Our Little Vince. Cute low rider, soulful and emotional, sensitive to touch, and stressed almost beyond the ability to cope in the shelter. This is how we met Vince and it took a village of very skilled humans to ease this little guy’s stress and help him survive, and then thrive, in the shelter environment.
When Vince finally went home after months at the shelter, a feeling of relief came over all the people who cared for him, but we were also a little worried. His new mom, whom we had met prior to his adoption and really liked, lived in a second-floor apartment. We knew being around other dogs stressed Vince out and we were not sure how living in an apartment complex surrounded by a multitude of dogs would go. Within a few weeks, our concerns came to fruition, though for a different reason than we had predicted. Vince, who was never much of a talker in the time we had known him, had finally found his voice and barked a loud booming bark when his mom (whom he already adored) left for work. Complaints from the neighbors rolled in, and the apartment manager said Vince would have to go.
It’s not usual for an adopter to be so devoted so early into a new relationship, but Vince’s mom was firmly resolute that he was hers and he was not going back to the shelter. To make this relationship last, though, she was going to need some unique support not typically available to newly adopted dogs. However, Dogs Out Loud isn’t a typical rescue group. Our goal is to keep good matches together, whatever the need, and we could tell this was a great match. Because of the generous support of our wonderful donors and the extraordinary nature of our volunteers, we are able to offer customized support to each dog in our program, whatever the need. Which leads us to Vince’s story …
Two weeks after moving to Austin I woke up one morning thinking I needed some companionship and made a spur of the moment decision to adopt a dog. I went to Austin Animal Center and it only took me 10 minutes of looking to find my forever friend.
Vince caught my eye because he was the only dog that wasn’t trying to get my attention. He looked like he had given up on socializing, as if he already knew I was just another person that would be walking by. Unfortunately, I hadn’t paid attention to the fact he had a red dot on his door and I went into his room anyway where I found myself falling in love with the sweetest boy. I immediately went to the lobby and said he was the one I wanted, so they called a Dogs Out Loud member to come and speak with me. The volunteer explained all of Vince’s quirks and was assuring I could handle his high anxiety, but I was positive he was the one I wanted.
I was prepared for our first night at home together to not be the smoothest, but he was nothing but well-behaved and had a good nights sleep next to me. My first couple of weeks with him Dawn and Jen both went out of their way to come to my apartment for in-home check-ins to help coach through any issues that were occurring and to ensure all was well. They stayed for training sessions and even helped work through Vince’s fear of stairs and also teach me ways to handle situations if Vince ever had an anxiety episode. I was amazed at how much time and effort they put into helping us.
Unfortunately, my living situation had become difficult, so they put me in touch with a dog-loving apartment locator. While I was in search for a new home the Dogs Out Loud program paid to board Vince for a few weeks while I figured everything out. They were so patient and kind during the whole process and I couldn’t believe how much help I was receiving from complete strangers. When Vince couldn’t stay at the boarding facility anymore, a volunteer even boarded her own dog so he could stay with her for a few days. I finally found a new place that suited everything I needed and everyone went above and beyond with helping me not only furnish my new house but also spoiling Vince with all kinds of goodies and toys.
It has been quite an unexpected journey with many obstacles but Vince and I are now happy in a new home that he loves and I know I have help whenever it’s needed. I am so grateful for my decision to adopt and all of the members from Dogs Out Loud!
While most shelter dogs go on to lead wonderful lives with no extra support or resources needed in their forever homes, there is a group of good, savable dogs who need creative solutions to succeed in the shelter and in adoptive homes. Even though Austin is “no-kill”, those dogs are still at risk of long stays, unsuccessful adoptions, and even euthanasia at Austin’s city shelter. The post-adoption support Dogs Out Loud provides is an important way we help fill that gap and ensure lasting relationships for dogs like Vince who need just a little more to make that dream come true.
That we can provide this level of post-adoption support is possible because of the donations we receive. While Vince’s case is exceptional, we typically spend a minimum of $300 on items like a crate, bed, food, enrichment items, treats, a training scholarship to select local trainers, and more, for each of our adopted dogs. If you would like to help us help shelter dogs succeed in their forever homes, please consider donating to our Amplify Austin campaign and help us meet our goal of $15,000 so we can help medium-large breed dogs at Austin Animal Center stay in loving forever homes.