and hikes. He also loves running in or near water.  He is a great and quiet road trip companion, stays by his person in public places, and comes when called.  He has no guarding behavior with food or toys. He sits, stays, lays, and will basically do anything for a carrot.
He is also great with other dogs and has interacted with an innumerable amount of dogs at dog parks, hiking trails, and beaches without a single incident. He has lived on a property with livestock and was comfortable in that setting. He has not lived with cats, and probably would be best suited in a home without cats. 
Our boy is housebroken, and sleeps solo on his own bed through the night. Umi used to living in a working household, and is comfortable being home by himself during an average workday.  He is used to being outside for 8+ hrs without us home. Umi enjoys laying in the yard, especially when it's sunny outside.
Umi has been our dearest loyal companion for 6.5 years, but sadly the last 20 months with a toddler have been very stressful on him and too extreme a change for his herding nature. Although he has been absolutely loving and protective of our baby until now, unfortunately, he bit her this week and we have realized we cannot provide a safe happy home for both him and our daughter. We are devastated, but hopeful that someone can offer him the companionship and attention he deserves.
He would do great in an all adult household, household with older children, and/or farm/ranch environment.  Umi is neutered, fully vaccinated, and  microchipped.  He is currently located in Forestville, CA.  If you have any questions or would like to meet our beloved Umi, please contact us at:  510.427.1988 or email:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
With broken and hopeful hearts, 
Chloe and Tim


Our mission: To rescue, care for, and rehabilitate unwanted, abused, and neglected dogs of herding breeds, concentrating on Australian Cattle Dogs and Border Collies.

Our focus is on their permanent placement into appropriate, loving homes, and informing the public about the special nature and needs of herding breeds.

Contact us at:   This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


We are grateful for any contributions to help us rescue, care for, and transport animals.

If you prefer to write a check, please mail it to: Herd It Through The Grapevine, P.O. Box 9585, Santa Rosa, CA 95405

Herd It Through The Grapevine is a 501(c)(3) approved organization.