When one thinks of dogs in need of rescue, a Lowchen is one of the last breeds that comes to mind. Indeed, it is sufficiently rare that it is one of the last breeds that comes to mind period.
When my neighbor told me that she was fostering a lost Lowchen, all that came to my mind was the dog shown right after the Lhasa Apso in the Non-Sporting group. A dog with a full front of fluffy tresses and shaved hind-quarters--The Lion Dog.
I immediately turned to the invaluable website of the American Kennel Club and read a glowing review of the breed. Smart, affectionate, low dander, cheerful, gets along with other breeds, easily trained.
None of that sounds much like the dog my neighbor was playing hostess to. THAT dog has knocked over and smashed a silk room-dividing screen, broken a window screen, broken an antique lamp, chewed various electrical cords, terrorized the resident cat, emptied and scattered the cat-litter box, scratched the resident Boxer's cornea, upset the resident Lab mix and pushed the Parrot close to a nervous breakdown.
Pretty impressive for a creature who was covered in stickers and ticks and near starvation at the time of rescue.
This particular homeless dog is much more fortunate than the average homeless dog. It is a rare and therefore valuable breed that scores a 10 on the Adorableness Scale. There is an active and diligent breed rescue organization that is being contacted.
And, this dog has found its way to the home of a true Animal Lover. Not just the sentimental type who wipes a tear from the eye and murmurs, "How sad." But an Animal Lover who takes stray pets to the vet and pays the bills and forgives the "accidents" and stays up all night, if necessary, with a frightened or sick animal. These are the strangers on whom needy domestic animals must depend when their owners find them to be too much of a bother, or they inadvertently become separated from their families.
What is this dog's story? Will we ever find out? What we do know is that even the best breed rescues must rely on the generosity of strangers--people who care for stray and hurting pets--until official rescuers can be contacted.
What we also know is that a few days of living rough can traumatize any domestic pet and can complicate the project of rescue and re-homing.
God Bless my neighbor, who just may have saved one Lowchen's life.