Dog Rescue

Angel then and now

Angel then and now

A portion of the proceeds from sales of The BARKtender’s Guide are donated to animal rescue groups.

Near and dear to our hearts is Southern Hope Humane Society from where our beautiful Angel came. Before she was rescued at about eight months of age, she had spent her life outside, with no shelter, suffering unspeakable abuse and brutality. At the time she was found she had a broken leg and broken hip from beatings and was surviving on twigs and her own feces. Today she is a happy, sweet-tempered girl; a powerful mass of muscle who loves squeaky toys, squirrel chasing and, of course, dogtails and pupcakes.

Angel is also the reason you’ll find many low-fat ingredients in The BARKtender’s Guide recipes. As fit as she is, she does have a sensitive digestion and is prone to pancreatitis. She’s a pit mix and we’re pretty certain she has a fair amount of hound in her. Take a look at Southern Hope’s Don’t Get a Dog campaign. Angel was one of their poster pups.

Vinny and Coco our two poodles

Vinny (Vincent) is a happy-go-lucky miniature poodle. He met Angel at Southern Hope, was immediately smitten and became her self-appointed guardian. As capable as Angel looks, she used to be extremely submissive. There was an incident at the dog park one day when Angel was attacked by a young German Shepherd (no, it wasn’t play, the dog was definitely aggressive). I was trying to get the shepherd off while its owner stood there yelling at me when a blur of white hurled itself at the offending canine. Our tough little tyke beat the dog off and chased it away. The humiliated (and ignorant) owner slunk after her mutt.

We don’t know anything about Vinny’s past but he is as loyal to his family as ever and, when he’s not being “Defenderdog”, is a complete love bug.

Coco (as in Chanel), is quite the little princess at times but considering her puppy mill background we give her a fair bit of leeway. She came to us through Southern Hope from a large bust of more than 300 dogs. We don’t know how many litters she’s had but she was found with two pups. As is usual in these cases she had no idea how to be a dog. For three or four years her life had been a small cage, males thrust at her to impregnate her, puppies taken away from her too soon, filth, harsh words and darkness.

Fortunately, Coco is extremely bright (and very food motivated) and picked up on the house-training and stair climbing quickly. She’d never run in her life until one day when Angel and Vinny were chasing each other round the yard. Coco tried to keep up by walking faster and faster ’til, suddenly, she broke into a run. Then stopped dead in total shock at what she’d done. Before long, though, she was charging around like the other two… except that she was running like a rabbit, swinging her back legs simultaneously out to the side while pulling forward with her two front legs… and she was just so proud of herself.

You can keep up-to-date with Angel, Vinny and Coco if you follow The BARKtender on facebook: