Meet Alister, a 1 1/2 year old red merle Australian Shepherd, with a tail! Then meet Minee, a 7 month old blue merle Australian Shepherd, who was born deaf, and partially blind. So what is the deal, what is the story, why are they together? Sit back, and learn how our Aussies, and our foster homes care, and how a bond that no one would have thought of happened, right in front of our eyes.
Minee came to rescue with 3 of his siblings, all lethal whites, all with various handicaps and issues, nothing big, just typical lethal white issues. All were set to be put to sleep if a rescue didn’t step up and take them. Well we couldn’t allow that, our rescue, in all it’s different names had been extremely blessed to always have great families that wanted to give a special need Australian Shepherd a home. Minee was the smallest of the 4, and probably the most limited, he was deaf and almost blind, while his brothers got a better hand delt to them in life. They ignored him, picked on him at times and so we moved him from his brothers into a new foster home. His brothers ended up adopting quickly, but Minee was still with us. While Minee wasn’t picked on any more, he was depressed, and would sit and just stare upward.
We heard of a little red merle down in Missouri, he too was set to be put down if no one stepped forward. We were full and not sure we could save his life, but some how it always works out, he was able to secure a ride on a transport out of Missouri (thanks to Anne Heckle and her team ARTT Animal Rescue Transport Team, they transport Aussies and other breeds, even cats to other rescues and save them from what would be a certain death) and was headed to Bloomington Illinois, to one of our foster homes that we moved our Aussies threw on their journey to a more long term home.
Well when they brought Alister to the home that Minee was staying, something happened, something we see every so often, a connection, and a life saved, in a way that no 2 legged animal could provide, only the love and companionship of another dog. As Alister was meeting all the other dogs, he saw this sad, docile little puppy, who was just sitting there, unmoved and unmotivated. Well Alsiter must have been sent to us for a reason, and he took action. He ran over to Minee, and wanted to play, Minee had no clue to what he wanted, in fact he may have thought he was going to be picked on again. he wasn’t, instead Alister pulled Minee across the dog park by his collar, then his back legs, then he sat on Minee, held him down and started to chew on his ears, his neck, anywhere that he could, and Minee started to respond, he started to play back, he chewed, he pulled and he started to smile, a real smile, something that the foster home had never seen, he even started to wiggle in Aussie butt.
The days continued and they played from the time they woke, to the time they slept, Minee was starting to gain his confidence and was no longer sitting in a corner, missing out on the fun, chewing on a bone as the world swept by. Alister and Minee were best friends, lost brothers finally found, a pair to be reckoned with. But then one day, as always happens, someone saw the beauty in Alister, they saw the compassion and love, and the wonderful playmate, one that would be good for their dog at his new forever home.
But it wasn’t to be, the other dog didn’t want to play, and they had a cat, and so if the other dog wouldn’t have fun then I guess a cat makes an excellent chew toy. But that was not in Alister’s cards as the family felt he wouldn’t work out. Alister returns, and the pair are back at it. And again another family wants Alister, and again he returns, he doesn’t have his best friend, his distraction, his Minee.
Meanwhile, Minee was again dropping back to that sad and alone state, no one understood him, no one engaged him, no one completed him. You see, Minee’s world is mostly smells and touch (Minee is also learning touch commands), and Alister gave him a constant contact with that world. Oh sure he was loved by his foster family and they gave him extra special attention, but somehow it was not the connection Minee was needing.
Well as things always work out, Alister and Minee are adopted, and now in their new home. What a great way to start the New Year!