Pets.ca - Pet forum for dogs cats and humans 

-->

Abby and Keeper come to the rescue as emergency therapy dogs!!!

Rick C
July 14th, 2008, 10:14 AM
Let this tale begin at the end, after climbing a mountain yesterday and walking down the other side, with the pooches pretty bagged on a hot day . . . . . Abby and Keeper were called to action as therapy dogs.

http://www.goldentales.ca/DSC_1050-edit1.jpg

Above, the end of the road . . . . . Keeper and Abby back at Barrier dam after a 13 km round trip hike up to the Barrier Mountain lookout.

We were sitting on the lakeshore here, after one last dip in the lake, when a gentleman approached us from the dam behind and explained he was a volunteer for a group working with the mentally handicapped.

On the dam behind us, he said, was one such young lady.

She was obsessed with dogs, he said, and some people had come by very quickly with a black lab but didn't stop.

That caused the young lady to sit down on the dam and begin to wail and generally throw a fit, for which their experience showed there would be no end.

Would I mind, he asked, if Abby and Keeper could come by for a visit to help calm her down.

We agreed and approached her, still sitting in the middle of the gravel road on the dam, crying and wailing.

Abby and Keeper were not shy at all and as soon as she saw them coming there was some improvement.

Abby, as is her custom, was friendly and interested for only a moment, then ready to move on to the next adventure.

Keeper though, her fatigue forgotten, wound her way back and forth alongside the young lady, allowing her to pet and talk to Keeper. Keeper was in her glory, surrounded by humans (myself, three volunteers and the young lady).

After about ten minutes of attention, all was rendered right with this young lady's world, and we moved on, Keeper resuming her painfully slow but steady pace for the final kilometre under a hot sun.

And so ended their short but successful careers as therapy dogs.

Earlier, below, Abby at the summit. We ascended from the dam just out of the picture on the left and descended well out of the picture to the right, eventually walking back along the lake on the near shore:

http://www.goldentales.ca/DSC_0913-edit1.jpg

Below, the same summit location as Abby above, believe it or not, but that's why they call it Prairie View trail. Keeper is already a bit pooped after the steep climb from the lake dam below. The Trans-Canada highway, leading to Calgary, is visible below. Actually, I noticed later, there's a roughly 100 foot sheer drop right behind Keeper, so maybe she had vertigo (just kidding).

http://www.goldentales.ca/DSC_0929-edit1.jpg

Below, down at the bottom again, a nice reprieve in the lake for Keeper and Abby:

http://www.goldentales.ca/DSC_1041-edit1.jpg

Rick C
www.goldentales.ca

14+kitties
July 14th, 2008, 10:48 AM
:cloud9: Awww Keeper! :cloud9: What an angel you are! You know what to do without being told. I love dogs like that!
I would imagine Abby, had she been older, would have helped too?
What beautiful pictures as usual. Thanks so much for sharing. (Wish you would have taken some of the therapy rescue but maybe next time. :D )

Rick C
July 14th, 2008, 11:14 AM
:cloud9: Awww Keeper! :cloud9: What an angel you are! You know what to do without being told. I love dogs like that!
I would imagine Abby, had she been older, would have helped too?
What beautiful pictures as usual. Thanks so much for sharing. (Wish you would have taken some of the therapy rescue but maybe next time. :D )

Abby and Keeper are both 10 years old this summer.

Just different personalities.

Abby is very smart and self-involved . . . always thinking and always planning the next move. She loves little kids visiting the house, as an example, so she can follow them around and put her nose right in their drink. Kids are low-hanging fruit. She also follows Polly around because she knows Polly can catch mice and leave them for her to eat. Abby is always working an angle.

Keeper, in turn, has a pretty simple outlook. Easily the most innocent personality I've ever encountered, either human or animal.

Rick C
www.goldentales.ca

14+kitties
July 14th, 2008, 11:19 AM
:o I'm sorry. I thought Abby was younger going by the snout. Keeper looks so much more white. Maybe it's just the camera angle that makes Keeper look whiter?
:headslap: I apologize. :o

jessi76
July 14th, 2008, 11:30 AM
what a lovely story and of course, lovely pictures too! I just love reading and seeing your adventures w/ those beautiful dogs!

ancientgirl
July 14th, 2008, 11:48 AM
That was sweet of Keeper to help like that. Great pictures as usual.

Rick C
July 14th, 2008, 12:21 PM
:o I'm sorry. I thought Abby was younger going by the snout. Keeper looks so much more white. Maybe it's just the camera angle that makes Keeper look whiter?
:headslap: I apologize. :o

Yeesh. Don't apologize.

Abby has a reddish tinge while Keeper definitely has a whiter coat . . . . and those might change depending on the light.

But they're both getting some grey hairs.

Keeper does much better on hikes in winter while Abby remains an energizer bunny.

Here's Abby's snout:

http://www.goldentales.ca/10370069-edit1.jpg

Rick C
www.goldentales.ca

JanM
July 14th, 2008, 12:57 PM
Ah yes - an instant therapy dog - and a Golden to boot :D

Great story and great pictures!

krdahmer
July 14th, 2008, 01:09 PM
I bet they made amazing therapy dogs!!!:lovestruck:

And I have to say the more I see of your west, the more excited I get to drive through it in the big rig this august! (I'll be on said highway below you there!)

Thanks again for sharing your stunning adventures and beautiful pups!! :thumbs up

14+kitties
July 14th, 2008, 01:21 PM
Even in the second picture of them on this thread they look closer in colouring. I guess I just went by the first one.
Cute snout btw! Would love to kiss it!! :)

chico2
July 14th, 2008, 04:14 PM
Rick,everything in your pics looks so pristine,I can almost smell the fresh air,no smog there.
I cannot believe Abby and Keeper are both 10yrs old and climbing rocks,etc...that's amazing:thumbs up
Maybe it's all that clean mountain-air:dog:

allymack
July 14th, 2008, 04:30 PM
Way to go Abby and Keeper!:dog:

How often do you do trails like that? they look absolutely amazing!

glasslass
July 14th, 2008, 04:38 PM
That 2nd pic is just stunning! Your shots are always super! Good dog, Keeper!!!

Rick C
July 14th, 2008, 05:44 PM
Way to go Abby and Keeper!:dog:

How often do you do trails like that? they look absolutely amazing!

Abby and Keeper's photoblog is at www.goldentales.ca/new.htm

They were dive-bombed by some Osprey's yesterday!!!

Rick C
www.goldentales.ca

Rick C
July 14th, 2008, 08:51 PM
Further on that . . . . .

Walking along a lake shore on Sunday, we scared up some Osprey's . . .

http://www.goldentales.ca/CSC_1251-edit1.jpg

Abby and Keeper were dive-bombed by the pair, including this one . . . . . just a threat, no contact, as we were walking under their nest . . . . it was a tactic designed to get them up and flying so we could get some pictures. Which worked all too well. Their nest was up on a man-made pole platform left expressly for that purpose, and well out of reach.

Come to think of it, I was probably dive-bombed too but didn't notice. We were walking by slowly and the contact was about 10 minutes. They're right on one of our favourite lake shore/prairie walks so . . . .

http://www.goldentales.ca/DSC_1171-edit1.jpg

A few weeks ago on this board, I misidentified them as Hawks but my Birds of Alberta book confirmed they're Osprey's. This time I was also better prepared camera-wise, with some thought put into angles and light.

Below, Abby on a prairie adventure, after a dip in the lake. She found a clutch of duck eggs but was confused as to what they were, at least long enough for me to pull her away. Some other tiny duck chicks managed to buzz away into the water as well. I thought we were well past the point where they would be that small - even geese babies are giants right now - but these must have been latecomers.

http://www.goldentales.ca/DSC_1044-edit1.jpg

Rick C
www.goldentales.ca

14+kitties
July 14th, 2008, 09:13 PM
Note to self - Get me one of those cameras that take such nice pictures ALL the time! If necessary make sure there is a Rick attached to the picture taking part. :rolleyes:
Very nice osprey pics. :thumbs up

Chaser
July 14th, 2008, 10:22 PM
Wow....you have amazing dogs and amazing pictures! :lovestruck:

k_anne_05
July 15th, 2008, 03:18 AM
i love your story and the pics of your dogs. i have two golden retrievers also. shooter i have had since he was 4 weeks old just tiny tiny when i got him he is now two. and Bo i just got this year at 5 weeks and he is now 7 months old. i love them to death but shooter sadly got hit by a car a few nights ago. at the time neither of his back legs would move at all. he spent the night in the vet and by the next morning one back leg started to work just fine again. the other leg still can feel deep pain (according to my vet) she is goin to start trying acupuncture on him to try and get the nerve damaged healed. he is not broken anywhere just nerve damage. have you heard good things on acupuncture. i am heart broke he was so active swiming, camping, fetching, rollerblading with me and he is my pal we have not been apart for more than a day in the last two years. hoping and praying for the best.

yettiyodamarlo
July 15th, 2008, 01:38 PM
What beautiful pictures!

Very adorable friends you have there :)

growler~GateKeeper
July 15th, 2008, 11:42 PM
Great job Abby & Keeper :highfive: I think Abby's aloofness might have greatly help the young lady situation as well, her inclination to be less involved would've helped the woman to say good-bye, it showed her it was okay to just say hi & move on :thumbs up


As always awesome pics :highfive: Love the Abby @ the summit pic :cloud9: & the pic of Keeper taking a rest :cloud9:

Dog Dancer
July 18th, 2008, 04:45 PM
As always Rick your adventures are stunning. Abby and Keeper would obviously be fabulous therapy dogs! I get tired just reading about your adventures let alone trying one of those hikes!

rainbow
July 18th, 2008, 06:54 PM
Yep......Keeper would make a wonderful therapy dog if she wasn't kept so busy on all her adventures with you and Abby. :cloud9:

Beautiful pics as always, Rick, and a very heartwarming story too. :thumbs up