Winnie came from a breeder in Indiana. The breeder says they are a farming family that breeds Golden Retrievers, Golden Doodles and Labradoodles. We are really not sure where the trauma began in this girls life as she is very fearful and shut down.
Winnie was sold to someone else who was going to continue breeding her. This didn't end up happening though and through a series of good luck, she was saved by a gal who took her home to help her. This gal was not aware how long of a process it can be to rehab a very fearful puppymill dog. After being kept in a horse stall for a month, we were called in to try and help.
On day one of her new life, she was picked up by GRRR. On her way to her new life, she was so scared and urinated all over foster mom's car. Her fear was so great that she had to be pulled from the car, making a beeline to hide behind the garbage cans. Her first stop was to get a bath, brushing out the mats, trimming the fur on her paws,etc. Did she do this standing? Oh no, as she was too afraid and tried slipping her lead and bolting several times while being dried off. She was then carried inside her foster mom's home.
After her bath, she was carried to a large bathroom on the main floor of the home that works perfectly for a place to let fearful puppy mill dogs decompress. Later in the evening, Winnie was able to meet the other dogs in the home, one by one. Foster mom will try a larger area tomorrow.
Winnie actually moved! Winnie drank water and food overnight while everyone was asleep, including a tempting piece of cheese. She must have gotten bored as she had a great time with the toilet paper roll. There was a lot of change the next day, when Winnie was introduced to a bigger area that she can explore with regular doggie visitors. She started playing with the dogs, but when foster parents came to look, Winnie went right back to her safe place. She did take a quick up stairs and look around. All in all, Winnie is progressing! She is getting ready to move to her new foster home, who was unavailable when she arrived.
The big move day came September 18th and Winnie tucked herself into the corner of the back of the car and was moved into her new foster home. She tried to dart immediately underneath the car after getting lifted out. She was carried into the home and is currently camping out in foster mom's kitchen. Foster mom is experienced with puppy mill girls, so she will use her two dogs plus lots of time and patience to help Winnie start to come out of her shell. In fact, foster mom heard her actually playing with the toys on the floor. Of course when she tried to sneak towards the kitchen to get a picture, Winnie heard her coming and ran back to her bed!
Since then, Winnie has been interacting with foster moms dogs, playing and then taking stuffed toys back to her bed. We paid for a mobile vet to come out and see Winnie as we didn't think she would be able to go to the vets in a normal setting. She was so scared when the vet tried to examine her and this was not successful (we'll have to try again later). We did get a stool sample as she pooped in fear.
Finally progress! Winnie now plays with the dogs in the foster home, both inside and outside. She also lets foster mom get close to her, pet her and now sleeps in bed with all the other dogs. Check out our Facebook videos
We'll try again when she has made more progress and will keep you updated on her rehab, from a puppy mill mama into a "normal", loved golden retriever.
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