Herd It Through The Grapevine

Herding Dog Rescue

Happy Tails

PILOT

Pilot (ADOPTED!) is a very mellow, easy going guy in all situations, with all people and animals.  We estimate that he is around 3 years old, and weighs 43-45 lbs. He appears to be a cattle dog, border collie mix, with some bull terrier thrown in. Pilot seems very careful and hesitant in new situations and with new people.  While he is quiet and gentle, he is also happy and social once he has had time to know everyone is ok. He is a moderate energy dog, who is very content to just sit beside or go for a walk with his person.

He is an extremely observant and highly intelligent dog, who quietly watches and evaluates everything around him. Although Pilot seems initially more comfortable when meeting women, than men, with a quiet, slow introduction, and some time to observe new people, he will warm up. However, if you focus on him and attempt to rush the process of getting to know Pilot, you will only scare him and it will take longer to gain his trust. When meeting his foster dad, who allowed Pilot his space and to approach in his own time, Pilot was following him around within an hour. Having the velcro nature of a cattle dog, Pilot now follows him around whenever possible. Our boy is fine when left alone. When his foster dad returns home, although Pilot has the company of other dogs, he is excited and happy, coming up to lick his foster dad’s hand, and running around in glee.

Pilot demonstrates excellent body language around other dogs. While curious about other dogs, if he is unsure of new dogs who look at or approach him quickly, he will turn his head away to avoid their gaze, letting them know he is not a threat.  He may hide behind the legs of his person if strange dogs quickly approach him to meet. It may take him several minutes to feel comfortable enough to return a sniff and slowly begin to interact with new dogs or people. Once he feels secure in a situation and with other dogs or people, he is happy, curious and interactive.

He met and shown no interest in his foster’s cat, and is doing fine living with several other dogs. His foster home has several dogs, Pilot especially likes an older, male, border collie. When the two get back together, after being away from each other, Pilot will run up to his border collie buddy, lick his face, follow him around, and make a gentle nuisance of himself.

As Pilot becomes more comfortable, more of his personality emerges. He does enjoy playing ball, and seems to have a sense of humor!  When being introduced to other dogs at his foster home, Pilot and I sat side by side in a room with exercise equipment. We both saw a tall mirror against the wall. I saw him looking into the mirror. I did a double-take, when I realized that he wasn’t staring at himself, but was instead looking at me. As we sat facing the mirror, looking straight into each other’s eyes, he had an amused smile on his face, as if he thought watching each other in the mirror was the coolest thing ever.

Pilot is a very easy going and compliant guy. When his foster dad calls him, Pilot wags his stumpy tail. He also likes being brushed or petted. Pilot was still and sat quietly in the tub for his bath. When walking on leash he will follow your lead and never pulls. Even if he is reluctant to go where you are leading him, if he knows you, he will follow. Pilot also rides extremely well in a car, and sits very quietly in the back seat.  He enjoys facing the window and watching the world go by. He is housebroken and knows how to use a dog door. At bedtime, if you let him, he would love to sleep with you.

Our boy also does something that may be a request for attention or support. When sitting with you, he will slowly lift up and offer you a front paw, while looking away from you. When he first came off of transport to us, Pilot seemed very apprehensive. To allow him to de-stress, I spent nearly 45 minutes sitting in the shade with him in a quiet area. He was so still and quiet, yet when he heard voices of passing families, he would perk up and strain to see them, and watch them intently until they disappeared.

We are seeking people who can give Pilot the companionship, security, confidence, and loving happy, active life that he deserves. He is a brilliantly intelligent dog, who needs TLC, and people who will be his partners in life. PIlot is fearful of new people and situations, and it will take time - at least several months - for him to feel comfortable meeting new people, especially most men. He needs people who understand this and who truly know how to work with a nervous dog who is basically afraid of most people.

If you are interested in meeting Pilot, we ask that you first complete our adoption questionnaire (online form or download a hard copy), which is the first step of our pre-adoption process.  At our website (hittgv.org), please click on the Adopt tab near the top of the page, and scroll down to find the online Adoption Form.  You can also email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you have specific questions about Pilot or our process.

ROCKET

Rocket (ADOPTED!) is an Australian cattle dog and Australian shepherd mix, between 3.5 and 4 months old.  She currently weighs 15 lbs. Her foster chose this name, because she is the more silly, playful pup, who gets the zoomies, running around the house frequently throughout the day. Rocket and her sister were found living in a field, and after seeing them for four days, the landowner realized that they would starve if nothing was done to help them.

Of the two pups, Rocket is the social butterfly. She is spry, energetic, and loves to run and play with other dogs. She has an easy going, happy, very loving personality. She is very free with her kisses. However, if a situation becomes noisy or chaotic Rocket will run to hide in a protected space. Even when she is relaxed and playful, she will frequently hang out under a coffee table or other cave-like space. Sudden moves or loud sounds will send her running for cover. For this reason, she would not be suitable in a household with young children.

This pup is fine with cats.  Because she likes protected spaces Rocket is good relaxing in a crate. Currently, her foster is working to get her to used to walking on leash. Although she will walk on leash, if you try to direct her with a tug at the leash, she will panic and struggle.

 

She is an adorable playful puppy now, but similar to her sister, Rocket will need a home where she can get plenty of mental and physical activity, and people who will continue the work of socializing her throughout the day, and teaching her basic manners and routines. Rocket needs people who have experience with and understand herding breeds. This is NOT a pup who should be left alone in the house for several hours during the workday.

I you would like to meet Rocket please begin our process by completing our adoption questionnaire (online form or download a hard copy).  Please click on the Adopt tab near the top of the page, and scroll down to find the online Adoption Form. You can also email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you have specific questions.

TANUKI

Tanuki (ADOPTED!) is around 4 months old, and currently weighs 19-20 lbs. Because of her perfect mask, her foster named her after the Japanese raccoon-dog.

UPDATE 6/17/16:  After a few weeks feeling safe in a stable home environment, and after her sister was adopted, Tanuki is transforming into a regular playful, energetic cattle dog puppy!  When the two girls were together, she may have felt the burden of responsibility for her sister. Once Rocket left, Tanuki has become much more playful. She is now a typical happy, busy puppy, who would love the space to run off her energy. This is NOT a pup who should be left alone in the house for several hours during the workday. She is also entering a chewing phase and enjoys gnawing on her rope toys and taking apart her soft, plush toys. Tanuki has recently started stealing shoes and puts them on her bed in her crate.  She does not chew them, she only collects.

Tanuki and her sister were found living in a field, and after four days, the landowner realized that they would starve if nothing was done to help them. When the pups first arrived, Tanuki was the more  serious and watchful of the two pups. She was the one who assessed new situations and made the decisions for both of them. When first meeting new people, she will initially run away to get distance from them, and observe. Once she decides a situation or person is safe, it didn't take long for her t
o come forward and give you kisses. Tanuki will soon begin playing and wants to be part of the activities. When she feels comfortable, she is very friendly, enjoys affection, petting, and cuddling. If a situation becomes noisy or chaotic she may run to hide in a protected space. Sudden moves or loud sounds will send her running for cover. For this reason, we do not recommend this pup for a household with young children. Tanuki's foster is socializing her each day, and she is becoming more friendly and outgoing everyday.

This pup is fine with cats. She likes protected spaces and is good relaxing in a crate. Currently, her foster is working to g
et her to walk on leash. Tanuki is doing well learning to walk on leash, but she will need continued work. While she has the cattle dog trait of being very bright and a thinking dog, she also has the trait of being willful and stubborn. She is an adorable playful puppy now, but will need a home where she can get plenty of mental and physical activity, and people who will continue the work of socializing her throughout the day, and teaching her basic manners and routines. Tanuki is all Australian cattle dog, and needs people who have experience with and understand these dogs.  A large yard or acreage would be ideal for her.

I you would like to meet Tanuki, please begin our process by completing our adoption questionnaire (online form or download a hard copy). Please click on the Adopt tab near the top of the page, and scroll down to find the online Adoption Form. You can also email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you have specific questions.

BREEZY

Breezy (ADOPTED!) is a very gentle, sweet natured, and quiet Australian cattle dog and possibly Labrador mix, who weighs around 45-50 lbs. She is calm and unassuming, and very friendly with all people. Most herding dogs who are Breezy’s age, are highly energetic, but Breezy seems to be mature beyond her 2-3 years. She is a moderate energy girl, who is happy to go on walks in quiet surroundings, and then hang out with her person/people. Occasionally, she will get a spurt of glee, pick up a toy and race around the house or property with it for a few minutes.

Breezy, adores human attention, and meets other animals calmly and politely. If a passing dog growls at her, she quietly ignores it or may hide behind her person’s legs. As an unassuming dog, she likes to know where her people are, and will just hang out somewhere in the same room or close by. She doesn’t feel the need to be at your feet, but if you move to another location, she will get up to see where you have gone. Because Breezy is unsure of herself, she often sits and observes the activity around her, only approaching if you invite her. When you re-enter a room, she will wag up to you to welcome you back.

Breezy truly wants her own person/people to bond closely with and follow around. Within a few hours at her new foster home, she was following her foster mom everywhere, watching for cues on what she should do. She has been trying to win over her foster dad, who usually doesn’t interact with her much. Whenever he enters the room, Breezy goes to greet him,wagging her whole body and gives him a big smile. Yes, this dog actually smiles. Most people initially think she is snarling, as she lifts her lips and shows her front teeth, while wagging and wiggling happily. Breezy usually does this when she is super happy to see you, and when she sheepishly realizes that she was caught doing something that she probably shouldn’t. Her smile is sort of an “Oops, I’m sorry. I’m really a good girl.”

Breezy is NOT mouthy, and has NOT shown any desire to nip at feet or hands. She is completely housebroken and will go out on her own if a door is left open. She does not know how to use a dog door, and is still a apprehensive about the swinging flap. She has come up to her fosters to let them know when she needs to go out. When walking on leash, Breezy walks right at your side and doesn’t pull. However, she is not familiar with leash walking, and tends to change sides, and sometimes bumps into your legs as she switches sides.

We believe that her original people did not take her off their property very often, as she lacks confidence in new situations. She and her 1 year old pup were found left out in a backyard, when the new owners of a house moved in, and was subsequently taken to a county shelter.

She needs confidence building through more exposure to new experiences, new people and other animals. When walking in town, she was very afraid of the cars that drove past, and when she saw bunnies in a pet store, not sure of what they were, she took a few steps back. Breezy also becomes very concerned when she hears people raise their voices. She likes to find small, protected spaces to relax in, and would enjoy having a crate to retreat to sometimes. Breezy has been excellent with the two dogs in her foster home. She has been better with them, than they have been with her. We have not seen any aggressive behavior at all from her in any situation. She is still learning the concept of eating out of her own bowl, when in a multiple dog household. She is getting better about not visiting the other dogs’ bowls during mealtime. We believe in her former home, the food was put down in a free-for-all.

In summary, Breezy is an incredibly sweet and easy going dog, who would be an ideal companion in a quiet, calm home.  As a young dog, she would appreciate exercise and mental stimulation, and to be slowly exposed to new experiences and situations to build her confidence.  Breezy would do best in a quiet rural setting.

SHALLOT

Shallot (ADOPTED!) is 4 years old and a lot to love! She is a very sweet, loving girl, who likes to have a routine. Our girl needs a gentle, quiet person and home life. While she is very sensitive and worried around new things. Once Shallot is comfortable and feels secure, she can be a silly girl with a sense of humor. She is a perceptive, quick study, who observes and figures out new situations and routines very quickly. Shallot is also very curious and interested about everything. When seeing livestock for the first time, she curiously did a lot of sniffing and wisely just watched them. Shallot was surrendered to the shelter, because she had been in a home with multiple dogs, children, and cats and she was constantly overwhelmed by all the activity.

Our girl is a bit on the plump side, and her foster named her Shallot, because she was sort of shaped like one when we got her from the shelter. We also called her Luvvy, because the shelter staffer who cared for her called her Love Bug, and teared up when she helped us load her into the car. Shallot/Luvvy is a moderately active girl.  A couple of walks a day would be good for her. She can walk about a mile per walk.

She walks well on leash, and tends to stay very close to you. When on busy roads, Shallot knows to stop to let cars drive past. She enjoys riding in a car, and seems to feel safe and secure when in a car. Shallot is is also very good and quiet in the house, and is completely house trained. She does want to go out every few hours to pee, and if she really needs to go out, she will pace, restlessly, but otherwise does not let you know.


Shallot is an extremely bright girl, who needs to feel safe in order to slowly build up confidence in new situations. She is a typical Australian cattle dog who wants to be with her person as much as possible. She would do best as an only dog in a quiet, adult home, or with another quiet, easy going dog. She becomes very nervous and worried at the sound of raised voices and around sudden moves. When she recently visited a pet store and another dog growled at her, Shallot cried and hid behind her foster’s legs.

If you are interested in Shallot (aka Luvvy), please begin our process by completing our adoption questionnaire (online form or download a hard copy). On our website (hittgv.org), click on the Adopt tab near the top of the page, and scroll down to find the online Adoption Form. You can also email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you have specific questions about this dog or our process.

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