Monday, October 14, 2013

Barbie and the Fosters at the Secret Harbour Spring Fair

Barbie's an old hat at these greyhound adoption displays, going to quite a few in aid of Greyhounds as Pets, the organisation I adopted her from. The fact that she is an old hand at this was evident pretty much immediately. She appeared to place herself out in the front line for pats for the first half an hour or so, standing out the front of the gazebo and helping to draw people in. After she had had enough of that she went down the back of the gazebo, but she was then confronted by young Sabre, who is fresh out of the racing kennel and is still in possession of all his parts. Barbie, being a proper lady, did not snark at him, but sought to get away by sneaking around the back and into a gazebo where they were selling jewellery (I think). The people there loved her and smooched all over her. She lay down in the shade there for a little while until I persuaded her to go back to the GreyhoundAngels display.

the crowd

Sabre is young, and cat friendly. Indy was the other young and cat compatible dog there on the day. Nic was supposed to be getting photos of everyone but she only got pics of Sabre with probably the ugliest muzzle in existence on, and no photos of Indy. Indy was a bit stressed out. She just wanted to get away from the display tent. Nic took her for a walk, and she was warned not to go too far as Indy wouldn't want to come back and she is very stubborn. After a while people were asking me where she was. I said she was on a walk, then Nic appeared, carrying her. Apparently she just refused to walk back and Nic didn't want to look mean dragging her.

Barbie totally chillaxing
Barbie laid down near the front of the gazebo with me after realising that she was safe there from Sabre's nose. She managed to convince a human to share his sausage sizzle bun with her as well so she was pretty satisfied.

Bronwyn was there, trying to find her forever human. Brownyn is mother to Mouse and Olive, and her face does resemble Olive's. They also got their soft, rabbit-like fur from her. She is even fluffier than they are. She also has a really strange tail - it is very bushy and has a white tip, like a fox. Her nickname is foxy lady. She had been standing up all morning, but when I got Barbie to lie down near her, Bronwyn laid down with us. I made sure that everyone who came by touched Bronwyn's rabbity coat. Every single person exclaimed in wonder at the softness.

LATE NEWS: Bronwyn met her forever family yesterday and is being adopted! YAY! 

Bronwyn and I sharing a joke
Annie, who is from the same kennel as Bronwyn, Olive & Mouse, was also there working the crowd. Like Barbie, she retreated when she had enough. She was a bit flaky at first, indicating a little bit of stress, but she settled into it very well. I think Annie was one of the favorites at the racing kennel, and she had been out and about even before she came into foster care. Her foster family has been doing a great job including her in everything they do, so the Fair was just another outing among many for her.

the beautiful Annie
The trio of 'old girls' was rounded out by Tess. Tess is lovely, and she likes to stand between people's legs for reassurance. She didn't lie down all morning though and she got quite hot! Tess is special because she only has a little stub of a tail. She won't be knocking anything over with it. Everyone has their favorite foster dogs, and Tess certainly has her groupies.

tess receiving pats
We waited around for the afternoon shift, as Nic was tasked with getting some photos of Gina. Gina is a really dark Brindle and is hard to get good photos of. Nic got a couple with her muzzle off but she was in the shade. I think the Volunteer Co-ordinator got a better shot of Gina when the sun was coming into the gazebo in the late afternoon.  Gina really coped well with the crowds and surprised her foster carer, as she was quite timid when she first came into care.

gina, bright and happy
Barbie clocked off after about two hours and moved to a shady spot down the side of the tables we had leaflets on. Other volunteers pointed her out every time they were trying to make a point about how chilled greyhounds are.  We left at maybe 1.30pm and Barbie seemed to enjoy the long drive home. The car was a bit cold because we had the air con on for her, and she seemed to appreciate it.

It was a huge Fair and I think quite a successful day for GreyhoundAngels. We handed out a few foster carer leaflets and a lot of people really enjoyed patting the dogs. Barbie got a great outing without having to walk or stand around very much, so assisting with her foot healing. I get the feeling Barbie knows these things are part of her 'community service' and just part of being a greyhound. She seems proud when she trots off for the day, knowing that she has done good work, allowing the public to adore her. It is really interesting watching peoples' reactions to the hounds, you can tell there are some that feel a very strong connection to them straight away. I know, I was one of those people probably 6 years ago, and it took a couple of years before I could finally get a hound of my own. Even though there may not be many hounds adopted immediately as a result of our public relations work, we know we are just there, planting the seeds and waiting for them to grow.  

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