This handsome youngster just arrived this morning from Whitehorse, YT and is now officially retired!
I had intended to tag along on his pick up with my camera in hand, but when flights changed and no one else was available, I put my big camera down and headed out solo.
You'd think it would be a no-brainer as I've done it so many times before. But knowing his pick up, collaring, harnessing, GPS'ing, transportation to his foster home, was up to me and me alone, was a whole new feeling.
I'm just going to say I'm thankful I wasn't photographing myself!
Zouave was perfect at pick up. Once I got him out of his crate (collard and leashed of course), he velcroed to me. Since he didn't seem to be in flight mode, we moseyed over to a patch of grass and he did some sniffing (a good sign!).
It was then time to get in the car. He gave a hard pass to getting back into the crate so he'd have to ride secured in the backseat as his crate barely made it into the hatch of my car.
But he didn't want to get in my car either.
If he wouldn't go in his crate and I couldn't get him into my car... now what.
"Think Wendy, think!" I told myself.
And then I remembered the advice I'd shared so many times before... get in the car first and then call them in.
It took him a bit to push himself up and in - maybe he's sore or stiff - but once he was in I was able to secure his leash. I then had to reach over him and close the door he got in, then slide out through the crack of the other open door.
He took it all in stride.
It was a beautiful, sunny day so I cranked the AC and other than a few times he stood up to look out the windows with his sniffer going, he just lay down on the backseat for most of the ride to his foster home.
Once there, he trotted out, sniffed at the kids playing across the street and we headed to the backyard. His foster dad took the leash and let him wander around the yard. This is the same family who was fostering Idèfix (who's been adopted - YAY!), so perhaps there's still a bit of his smell back there to help Zouave. I had a couple minutes to get a few photos and then I had to go... thankfully he's being fostered close by so I can hopefully visit him again!
Zouave is only 1.5 years old so once he's had time to settle into his foster home he'll be off to the vet for a wellness exam and neuter. At the time of writing, it's been a few hours since he arrived and his foster family says he's eaten, done some business outside and is watching the world outside their window. Oh, and he's found his voice too!
Speaking of his foster family... Zouave is staying with the lovely family who recently fostered Idèfix because (drum roll)... Idèfix has been adopted! YAY! In fact he and Shining both have been adopted - double YAY!!
If you've continued to read this far, thank you. I try to make each story as unique as the dogs that are a part of it and with fewer than usual photos, I wrote a bit more.
Thanks to Jill for organizing his arrival, Victoria Humane Society for taking yet another sleddie under their wing, Air North for allowing him to fly for free, and his amazing foster family.
Zouave came from a smaller sled dog operation that needed to shut down. After re-homing some dogs themselves and a full shelter who couldn't help them, the operation reached out knowing of our dedicated community here and for that, I'm thankful.
I fall in love with every sleddie I meet and Zouave was no exception -- that soft fluff on his head, his cute little nose and those eyes...