People often ask me how I choose which dogs to keep as I have a varied bunch, and the simple answer is I don't choose them they choose me. The other question I get asked a lot is "how do you cope with so many" Honestly once you are past six dogs you really don't notice anymore. So, my ten became eleven, and as always I knew it was the right decision.
Garfy has joined our home, and from the moment he walked in I knew I had made the right choice. He had been offered a home in the UK, the guy sounded great on paper it was everything a dog needed, and would love, but not Garfy. I had discussed with the guy Garfy's "need" and all sounded great, but there was a niggle.
Rule number 50 is "trust your gut" and I always do... Garfy had come so far, yet had so much further to go. Although his guarding issues were controlled he loved being outside. He would leave the kennels in the night to go and lay in a hole in the play area.
How do I say to someone in the UK, yep you can adopt my dog, but never close your door, and please leave him outside regardless of the time of day or night. I also had serious concerns about how Garfy would react to the real world. Again the moment he came into my home, I knew he could not live in a "normal" home.
Garfy freaked, he freaked at the TV, the fridge, the other dogs, the noise, the sofa, Garfy went into complete panic mode looking for an escape route. The sheer panic in his eyes was enough to re enforce the fact I had made the right decision.
We never close our doors, even in winter, even when its raining allowing the dogs to come and go as they want. This made Garfy's escape route easier, and ensures he feels less trapped. At the moment he is happy living in our garden, everyday I bring him in, and get him used to home life, but as soon as he can he bolts, and off he goes back to the outside world.
I know that one day he will come in on his own, he will join the others for coffee and biscuits (us coffee them biscuits) But I'm happy for Garfy to make that decision on his own. I always want what is best for my dogs, and although I didn't need another dog, Garfy needed me.