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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, it looks like we're going to be adopting Chance sometime this week. He's 3 or 4 months old, and boy does he have a big story for such a little guy. I think he's a standard-type AB, but since he was a stray and the person that took him in obviously doesn't have any background on him, I'm not 100% sure. Maybe some AmStaff/Pit in there somewhere. I have a hard time telling at this age just from pics. Those big floppy ears though...

But who cares?? He's adorable! Jen and I are sooo excited about going to get him :p

The person that has gone so far out of his way to help this pup find a home just sent me this. It's very long, but I had to share...it is so touching. Like I said, Chance has a big story for such a little guy. I just didn't know how big. Jen and I have a LOT to live up to as his new parents.

Abbreviated the names for the sake of privacy...

Taken from my journal posting chronicling our experiences with Chance.

Last night our Maddie started barking like there was someone at the door. We looked, nothing. It happened again and my wife, M, caught a glimpse of a small white dog at our gate. By the time I got out there he was gone.

Maddie and I went on a walk. On the way back my wife pulled up in the car to speed us home. The little white dog had reappeard. M heard him crying. His head was stuck in the gate. It took my son her to get the 3 month old Pit Bull/Boxer mix out of the bars. As we drove up there was my son with the puppy in his arms, an iconic picture.

The problem is that our Maddie was never socialized... with dogs. She thinks she is human and does not like other dogs. That's the reason she's an only child. We whisked her into the house and sat in the front patio trying to decide what to do. We barricaded the gate with two tiers of benches and bags of soil, made the puppy a bed, and fed and watered him. He was famished and parched. When we made a bed for him he immediately curled up and went to sleep.

About 2 that morning Maddie started with her warning bark. We quieted her but she started again. Then we heard muffled thumps. I looked out and all I could see was the puppy's fat ass in mid-air at the gate. It turns out he had knocked off the top bench, climbed on the second and squeezed through the gate to his ribcage. His front paws were on the sidewalk on the other side of the gate while his hind end was on the bench on this side of the gate.

With some effort, I dislodged him. Wearing only my boxers I then made a new barrier only to realize maybe he had to pee. So I tore down the barrier and let him out but he wouldn't leave my side. I rebuilt the barrier. Once inside I could not hear him crying . Now everyone was awake and I was worrying about the neighbors and my wife and son had school.

I carried him through the house to the backyard and settled him once again and waited. Silence. With the smell of stray puppy again on me I took my second shower of the night. As I headed to our bedroom, at the front of the house, I heard him crying again. Again from the front patio.

I looked out and there he was at the gate. He had gotten out through a side gate. Even though it is double-gated. One had been left open and he squeezed through the second. I now barricaded that gate. It was now after 3 and we had to get up at 6.

Three hours later, after getting everybody off I started making calls, taking pix, and making flyers. By noon I could see there was going to be no alternative means of placing him or finding him a holding area. Keeping, even for a while was out of the question. We're a bunch of softies and all becoming attached to the little guy and Maddie was not becoming less tolerant to sharing her house.

One last chance. I took him to my wife's school. He hopped into the car and sat up in the back seat like he was born to ride. The teachers loved him, the kids loved him but no one could take him. I took him to the vet's to scan him for a chip. No chip. There too everyone thought he was as cute a guy as they had seen but still no takers.

There was nowhere else to go but the pound. By now he was in the front seat with me. His head lolled back and he looked at me upside down with his big blue eyes. He sat next to me trusting, ready to be my buddy for life. I called my wife and she agreed. I turned for home.

School was out now and M, the puppy and I sat in the backyard. We knew we had to take him before we picked up our son. We headed out. Soon, he was in my wife's lap. As we drove deeper into the bowels of LA. We were surrounded by power lines, oil tanks, and warehouses and couldn't believe we were making this trip. He was asleep. We found the place. My wife couldn't get off the car. I took him in. He was trembling as I held him close. He was so warm and all I could think about was how cold it would be for him tonight. He charmed the attendants who took him from me. He gave me a last look I'll never forget.

They gave me a number to keep track of him. Policy is to keep him for a week to give the owner a chance to find him there. Then put him up for adoption. They said they don't euthanize and I'm sure a charmer like him will get adopted but he's there alone that night.

We drove in tears to pick our son who also broke down when we finished our carpooling. No response from our flyers.

It was a very quiet night for us. I took Maddie for her walk and let her sniff a little longer than usual.

The next day my wife noted how he looked like the dog from Homeward Bound. I looked that dog up and was immediately struck by the resemblance to the American Bulldog. Not as commonly known and why everyone was saying a Pit with Boxer. We called the shelter to check on him today. He's been checked and is healthy.

With the neighborhood papered in our flyers and no response we were thinking he was probably dropped off. Too many major streets to cross to get here from outside the 'hood.

Some people tell us that we should have kept him and eventually they would get used to each other. I'm wondering if we should have kept him and tried to place him ourselves. We keep imagining some cholo getting him and... well, you can imagine. Meanwhile I’ve contacted an American Bulldog rescue site.

Since he was in the hands of the Animal Shelter he is considereed County property. Next Friday he was to go up for adoption. Since we found him we could put our names in for him right away.

A bit of good news. The American Bulldog rescue finally got back to me and said they are trying to find someone in the area to go to the shelter. They also told me they are in San Diego.

Had we known all this we would have held him or taken him to San Diego, only two hours away.

I feel bad. As a librarian it seems I should have found someplace that would have given me some hope before surrendering him. I only found this place by looking up breed specific rescue sites. Previously, I was looking for the wrong breed. Doing a general search I found no one that gave me any options. This organization has placed a couple dozen breed realted dogs this year.

An aside, there was a picture of a deer on the news tonight that was stuck in a fence just like the pup in our yard.

The American Bulldog Rescue organization called and said they might have a spot for him. We thought it best to get him out of the shelter and tough it out with both dogs rather than leave the little guy in the pound where cholo might get his hands on him. And there were cholos there looking for a pit bull when I picked him up. During his stay he was neutered and microchiped.

M took Maddie to bed with her and I slept on the couch with the little guy who we are calling Chance after the Homeward Bound A B. Man, that little pooch is a noisey sleeper. He slept in my arms all night. When his breathing woke me up I found him in my armpit, on his back, feet in the air, snoring away.

For a while this morning he and Maddie were existing in the same room but eventually they snapped at each other. My wife was so looking forward to this day off and now we can't even be in the same room. When either one is left alone they cause a commotion that upsets the other. Whenever one of us leaves the house we take a dog so the other can rest.

As I type Chance and I are locked in the study while Maddie, M & J eat dinner.

We suceeded to get them exist in the same room if we are holding the pup from wandering the room. Maddie is very apprehensive of him while he is bold and brash.

Saturday morning he didn't want to eat but still attended my son's football game. We came home and went to his post-shelter vet appointment and all went well. We were told to keep an eye on his diet and any digestive porblems but that it was too soon to tell if he was getting Parvo since he had just been vaccinated.

Returning home I found out where he came from. A neighbor saw us getting off the car and said "He's still around?" Turns our his daughter almost ran over him and then went looking for him and picked him up just before he became dinner for a Rotweiller. She had been on her way to the college up the street where she was living but brought him back to her parents' house. The put him in their backyard with their papa bear of a Golden Retreiver. He easily squeezed through their picket fence. The neighbor's wife heard him crying but he ignored her. So he went two doors down to our house. All the while the puppy was playing with his dog right there in front of us. The jerk told us this story and it ended it with words to the effect "Well, you've got him now."

He slept, vomited and failed to eat throughout the next 24 hours. It was Parvo. There he was back in a little cage like the one I had just rescued him from two days before.

Next day, when I went to tell him the puppy had Parvo his cell rang and I followed him all over the neighborhood while he talked and eventually disappeared into his backyard. Do you think he was afraid of what I might be telling him. Not about the Parvo but that he had some responsibility for the pup.

Today I visited him and he couldn't lift his head. I could see a glimmer of recognition but he just laid there. We went this evening and I don't know what ot think. He was sitting up and hadn't vomitted all afternoon. But he looke awful. HIs bright blue eyes were drooping badly and his face was a mess with slobber stains, boogers and his eyes looked like they were full of tears. It was about the saddest little thing I've ever seen.

Needless to say, we are a wreck and wracked with guilt. Will I ever learn to listen to instinct. Taking him to the shelter felt like a mistake and was it. I felt like I was dooming him and apparently I was.

Vet is non-commital at this point. They need to see his digestive system go one way or the other before making any more decisions.

Tonight he wagged.

He still had diarrhea today but he was sitting up and when my wife opened the cage he made a littl move towards the exit. When she talked to him he gave the tiniest little wag. Couldn't ask for more today.

Fingers still crossed.

Good news... bad news...

This morning Chance was sitting up. Once I started talking to him he started crying, he licked my fingers, cried, yawned and repeated the cycle.

The doctor called this afternoon and said he is taking solid food, keeping it down. Don't know if he has had any stools yet. He's been bouncing around in his kennel, anxious to get out. And he can probably come home tomorrow... with a caveat.

My wife an I had been surprised to see him with a runny nose from the time of our first visit. The doc now says that dogs usually pick up repiratory infections in kennels. Our Maddie once got kennel cough from the groomers. But it could also be distemper. And we likely won't know for sure unless it gets worse and/or he could have some problems in old age(?).

I haven't researched this yet.

I was able to get him to comit to an opinion that if Chance was to bounce back in the next week or so, with all appearances of being healthy that it would not have been distemper.

Saw the pup again. He was pretty darn excited to see us. Very vocal about wanting to come home. It wasn't until we left that we realized his runny nose was not so bad. Hopefully this means repiratory infection and not distemper.

We're looking forward to bringing him home tomorrow. Of course, I have to qualify that. My wife is of the opinion that he has deeply imprinted or in layman's terms fallen for me. When I left quarantine room briefly he really started yelping louder and started nuzzling me as soon as I returned. And I have to say the feeling is mutual. But I can't betray my girl, Maddie. M’s very worried about what happens next. Time to get in touch with K's friend.

I have a new strategy. I'm going to keep Chance on a leash and try to let Maddie know the house is still hers. Keeping him or not he needs to start learning his limits. Bedtime will be hard.

It's hard to believe he's coming home. Many, many thanks to everyone for all your support. I don't want to get too much ahead of myself but things seem on course and this has been a great place to renew my spirits.

All goes well.

Still has some boogers. Not coughing as much. Stools look good. He's all over the place. Still skin and bones, looks like he's been in a concentration camp. He runs his wide muzzle all over the floor sucking up an flotsam. Particularly fond of the ficus berries outside.

Goldie is still shy with him. Bought the crate and he goes in and out willingly... as long as he has reason to, like treats. I'll be amazed if we can get him to spend the night in it . He is quite vocal.

We are so relieved that his recovery continues apace.

A confluence of events began this morning from my wife's eldest sister. She said she found him a home. And I could hear his new mistress in the background. She sounded strong and capable. Her husband was to come over in a couple hours to take a look at him.
We began to pick up around the house. Now, I had been sleeping on the couch with Chance and my wife had been in bed with Maddie. In the middle of the night I heard footsteps all about me. I awoke to find Maddie on the couch perpendicular to the one I was sleeping and Chance atop me ready to hit the floor to go see her. We all got straightened away. But it must have been during this interlude that Maddie, unbeknownst to my wife, had barfed all over a corner of the bed and again on the floor at the foot of the bed.

One of two of things. Either she might be having Parvo symptoms or she was emotionally upset over the whole business. This only reinforced the idea that Chance had to go.

The husband came with his two sons, 5 & 7. The whole introduction went well. We both felt good about the family, their experience with dogs and their willingness to love him. The husband was particularly taken with him and almost never put him down after he first picked him up. He was not daunted by his current condition, he wanted an inside dog, and had grown up with pits and boxers. We let him go. He put him in the car and immediately turned on the air conditioning. Chance was crawling all over the kids his tail a wagging. We packed him and I couldn't look back. Sadly my wife did and told me later he was in the back window looking at us.

We learned that they drove straight to his wife's hospital to show him off and she loved him, as everybody has. Later we got a progress report he was on the couch asleep in his new dad's lap.

After they left I came here to use the computer and found a poop, that could have been Golide's on a spot where Chance had peed. We took Maddie to the vet's where everyone couldn't believe we were back. Our doc didn't believe it was Parvo and gave us stomach soothing medicines. Tonight, Maddie is well, has a great appetite and is pretty darn happy with no further accidents.

What an experience this has been for us. Much has been learned and the only regret is that first trip to the shelter.

An aside. We've learned that there is a price on a dog's life. No one who knows how much we spent on the pup can believe we gave him away. It was never a consideration and we are somewhat perplexed by that considering so many of these people are genuine animal lovers. It was only about doing what was best for the pup and maintaining an equilibrium in our Godlie's life. I see the $1,000 spent as much for our dog as for Chance.

The great escape artist -

Chance remains Chance, in name and chracter. Today's report from the Chance's new owners is yet another testament to puppy power.

Last night he cried until his new dad slept with him on the couch. He too reports Chance snuggling hard against him. He kept tissues at hand to wipe his nose throughout the night. I believe he's in good hands.

But even the best of hands may not be enough for him. Chance was left in the house while the family went to deliver lunch to the mom at work. When the were turning into their cul de sac, who do they see but Chance, playing with a neighbor. "You forgot to lock the door." shouted his 7 year old. But he had double checked the door the thought. Searching the house he found that Chance had found an open window above a couch. With his big boned head, he pushed out the screen much the same as I had watched him do with our French doors to return to the living room.

Later that evening he put Chance out to do his business in the double gated, fenced backyard. It was not long before he heard Chance at the front door scratching to get in. He opened the door, incredulous as Chance padded in. He put him back in the yard and watched him. Chance returned to the chain link gate that was held closed by a metal post that drops into a hole in the concreet. Chance had tuned his head sideways, grabbed the pole with his mouth and lifted it until it cleared the hole and he could push the gate open.

It harkens back to his first night with us and I had warned the new owner. But who would have thought. And he is neither completely well nor full grown. This pup is amazing. He's destined for greatness or an early demise. I so wish we could have kept him.

Meanwhile, Maddie is in much better spirits. When we left for a while last night we did find that she barfed again in out absence. The new owners came back today (sans Chance) to pick up the crate. As we were putting it into the trunk I looked down to find Maddie with her face right there to make the last vestiges of Chance were taken away.

The saga resumes

Today I called to see how Chance is doing. A very groggy wife answered, put me on hold and after some time her husband came on the line to tell me they can't keep Chance. The last time I talked to them his wife had been reading Chance's papers and noted that he had been described as a pit bull by the Animal Shelter. This should not have come as a surprise to her as her husband thought the same when he first came to see him. Now she, through him is saying that they are not going to be able to take the homeowner's insurance hit that having a pit bull will cost them.

As far as being a pit, Chance does not have the characteristic "longer than tall body." His legs are quite long. His face is not as tapered as a typical pit bull. He does have strong, muscular jaws but several similar appearing breeds share that characteristic. He also has AB markings. Not to mention he looks much more like AB puppies pictured throughout the web and that he is the most affectionate little guy you can imagine. And bad pit bulls are made not born.

It is much more accurate to call him a mutt which might even account for his intelligence.

The one thing for sure is that Maddie will not tolerate him. She is just coming around to her old self. I got the distinct feeling that she was very suspicious of who might be with us each time we returned to the house. And today she once again started acting a little insecure again.

I don’t know what we’re going to do. We have contacted everybody again, sadly, even people whom we considered more marginal. We only have days to place him.

The wife is kind of anal. There's a little more to the story.

Apparently her kids were throwing rocks over a fence and were hitting a Lexus. The parents have to pay $1200 in damages. They were talking to their insurance company about it. She told the guy they just got a dog and he casually asked what kind and she said pit bull. That’s when the trouble started. Had she just said mutt there would have been no problem. In punishing the kids for the rock throwing they are also giving away the cat they had bought for the kids a couple weeks before Chance. The husband made the wife out to be fastidious.

I'm wondering if all the animals got to her and now she wants to move on without animals.

As I look for a new owner for Chance I am also going to investigate breed identification techniques.

Not that I'm going there but, does anyone know if there is means of detecting breeds by genetics? While the pit bull is a terrier and the AB is a bulldog their UKC (the American Bulldog is not recognized by the AKC) breed standards are remarkably similar. This, even though they are different types of dogs, guard vs. working.

I found a forum of bulldog owners. A taker on the puppy. They are trying to work things out on their end. They own one already. From the pictures I sent them, they said they feel there is a good chance (no pun intended) that Chance is American Bulldog. Although they live 500 miles away, they have family in the neighboring city and would come and get him this weekend.

A collective finger crossing would be in order.

And, you know the rest.

1,013 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
We're still working out the details, but sometime before this weekend :).

He's in LA and we're in Sacramento, but we're talking about meeting half way. It's just a matter of scheduling now.

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Pitchic27 said:
He's adorable! I would guess that age right and I'd put as APBT full. That's a normal size range and markings are right as well....He'll probably look like a mini me to your other dog
Just want to make sure you meant APBT...cause my other dog is an AB :p. Damn acronyms.

1,120 Posts
Chrisnjen said:
Pitchic27 said:
He's adorable! I would guess that age right and I'd put as APBT full. That's a normal size range and markings are right as well....He'll probably look like a mini me to your other dog
Just want to make sure you meant APBT...cause my other dog is an AB :p. Damn acronyms.
That's what I said, no? I knew you other dog was an AB (my other fav bully), that's why MINI me. They looks similar but I have a feeling your new puppy wont be anything close to your AB size! :lol:

1,013 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Chico.Heidi said:
He's very adorable and what a story!!! You know, I live in Orange County and would love to help you guys out if necesary. I could drive part of the way if you need a chain...
Wow, thank you for the offer! We're meeting up on Sunday in Fresno, which is pretty much halfway for both of us, so I think we've got it covered. I appreciate it though, very nice of you :D.

1,013 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Chico.Heidi said:
All right, I'll admit it. I just wanted a chance to snuggle with a little puppy for a couple of hours. They're so darn cute!!!!! :oops:

After I read what he'd been through (and lifted from a movie or not, don't you think Chance suits him perfectly?) I would have driven to New York if I it would have kept him out of the pound.
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