As many (ok, well, all) of you know, we have been desperately looking for a new keeshond; Geronimo's passing left a big hole in our life. In doing so, we started with the usual methods — searching Petfinder and the Animal Humane Society. WE then asked friends to keep an eye out. We *almost* got 2 keeshonds from Midwest Animal Rescue, but both feel through at the last minute. We registered with every place we could find. We found some breeders in the area, and even attended the Land O'Lakes dog show, which is an interesting world all in itself. Recently, I have become active in a few Facebook keeshond rescue communities, especially one very active with 101 Keeshonden Rescue: Free the Kees, working to shut down an infamous puppy mill in upstate New York.
The site has become active with other keeshond rescue as well, and on MLK Day two Minnesota members drove to Wisconsin to rescue a keeshond there. Lacoya had been owned by a backyard breeder, who apparently decided to get rid of her because she was not making enough money on the keeshond puppies. From the sounds of it, Wendy (and Bill, with Sapphire - a 101 Kees) got there just in time.
They brought her back, and Wendy was incredible at giving this shy girl a new take on life. In just a few days, this poor dog, who had never really known love or concern, started to bloom. But her landlord was not big on a dog, and so Lacoya needed a new home, which is where we came in.
I had first reached out to Wendy when she rescued Lacoya, to thank her for her work and dedication. She knew we were looking for a new kees, and so asked if we wanted to foster, or foster-to-adopt her. We immediately said yes, and Wendy brought her over this weekend.
Lacoya (or "Coya" as we know call her, after Minnesota's first elected Congresswoman and the "Coya Come Home" scandal of 1958 — we would not elect a second Congresswoman until Betty McCollum in 2000!) has settled right in. She is still incredibly shy, and can't always get used to being loved and snuggled and cared for. She's an amazingly good and sweet dog, just one who seems to think that she can't believe her good luck and it will all come crashing down soon. Our main goal right now is to teach her that she deserves to be loved and will always be a cherished part of our family.
She has "papers" of a sort, and we learned from the breeding world that all purebred kees are actually showable. However, show dogs cannot be spayed, and since Coya was a breeding dog, we have agreed to take care of that right away. Agility dogs can be spayed, so maybe we will look at that as she gains confidence.
We went into this looking only for another dog, and soon realized how much more fulfilling it would be to be part of a keeshond community. From there, we further decided we wanted to be part of a community that made a difference in the world. The people in the 101 Kees group are true heroes, and I am in awe of the work they do. I only hope that we can be worthy of them, and give Coya the wonderful life she deserves. I had known the value of rescue groups before, but had not understood their impact.
Coya, we are so glad you are home!