Thursday, December 31, 2009

Goodbye, 2009

Like most years, 2009 had its personal highs and lows. John and I began 2009 with two beautiful Greyhounds: Portia and Bingley. We celebrated the first anniversary of Portia's Gotcha Day on February 10, Bingley's on February 16. Portia turned 4 on May 5. Little did we know it would be her last birthday. We lost our beautiful Portia July 7, 2009. The loss was so shocking, it was the motivation for starting this blog.

November 20, we welcomed a new girl into our home. An intriguing Scottish Deerhound/Greyhound mix: Magic. She is well named, because she is an enchantress. Magic and Bingley are slowly getting accustomed to each other. Bingley loves to play. Magic, born into unspeakable deprivation, never learned normal doggie play cues. Bingley is sometimes patiently, sometimes impatiently, tutoring Magic in the joys of play. And although she might never match Bingley's exuberance in playing with toys, Magic is learning that stuffed toys--especially ones with squeakers--can be fun.

The original purpose of this blog was to make walking dogs on leash safer. That remains an important focus of Friends of Portia. But in dealing with all aspects of the unleashed dog problem here in San Diego County, I have realized that it is just one part of the larger problem that is the result of the over-breeding of dogs and an appalling lack of education about what is involved in responsible dog ownership among the general public.

The sad outcome of these problems is the suffering of hundreds of thousands of homeless dogs--dogs who flood our public shelters, humane societies, private rescues and breed rescues.

On behalf of Bingley and Magic, and in loving memory of Daphne, Zephyr and Portia, our "Rescue Dogs" who have crossed the Rainbow Bridge, Friends of Portia will devote 2010 to Dog Rescue Awareness.


  1. Keep up the good work of educating the public! Rescue pets can be a wonderful addition to a family. I watched a news segment the other night about adopting retired military dogs and wrote down the 2 websites who handle military dog adoptions if interested.
    Happy New Year to you and your critters.

  2. If you find those links, I would be happy to have you post them. These are outstanding dogs that deserve the best homes.

  3. I’m a big advocate of adopting older rescue dogs. Too many folks think that canine seniors can’t be trained or retrained and that they won’t bond. Hooey! So, I want to tell you about some very special senior canines that need forever homes in their golden years. They are retired Military Working Dogs or MWDs. These MWDs are mainly German Shepherd Dogs from ages 6 to 10 years of age. There are other breeds, too. I can hear some of you now…they are too old and won’t be around very long. I’m here to tell you that most of my GSDs lived from 12 to a little over 14 years. If I had the room, I would adopt one of these heroes in a heartbeat. So, if you are considering a large dog, please consider one of these beautiful retired MWDs. They’ve served our country with honor!

    K9 Soldiers: website isn’t an adoption agency but it does list the military bases in all states that have kennels with their contacts. This site has very good information worth reading. It was featured on Sean Hannity’s show. The military kennels in San Diego County are: Camp Pendleton Marine Base, Coronado Naval Base, Mira Mar Marine Base and Point Loma Naval/San Diego.

    Military Working Dogs Adoption: is an excellent site with a lot of information, adoption form, photos of retired dogs and stats, and dogs who now have forever homes and their adoptive families. Tissue may be needed when reading a couple adoption stories!

    Lackland Air Force Base: adoption listings for a few MWDs and the requirements for adoption of each dog listed. Lackland AFB is a training center for MWDs.

  4. February 14, 2009 we adopted a wonderful poodle we named Chanel from a rescue service in Dodge City, Kansas. The fee was so minimal, we were embarrassed. We have since sent two donations to help with food and expenses. This December we also sent the owner a thank you for our wonderful girl, with a picture of her. Monica, the owner, likes to know how her "fur babies" are doing. We in turn received a lovely thank you note from Monica. So, if you do adopt from a rescue service, let the rescue people know how happy you are with your dog, and thereby encourage them. They are doing a marvelous work.