When Josie was returned to HLSPCA, she had also changed, but in a much different way.  Overweight, she wouldn’t look you at you, she gave you her backside, was reticent, and reactive to other dogs.  Josie was isolated and angry, not the dog we had known some six months ago.  The alpha hadn’t received the critical pack leadership she so desperately needed. She regressed to the only place she knew: her more primal instincts.



No two ways about it: It's just one heck of a hard day when a rescue gets returned back to a shelter.

We think it's hard on us, but it's especially hard on them:

Josie's first day back at HLSPCA.

We felt bad, we blamed ourselves, “How did we miss this?” HLSPCA’s policies and procedures are patently rigorous. Nobody’s to blame, not even Josie’s original adopters. No judgments, life happens. Small behavioral issues only get worse if unchecked and uncorrected. We highly recommend to continue professional training to build upon the commands our dogs already know. 'Training' is as much for the new adopter as it is for the new pet; teaching valuable instruction on how to be the good pack leader when coexisting in a world with the demanding canine. Not recognizing problematic behaviors nor seeking guidance from a professional trainer can lead to bigger problems later. We’re committed to do right for Josie; first we’re getting her back with a professional trainer for assessment and a game plan. We’re going to reinforce obedience commands, which she already knows well, and a daily routine of exercise and socialization. We’re going to be the firm, but silent pack leader to let her know that she needs to follow, working with her to navigate her back into the human and canine worlds. And finally, we’re going to find that special adopter who can interact strongly but lovingly with a demanding canine and give her that “forever” home, like Gracie was so fortunate to find. We’re patient and confident that all this will happen, no matter how long it takes, because after all, rescue is what we do. Time to get back to work.

A Favorite Reading About Challenging Canines:





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Copyright@2017 Highland Lakes SPCA P.O. Box 1275 Marble Falls, Texas 78654  830-693-0569  |  To rescue, rehabilitate and secure loving and healthy forever homes for homeless dogs.