Not sure if you remember me or my dog Gable, formerly Nanook. From what I gathered, he was surrendered to you by a family in GFW who had multiple children and was expecting another...I believe 4 or 5 kids! The husband worked away and the mother was struggling to care for Gabe. I met him after he had been at the shelter for about a month.
Gable was adopted on a whim if I'm being honest. My Boston terrier Oliva was strugging with separation anxiety and I really wanted to get her a friend but I was adamant on another Boston. I started volunteering to walk dogs at the shelter and had my eye on another, older yellow lab mix. The day I came to pick him up someone else had been out with him so I took the one in the kennel beside. 'Nanook' got maybe 10 feet up the road from the shelter and rolled on his back and refused to walk any further - insistent on getting a belly rub. My boyfriend and I were instantly smitten, we talk about that walk all the time. We went home and talked about him more. The idea of adding a second dog when we were both students with no real idea financial security was scary. We went back and forth, weighing the pros and cons without really coming to any conclusion. A day later we went back to take him for another walk and never came back. That was it, he was part of the family. I visited a few times and made donations but it's been a few years since we've come by.
Gable wasn't house trained, had no leash manners, was afraid of most men and some women, he mounted every dog his size or larger and he had some resource guarding issues that needed a decent amount of work but he was sweet. He was never malicious. You could tell his issues were fear based and his training background was limited. I busted my ass for a year socializing him and conditioning him to allow me to get closer to his high value items. We worked on loose leash manners and rewarded him for all his good behaviour and he got better. Exactly one year after his adoption we had him evaluated for the St. John's Therapy Dog Program. He passed with flying colors. You couldn't slap the smile off my face if you tried. I was and still am so incredibly proud of him.
We just celebrated his 7th birthday/6th gotcha day on the 24th! I simply can't put into words how amazing this dog is. How important he is and how much we all adore him. The kindness, patience, and unconditional love he gives is everything anyone could ever want or need. I run my own dog training business and he is the best little assist and teacher dog. He's assisted me in obedience demos, helped put off dog safety presentations for children and aided in rehabilitating other dogs with a variety and severity of behavioral issues. We have another dog and a cat now and all 3 of his siblings love him the most. We've traveled all across the country, camping and hiking and adventuring along the way. He's swam in the Pacific, the Atlantic and dozens of lakes, rivers and streams in between. He loves to dig in the sand and chase his own tail. His favorite snacks are carrots, timbits and cheese but if I'm being honest he wouldn't turn down a piece of lettuce if you offered it to him. He finds joy in the small things and he reminds me to do the same.
I know you didn't ask or probably want a full letter describing what we've been up to the last 6 years but I couldn't pass up the opportunity to praise him up and thank you for trusting us with him.
Hope you're doing well! Would love to come by for a visit again the next time we're in central.
Heidi, Drew, Olivia, Gable, Cove and Louis the cat!