Callie the Collie arrived at NAWT in May 2018, having already spent several months in stray pounds. Despite her beautiful nature, Callie remained homeless, without a family to call her own, for many months. It was distressing for us to see how much Callie hated the kennel environment; she found it extremely stressful and we could see how this stress was affecting her behaviour.
Luckily for us, we discovered Callie had the brains to match her extraordinary beauty and were able to get to work straight away on her training. Open Paw aims to provide our animals with the enrichment, training and social skills they will need to make them more rehomable and to enable them to successfully settle into a new home. With this in mind, we started to identify some of the issues we felt might be prohibiting Callie from finding that perfect home.
She excelled at the Open Paw training and was able to develop a catalogue of skills in no time at all. One benefit of Open Paw is the level of consistency it offers to the dogs; all of our staff and volunteers receive structured training to best help our animals and this was of real benefit for a dog like Callie who strived on routine and familiarity.
An element of the Open paw programme is the way in which dinner is served! We aim to feed all of our animals with exciting interactive feeders. For Callie, we found this, in conjunction with a wide range of other enrichment games and puzzles, a real help to battle some of her kennel stress as it gave her a challenging activity to keep her busy brain ticking whilst she was alone.
On top of the basic skills and manners we teach every dog, we were able to up the ante with clever Callie to some clicker training. We taught her fun skills like dropping toys into a bucket, as well as useful tools for the home environment like settling herself quietly onto a mat.
Callie loves walks in new places and we found that this reduced her stress levels even further. She had a lack of confidence around new people so we worked on this with some positive training to help her meet potential new owners.
We were delighted when, after four months in our care, some experienced Collie owners came to meet Callie and fell instantly in love. After several visits and training sessions at the centre, plus a few play dates in her new home, we packed Callie off to her forever home and she hasn’t looked back since. Her new life sees her happily enjoying walks at the seaside where her socialisation has come on leaps and bounds, whilst her new owners couldn’t be happier with their choice and feel confident that they have the best dog in the world!
A little time, patience and care was all Callie needed to show the world the wonderful dog she could be. Your donations gave Callie that chance and offered her a future free from any more neglect or pain. You gave this beautiful girl the life every dog deserves.
To make your donation go even further for animals like Callie this Christmas, please support our project on The Big Give, where every donation received between 12pm 27th November – 12pm 4th December will be doubled at no further cost to you. https://secure.thebiggive.org.uk/projects/view/29572