Happy Tails

Hank (ADOPTED!) is a very loving, sensitive, sweet soul with so much potential. Typical of cattle dogs, Hank longs for his own person to love and devote himself to. He weighs around 45 lbs. and we estimate he is 2-3 years old. Hank was a waif, who was found wandering as a stray. He is completely wonderful with other dogs of all personalities - very respectful and takes his cues from them. He adores playing with other dogs. As a young, moderate energy dog, Hank loves to run, play and explore. He will need regular daily exercise. When first meeting people, he is polite, but needs time to decide if he can trust you before he opens up to you. He can definitely “feel the love,” and tends to trust gentle, soft spoken people very quickly. Hank's core personality is a soft marshmallow. Once you have his trust, his floodgates open to show you how much love he has in his heart and how grateful he is. For his people, he is attentive, listens well, and wants to to please.

Most of the time Hank has a very quiet, low key nature. He is good company without constantly being on top of you, except when he checks in, to show you much he loves you by putting his front paws on your lap so he can enthusiastically give you kisses. He is extremely sensitive to his living situation and the people around him. Hank truly needs a calm, balanced home situation, and consistency. He is not for a busy household. If he is comfortable at home, he will meet new people in a relaxed, happy manner. If he is uneasy in a situation, he will also feel stressed about what new people might do. Hank is extremely intelligent, and a quick learner, who wants to do the right thing. He is big on food and treats, and should be easy to train. He knows Sit and Down, but could use some additional basic obedience training, and a good recall. Hank is housebroken and knows how to use a dog door. We are working on crate training him.  At home, he wants to follow his person from room to room, waiting for you to let him know that it is time to do something. He adores car rides and the idea of going to a new place with his person. In a car, he rides very quietly in the backseat, watching the world go by, or in the passenger seat facing you. We have only seen him around a cat once, and he very calmly looked at it without any desire to do anything more. If a cat ran, he may want to chase. However, when Hank saw chickens being shoo'd into their pen6-8 feet from him, he did nothing more than calmly stand and observe them. When another dog began chasing a large flock of wild turkeys, Hank did NOT join in. We believe he would be very good with livestock and other animals.

For the most part, Hank has very good house manners. However, he is a pro at napping on the sofa, and at bedtime, wants to curl up on the bed beside your feet. When happily greeting people he knows and trusts, his first impulse is to jump up with his front paws on your chest to give kisses. While mostly quiet, Hank will alarm bark when he hears something outside. This happens especially after dark, when unexpected sounds may scare him most. He would be a good watch dog to let you know when someone is approaching the house. Hank should not be left outside unattended, and would do best on quiet country property.

Hank walks fairly well on leash. He is fine going places and seeing people on walks and in stores. In the month that he has been in his foster home, Hank is much more relaxed, happy, and more eager to get out to explore new places and meet new people. A month ago, when on walks, he was calm but cautious walking in town and seeing new people. We have seen over time, that when every new person he has met has been a good experience, that he is no longer worried about new people. Now, he is relaxed and wags happily when meeting new people. When he makes the transition to new adopters, he may be initially insecure about the change. His people need to go slow, and allow him to decide and approach new things when he is ready.

On walks (but, NOT in the car), Hank barks his annoyance at fast moving things with wheels going past. As he has recently become calmer and more relaxed, he has sometimes not barked when wheeled things rolled past at a distance. However, if they are close-by as they go past, he will still bark.

Hank is only now learning about treats and toys, and he is loving them. However, he loves them so much that he does sometimes guard toys (especially plush, squeaky ones) and the treats he has been given. His current fosters are starting to work with him on this behavior, and making progress. He is very smart, and wants to please his person. He is good at body language to communicate to his foster mom, when he is not comfortable about a situation or something we might do. Because of this current tendency to worry and guard his prizes, plus the fact that when he wants to love you, he will put his front paws on your lap and push his way to your face to give kisses, sometimes nibbling your chin, Hank would not be appropriate in a home with young children.

Hank has a soft, adoring and playful soul, and will make someone a wonderful companion. It is clear that whoever had him before he was stray, didn’t do right by him. To overcome his past negative experiences, he will need loving reassurance from calm, easy going, confident leaders. Hank should be introduced to new things at his pace, and not pushed into new situations too soon. His person must pay attention to his attempts to communicate when he is not comfortable with something. In just a month at his foster home, we can see that his outlook is much more positive and trusting. His person(s) should be experienced with herding dogs and be willing to continue his training, and work on his resource guarding behavior.

If you are interested in meeting Hank, please begin our pre-approval process by completing our online adoption form, by clicking on the Adopt bar near the top of this page. Email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call us at (707) 583-9583 with specific questions.

Nova (ADOPTED!) is a 28 lb., female Australian Cattle Dog - Australian Shepherd mix. At 5 months old, she is still very much a pup, who is playful and energetic and adorable. She loves meeting new people when on walks.

Typical of cattle dogs, she will quickly bond with and adore her people. She is smart as a whip, figures things out quickly, and knows several obedience commands.

We make feeding time a training session for Nova. She will sit or lie down and wait while the food is being prepared and served. If she moves from her spot, food preparation comes to a stop.  When the food is placed she must ‘wait’ in her spot until the ‘okay’ is given.

Nova has shown some resource protection and has bit at us when we get too close to her while she’s eating her special treats. However, there are many more times that she has chewed her special treats while we pet her even on her head. At this point the resource guarding is unpredictable.
Nova is house-trained, and rides very nicely in a car in her crate and sleeps through the night in her crate in the home. She also spends quiet times in her exercise pen, napping or keeping herself bust with a marrow bone.

Nova can be a wild child, who needs mental work to challenge her busy brain, as well as active physical exercise, both of which will help tire her out. True to her breed, in the absence of leadership and guidance, Nova will take the lead and make her own decisions.

As a result, she developed a few behavioral issues that will require some management and effort by new adopters. Our home was too active, with rambunctious children and visitors coming and going and Nova have been experiencing sensory overload. She often got overstimulated and barked and nipped.

The good news is that Nova is a very smart, young dog, who wants to bond with her people, wants to please, and to have a purpose.

For the reasons above, Nova needs someone who understands and respects the mental strength of this breed, knows how to meet the needs of a cattle dog pup, and how to motivate and work with her.

She is partially vaccinated (will need boosters), not yet spayed or microchipped. She is currently located in Aptos. If you are interested in meeting her, please go to the "Adopt" bar at the top of this page to complete our online adoption form. For questions about this pup, please email Shannon at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Quinn (ADOPTED!) is a gorgeous one year old, 40-45 lb., Australian Kelpie mix. As a herding breed, Kelpies are known for their extremely bright intelligence, loyalty, and energy.  True to her breed, Quinn is incredibly smart, and very willing to please, but no one has shown her what to do. She is a happy girl, who loves being with people and playing ball. She would make a wonderful, loving companion for an active person. Keeping busy is one of her favorite things! 

She is currently in a kennel situation, and is not happy being kenneled all the time. Quinn meets all dogs well, both male and female. As a herder, once she begins playing and interacting with another dog, she can be pushy and try to control the action. She wants to be the leader of the pack during playtime. Quinn can be more pushy with other females. As a result, the trainer who tested her with other dogs, recommends that, if in a multi-dog household, she would be best with male dogs. 

Quinn is a confident girl, and she adapts well to new situations. Although she can be bossy with other dogs, Quinn is very compliant with people. She responds quickly if a human corrects unwanted behavior, and will immediately follow their lead. Currently, she is being fostered in a home with two children (girls), ages 5 and 11 years old, and is very good with them. She has ridden in a car in a crate and is great riding in her crate or on the seat next to you in a car.

Our girl knows some basic commands, but is still learning, and seems eager to learn new things. She walks nicely on leash and appears to be housebroken. Quinn is a work in progress. The evaluating trainer recommends that Quinn and her new people take obedience training classes to help her reach her full potential. With some additional training, and being taught what is correct and appropriate and what isn’t, she will be an absolute gem!  

We would love to see her get a great home where she can be appreciated and loved! She would blossom in an active home, with a person or family that will be actively involved in working with her, and giving her the mental and physical stimulation she craves. When motivated to join her people, Quinn has been known to scale a chain link fence. If left home alone, she should not be left outside, and a high wooden fence is recommended.

Quinn is spayed and current on all shots. She is heartworm negative and on preventative. She is currently being fostered in Santa Rosa, CA.

If you have any questions, please contact Eileen Endres at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or call us Herd It Through The Grapevine at (707) 583-9583.

Buttercup (ADOPTED!) is approximately a 1.5 years old and weighs about 25 pounds. We rescued her 2 weeks before she gave birth to a litter of puppies (all adopted), and she has proven to be quite the puppy herself. Her fosters call her a “good dog.” She will look you in the eye with an intelligence and expressiveness that is almost human. Buttercup will make someone a wonderful companion, but she needs people who are ready to play with and exercise a dog who is rambunctious, playful and always ready to go!
Her breed is something of a mystery - she has little, short legs on a well-muscled body, upright ears, and though she looks black, she is actually a very dark chocolate color that shows itself it bright sunlight. Buttercup has been a wonderful mother to her puppies and even when her time was consumed with chasing them around and nursing, she would always take time to get cuddles from her people. Her fosters often wake up in the middle of the night to find that Buttercup has joined them in bed, snuggled up as close as possible, usually with her head buried under their pillows.

Buttercup is very bright and is usually a quiet girl. She came to us knowing a few things. She is housebroken and seems to know right from wrong when it comes to household rules. She knows how to sit, but will need practice with other basic obedience commands, like “come” and “stay.’  Our girl rides very nicely and quietly in the car. She also has a few quirks that are sure to put a smile on your face. She is an expert at offering her paw for a “high five” or “shake” – sometimes even slipping her paw into your hand when you aren’t expecting it. She absolutely loves a nice fluffy blanket and will dig and squirm around in it until it’s just right for a nap. Usually ending up with just her nose exposed for breathing. Blankets are also a favorite place for to her to hide her treasures. She digs and dexterously uses her nose to tuck away toys and chewies for later.

Buttercup loves to be outdoors and seems to find everything interesting in some way! She truly relishes rolling around in the grass on a sunny day or stretching out and dragging her belly across the lawn. She can often be found lying outside, belly up, in a patch of sunshine. As a young, active dog, Buttercup would do best in a home that can provide her with both mental stimulation and physical activities. She is a smart, athletic, high energy dog that loves nothing more than to play all day and then crawl into your lap for a nap and some ear rubs. Buttercup is happiest after a nice long walk or a game of chase in the yard. She seems to be most content with a good snuggle at the end of a long, busy day. She would love several walks a day, to sniff and explore, as well as interactive play time with her people. She likes to play ball and fetch sticks. She also enjoys brain-stimulating puzzle toys that require a little mental agility and reasoning for a tasty treat (i.e. Kongs, bob-a-lot).

In the evenings, when on a long leash, and distractions are minimal, Buttercup walks calmly. She has more trouble staying focused during the day, when on a shorter (4-6 ft. leash) and more control is needed. At these times, she often pulls to investigate bushes or leaves blowing in the wind, and is reactive (barking and pulling) if she strangers, other dogs and bicycles at a distance. She is fine, however, when people and bicycles come close. We believe that if meeting others while she is off-leash, she would not be reactive.

Buttercup’s experience with other dogs is limited. Because she has spent most of her time inside with her puppies, there have not been many opportunities for her to interact with other dogs. However, she was living with several other young social dogs and pups at the shelter before she came to us. Like most dogs in “mommy-mode,” Buttercup became more defensive of other dogs after her puppies came. When the time for her to nest came along, she didn’t even want her foster brother around anymore (with whom she had got along with up until then). We believe that if given the choice, she would prefer the company of people over dogs and that, with some practice, she can be comfortable around other dogs once again.

She is currently living at a foster home with four cats. It took a few weeks for everyone to learn to get along. Buttercup would need reminding that the cats don’t appreciate being chased and that they definitely don’t want to wrestle like puppies. Her urges to chase them have since faded and she is trusted to be left home alone with them.

We will schedule her spay surgery as advised by our veterinarian. As with all our dogs, she will be up-to-date on her vaccinations, microchipped and started on heartworm prevention.

If you are interested in meeting Buttercup, please begin our pre-adoption approval process by completing our online adoption form. Click on “Adopt” at the top of the page, for our online Adoption Form.  If you have specific questions, email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Yeti (ADOPTED!), is a very loving, easy going, old soul, who wants nothing more than a quiet, calm home and his very own person. He is approximately 5 years old, weighs 90 lbs., and is just a big marshmallow. While he meets all people well, he seems to gravitate to women. He will choose his person, probably a female, and want to hang out near her, often following her from room to room. Yeti adores human attention and being petted and stroked. Sometimes if you are stroking him and then stop, he may use his mouth to take your hand and pull it back to tell you to continue petting him. Other times he is happy to quietly hang out on his own and rest in a preferred small space. Yeti is polite and friendly when meeting new people on the street, and meeting new dogs. He is curious about other dogs, and will meet and sniff them politely. Although he prefers the company of his people and receiving human attention, he is good around dogs, who are polite and not actively in his face or constantly running around or past him. He may avoid pushy dogs who rush up to him, or if they run past him, he may try to interfere as they pass, to make them stop. He wants to keep the peace.

Yeti is completely house-trained. When on leash, he walks nicely at your side and never pulls. He is very compliant and will try to do the right thing if you let him know what you want. Yeti is also extremely smart. When he was first fed alongside another dog, he tried to go to the other dog's bowl. When his foster gently touched his neck and told him to go back to his own bowl, he listened and returned to his own food. From that one time, he learned not to wander to the other dog’s bowl. If you tell him No, when he is showing unwanted behavior, he will stop immediately and come to you. After just two days in a temporary foster home, when a man he did not know entered the house on his own, and Yeti heard a strange voice, he immediately ran out and barked at that person. When his foster mom told him No, he stopped barking and turned towards her. He would be a great watch dog. We have not yet seen him around cats. Because he is easily stressed by fast and unpredictable movements, we do NOT recommend him in a home with young children.

Our boy was found as a stray by animal control officers. Based on the occurrences that trigger his fear and his watchful caution, we can guess how he was likely treated in his past life, and how he came to be stray.  He is completely terrified when riding in a car and wants to lie up against a person with his head buried under your arm, or over someone’s lap for security. He will go into the car willingly, but once the car begins to move, he will tremble, drool, hyperventilate, and his heart will almost beat out of his chest. His extreme fear when in a moving car leads us to believe that he was likely driven somewhere and dumped. Anyone driving him, should have a second person in the car, as he feels the need to hug or be up against someone during a drive. The fur along the very tips of his ears has been eaten away by flies or cut away for some reason. At night, Yeti likes to have some light, and will go to a lit area or a night light. If he can, he will place himself in small protected spaces, such as a closet, laundry room, or a protected corner of a room.

Yeti will react when people reach to grab his collar, by resisting and struggling. However, if you simply attach a leash to his collar, he will easily come with you, even if he doesn’t want to. He is very quiet 98 percent of the time. We have only heard him bark on a few occasions when he was startled, and for a split second, scared for his own personal safety, and the other was the incident when a strange man let himself into the house. 

The two times a startle reaction was triggered in him, that it was triggered by a man. During all other times, when he feels happy and secure. Yeti will be immediately more comfortable and trusting when meeting women. He is calm, but watchful when first meeting men. After a day or so of observation, he will begin to trust and relax around a man. He would love to be an only dog, and have all the love and attention of his person. He would also be good with another easy going, lower energy, female dog. He is mostly indifferent with a male dog in the house, but tries to control the movements of his submissive foster brother.

In summary, this dog has a wonderful, loving and gentle spirit, but has seen some hardship and trauma in his past. His adopter(s) will need to be aware of his desire to police male dogs and strange men in the home, and to teach him some basic rules. He will quickly obey his person.

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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.

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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.