Sunday

Changing of the Season…

It's now is getting dark early but I realized that we are winding down this summer and it’s kinda sad.  We will soon turn our clocks backwards for daylight saving time and in a way, it’s sad that the season is changing.  I love spring and summer except the hot humid weather but it’s worth putting up with for the long pretty days and dry weather.  The only good part of winter that I like, I can take longer naps and don’t feel that I have “be on the move” the whole time.  There is nothing like a long nap in front of the TV with several dogs in my lap.  Every season has its perks but spring is best for me.  This particular fall/winter is bittersweet for several reasons and the number one reason is a chapter is closing that won’t open again.  As many have read, this is our last breeding season for Border Collie pups and just happens, all of the puppies go to their new home this coming week.  It’s something I really don’t want to think about, but this door will shut, but it may be fitting because we are in a seasonal change too.
As I said, a new chapter in my “book of life” has opened and with the fresh winter season, and new adventures will come our way and fun will be had by all.  There will be more focus on my dogs and less on guest boarding or rehabilitation of other dogs here on the farm because of the cold weather but will soon return next spring.  Spring and summer are always busy and packed full of adventures of play and fun and especially work and I'm sure my dogs suffer a bit and miss "our" time. 

I’m sure the dogs will appreciate more time with “the man” and in truth I will to, I just don’t want to deal with the mud.  Frozen ground is good but lots of rain and mud is brutal to everyone and then the nap time with dad is out until they are clean, something they never think about, just running and playing for the moment.
Cold winters seems to bring the best out, I put on my subzero coat and insulated boots and off we go on long walks several times a day around the lake and down the long trails.  In the evenings, Dutchess will park herself in front of the TV just to watch the local weatherman and when the word “snow” comes on, a loud bark follows from her with eager ears and a spring in her step.  I will tell you, around here snow is great.  The deeper the better and as long as it last, there is joy is in the air.


 If things are going to change, then bring it on, lets face it with open arms because it is going to happen and we should do our best to make the most out of it.  Change can be good...
To everything there is a season,

A time for every purpose under the sun.
A time to be born and a time to die;
A time to plant and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
A time to kill and a time to heal ...
A time to weep and a time to laugh;
A time to mourn and a time to dance ...
A time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to lose and a time to seek;
A time to rend and a time to sew;
A time to keep silent and a time to speak;
A time to love and a time to hate;
A time for war and a time for peace.

As change is inevitable, life will move on, but it will be hard not to look back...especially when I hand over our "last" pup this week and watch that car travel out of sight...  Ken
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Run...Run...Run...

Does it ever stop?  I've seen it a thousand times and they do it everywhere they go, no matter what they are doing.  If I’m inside the house and they are in a dead sleep on the porch and I walk anywhere near the sliding backdoor,  off they go down the driveway.  As fast as they can go, thundering toward the gate at the end of the lane.  If they are really excited, they don’t even look for me, they just thunder off to "somewhere land" not knowing where they are going, just somewhere.  They know there are balls and Frisbee's to be played with, and a lake they can swim in if they can get there in a hurry.  They are so crestfallen when I open the door to get something and walk right back inside that they pout.  “Bark, Bark and more Bark” Dutchess says “hey, what about us, let's play” with that evil eye she has.  All in all, they run everywhere they go, trust me.
Now I really don’t care if they run, I just want them to be careful when they do.  We have had many vet trips for sutures and x-rays and nearly every one of our dogs and neighbor dogs have made that same Vet trip.  Sometimes they will run into each other, nip at each other and even run into anything or everything.  “Over the river and through the woods to grandmothers house” is a wonderful verse to a lovely song, but with Border Collies, the through the woods part scares the bejeebers out of me.  I've seen them run through overgrowth and around trees missing them by only a smidgen of space with me, gritting my teeth the whole time, wanting to turn my head and look elsewhere.  Just a few weeks ago, I was brushing Abbie and discovered that she had a cut on her right side.  
After a good exam, I felt that it is something that we can manage and watch at home.  I had some antibiotics from another dog injury which would help with infection so we were well on our way to the “home health care” plan.  I sprinkled on some antibiotic powder along with an antibiotic pill and now we were on our way to recovery or so I thought...  In just about 2 minutes, Abbie had licked the powder off and continued to lick her boo boo with great pleasure.  As it comes to pass in most dog’s life, especially Border Collies, they face the dreaded doom…”THE CONE OF SHAME” or as some call it, "The No Fly food cover".
Being an experienced BC owner, I went to the top shelf in the kennel and got the last cone we had.  This was Abbie’s first time in the cone but after a rough start, she had mastered the “run and bang” theory very well, hitting everything in sight, and not stopping.  
Cone # 1...Help me...I can't lick my butt... 
Of all the past “cone of shame” wearers, she was the most active.  Abbie would assume it was flexible and would run as normal.  While I tried to limit her activity, you know it’s impossible with a BC, so off we were on a joy ride of sorts.  After nearly knocking the back door off its hinges, tires off of the car and whizzing past me knocking me to the ground, the “Cone of Shame” had seen better days in just one day. 
Cone #2, one day old... notice all the hits to solid objects...
Needing to replace the “Cone” as we BC experts call it, I made a trip to our local and friendly Vet’s office where I am always welcomed with open arms and wallet where a new one was purchased and off we were on "our" joy ride again… and in just a few days, Abbie was running and her cone was flapping like a bird trying to take off and because of her speed, she even whistled as she ran through the woods.  I discovered that the manufacturer may want to upgrade the material or make a special Border Collie “Cone” made from of indestructible material but in the meantime, the Vets office has ordered me a few more...  Ken

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The Wrap-up…What do we do Now?


As I finish this short series about helping the “Lucky 5” dogs that Karen Newhall and I took to Glen Highland Farm in New York, I realize that I have closed a door and I have begun a new journey.  If I have learned anything, it is that you can’t turn a blind eye to a problem, even though we would love to, but it won’t go away and it will usually get worse.  Because of a puppy mill, I have spent thousands of hours on the phone, written hundreds of letters, driven thousands of miles and spent thousands of dollars and this is just a drop in the bucket of “What do we do now”?
As Karen wrote in the prolog of this series, the adventure changed her life.  I never thought of it that way but it also changed my life too.  It has, in a good way and also in a haunting way; but will never leave my mind’s eye.  I say this, because of the trauma I have suffered when I saw the inhumane, brutal and ruthless way that some people treat their animals.  To this very day, I can taste it, smell it, touch it, hear it and the burning memory of that puppy mill will be forever  locked in my memory.
We coined the dogs that went up to GHF the “Lucky 5” which sounds rosy and it is for them, for the rest of their life, but not for the thousands of border collies that never make it and are abandoned or euthanized because of wrong placement or bad owners.  I saw things that I will never forget when I made visits to that puppy mill.  The last thing I think about at night, is the faces of the many dogs we left behind in a kennel and I see “my” Dutchess, Clancy, Molly and all of my dogs, not at my home running, playing ball or sleeping in bed with us, I see them in the same kennel where we rescued the “Lucky 5” dogs from.  By the grace of God, fortune or destiny, my dogs came to me first.  Out of the nine Border Collies we have, six were given to us from people who were looking for a “good home” and what if my very pets had gone to a shelter, “breeding farm” or worse, put to death!  Can you imagine my “Dutchess”, “Gabby” or “Annie” on a eight inch chain, unable to move and living in their own feces for months “Just to fatten them up” for breeding?...yes, this haunts me and yes, I see the faces of my loving dogs in this inhuman kennel nearly every night, but, there is hope, but what should “we” do?
First, Support Glen Highland Farm, but why?  This video shows why I do because they never give up, no matter the cost or needs, please watch, this will warm your heart and show you why I do what I do.
Watch..."Why I support GHF" here...

The reasons I am writing this passionate plea to you is because of my friends who have asked me over the course of 3 years, “What can I do?”  Well, NOW is the time to act and step up…First I would suggest you look and read the GHF website and the amazing things they do.   Glen Highland Farm, Inc is a 501c3 non-profit organization, dedicated to the rescue of abandoned and unwanted border collies and border collie mixes and fostering the human/animal bond through new levels of awareness and connections to the heart.
Read About "Glen Highland Farm" here...
If at all possible, please donate to the “Lucky 5” or any dog at the farm. You can also become an Angel to one specific dog at the farm if you would like too.  
My Angles
At the bare minimum, it takes $700.00 a year to care for “every” dog at the farm and two of the “Lucky 5” has already had dental work performed at a cost of over $1000.00. 
Read about "The Lucky 5 and their story" here...

Each dog at GHF has special needs in one way or another....otherwise, they would not be there.  Whether they were abandoned, rejected or someone's life changed and they no longer fit in, they are counting on GHF to help them start a new life.  Every dollar spent at the farm is from people who love Border Collies like us.  Remember not all the dogs have checkered pasts.  While I was there, one very cute BC mix was there because their owner had passed away and the dog had nowhere to go.  Sitting next to him and even playing ball gave comfort to both of us.
Some things to consider;
Become a Facebook friend and watch for their updates on Border Collies that they have rehomed in their new life, now having a great time with their new family.

Become an “AmazonSmile” supporter for Glen Highland Farm through Amazon.  It’s easy and there is no cost to you, the donation is taken from Amazon’s profits.  During the Christmas season, you can even purchase specific toys, treats and needs for specific dogs.  No purchase is too large or too small and if you're a Prime Amazon member, shipping is free.

You can also purchase dog food, nylabones bones and treats directly from the supplier here...

The CONNOR FUND was created to ask for help for dogs with special needs who needed extended time at the Farm in order to be ready for new lives - they needed a facility for long-term care. One dog inspired this need....  Connor came to the Farm 3 months after being hit by a car.  His hips were crushed, meet Connor and see his miracle.

See "The Farmhouse Sanctuary"  Here.   Glen Highland Farm now has the first facility devoted to the needs of aging and ill Border Collies that live in peace until they pass over.  Meet the senior dogs here...

There are many ways to enjoy the farm and also help the dogs.  They have Canine Outdoor Adventures, Dog Friendly Lodging, hiking and 175 acres of countryside to swim, play, hike, run and relax in with your dog!  Even if you don’t have a dog, it is a great destination place for a vacation.

We have raised puppies on our farm for many years and I will turn away more people than I accept that want one of our pups.   Our number one rule has always been “if it doesn’t work out, the dog comes home” but most breeders will not do this.  We would work with the returned dog and get it ready for a new home, never reselling our pup, just getting a good home is enough payment and reward.  I have always said to the new owner, "It might be your dog, but it will always be my pup" and they are.

But what will we do?
On my part, I will continue to assist and rescue border collies.  I have put my application into our local kennel and intend to volunteer one or two days a week.  I would like to foster any Border Collie that comes into the shelter, fostering them at our farm and rehabilitating them if needed.  I will continue to financially support GHF because of the work they do and the time spent with the dogs. 
Elaine and I have decided that the pups that were born at our farm this year will be our last.  We will not breed our dogs again.  As I work/play with the young pups we have now before they go home, this is very bittersweet.  I will now be part of the solution, not the problem.  I will also attempt to rehabilitate any dog from the puppy mill where the “Lucky 5” came from here on the farm, free of charge.   What will your mission be?
This has been a very emotional time in my life but as I close one door, one large door opens up, and it’s big.  I have never asked for anything from my readers or friends but I am asking now.  I know this is hard to deal with but there is an answer and it’s your help… Please help me, give the Border Collie breed a loving chance, and by the grace of God, fate or destiny, your dog at your side is with you in a warm and wonderful place and not in a puppy mill.  Please…
Karen Newhall and I worked so hard for what is right on something that was so wrong and I feel that not only did we help rescue a total of 36 dogs, we rescued ourselves…  Just a short time after I got back home to Indiana, I received a thank you note from GHF, speaking about the “Lucky 5”, it read in part “Thank you, Their world has changed forever”  it was from Lillie… and my response to Lillie... "Mine has too"… until I meet you and the dogs again...Ken

You can read the entire rescue here



Back Home to Indiana

Our Departure Back to Indiana
After driving away from Glen Highland Farm in Morris, New York, Karen and I both looked out the window and stared at nothing…and we both temporarily lived in another world.
Karen is a friend of the family.  We met her nearly 6 years ago when she purchased a working border collie from us for her sheep farm and we soon discovered we had the same passion for the breed.  A few years ago, she phoned us and told us about “the most fabulous place for border collies” and turned us on to GHF.  We all dreamed about making a visit to the farm and seeing the dogs and the rehabilitation that goes on there.  When necessary, we have banded together to help rescue dogs, whether it’s getting a BC from an ad in the newspaper or on Facebook.  We both spring into action and do what we can for the dog(s), transporting, purchasing, posting or rehoming when necessary.  When we were asked to help with GHF and the “Lucky 5”, there was no question, we knew and wanted to go. A large vehicle was needed to transport the dogs and Elaine and I having just purchased a new Jeep Unlimited, which solved the large vehicle problem.  Packed to the gill, the new jeep, with barely 500 miles on it, took off on its’ first big road trip to New York, with Karen and I and the “Lucky 5” all crammed safely in.  What a way to break in the new Jeep and so much for the new car smell, but it was worth it and I would gladly go again if asked.    
After leaving the farm to return home and after what seemed like hours, Karen and I started talking about the visit and our experience at GHF.  About an hour before we left, Lillie Goodrich had invited us to take a tour of the farm.  We all piled into the Gator and off we went to see the farm.  Lillie was pulled aside for just a short time because of a pending adoption that needed finalizing.  While she was talking with them, off Karen and I went through the trails and camping areas.  We saw the dog friendly cottages on the property, nestled next to the woods and heard the campers a little further down the path.  Hearing the familiar sound of dogs playing, we found two families camping that have met at the farm for the last nine years to spend their vacations together with their common passion. 
 As we all know border collies are all about, water, balls and Frisbee's and are the main event, they were in their element.
After chatting with them for a short time, we continued our walk to another tent camping area beside a beautiful stream.  
Meeting up with Lillie, we met the new dog owners she was helping and their newly adopted Border Collie.  All were happy and another success story was accomplished. 
Getting back in the Gator we drove in another direction, we saw more camping areas with people and dogs having a ball and getting back to nature without any worries. It is truly heaven on earth here.  “If only I lived closer” I thought, what a way to spend my time helping GHF find loving homes for this remarkable breed.
Lillie asked, if there was anything we wanted to see?  After reading about the farm earlier, there was a certain area I wanted very much to see.  Like a kid blurting out a quick answer, I told her what I had wanted and she pointed to the direction we needed to go and Karen and I solemnly walked to a place most revered and sacred.  
Through tall trees and abundant ferns, we walked nearly 15 minutes to a very special place, passing waterfalls and wildlife, we were finally there.  Nothing can prepare you for this…
Immediately, we parted ways, I, went one way and Karen another. Usually we are very chatty but at this moment, nothing was said and the only sounds heard were the trickling of the waterfall and our sniffles.
No looks were passed between us because of the tears that were flowing as we each explored the beloved pets resting space and read the personal notes from the owners that was lost because of death.  Even now, it is one of the most monument moments that I have ever witnessed and I know I will have to walk this path again. 
“Any animal is welcome, cremated or in bodily form or in memorial.  Letters, poems, toys and personal memorabilia related to your animal are included at the site.  And, visitors are welcome at any time.
The Garden is a place of peace and grace. There is an ease to the solitude with only wind rustling the treetops and chimes ringing. Each animal is given a wind chime, engraved with their name and date of transition.  Their spirit sings on in the forest as a reminder of their time here.  No sound is sweeter.” GHF
As we slowly walked back to the Jeep, our last stop was to again meet Lillie and she took us to the Pond House Refuge.  It is a place where unadoptable dogs permanently live because they have no other place to go.
This is her residence where she lives with her husband John and nearly 20 border collies…   You see... the most important thing I learned about the Farm and Lillie, is not only do they talk about doing what it takes, they do it, without question.
There are many things that you can do at the farm and many things I have not mentioned because of space but I will tell you, this will not be my only trip…and it's the tip of the experience.
Why and how did Glen Highland Farm get started? I can think of no better way to let you know, than from the founder, Lillie Goodrich and the rescue dog that started it all…”Luke,” she said, “rescued us as we rescued him. And, THAT healing became the foundation for Glen Highland Farm.  Read his story here.

While there are many things to do at the farm, make NO mistake what their purpose is and that is to help and heal Border Collies, putting them in wonderful forever homes, but this is not all.  

Next Week…What can be done now?

Arriving at GHF, Part II


After arriving, I put the Jeep in park and I could sense the stillness in the air.  I could hear the familiar bark of our beloved breed and in just an instant, we were met by a staff member and a border collie at his side.  “Are you here for an adoption?”, “We've brought 5 rescue dogs to you” I said, and in a flash a radio check was made and we were told to pull in the gate and to back up to the “Rescue Barn”, "You are expected" he said.
On the Barn Door
We met a few of the workers and was introduced to Lillie Goodrich, the founder of GHF. As we made small talk, the Jeep was swarmed with caring workers who unloaded the dogs one by one and in less than 5 minutes they were being checked and bathed. 

As we watched the transformation, unbeknownst to me, the Jeep was cleaned from head to toe, our crates were washed out and everything was arranged back to normal; and the “Lucky 5” had a chance at being normal dogs in a much desired normal environment very quickly.
As I watched and witnessed the work, a staff member ask “Can you help me with a “once over” body check”?  “Of course”, I said, touching each dog and feeling them with loving hands for one of the few times in their life.  
Vacant eyes sought refuge, lots of skittishness, fear and un-trust, but the “Lucky 5” were now in the arms of affectionate, caring people, ready to give them a life filled with love and attention.  
Every dog was checked and washed and their assignments were made.
We did speak to Lillie who was directing the operation and we made some plans for the day but not before everything was lined out…
That night, we were to stay over because of our long journey.  Lillie said “You will sleep in the bunkhouse” pointing to me, “and Karen, you will sleep in the reception house.  I hope you like dogs, because you will be with several, this is their house.” We were thrilled as we both sleep with our dogs, and it would help with the loneliness of missing our own border collies.
As the afternoon passed, we got to see firsthand a working farm that transforms a dog with problems and issues to an affectionate, loving and devoted dog that would fit in most any home.  It was wonderful to watch the current border collies play and socialize with everyone as they lived without any cares.
After dinner, we sat around in an informal circle with some of the staff members that live on site and we were joined by Lillie.  In just this short informal gathering, I learned what a true “rescue” was and how well they do the things that need to be done, to correct a challenging dog and how I have failed in some areas.  Lillie is one of the most talented people that I have ever met with a rewarding background and a very keen sense about dogs.  After everyone left, I turned to Karen and said “Wow, Lillie is one of us.” and she is, and much more…
Sleep came early because of being up for nearly 30 hours. I walked to the bunkhouse to be with Quincey, my K9 companion for the night and very shortly we both were fast asleep.  I was dreaming about moving to New York and Quincey was chasing rabbits…Karen was with Simon & Jaz.
Quincey
I got up at 6 am and walked the farm to see a small part of heaven, the sun was coming up and the fog was laying low but make no mistake it is heaven for dogs and dog lovers.

We started at 7:10 at the rescue barn and no-one went in until everyone arrived and everything was in full swing in just a few moments.  Bedding was washed, food was given, floors were swept and mopped and then the “Lucky 5” were carried to living green grass for probably the first time in their life and "actually" got to walk on it and begin their journey to new adventures.  
Apprehensive at first, they would look for a corner to run and cowl in and then move again to another.  They did loosen up a little after a while and Lillie stated that their rehab would take about one year.
It was amazing to see trained personnel work and do things that I didn’t even know about, but they do know dogs and how to read them very well.  
Lillie giving instructions
One thing that they also do, is to take each group of dogs to a groomed pasture and walk and play with them.  They would run and scamper and forever frolic in the sunlight, and to think, this is part of the responsibility of the handler, amazing...  Everyone was in heaven, even me.
There is so much that is done at GHF for all the dogs and they even have an onsite home for senior dogs that may need extra care and attention, including an area for dogs that need medical attention.  Quincey is an example of this, he was being treated for Heartworms and needed extra rest and slow walks because of the treatment, which he is getting.  One thing that I saw, GHF spares no expense at the needs of animal care.  It is truly a place where a border collie can get every type of care that is needed to place it in a forever home, no matter how longs it takes or cost. Before we left late that morning, we took a tour with Lillie in a Gator, exploring the camping area (tent and cottages), the creek, Flynn’s Folly, Bullfrog Pond, the Connor House and my favorite place the Garden of Resting Spirits, more on this later.

After we started the Jeep to head home, just as we were when we came in, we were again without words and their are none to express the gratitude that we have for a dream that has come true beyond our highest expectations.  Ken

Note: During this series, their are many things that happen with people and dogs and at the end if it I will tell you why, firsthand...
Glen Highland Farm
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The Journey Starts…

Where to start...   I've pondered this story since its conception three years ago from one of the worst possible situations to absolutely the best situation.  For several years, we have done everything to save/rescue border collies because of our love for the breed and the uniqueness of the dogs. Wrong placement in a home can be fatal to the breed and if you have never had a BC, take caution and research them before you get one, they are not for the faint of heart.
But...this story begins here, saving a soul...
A Year or two ago, I had volunteered to help Glen Highland Farm (GHF) in upstate New York with help or assistance in transporting a dog if needed.  Several weeks ago, I was contacted for some transportation and I ask Karen Newhall if she wanted to go on a road trip which she agreed.  GHF is a Border Collie rescue that focuses on rehabilitation and love, not quick re-homing of a BC.  They will spend as much time as needed to get the BC rehabilitated and will be sure that the Border Collie is properly placed, sometime taking years and if the dog is not place-able, they will live on the farm forever in loving care with the Founder of Glen Highland Farm.


On September 5th at 10 pm, Karen and I began a journey of "hope". We were to pick up five dogs in Lafayette, Indiana at the Wildcat Valley Animal Clinic run by Dr. Heather Baker and drive to GHF.  They were 5 dogs of nearly 40 border collies that were given up after a 3 year court battle and were now known as the "Lucky 5".  
Dr. Baker with one of the Lucky 5

Dr. Baker
Arriving shortly after midnight, we met up with Dr. Baker, who was waiting for us and had the Lucky 5 dogs ready to go that we were to transport.  After meeting and talking briefly with Dr. Baker, we soon found out that she too is an animal lover. She informed us that her practice is prepared to handle any large or small animal crisis in a loving way and saw this firsthand.  We met the staff and even a pot belly pig that was housed in the bathroom for the night.  Surprisingly, we found him to be quite joyful and pleasant to be around.  Once the five dogs were packed up and ready for travel on our 1500 mile, round trip journey, we had the opportunity to meet the other dogs that were rescued out of the same facility. They were still there, but on their way to other rescue groups.  

In the back of the Jeep, and the last cage they'll ever be in...

Going in for the trip
We were told that all of the rescued dogs that came to Dr. Baker had been given the necessary shots, medications and were spayed or neutered by Dr. Baker. They all enjoyed a good cleaning, the first bath any of them had ever had.  All their records were in a folder with donated Heartworm medication ready for them to take to their new home.  Everything was done with the best of care and each dog's needs were donated by Dr. Baker. Dr. Baker stepped up and did what was necessary, something many people talk about doing, but few rarely follow through.
Getting instructions
At 2 am we hit the road, finally on our way.  We had not planned on stopping for food so Karen packed sandwich meat and bread. Snacks and drinks were also provided by a true friend from Lafayette who has assisted us many times via phone and emails for support and we finally met for the first time and they too carried a great love for animals. We were headed east or so we thought… but 10 minutes into the trip, we need to stop to clean out a cage, one of 4 times during this trip and had to stop for more towels, wet wipes and disinfectant, but then we were off to border collie nirvana.   If only the Lucky 5 knew it…

The night was somewhat uneventful and of course as the sun started to rise, sleep occupied my brain. It was a long trip, but the cage cleaning kept us active. Not one dog barked the whole trip, they were good as gold but I believe they were fearful from no socialization or contact with humans and they were out of their usual element. As the hours passed and we were getting closer, we became chatty, one question was asked, “What do you think it will be like?”.  I was a little nervous because I always hope for the best, but expect the worst, it’s just my nature…

As we turned down the final road and saw their sign, my heart started pounding, we were there...

Note...
I have watched GHF for several years and keep up with them on their Website and Facebook page. Since learning and knowing about them, we made the trip but “Why Glen Highland Farm?  Please read the link below and in their own words, you will get a feel of what I am about to tell you from a firsthand view...and meet Lillie Goodrich the founder and as we heard about “Luke” the dog that started it all, my life started to change before me…


A placard on the front fence...
As there is so much I need to share, but this will have to be in parts…

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Friday

It Had to be Done...

This week, several life chapters have opened and several have closed and each one brings so many emotions to ones state of mind.  This post will be a little earlier and shorter and if you read it this weekend, know that Karen Newhall and I are on a mission to close a chapter that was started over 3 years ago and we will travel nearly 1800 miles to do what we need to do and close a huge chapter…More very soon…

But as I said, chapters do open and close with everyone and they certainly do in my life too.  As most of you know, we presently have puppies with most going home in about 5 weeks to their new owners.  Just a few days ago, I received an email telling me the fate of one of our pups that left the farm last year.  It was involved in a very serious accident and I will tell you, this is an email I hate to get but I am so grateful people trust me and let me know because I do truly care about my pups that venture into this world.  Things happen with no fault of our own at times and I have had it happen here and it’s a feeling that is easily carried on your shoulder.  
Over the years, we have lost several pups to accidents and when I get that notice, it's devastating.  I will tell you, I have cried with every notice and always drift back to the time when they left.   I am so glad that that I am alone when I read it, those chapters close and new ones may open. 

Many times I have said “there are dog owners and dog lovers” but I know you can change from one to the other but I don’t know why, I am the lover but I always wasn't however when that little face looks into your eyes and that little paw reaches for you, extending into your heart, thing change…trust me.

Just recently, I was informed of three families that faced a tragedy with their dog.  In all of the cases, everything possible was done and things did changed for the better, but not without struggles and inconveniences to all involved, including the dog because “it had to be done”.

There is that little spark that kicks in and common sense is not always present but in most cases, the end justifies the means and in your heart, you know it’s the right thing to do.  As we travel to Glen Highland Farm tonight, I’m sure that the struggles we had will surface in our conversation and the burning images of past visits to a puppy mill will also surface too, but there is a great satisfaction knowing we did the right thing for the things we love…Run Free everyone Run Free…Now you can...  Ken

I went out to help some dogs today
To give them a really good life
To take them away from the life that they led
And free them from trouble and strife

I thought I would do them a favor
And be a good person to them
And go do my bit for the country
I didn't go out on a whim

But what do you think really did happen?
The day that I did my good deed,
I discovered a love that I’d dreamed of
And fulfilled in myself a strong need.

I helped the dogs that I care for,
I see things that I needed to see.
Those lovely dog that I rescued
Really ended up rescuing me...

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