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2011: Back in Action! January 14, 2011

Posted by Dana in Uncategorized.
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Wow!  2010 was a big year for our Iron Underdawgs family!  Rachel and Dana both welcomed their own new “pups” (haha!).  Dana’s baby girl, Stella Quinn Williams, and Rachel’s baby boy, Jesse Gabriel Kertesz, were both born in May, just 9 days apart!  They are good buddies and are surrounded by plenty of four-legged friends!

Stella in December 2010

Jesse in December 2010

Taking care of babies and our own dogs has been exhausting… but in a good way!  Haha!  Now that life is starting to fall back into some sort of normal schedule and rhythm, we’re excited to start participating in rescue events again!  Rachel’s work as a Humane Officer in Randolph County didn’t take a break even when she was pregnant, and you’ll notice in our available dogs section that there are a few new additions.  We’d like to find these guys some great homes!

Another goal for 2011 is to get our 501c3 (non-profit classification)!  This will enable us to hold fundraisers and take advantage of other resources that at this point are unavailable to us.

Please bookmark our page and check our available dogs section regularly.  You can also find us on Petfinder by copying and pasting this link into your browser:



Rest peacefully, Ja Rule April 23, 2010

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Friends, Iron Underdawgs has lost a family member today — Rachel’s big smooshy white foster boy, Ja Rule. Totally blind since birth, 9 year old Ja Rule had a knack for finding the softest, comfiest spot in the room. He lived a great life with Rachel for about the past 5 years while awaiting the perfect adoptive family that just never seemed to come along. Rachel’s requirements for adopters might seem stringent to some, but the bottom line is that the dogs in her care are part of her family. Although Ja Rule was available for adoption, he knew he had a home and never wanted for anything.

Within the past couple of weeks, Ja Rule fell very ill. He spent 3 days at the vet where he didn’t respond to any medications. Bloodwork made the doctor think he was probably dealing with an advanced case of lymphosarcoma. He was no longer eating and had lost a lot of weight. The vet was no longer able to control his vomiting. Rachel made the merciful decision today to let him go. He was one of a kind and will be missed!

Ja Rule was equally comfy being lazy on the couch....

... or being lazy on a person on the couch. 🙂

Featured Foster – the lovely Bella! March 11, 2010

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UPDATE:  Bella has been adopted!!  Stay tuned for happily ever after pictures! 

We are so happy that our friend Carrie happened upon this gorgeous girl, wandering stray in a rural area, and decided to foster her for us.  She was pretty rough when found, and appeared to have been living outside for quite a while in the dead of winter.  Bella is about 3 years old and has a great temperament.  She is surprisingly VERY calm for a Weimaraner.  She’s great with other dogs, and very closely follows her foster mama’s other dog around, keeping her company.  We think she’d do best in a home with another friendly pooch.  She’s also great with kids, and has no problems with staying in a crate.  PLEASE SEE OUR ADOPTION REQUIREMENTS AND APPLICATION on the INFO PAGE if you are interested!

Bella is just an all-around NICE dog.

What a pretty face!

Rocky’s Headed for an Amazing New Life! February 27, 2010

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To get all the background on this story, you will have to start with the post below, but I wanted to dedicate an entirely new post to an entirely new beginning for Rocky, our recent Savannah pound pull.

Last night, Rocky was picked up from the Savannah vet hospital where I’ve been boarding him by Pilots N Paws volunteer, James Kleen.  James let Rocky overnight at his place, and it seems he enjoyed his time snooping around the bachelor pad!!

"Hey, what's that you're pointing at me?"

"I smell food!"

"A soft bed and ear scratches!! Did I go to Heaven?"

James said Rocky was obviously feeling much better after only a couple days worth of treatment with Lasix and Prednisone.  And he was extremely friendly and lovable, wagging his tail constantly.  I think he started to realize his life was looking up!  And UP is where he went in the morning!!!  James appologized for not getting more pictures from the first leg of Rocky’s journey (Savannah to Asheville) but he did send us a great clip of their car trip to the airport, where I would swear he must have let Rocky drive!!

Rocky was suited up with ear protection at the airport.

The weather was perfect for flying!  James met PnP volunteer, David, in Asheville, and Rocky took to the sky once again!!  When he arrived at the airport in Bowling Green, RePets owner Tracy was overcome with excitement….

Image courtesy of Miranda Pederson, Daily News.

Dr. David gives Rocky a lift out of the plane, and Rocky looks pretty anxious to meet his fans!!

Photo courtesy of Miranda Pederson, Daily News.

And finally, Tracy meets her new foster!

Photo courtesy of Miranda Pederson, Daily News.

Photo courtesy of Miranda Pederson, Daily News.

I am SO HAPPY about the way this rescue has turned out.  I’m so glad my friend Mary called me about this boy stuck in that pound.  So glad Minnesota Boxer Rescue helped me pull him out of there.  So glad Kathy Lewis was there to drive him to the vet hospital.  So happy the vets at the Southside Animal Hospital were attentive and compassionate with this poor guy, and realized he needed a little extra TLC, and so thankful to my friends who donated so we could cover his expenses.  So thankful for James and David who generously gave of their time, skill, and fuel!!  And I’m very, very happy I met Tracy of RePets Animal Rescue in Bowling Green, Kentucky!  Dog rescue works best when it is a collaborative effort, and this is a PERFECT example of some very cool people getting together to help one lost soul find his way to a happy life!!

What a difference a little hope can make!!

Rocky is for SURE the embodiment of an IRON UNDERDAWG!!  We didn’t give up on him, so he decided not to give up on himself.  Rocky is fighting his way back to being a healthy, happy dog!!

Sad Rocky in Savannah February 19, 2010

Posted by Dana in Uncategorized.

Poor Rocky is a sad boxer in Savannah, Georgia whose owners moved and abandoned him at their house, tied up, with no food or shelter for many days, nearly to the point of starvation. Savannah, Georgia Animal Control picked him up and took him to the pound, which is a very bare-bones, police run shelter that does not have a high adoption rate (understatement alert!). It is usually the end of the line for most dogs.

I was working to spread the word about Rocky for my friend Mary who lives in Savannah, when I received word from the shelter that they were going to euthanize him. Like right now. Syringe in hand. So I started scrambling to find someone to pull him out of the shelter. Some of the other contacts that I’d been in touch with in Savannah proved to not be all that helpful. I was told that they were going to euthanize MANY dogs at the shelter today, and basically, there were “cuter” dogs there to save. That did not sit well with me.

"Cuteness" does not determine the worth of an Iron Underdawg.

It is not Rocky’s fault that he’d been neglected and is now skin and bones. It’s not his fault that his coat is dirty and dull, and his feet are covered with sores. He might not be “cute” right now, but he deserves a chance to fulfill his potential as someone’s best friend. I want Rocky to know that not all human beings are irresponsible and heartless.

Minnesota Boxer Rescue came thru and helped us get Rocky pulled from the Savannah pound, as they will only release to rescues with a 501c3. They agreed to take Rocky on if he passed some basic temperament tests and turned out to be full Boxer. It’s hard to tell from the picture, and I can’t see him in person, but I am going to assume he’s not full Boxer… my friend Mary in Savannah says he looks like he might be mixed with American Bulldog or pittie.   But, there is another great rescue in Bowling Green Kentucky called RePets Animal Rescue (http://www.repets.biz/) who said they had room for him, and they were eager to put some meat on his bones!

Though Iron Underdawgs has no outside funding, I’ve boarded Rocky with Dr. Karen Kane in Savannah while he awaits transport to Bowling Green.  He required vaccinations and a fecal exam which showed he was full of parasites.  Getting rid of those worms will help him put some weight on!  The staff in Savannah gave him a good bath as well!  I had him tested for heartworms, and not surprisingly, he is positive.  That’s what happens when a dog lives outdoors on a chain and endures complete medical neglect.  The doctor says his heart rate is a little elevated and there’s a little noise in his lungs, so obviously he’s not an entirely healthy dog.  But… he can get there with the TLC he’s been missing his whole life!  He’ll need to be treated for his heartworms after he gets settled in with RePets.

Dr. Kane  says Rocky is only between 2 and 4 years old, though it’s harder to tell when a dog has an “underbite” -type jaw.  She said he looks much older right now just because of the level of neglect he has suffered, but she feels confident he will bounce back!  She said he LOVES people and doesn’t care if you put your fingers in his ears & mouth, handle his feet, or anything.  It always amazes me that a dog that has suffered at the hands of humans still gives them the benefit of the doubt.

I also found two wonderful volunteer pilots thru Pilots N Paws who have agreed to split the trip and fly him from Savannah to Ashville, and then from Ashville on in to Bowling Green!  I LOVE the Pilots N Paws program!  It is such a great way to get a dog transported over a long distance with minimal stress… especially a dog that’s already been thru enough!

If you or anyone you know would be interested in helping this guy, please visit our Chip In page to contribute: http://ironunderdawgs.chipin.com/iron-underdawgs-rescue-vet-expenses

I am putting out this personal plea, because for whatever reason, this one really got to me. It just wasn’t possible for me to say, “Well, go ahead… put him down,” as long as I thought there was a chance for him.  Dogs are not garbage to be disregarded when they are feeble or no longer cute. And Iron Underdawgs is committed to helping those that often have no other hope.  Even if it’s just one dog at a time. These are the cases I remember when someone implies that dog rescue is a futile effort, and doesn’t really make much difference.  I have a feeling it makes a difference to Rocky.

UPDATE 2/24: I received a call from the Animal Hospital last night and a few of the doctors were concerned that Rocky is going into heart failure due to the stress from the heartworms and extreme malnourishment.  They are going to donate some Lasix and get him started on that as well as Prednisone to try and knock out some inflamation in his heart and lungs.  Please keep him in your happy thoughts!

No more chains for Brackett! February 5, 2010

Posted by Dana in Uncategorized.

UPDATE:  Brackett found a home thru Northern Lights Sled Dog Rescue, where he is now enjoying life as a cherished family member, and soaking up the attention!!!  🙂  Read his story below…

Several weeks ago, I got an email from a coworker who was asking for help on behalf of a friend…. The friend’s boyfriend acquired a young male Siberian Husky, and it had become apparent that they were not equipped to provide the right kind of home for him.  Huskies LOVE to run and need activity, and he was being kept confined in a small outdoor pen.  When he successfully escaped several times, they decided to use a heavy chain to make him stay put.  Not the greatest life for one of these guys!

Brackett relaxing at Rachel's prior to traveling to Indianapolis.

The very wonderful Julie with Northern Lights Sled Dog Rescue graciously offered to take him into her rescue, even though they are way beyond full and stretching their budget to accommodate a LOT of dogs right now.  She just asked if we could evaluate his temperament and let her know if we thought he was honestly adoptable.

Rachel visited the owners with a couple of her best behaved pittie friends, and Brackett (then called Bandit) was a perfect gentleman!  She was expecting him to be a little stir crazy from confinement, but what she found was a very good boy who really just wanted some attention and interaction.

Last night, we took Brackett to a clinic in Indianapolis, where NLSDR will have him neutered and vaccinated, and he will be placed in foster care while awaiting a forever home!!  We are POSITIVE this dog is going to make an awesome addition to a family with some Husky experience.  He’s definitely a very nice example of his breed.

If you are interested in Brackett, or would like to make a donation to Northern Lights Sled Dog Rescue, please visit their website by copying and pasting this link into your browser:  http://www.petfinder.com/shelters/northernlights.html    Or click the link to your right under “Blogroll.”     We know that Julie went out on a limb for this guy, and we (and Brackett!!) appreciate all she does!

This handsome boy can rest easy, knowing he's on his way to a better life!

Blackford County Dogs: Hugs! January 10, 2010

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UPDATE: 2/05/10
Hugs is doing so great in her new foster home!  She has been to a couple adoption events, and Katie tells us she is a wonderful bully breed ambassador!  We hope she finds her perfect forever home very soon, but until then, Angela is taking excellent care of her!!

Feb 2010: Hugs, now "Dove", has very comfy accommodations with Angela's family.

This weekend, we teamed up with our friends Katie (from Smilingk9s.com) and Tara Harris (Humane Society for Hamilton County) to pull an “urgent” need female pit bull named Hugs from the Blackford County Shelter.  The Blackford Shelter has come a LONG way recently in improving their facilities and day to day operations. We’re happy to be able to work with them!

Hugs in her shelter "mugshot."

Hugs has a case of Demodex mange, which is easily treatable, but causes a dog’s skin to appear scabby and makes patches of their coat fall out. Unfortunately, this combined with the fact that she is a pit bull, makes her a harder dog to place in a permanent home.  As the shelter was facing an influx of several more dogs over the weekend, they knew they were going to have to make some tough decisions which might include euthanizing for space.  A dog like Hugs would be at the top of the list.

The Blackford Shelter contacted us on Friday and asked if we could help.  We began posting information on Facebook and emailing all our rescue contacts to see if anyone could help.  Our good friends Katie and Tara quickly stepped up and said they could help!  Tara connected us with a wonderful foster, and Katie agreed to take Hugs into her rescue if we could pull her from the shelter and take her to the foster home.   Yay!!

Hugs with one of her new housemates, Cleo.

I sat in the back seat on the way to Indianapolis with Hugs because she was so sweet and lovable that I just wanted to spend some time patting on her!  She is very much like my own female pit bull… extremely cuddly and fond of leaning against whoever will pet her and tell her she’s a good girl.  She wasn’t at all nervous in the car and seemed totally trusting and cool with whatever we had in store for her!

Hugs now has a brand new start in her new foster home with 3 other doggie friends!  She will complete treatment for her Demodex, and will eventually have a gorgeous dark silvery-grey coat!  She’s a big love bug, and whoever adopts her will be very lucky to call her their new best friend!  If you are interested in adopting Hugs, please contact Katie Wilson thru http://www.smilingk9s.com !!!  Or contact us, and we will put you in touch!

Randolph County Dogs January 6, 2010

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UPDATE:  Miss Lilah waited only about 24 hours for her forever home!!  A lovely couple adopted her from the Humane Society for Hamilton County, and she is enjoying a happy life!!  Missy is available for adoption thru Central Indiana Lab Rescue (CILRA).

Since Rachel is the point of contact for the sheriff in Randolph County when it comes to animal cruelty or neglect cases, she received some calls about a condemned trailer where some dogs were being kept chained outdoors and the owners wanted to find new homes for them.  The people were very nice and cooperative, and I think they were just trying to do the best they could in difficult times.  The dogs all had great temperaments and seemed happy and relatively healthy.

Caleb and I had Lilah, a husky mix girl,  as a houseguest this past Sunday night, and Rachel took Missy, a gorgeous black lab girl.  Monday morning, Lilah went to the Humane Society for Hamilton County to be placed up for adoption.  It didn’t take long!!!  She was adopted Tuesday night by a really nice young couple who also adopted a kitten!  This news makes me so happy!  She is such a great dog and she’s had a rough beginning to life.  Now she can move on to better things!  We thank our friends at HSHC for helping this girl find a happy life!

Rachel is still working on finding a lab rescue to take Missy, who is setting in nicely at Rachel’s place and making friends!  Missy is a very pretty black lab with a sweet disposition.  We are going to need to get her initial vetting done if she doesn’t move on to a rescue soon, so please visit our ChipIn page if you’d like to contribute by following the link on the righthand side of this page, just below the Iron Underdawg!

Need to raise a few bucks for Joe! January 2, 2010

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UPDATE:  2/03/2010
After having Joe vetted and neutered, we discovered that he had some form of blood clotting disorder.  There were many tests that would have needed to be done to determine the proper course of action or even if Joe could be helped, but he just didn’t have that kind of time.  Sadly, a day after surgery, Joe passed away in the comfort of a loving home with his friend Rachel beside him.   We are grateful we had a chance to share his friendship in the last couple months of his life.

Joe is our newest “Iron Underdawg.”  Since reorganizing our efforts, we have been primarily focusing on networking and advocating for dogs by calling attention to those in need and reaching out to our rescue friends with better funding.  But on Christmas Eve, someone brought this guy to Rachel, bleeding, and she couldn’t turn her back on him.

Joe needs to be thoroughly vetted — meaning he needs deworming, vaccinations, a heartworm test, and neutering — so we are trying to raise a few dollars to cover that expense.  We’d also like to purchase another batch of microchips for any future “Joe’s” that come along!  If you’d like to contribute to Joe’s care, please visit our ChipIn page at the link below!!  Every little bit helps!  Thanks!


Happy New Year!!! December 30, 2009

Posted by Dana in Uncategorized.
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2009 was a great year for lots of Iron Underdawgs!!  2010 promises to be EVEN BETTER!