Luvin’ Labs is a Labrador Retriever Rescue based in New Mexico.   We are dedicated to finding loving homes for Labrador Retrievers through rescue and rehoming.  We currently do not have dogs on site, rather we rely on donations for boarding and fabulous fosters to keep our labs until they find their forever homes!

Luvin’ Labs works with shelters and rescue organizations throughout the state.  We also work with owners of Labs who for a myriad of reasons need to find a loving home for their Labrador Retriever.

Click through the pages of our site and check back often for updated posts of available dogs as well as Lab related information.

Postings include dogs in our program, as well as Labrador Retrievers in danger in shelters throughout the state.


To visit dogs in immediate danger please click HERE

972 dogs adopted to date!


Together saving one soul at a time.

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We’ve been watching Rory grow from a tiny puppy to a beautiful 8 week old ready to begin her life’s adventure with a new forever family.  Rory was the biggest girl in her litter of 9 brothers and sisters and also the most vocal.  Rory learned early on that the squeaky wheel gets the grease and she is not afraid to speak her mind, but in a very sweet and persuasive manner.  Rory’s mom is a full-breed yellow lab and by all indications her dad is a full-breed black lab, but no guarantees as a handsome boxer shared their home.

While Labrador puppies are adorable they are not right for everyone.  We are extremely careful in our placement of puppies as each  has special needs that includes the time commitment for training, bonding, and supervising in order to make them the best canine citizens they can become.

If you are interested in meeting Rory  click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

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There is really nothing quite as sweet as a little puppy and Molly is no exception. Molly’s mom is a purebred yellow Labrador Retriever and Dad is a handsome black purebred lab… or he maybe a handsome boxer. Two eligible bachelors in the home and mom isn’t about to let us in on the secret.  Molly’s foster mom describes her this way,  ” They don’t get much sweeter than Molly!  She never walks, but runs everywhere she goes.  Playtime is her favorite time but being held runs a close second.”  Molly is 8 weeks old and all ready to move right into a new forever home.  Could that be yours?

While Labrador puppies are adorable they are not right for everyone.  We are extremely careful in our placement of puppies as each  has special needs that includes the time commitment for training, bonding, and supervising in order to make them the best canine citizens they can become.

If you are interested in meeting Molly click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

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Remember the family rescued from a nearby county shelter within hours of being euthanized for lack of space.  The mom Faith and sister Dahlia have found their wonderful forever homes and now it’s time for sisters Ari and Izzy to find their own families to love.  Ari and Izzy are 5-6 month old female yellow labs who are both friendly, happy, and very smart puppies.  They seem to learn something new and exciting everyday which they look forward to sharing with their new families.  From their foster mom:  “They have been spayed, vetted, microchipped and well loved. They love to chew toys, bones, rawhides. They love the water, sprinklers pools whatever. They are potty trained and know the command for going potty as “outside”. They also are responding to all the basic commands, but will need some refreshing. They are very loving and love to cuddle. Arie is a little more outgoing more playful, if that makes any sense. She likes to instigate things with the others dogs. They love to be around their humans. At your feet, at the shower door, etc.”

While Labrador puppies are adorable they are not right for everyone.  We are extremely careful in our placement of puppies as each  has special needs that includes the time commitment for training, bonding, and supervising in order to make them the best canine citizens they can become.

If you are interested in meeting either Ari or Izzy (or maybe both)  click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

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Ari

 

Izzy

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My name is SHAYLA and I am a spayed female, black and white Labrador Retriever mix.  The shelter thinks I am about 9 years old.  I have been at the shelter and available for adoption since July 14, 2014. The shelter volunteers say that this sweet girl is shutting down in the shelter. She has lost interest in food and toys, but she passed her temp test and did good with other dogs. Her owners moved and dumped her at the shelter, an all too common occurrence in today’s world. She freezes up and doesn’t move when they try to take her out of her cage, but they are working on getting her used to her circumstances and people. Please, if you are interested in helping this older girl find a loving home, contact the shelter about Shayla or go down and visit her.
For more information about Shayla, call:
Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Eastside at (505) 768-1975
Ask for information about animal ID number A1632751

Shorty10 year old female, Shorty is a sweet, well-mannered Chocolate Labrador Retriever who has found herself in a rather unfortunate and stressful living situation- a kennel at the Santa Fe Animal Shelter. Somehow, even though she’s afraid, she has managed to make the most of her situation by becoming a staff and volunteer favorite, receiving excellent marks on her doggie report card (happy disposition, loves people, enjoys gentle interactions with other dogs). A shelter, though, is no place for a senior pup, so we are hoping a special someone can give Shorty the forever home she deserves. Shorty has some typical senior ailments so she will require a little extra TLC (cataracts, arthritis and diabetes). We would like to point out that, in spite of her medical issues, she is still a bazillion times easier to care for than a puppy: she promises not to bury all your shoes, or to harass you mercilessly for no discernible reason… she will, however, show unlimited gratitude to the kind soul who sees past her ailments and appreciates her wisdom and humility.

Shorty, our paws are crossed for you, Sweet Girl! We hope that an angel will see your beautiful face and take you home and love you for they rest of your dog years. If you are interested in Shorty please contact info is the Santa Fe Animal Shelter & Humane Society 505-983-4309

Heartworm

Our bodies are finally safe, and we now know what ‘love’ feels like… but our hearts are still broken; diseased and suffocating from heartworm. Will you help us?

Brittany, Dexter, and Buddy ask that you join us in helping them finish their heartworm treatment so that they can live long lives with healthy hearts.

These three formerly lost souls are safely tucked into a loving foster or forever home, but they still need continued lifesaving care to finish healing their broken hearts. Sadly, Brittany, Dexter, and Buddy are all infected with entirely preventable heartworm disease. Brittany and Dexter have both been through their costly and painful initial shots, and Buddy is just starting on his journey.

Heartworm, if not prevented, requires a very expensive, very painful series of injections. Initial care includes a month of antibiotics. Treatment also includes pain meds, and often hospitalization. We committed to and have begun treatment on each of these beautiful pups, and we are hoping our extended friends and family will help us to offset our vet bills so we can continue saving those without voices.

Can you help us heal their broken hearts? 

Brittany, rescued at the 11th hour from a high kill rural shelter, has been placed in her loving forever home where she is currently in training to be her two legged mom's service dog.

Brittany, rescued at the 11th hour from a high kill rural shelter, has been placed in her loving forever home where she is currently in training to be her two legged mom’s service dog.

Buddy is an incredible survivor who was rescued from a high kill local shelter. He has a lovely foster home committed to seeing him through his treatment and until he finds his forever home.

Dexter, found running the streets of Albuquerque, has been placed in his wonderful forever home where he is learning to trust and to work through anxiety ... hopefully a soon to be healthy body will help him with that.

Dexter, found running the streets of Albuquerque, has been placed in his wonderful forever home where he is learning to trust and to work through anxiety … hopefully a soon to be healthy body will help him with that.

Please help us heal their broken hearts.  Brittany, Dexter and Buddy thank you for anything that you are able to donate to help them fully recover. 

All funds raised are used solely to treat the medical expenses of the intended animals.  Lodestar Dog Ranch (www.luvinlabs.com) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization registered with the state of New Mexico and all donations are tax-deductible.

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July 18th Update:  We are still looking.  Jazmine could be near Phoenix/Washington/Menual area, she could be near the open space near Costco on I-25/Montgomery, she could have followed a bike path and traveled up to the Chelwood park area.  She has been missing for over two weeks!  Please, if you have time go out to these areas and take a look.  We have put up flyers, but if you can also help with that please call us.  We are hoping someone has her and will call.  She is microchipped!

July 16th Update:  It is believed that Jazmine was seen in the vicinity of Chelwood Park near Lomas and Tramway today.

Jazmine’s owner is desperate to find her…Jazmine is a 3 year old female black lab who got out of her family’s yard on the 4th of July.  Last seen in the vicinity of Phoenix and Carlisle NE in Albuquerque on the evening of the 4th.  Jazmine slipped out of her collar, but is microchipped.   If you see her or know where she might be please call 505-720-6806 or 505-362-0331.

 

Luca

Meet Luca, a 6 month old Labrador puppy. Luca was found searching the aisles of the Walmart in Belen for his new family. Sadly, they weren’t there and he ended up in a rural shelter where Luvin’ Labs saw him and brought him into the rescue.  Labrador puppies do best when they have the love and structure that a home can provide. Maybe that’s your home?

While Labrador puppies are adorable they are not right for everyone.  We are extremely careful in our placement of puppies as each  has special needs that includes the time commitment for training, bonding, and supervising in order to make them the best canine citizens they can become.

If you are interested in meeting Luca click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

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Percy, a handsome 8 year old black lab used to have a home; when he got separated from his family he just knew that they would come get him.  As he was microchipped, the shelter gave them a call, but they never responded.   Now Percy sits in an over-crowded shelter just waiting.  He loves to play and gets along great with other dogs.  We can’t just let this good dog become a statistic.  If you can offer Percy that home he longs for please visit the Aztec Animal Shelter, 825 Sabena St., Aztec, NM or call (505) 334-6819.

 

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Meet Lori (aka Lulu). Lulu, as her foster family calls her, is doing great in her foster home. This 2 year old black lab loves to be around her humans and gets along with her foster sister Bella. She is being crate trained and learning what it is to have a family that wants her and loves her. She is on the small side, at only 35 pounds, so if you’re looking for a compact lab, Lulu might be your girl. If you are interested in meeting Lori click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions please call (505) 362-0331.

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My name is Angelica and I am a 2 year old white Labrador Retriever. I was lucky enough to be pulled from a high-kill shelter by Luvin’ Labs, and now I will be loved and protected forever more. My foster family says that I have a very strong love for people and other dogs. And as you can see, I’m doing so much better now that I have a home to protect me. I’m working on putting some weight on as I’m thinner than I should be, but soon enough I’ll be right as rain. If you are interested in meeting Angelica click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions please call (505) 362-0331.

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This handsome young black male labrador retriever is Corey and, believe it or not, he’s homeless.  The shelter describes him as a good boy.  We would love the opportunity to find this guy a forever home, but we need a foster to do that.  If you are interested in fostering Corey and helping us find him a home please complete the foster application found here:  http://www.luvinlabs.com/fostering/ or call us at (505) 362-0331.  If you are interested in adopting him call Rio Rancho Animal Control at 505-891-5075 and ask about Pet ID C14-1035 (don’t use his name as that is something we have given him).

Found in the south valley on July 4th, a black male lab with no collar or tags.  If you think this might be your dog please call 505-917-6859.

Pearl

Pearl needs a foster or forever home STAT! Poor baby girl had a severe fracture to her right rear leg and, sadly, it had to be amputated and she is currently recuperating in a kennel. Pearl about 7-8 months old and she has never stopped wagging and smiling. She is a friendly, happy cuddly pup and we really want to help her to join the Luvin’ Labs family. If you are reading this you are a dog lover… Help us spread the word to your fellow dog lovers so we can help Pearl find a nice comfy home with humans to love her and spoil her to pieces.

If you are interested in meeting Pearl click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions or be interested in fostering her call (505) 362-0331.

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Sad eyesThis sweet girl’s eyes say it all: deep sorrow, mourning the loss of her beloved owner. Often we here at Luvin’ Labs rescue dogs, and being the resilient creatures they are, they quickly respond to whatever new name we bestow upon them. For this heartbroken 3 year old girl, we will move heaven and earth to learn what name her owner blessed her with, because she truly needs that connection. After the loss of her human, she was left at a shelter by the family, who was unable to keep her. She is grief-stricken, too scared to even get her picture taken- she wouldn’t even come out of hiding when our volunteer showed up to snap some photos.

So for now, we pray that one of you will see this post and offer to bring her into your home where she can grieve, heal, and learn to trust and love again. One thing is clear: she is an exceptionally loyal dog who is scared and confused. When we learn her name we will update, and if she comes out to play or get her picture taken, we will let you know.

If you are interested in meeting this sweet girl click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions or be interested in fostering her call (505) 362-0331.

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Friendly black male lab found in Los Lunas wearing collar, but no tags. If you think this might be your dog please call 505-620-1911.

 

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Imagine someone cruel enough to dump their senior at a high kill shelter because she just has “too many dogs.” Sadly for wonderful, 10 year old Mandy this is exactly what happened. Mandy is a sweetie pie and a total love (who adores being petted). She is in search of a foster or forever home where a loving someone will give her a much needed spa day- if ever a girl needed furminating… a comfy dog bed and some nice walks to help her regain her girlish figure. Please help us to find this lovely, deserving girl a home where she can feel what real love is.

If you are interested in meeting Mandy click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions or be interested in fostering call (505) 362-0331.

Mandy waits in her kennel at the shelter and wonders why her people haven't come back for her yet.

Mandy waits in her kennel at the shelter and wonders why her people haven’t come back for her yet.

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This small-sized, gentle labby girl is Melodie and she is in immediate need of a foster or forever home. Melodie is  just 1 year old, and that year has clearly been a stressful one. She is slowly starting to come out of her shell but she is still very shy, understandably traumatized by the events leading up to her rescue. Melodie is currently in Luvin’ Labs boarding where our volunteers are doting on her and taking wonderful care of her. In spite of all of the love, affection and creature comforts that we spoil our boarding pups with, it’s amazing what a stable home can do to help bring an introvert like Melodie out of her shell.

If you are interested in meeting Melodie click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions or be interested in fostering Melodie call (505) 362-0331.

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7/16/2016 Update from Colleen:

We’ve had a huge outpouring of incredible folks donating to Sabrina’s care via youcaring and paypal. Funds have been raised for her surgery. She’s had her surgery and is currently recovering from over 100 stitches at the vets. She’s still is wagging her tail. In no time at all sweet Sabrina will be looking for her foster or forever home, could that be yours?

Can we tell you how grateful we are? Well, in true Sabrina style if our tails could they would be wagging knowing how wonderful you folks are. Thank you, we are grateful.

And … if you feel like still donating … we’ve other labs with their own set of medical bills we’d sure appreciate ya’ll helping with.

Thanks ya’ll.

pup pup HORRAY!

Sabrina1Sabrina after her life-saving surgery on Monday

Sabrina was found tangled in a fence and turned in to a rural shelter. Ten minutes before she was to be put to sleep we were called in to help, now we need help paying for her surgery and recovery.

Imagine getting a call on a sunny Saturday afternoon, 911, emergency, beautiful sweet black lab was caught on a fence and is now at a rural shelter and will be put to sleep in ten minutes … frantic calls, thankfully the vet answered and agreed to intake, rushed transport, arrival, pain meds, fluid, stabilizing and now an emergency surgery scheduled to put this sweet girl back together. Sabrina is a beautiful 1-2 year old full of lab love despite the incredible pain she’s in …

Meet our latest intake, Sabrina, who we pulled on a lark and prayers that you, the good folks who always manage to help us come through, will help.

We need to raise funds for Sabrina’s surgery on Monday. Because of the extent of damage the surgery and after care will total over $1200.

Will you help us secure funds for Sabrina’s lifesaving surgery?

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Steely is a 7 month old purebred lab pup who is looking for his  forever home. He’s a very sweet boy who specializes in being adorable and he is very excited to see what the great big world is all about. Update from Steely’s foster mom:  “Steely is a very gentle soul.  His droopy eyelids and bright green eyes are a window to his sweet personality.  Steely is very mellow, sweet and cuddly…just a big teddy bear.  He is content just hanging out and loves to cuddle.  When you make eye contact with him, you can’t help but melt.  He is a large, clumsy puppy who loves to run and chase after his foster brothers and sister.  He is still learning to control his body, and often trips or slides on the  floor to everyone’s amusement.  Steely would do great in a house where there is another playful dog for him to expend his energy on. Steely is currently going through his chewing stage (Surprise!  He is a Labrador puppy).  He loves to eat sticks, rocks, socks, among a few things in his mouth he shouldn’t be chewing on. He will need to be supervised or crated when not attended.  He does well in a crate, but only lasts about 3 hours before he needs to get out and move.  He is experiencing growing pains (I mentioned he is growing fast) and needs to move around periodically. Steely would do well in a house where he goes for walks daily, but he is so large he won’t do well as a jogging partner. Steely loves to follow me around curiously watching everything I do. However, he is fairly independent and can keep himself entertained. Steely is an all around great puppy that with future guidance will make a great dog.”

While Labrador puppies are adorable they are not right for everyone.  We are extremely careful in our placement of puppies as each  has special needs that includes the time commitment for training, bonding, and supervising in order to make them the best canine citizens they can become.

If you are interested in meeting Steely click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

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This formerly scared 1 year old Labby boy is Paddy. Paddy is now safe and adjusting quickly to life outside the shelter in a loving foster home. He is a good-natured pup who gets along well with other dogs.

From his foster family:

Paddy is a wonderfully sweet, dark chocolate brown, 1 year old Labby boy.  He has acclimated very quickly to living in a home, and has made friends with all my male and female labs.  He is house trained, crate trained, and rides well in the car (even if he is a bit scared)   He is very lean and lanky and loves to run, play, and explore.  He loves people of all ages and loves to be by your side or lying with you on the couch.  Paddy is very calm and good natured and has a tail that seems to be constantly in motion.  He so wants to play fetch – but really needs a partner to show him how.

Paddy has requested a home where he will be a cherished member of the family. In return for opening your home to Paddy, he promises his unconditional love and devotion… maybe some kisses… and definitely lots of smiles.  He is just starting to see that they are still good people and good places in the world for him and he is totally ready to begin his journey….

If you are interested in meeting Paddy click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

Rusty

Senior male, Rusty, seems to be a dog that was once someone’s very special pet. He is a happy, well mannered gentleman who gets along with other dogs.  A good Samaritan found poor Rusty wandering around rural New Mexico with fresh cuts on the back of his neck where he appeared to have been chained. The volunteer who cared for with Rusty tells us that when he came to her,  he was starved for human attention and love. Rusty is neutered and healthy but he is a little overweight so he will appreciate some healthy food and walks with his new owner. Rusty is fortunate to be in a wonderful foster home and as his foster mom gets to know him better, we will update his bio.

If you are interested in meeting Rusty click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

Pandora16 month old Pandora is a resilient, happy girl. You would never guess that this girl spent a terrifying night tied to the front gate of the shelter with an old piece of manila rope around her neck. But, we all know how labs are… and how puppies are! Pandora has moved on from that traumatic night and she is now winning hearts with her adorable, silly sweetness. She would love nothing more than to wiggle her way into your heart, (and sit on your lap).

While Labrador puppies are adorable they are not right for everyone.  We are extremely careful in our placement of puppies as each  has special needs that includes the time commitment for training, bonding, and supervising in order to make them the best canine citizens they can become.

If you are interested in meeting Pandora click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions or be interested in fostering Pandora call (505) 362-0331.

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Daphne

Is there a home out there for me? For 7 years I’ve lived a hard life … what the good folks at Luvin’ Labs know about me is that I was rescued by another “rescue” who microchipped me but didn’t spay me so for years I was used to breed … only to have my babies taken away from me again and again. Some how I found myself wandering in southern New Mexico and was picked up by another rescue who transferred me to Luvin’ Labs. Unknown to them, I was almost completely blind with an unfixable degenerative condition that leaves me only seeing shadows and outlines of things. I try so hard to be a good girl but sometimes other dogs frighten me so I need long slow intros to mellow dogs. Wouldn’t you be scared too? I can learn where things are in my house very quickly, I love laying right by my person, I take a few days to adjust to a new situation. I would so love to have a family to call my own. Would you be willing to foster me … to love me … can you help me? Love, Daphne

If you are interested in meeting Daphne click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

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Here is a handsome, compact labby boy for someone in search of a smaller dog. Mahoney is 5 years old and he is a sweet love bug who is good with other dogs. Through no fault of his own, poor Mahoney was dumped at a high-kill shelter.  Every time he heard human footsteps, he perked up, hopeful that they belonged to his owners- that they had finally come back to take him out of that awful place… but it never happened, so we decided to give Mahoney a second chance at happiness. He is in search a new foster or forever home to call his very own. We will update Mahoney’s bio as soon as we get to know him a little better.

If you are interested in meeting Mahoney click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions or be interested in fostering call (505) 362-0331.

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Been lookin’ for a special someone? Well, 8 year old yellow lab Buddy has been looking for someone special too! His foster family reports that he is a wonderful gentleman, sweet as heck and he is doing great in their multi-dog home. Buddy is a truly inspiring pup who has never lost his smile despite being left in a high-kill shelter and recently beginning painful heartworm treatments. We anticipate that this brave boy (and eternal optimist) will make a full recovery, and we certain that he will make a fantastic addition to any family.

If you are interested in meeting Buddy click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

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We call her Dreamer. She’s a 4 year old purebred Labrador Retriever. Dreamer joins Luvin’ Labs as one of a long list of truly wonderful dogs that have been rescued from an NM breeder. She is a well rounded girl- just enough “silly lab” mixed with the right amount of “content to share your Snuggie while you watch an all night Netflix marathon,” with a pinch of  “I should definitely sit here and stare at you while you go to the bathroom so I don’t miss anything important...”  Dreamer will need a home with another dog she can bond with. She is currently in need of a foster home, or, better yet, a home forever and ever. Either way, we need a special someone to apply to  love her tons.

Did you know if you foster a L.L. dog and fall in love you can adopt your love and keep her (or him) forever? If it’s not a love connection, you are just a great human being who is giving a deserving dog a safe, loving home while we find the perfect forever home. Fostering is a win/win no matter what. And we think Dreamer is a keeper. We ♥ fosters.

If you are interested in meeting Dreamer click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you be interested in fostering Dreamer or have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

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Moose_&_Mandi_flyerMoose and Mandi are 9-12 month old lab mix pups currently being fostered in Las Cruces, NM. They are very gentle and bonded to one another. They are currently being fostered by a kind and generous human with a big heart and many commitments. If you are interested in these sweet babies, please contact the Cherished K-9 All Breed Rescue at 575-496-6085. Courtesy Listing

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Meet Elvis, a 4 year old black male Labrador. Like so many folks, Elvis’s mom has fallen on hard times recently and, sadly, is losing her home. Unfortunately, all too often when humans lose their homes, so do their beloved pets. Elvis is a good dog in desperate need of a new home and a family to bond with. He is a kind and happy sort of dog who seems to be very affable. If you live in a home with other dogs or children, Elvis might just be your guy because he is a good with any combination of the two. Cats are an unknown because he has never been around them. Elvis would love nothing more than some consistency and stability in his life – things that have been missing recently and are so important.  Do you think you are the person to offer Elvis these things? Oh, and don’t worry- he comes complete with the sweet face, adoring eyes and wet nose.

If you are interested in meeting Elvis click here for information on the adoption process. There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days. Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

Sweet puppies

 

These 4 sweet pups will be available in August. If you are interested in these babies, please contact Cherished K-9 All Breed Rescue at 575-496-6085. Courtesy Listing

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If ever there was a girl who deserved a turn to be treated like a princess, Jeulia would be that girl. Jeulia is a 9 year old purebred yellow Lab and her job has been to be a mama to lots of Labrador puppies. Jeulia was finally able to retire when she was brought into the rescue to become part of the Luvin’ Labs family. Now we hope that someone will take Jeulia into their home and spoil her absolutely rotten with all of the same love and affection that she has spent so many years giving to her babies. Jeulia loves to go for walks and play, she is a very happy dog with a great personality. Julia would do great in a home with another dog she can bond with (she loves other dogs). The thing that would make this girl the happiest dog in the world, would be to find a real home where her only job is to snuggle and play with her dog friends and her people.

If you are interested in meeting Jeulia click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions or be interested in fostering Jeulia call (505) 362-0331.

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Photo Courtesy of Michelle Oglesbee

What’s better than a Hershey Kiss?  A kiss from Lab Hershey with no added calories!  Hershey is a gorgeous deep rich chocolate colored eight year old Lab.  Hershey is house broken, good with other dogs and cats, and has never met a stranger.  Sounds like a great older girl for the right family.”

If you’re a lover of gentle, affectionate Chocolate Labs, 9 year old Hersey is someone you will definitely want to meet!

If you are interested in meeting Hershey click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com.  Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331. 

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Photo Courtesy of Michelle Oglesbee

For information about becoming a Luvin’ Labs foster click here…

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Without our foster parents, we have no means to rescue the dogs we do.  Foster parents are the backbone of Luvin’ Labs.  It is with their incredible generosity of time, home, love and caring that many labs are rescued and placed in their loving forever homes.

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Dandy is an 7 year old male border collie/lab mix with a tail that curls up behind him. He is in great shape, he is housetrained, fine with cats, other dogs, walks great on a leash, familiar with dog door… just a really good dog. He would be great as an only dog, or would be fine in a home with another dog. Dandy came from a home where he was an only dog and his owner was not able to take care of him anymore. He loves being an inside/outside dog and would make someone a fabulous friend.

If you are interested in meeting Dandy click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

 

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This is Jeulianna (not to be confused with Jeulia). Jeulianna is a 6 year old pure bred female Labrador Retriever. She is also pure sweetness, and thinks everyone she encounters is her very best friend. She is a very good-natured dog with a soft, gentle mouth that loves to give little kisses. Jeulianna is a calm, patient sort of girl and she can’t get enough pats and scratches. She is good with other dogs and would probably prefer a home with a canine friend she can bond with.  Oh, and did we mention that her eyes light up at the mere sight of a ball that she might be able to bring back to you if you would be so kind as to throw it? A practically perfect dog that hasn’t gotten to do any of these wonderful things because she has been busy with puppies for the first 6 years of her life.

Update from Jeulianna’s temporary foster:  Jeulianna is the most perfect pup.  She is quite comfortable here, loves running with Caderyn, our 4 year old lab boy, and often just walks past Jubal, our 8 year old yellow,  giving him a “kiss” on his head as she does.  When she came to the house last week she was clingy, but that’s not the case now.  Often I will find her resting by herself in our bedroom on Jubal’s bed.  She’s such a happy dog and her butt wiggles constantly in time with her tail.  She is not spooked by anything and enjoys looking over the fence and barking a quick hello at the school bus as it passes in the morning (Caderyn taught her this).  She wants to please and learned the routine of our home very quickly.   

If you are interested in meeting Jeulianna click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions or be interested in fostering Jeulianna call (505) 362-0331.

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This is Little Man, a male dog, breed unknown (possibly chihuahua mix). We think he looks like a very tiny Labrador with funny ears. L.M was taken in by a Luvin’ Labs foster family when they found him wandering along the ditch bank, emaciated and with what appeared to be bite marks from another animal. They have nursed this adorable guy back to health and he is now ready to find a forever home. L.M. is a lapdog and a snuggler who likes to sleep curled up on the pillow next to his people at night. He gets along great with other dogs and cats and adjusted to his new foster home very quickly. L.M.’s foster mom says he’s a keeper and if she didn’t already have a full house she would love for him to stay and be part of her family. Do you have a little bit of extra room on your pillow? If so, Little Man would love to occupy that spot. Oh, and we encourage his future family to tell everyone that this guy came from Luvin’ Labs and that you believe him to be mostly lab… It’ll be funny to see who pretends to believe you.

If you are interested in meeting Little Man click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions or be interested in fostering Flower call (505) 362-0331.

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This pup is Shyla, an 8 month old female lab. She is a cuddly, fun loving, happy little girl with a loving personality who is finally ready for a forever home. We say finally because Shyla had a lot to overcome before she could be adopted. On March 6th Shyla’s right front leg was amputated to resolve a painful injury that wouldn’t heal, and was robbing Shyla of a proper puppihood. She hardly missed a beat after the surgery and promptly resumed playing and entertaining her foster family.

Shyla came to Luvin’ Labs by way of a rural animal shelter where she was abandoned after her owners decided they didn’t want her. It is unknown how her leg was injured, but what we do know is that she received no veterinary care for several weeks. Instead, her previous owners duct taped a homemade splint onto her leg, causing the injury to heal incorrectly, and then decided they didn’t want her. Her fosters and Shyla’s wonderful vets have made a valiant attempt to try to recuperate her leg but, unfortunately, the damage was too severe.In order for Shyla to have the best quality of life, the decision was made to amputate her leg.

Shyla is now pain free and loving life. She is as tough as she is sweet and funny, and she is very excited to finally begin a normal life with a loving family to play with and cuddle up to. If you are looking for a great dog this girl most certainly checks all the boxes.

If you are interested in meeting Shyla click here for information on the adoption process. There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com. Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days. Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

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 I am the grandmother your other dog has always wished for. My name is Annabel and I am 12 years young. To be fair, I am very fond of less mature pups (I get along well with other dogs) but I’m darn sure not going to sit back and watch while they hog the spotlight (I plan to be around for awhile and I am a spunky girl). I am good with children and cats and I love to be affectionate with people. I am spayed, house trained and I can use a dog door. I don’t jump or dig either. I really enjoy walks and my foster mom says that with some careful conditioning I will be the one whipping you into shape. It’s clear she has already fallen for my charm and spirit and she says that the family who ends up with me will be lucky because I am an awesome dog. Basically, I’m perfect… So what are you waiting for?

If you are interested in meeting Annabel click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com.  Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

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Danae was pulled from a high kill gassing shelter in Oklahoma.  She was only there a short time before she gave birth to 3 puppies.  Luvin Labs was able to get Danae and her pups released to rescue and into a foster home, but unfortunately, only one pup survived.   We named the pup Marvin and he has found his forever home .

Danae has proven to be a very special girl during her stay in foster care.  She will need a loving family that can devote time to helping her trust people.  She loves toys, treats, and water just like any good lab does.  She is good with other dogs in her foster home and loves to give her foster mom hugs when she is busy trying to get ready for work.

This sweet sensitive girl is looking to find her forever home, and the family willing to commit their time and love to her and she’ll repay them with loyalty and devotion.

If you are interested in meeting Danae click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com.  Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

 

Meet Cinder, an 9 year old spayed female, chocolate Labrador retriever. From her foster dad: Cinder has become a wonderful companion. She likes to talk to you when she wants her food or to be walked. Cinder is in terrific shape as she runs with her foster dad daily.  She loves people and with the right introduction, she gets along with other dogs.  Cinder has some damage to her larynx so it’s best that she walks wearing a harness and she will need to go to a home that is smoke-free.

If you are interested in meeting Cinder click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com.  Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331. 

Cinder with Foster Family

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Sasha  is a 11 year old beautiful silky black mellow Labrador looking for a new home.   Happy and easy going, Sasha is a real sweetheart of a Lab.  She loves other dogs, soft beds, and good food.  She is house trained and is mostly a couch potato looking for a warm place to live out her remaining years.  Her foster mom tells us:  “Sasha is so happy to be in a home again.  She has very nice manners, someone spoiled her and it’s so hard to believe they gave her up.  She’s in good physical shape for a senior.  She knows basic commands such as sit and stay.”

If you are interested in meeting Sasha click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com.  Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

 

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KoriePhoto Courtesy of Benjamin Chan

Korie is an 8 year old gorgeous chocolate lab with the softest shiniest coat.  She is in great physical shape and loves walking, running, and hiking.  She’ll even help her new family to get in shape!  She gets along great with dogs and cats and even chickens.  She must have experienced some bad moments with humans at some point in her life and she can be timid and shy around new people, but she always remains gentle.  She very much wants to be part of a family with other dog siblings.  If you can give her time to check you out and make sure you are OK you will be rewarded with an incredibly loyal friend who gives the sweetest most gentle kisses.

If you are interested in meeting Korie click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com.  Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331. 

IMG_2449Photo Courtesy of Anthony Martinez

 

This handsome senior guy is Travis, a 12 year old male yellow Labrador retriever.  Don’t let the age fool you, this guy’s got lots of life and energy in him and would make some family a great companion.   7/2012 update from his foster mom:  “Travis has a little trouble seeing due to a cataract in one eye but that doesn’t slow him down any when it comes to loving!  His favorite activity is to lay by the couch and to get some lovin’.  He is fully house trained and can be trusted to stay inside the house on his own or enjoys being outside without digging or jumping.  He gets excited and runs around when we get home or when he knows he’s getting a treat but never jumps.  He’s very good about riding in the car, just he may need a boost to get in a taller vehicle since his legs are a little short for a lab.  He is very good with other dogs and loves everybody he meets, especially if they’ll give him a scratch behind the ears!”

If you are interested in Travis Jett click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com.  Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

 

 

Meet Ellie, a senior female chocolate lab about 11 years old.  Ellie came to us from the Albuquerque Animal Control where she impressed the staff with her sweet personality. Ellie lives with 2 other labs and a cat. She loves to take short walks, have her belly rubbed and play with a tennis ball. She is also just as content to lounge around and watch TV with you. Please consider adopting Ellie and giving her a permanent forever home.  Ellie will make somebody a wonderful loyal companion; might that be you?

If you are interested in meeting Ellie click here for information on the adoption process.  There you will find the online application which, when completed, can be emailed to applications@luvinlabs.com.  Upon receipt of the application a volunteer will be in touch with you within 3 days.  Should you have additional questions call (505) 362-0331.

Did you know that large black dogs are commonly the last to be adopted?  This phenomenon is referred to by shelters and rescues as black dog syndrome.  Black dogs are often more difficult to find homes for and among the first to be euthanized.  Their fate lies not with their ability to love, their personality or their intelligence, but merely the color of their coat.

We ask you to come meet our awesome black dogs currently in the rescue…Cody, Jayda, Jett, Nan, Sasha, Baiden, Hope and Bandit, Danae, Britney, Vader, Calvin…all have their own story to tell and all are looking for that loving forever home.  Or visit your local shelter…you’ll quickly see this phenomenon, but you’ll also see what wonderful treasures are there wrapped in black fur.

Thinking of adopting…check out the 10 reasons you might want to consider a black dog…

 

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scentsy

Scentsy Electric Candles are ceramic candle warmers that use a low-wattage light bulb to heat and melt our highly-scented long-lasting Scentsy Wax. Simply plug in your candle warmer, turn it on, and place a cube of your favorite Scentsy wax scent inside the warmer dish top. In minutes you will be enjoying one of over 80 scentsational scents. With over 70 full-size warmers, 17 mid-size warmers, and 20 plug-ins (night light style), there is surely a Scentsy Candle Warmer design to fit all your home decorating styles and preferences. These beautiful candle warmers are sure to inspire home decorating inspiration. Scentsy Wickless Candles are the best selling candles you will love.

When you order here, you will be helping Luvin’ Labs Rescue as 20% of ALL purchases will be donated to Luvin’ Labs to support their tireless work of rescue for all Labrador Retreivers and all Labrador mixes!

Direct link to the store which supports Luvin’ Labs: https://tracysdelightfulscents.scentsy.us/Scentsy/Home?partyId=218131197

For more information see this Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/777377895622386/

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Amazon.com has teamed up with Luvin’ Labs Rescue through AmazonSmile to help raise funds for the rescue and rehoming of Labrador Retrievers and lab mixes throughout the state of New Mexico.  When purchased through their AmazonSmile site, Amazon will donate 0.5% of eligible purchases to Lodestar Dog Ranch (that’s us!) benefiting all the amazing pups you see on the Luvin’ Labs site!.  While shopping at Amazon (prices, services and guarantees), you’ll be donating to the amazing labs in our program and waiting to come in to our program…how simple is that!  With the holidays just around the corner what better way to make a difference in the life of a lab!  Click on the “Learn more” button below and start shopping.

Lodestar Dog Ranch Inc

 

This video shows the harsh reality of owner surrenders to our shelter system in this country. Please think long and hard before surrendering your family member to a shelter. And if you choose to do it, don’t kid yourself into believing the shelter is going to find them a good home. It just doesn’t happen.

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Want to help make a difference to the Labrador Retrievers in our program? We’ve two easy ways below … 
  
Sign up for a one time donation at the Paypal (paypal link at the bottom of the page).

Or sign up to be a monthly donor through our monthly donor Paypal program (monthly donor link below, select the amount from the drop down then click on the large “monthly donation” button).

Either program will help you to literally help us save the life of a Labrador Retriever waiting to come in to our program. All donations assist us in continuing our mission of rescuing, rehoming and rehabilitating Labrador Retrievers.
 
100% of funds are used to cover costs incurred from intaking, medically treating and boarding dogs in our program. As a 501 (c)(3) non profit all donations are tax deductible.
We are deeply grateful for your help.

Monthly Donation


 

Together we can save one soul at a time.
 

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Papa Murphy’s Take and Bake Fundraising Cards are now for sale with Luvin’ Labs! For $5.00 you’ll receive 8 specials including a FREE large Pizza, free cookie dough, free cinammon wheel plus discount coupons … an easy sell!

To purchase please stop by Good Shepherd Animal Clinic or visit us at any of our events.

If you are able to help us sell the cards please email colleen@luvinlabs.com
All proceeds benefit Luvin’ Labs dogs in the program and coming in to our program.

Owner Listings are posted as a courtesy with Luvin Labs acting as a facilitator in this process.  We will receive applications, send them to the owner, and work with both parties to find a suitable home.  However, Luvin Labs has not evaluated these dogs and has only provided information supplied by the owner. We make no representations of, either expressed or implied, as to the health and/or temperament of courtesy listing dogs.

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Tanner is a neutered 18-24 month old male Labrador Retriever. He is a volunteer favorite at the shelter in Tucumcari, NM. They tell us that Tanner is laid back, lazy and cat indifferent. His previous owner CLAIMED he did not like other dogs but at the vet’s office he happily engaged every dog there…big and small/male and female. Tanner is STRONG (80 lbs) and while he wants to walk on a leash, he seems to have little experience and will need some training. Tanner  especially loves men and wants to be around people and sit on your lap!  Tanner is very affectionate, eager to please and a quick learner and he is housebroken. We think Tanner sounds perfect and we hope that he finds his forever home very soon.

If you are interested in meeting Tanner, please email quaycountyanimals@yahoo.com. Courtesy Listing

BusterandchaplinBuster and Chaplin are 10 year old males who are in desperate need of a new home. These sweet boys have been together since birth and have never known life apart. Their owners are moving out of state for a new job and are not able to bring them. They tell us that both dogs are very friendly and obedient. Chaplin likes to check in on his people and he prefers to be indoors relaxing with a rawhide.  Buster enjoys being outdoors where he can run around- he has a playful personality and likes people. They both like cats, and are good with children and other dogs, but they prefer female dogs. Buster and Chaplin spend the majority of their time in the house: they are house-trained and they know their basic commands (sit, stay, lay down, and shake). The boys are neutered and micro-chipped, but they need to be updated on their vaccines. They are both healthy, although Chaplin has a bump on his left eyelid that his owners are not able to afford to have assessed, and Buster has some mild arthritis in the winter months.

Please help us find these guys a home where they can spend the rest of their years together and never have to know the stress that seniors experience when they suddenly end up in the shelter. Their owners have been working hard to network them on Facebook and with friends and family. Let’s help them find these sweet, deserving boys a home.

If you are interested in meeting Buster and Chaplin please complete the online application found by clicking here and email to applications@luvinlabs.com. Should you have questions on the process or the application call (505) 362-0331.  Owner Listing

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Marlo

This beautiful senior is Marlo, a 10 year old black female lab.  Her owner describes her as “loving, kind and patient.  She is comfortable around other dogs and wonderful with children.  She has a sweet and calm demeanor.  Marlo is a very happy dog and loves to show excitement by wiggling.  She is not showing any signs of aging, still very mobile and flexible.  She is at her happiest around people and just wants to be loved.”  Marlo is used to being in the house, is up-to-date with all shots, spayed and microchipped.

If you are interested in meeting Marlo please complete the online application found by clicking here and email to applications@luvinlabs.com.  Should you have questions on the process or the application call (505) 362-0331.  Owner Listing

 

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Ithica 1
Ithica is a 5 year old female black lab (and aspiring yoga instructor) who is in search of a new forever home. She is described as a sweetheart who loves to cuddle, and believes the term ‘lap dog’ is discriminatory to larger dogs. She has been with her human since she was a pup, however their new roommates are allergic to her and their dog refuses to roll out the welcome mat for this sweet girl. Ithica gets along with humans of all shapes and sizes and is a typical, bouncy, young lab.  She is good with cats and other dogs, but prefers to be the only female dog in the home or to be with a non-dominant female. Ithica is housebroken, spayed and micro-chipped but will need to visit the vet soon to update her vaccines and heartworm test. She is not food or toy aggressive and doesn’t nip or bite. Ithica requests a yard with a 4′ fence.

If you are interested in meeting Ithica please complete the online application found by clicking here and email to applications@luvinlabs.com. Should you have questions on the process or the application call (505) 362-0331.  Owner Listing

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???????????????????????????????This beauty queen is Savannah and she is 1.5 years old. Her current owners are moving out of their home and must say goodbye to her as their living arrangement will no longer be suitable for a dog. They tell us she is a very sweet, busy girl who gets along with everyone- humans of all sorts, dogs and cats. Savannah is still a baby by lab standards: happy, active, curious… She spends most of her time indoors and is house-trained, knows how to use a dog door, and has completed obedience training. She enjoys walks and does fairly well on a leash. Savannah is spayed, microchipped and UTD on all of her vaccines. Savannah has been known to be very mouthy and needs boundary training so she can grow up to be the best dog she can be. She also requests a fenced in yard with a minimum 4′ fence.

If you are interested in meeting Savannah please complete the online application found by clicking here and email to applications@luvinlabs.com. Should you have questions on the process or the application call (505) 362-0331.  Owner Listing

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This stylish girl is Sammy and she is an 8 year old lab cross who is looking for a new home. Sammy’s owner describes her as a sweet, loving dog who likes to be near her person “helping” whenever she can. She is a petite girl, weighing in at under 50lbs and she has spent her entire life as an indoor dog so she has excellent house manners. Sammy gets along with people of all ages and she usually gets along with other dogs if they are introduced properly. She is not a cat lover (we understand, Sammy… dogs rule). Her present owner has had her since she was a young dog and says she is really a wonderful girl who has unfortunately been left alone quite a bit recently due to a rigorous work travel schedule. Sammy would like to be adopted by someone who is able to provide her with the kind of love and attention that she deserves.

If you are interested in meeting Sammy please complete the online application found by clicking here and email to applications@luvinlabs.com. Should you have questions on the process or the application call (505) 362-0331.  Owner Listing

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Remo and Evie

Meet 7 year old lab/hound cross pups and best buddies Remo (male) and Evie (female). These two dogs love people of all ages, although Evie can be a bit shy around new people until she gets to know them. Evie and Remo are good with other dogs and they are excellent with cats (their other BFF happens to be a cat). Remo’s current owner describes him as extremely loving, gentle, friendly and eager to please. Evie is described as a gentle and friendly girl. Both have been through obedience training and are OK on leashes, except for they have a tendency to pull.  These two dogs have excellent manners- they don’t jump to greet, are not food or toy aggressive and they don’t dig or have issues with separation anxiety. They’re also both spayed/neutered.

Evie and Remo are a bonded pair and have been best friends since they were tiny pups so their owner feels it is important to find them a home together.  Maybe you could arrange to meet these two sweet dogs and see for yourself what a great pair they are!

If you are interested in meeting Remo and Evie please complete the online application found by clicking here and email to applications@luvinlabs.com. Should you have questions on the process or the application call (505) 362-0331.  Owner Listing

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Meet Missy, a 13 year old female Yellow Lab. Missy is a deserving senior looking for a forever foster or forever home. She is blind and nearly deaf, however, she is intuitive and gets around well. She is able to use a doggy door and able to feel the warmth of the sun finding a spot to nap for bit when outside. Missy has a lifetime of experience specializing in love and loyalty and she can nap with the best of them. Her desire is to have a retired person navigate life’s journey with her. 

Please take a close look at this deserving gem. Missy is UTD on vaccinations, chipped and spayed.

Please contact Don Helfrich (dondoberman@gmail.com) for additional information.

Following are postings for dogs in immediate danger in shelters throughout New Mexico, and Texas, as well as courtesy listings for other shelters and owners looking for homes for their labs. The postings contain contact information on the shelter, as well as the dogs identification.  For more information on specific animals please contact the shelter directly.

Luvin’ Labs works with other rescue organizations throughout the states, and has resources that may be able to help with transport via the puppy express … a network of fabulous volunteers who donate a bit of their time to move dogs across the country pony express style.  For more information on transport assistance please call 505/362-0331.

I have been at the shelter since July 07, 2014, but I am not available for adoption until July 15, 2014.  The Shelter staff named me CHEVY and I am a neutered male, about 2 years old, black and brown Rottweiler mix.  Since you are reading this on the Luvin’ Labs Web site, I assume the “mix” includes some Labrador Retriever.  With any luck, more information about me will become available between now and July 15th, so keep checking.  Better yet, drive on over to the Eastside Shelter and check me out.
For more information about this Chevy, call:
Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Eastside at (505) 768-1975
Ask for information about animal ID number A1639969

Shelter staff named me FRISKY and I am a male, tan and white, 4 months old Labrador Retriever mix.  I have been at the shelter since July 17, 2014 and I have been available for adoption since July 18, 2014.  Very few Yellow Lab puppies become available, so you need to come see me and take me home quickly before someone else sees this posting.
For more information about this Frisky animal, call:
Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Westside at (505) 768-1975
Ask for information about animal ID number A1700255

The Shelter staff named me WHIMSICAL and I am a spayed female, black and white, about 11 months old Labrador Retriever and Australian Cattle Dog.  I have been at the shelter since Jul 12, 2014, but I have only been available for adoption since Jul 17, 2014.  So, my questions for you are, “What do you think the chances are that when I bark I sound like Crocodile Dundee?  Can’t you imagine me saying, ‘Bone? That’s not a Bone… This is a Bone!’”  Come on down (under?) to the Westside shelter and we’ll talk.  You can assess my accent for yourself.
For more information about this animal, call:
Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Westside at (505) 768-1975
Ask for information about animal ID number A1699837

My name is GUCCI MANE and I am a spayed female, 1 year and 7 months old, black Labrador Retriever mix.  I have been at the shelter since July 14, 2014.  I have been available for adoption since July 14, 2014.
For more information about GUCCI MANE, call:
Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Eastside at (505) 768-1975
Ask for information about animal ID number A1151554

My name is MAXIMILLIAN and I am a neutered male, about 4 years old, black German Shepherd and Labrador Retriever.  I have been available for adoption since I arrived at the shelter on July 13th, 2014.
For more information about MAXIMILLIAN , call:
Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Westside at (505) 768-1975
Ask for information about animal ID number A1695060

 

My name is TUCKER and I am a neutered male, about 6 years old, brown and black Rottweiler and Labrador Retriever mix.  I have been available for adoption since I arrived at the shelter on July 02, 2014.  To learn more about me, you really need to come visit me.
For more information about Tucker, call:
Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Westside at (505) 768-1975

Ask for information about animal ID number A1699105

My name is CHARLIE and I am a neutered male, about 5 years old brown Labrador Retriever mix.  I have been at the shelter since May 30, 2014 and I have been available for adoption since June 03, 2014.

Charlie is a owner surrender as a part of break-up and the other partner surrendered them, so she came in to give some information but is unable to afford to take them. Charlie has beenkept outside, but he is housebroken, and crate trained.  He loves car rides,is good on leash, and has had some obedience training but he  digs.   All 3 dogs love each other’s company, and she wanted to make sure that everyone knew they were together.  She said that Charlie: chases and tries to play with cats, and is feisty with men. Coco was adopted (3rd dog).
On 6/21/2014 a shelter volunteer reported that Charlie is very shy now that Coco adopted.  I threw treats in kennel to get him to come closer and closer, then opened door and he came right up to me for petting and leashing and out we went.  His shyness is much improved outside the kennel I  introduced him to many new people and he was fine. he is cute andsmaller in size  It is likely that it is just that he is too stressed without his friend and with barking all around his kennel.
For more information about Charlie, call:
Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Westside at (505) 768-1975
Ask for information about animal ID number A1564669

 

My name is DANZING and I am a neutered male, black and white, about 3 years old Labrador Retriever mix.  I have been available for adoption since I arrived at the shelter on June 26, 2014.

The owners report that Danzing was surrendered because the owners are moving and their new  place doesn’t accept dogs.  Danzing is great with kids and went to dog school.  He was kept outside and  doesn’t  try to escape and is not destructive.  He is good with adults, great with kids, but scared of other dogs.
On 7/3/2014 a shelter volunteer reports that Danzing  used to be very shy, but now comes right up to kennel door with a wagging tail where he loves treats thru the kennel door.  He was easy to leash up and he started to walk out then pancaked with all the dogs barking.  I was able to coax him out with treats and by getting low,  as he really wants attention.  He easy on leash as long as you are not near the kennel.  He gets a little too excited about treats, but he knows sit & down.  He did well meeting other dogs thru a fence.  He was not at all focused, but willing to go up and meet the other dogs with body soft and tail wagging.  Danzing is playful once he is away from barking and he loves petting.  He was difficult to get back into the building.  I had to  coax him with treats and getting him to come for petting while I got low.  In summary, he is  fearful and probably should not go to a forever home where there are small kids.
For more information about this Danzing animal, call:
Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Westside at (505) 768-1975
Ask for information about animal ID number A1698649

My name is XENA and I am a spayed, female,  about 2 years old, white Labrador Retriever and Pointer mix.  I have been available for adoption since I arrived at the shelter on June 27th, 2014.

The shelter indicates that Xena is an Owner Surrender.    The shelter has her listed as pointer mix, but owner said that she is a lab and she looks lab to me.   Her former owner says that Xena is housebroken but she was kept outside  She loves riding in the car, she is  good on leash, and she has had some obedience training.  She  does not destroy things or escape, and she is submissive with adults.  Xena is  friendly with kids, but how she is with cats is unknown, she is, however, aggressive  with dogs.  She is loving and very loyal, loves kisses, hugs and long walks.

On 7/5/2014 a shelter volunteer reported that Xena is very shy in the kennel building, but  she gets better and better outside.  She is a loose leash walker, mellow, likes treats, and is gentle.  She seemed fine around other dogs.  (i don’t know what owner meant when she said that Xena is aggressive with dogs,)

For more information about Xena, call:
Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Westside at (505) 768-1975
Ask for information about animal ID number A1133955

My name is NOVA and I am a neutered male, black, 8 years old Labrador Retriever mix.  My owners surrendered me on June 20, 2014 so I’m looking for a new home.  (For people who want the classic lab qualities Nova has them.  He’s friendly and loyal and just a generally happy go lucky dog.  This is a good dog for people who like labs but don’t have the room for the energy most labs have.  Nova is older and calmer but still has a bunch of years of love to give.   He does not act Dog Friendly on leash, but he is good on leash, and very easy & sweet.)  Would you consider being my new ‘people”?  Please?
For more information about this animal, call:
Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Westside at (505) 768-1975
Ask for information about animal ID number A1503593

 

ROCKY is a neutered male, white and brown, 5 years old Labrador Retriever mix.  He gets excited and happy so he jumps out of the kennel when he is taken out, but then he is mostly mellow.  He  pulls intermittently on his leash. Folks need to watch fingers when giving Rocky  treats.   He is really thin even though shelter is feeding him frequently.   He eats his too fast and is very focused on it so he likely needs to be separated from other dogs for eating when adopted.  He seems Dog Friendly thru fence, mostly not interested in the other dogs. Rocky enjoys petting, did well when he got a bath earlier in the week.  He has been at the shelter and available for adoption since April 24, 2014.
For more information about Rocky, call:
Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Westside at (505) 768-1975
Ask for information about animal ID number A1693988

 

My name is MOSLEY and I am a neutered male, black Labrador Retriever and Chinese Sharpei mix.  Talk about a RARE mix, that’s ME!  The shelter thinks I am only about 3 years old.  I have been at the shelter and available for adoption since May 7, 2014.
Did You Know:    Black dogs are particularly doomed when they are brought to a pound because they are passed by for lighter colored dogs.  This is especially true of  black labs or lab mixes.  They are euthanized at a horrifying rate at many pounds & shelters. If you are thinking about adopting a dog , please don’t overlook me because I am just as loving & wonderful as lighter colored dogs!
For more information about Mosley, call:
Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Eastside at (505) 768-1975
Ask for information about animal ID number A1603463

 

If I look familiar it is probably because this is the second time I have been put on the Luvin’ Labs “Dogs in Danger” page.  On March 7th the Shelter notified Luvin’ Labs that I was no longer available.
My name was CHACA but it has been changed to Shakira and I am a spayed female, black and white Labrador Retriever mix.  I have been at the shelter since February 24, 2014.  I have been available for adoption, again, since March 17, 2014.  The shelter thinks I am about 1 year and 2 months old.  I hope you will call the shelter and ask about how it happened that I was on and off and the back on again.  Even better, I would like to be taken off the Luvin’ Labs site for the last time because I have been taken home by you.

For more information about me, call:
Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Eastside at (505) 768-1975
Ask for information about animal ID number A1687447

 

ImageProxy (1)

Shelter staff named me LINGUINE and I am a neutered male, brindle and white Labrador Retriever mix. I have been available for adoption since Feb 02, 2014. The shelter thinks I am about 2 years old. I have been at the shelter since Jan 29, 2014. For more information about this animal, call: Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department – Westside at (505) 768-1975. Ask for information about animal ID number A1688775.

Did You Know:    Black dogs are particularly doomed when they are brought to a pound because they are passed by for lighter colored dogs.  This is especially true of  black labs or lab mixes.  They are euthanized at a horrifying rate at many pounds & shelters. If you are thinking about adopting a dog , please don’t overlook black dogs because they are just as loving & wonderful as lighter colored dogs!   Martin County Animal Shelter, Fairmont,MN

Walking nicely

We are SO pleased that we were able to have our first Luvin’ Labs Fostercare Seminar with trainer Arie Deller.  The weather was perfect – warm with a beautiful perfume of Russian Olive blossoms in the air, -  and we had a nice attendance of new,  perspective and experienced foster families, including some from a few other rescue groups.

Arie was so generous to put on this free seminar to help our Foster Families learn how to deal with some of the issues that we come across in bringing home a new foster dog.   She is quite knowledgeable about the things we deal with, and was able to give us some good pointers on how to help these dogs along their journey to a new adoptive home while they are waiting in foster care.  She obviously cares very much about the welfare of these dogs and has worked with several rescue organizations, including Luvin’ Labs.

We got some great info on helpful supplies, introducing the new foster dog to the family (people and dogs and cats), preventing jumping, exercise ideas, crate training how-to, and walking nicely on leash.  Arie had some neat tips that will make these things easier.

We hope to have other seminars coming up that will deal with other issues that foster families come across, including behavior issues.  Arie is open to suggestions for topics that would be helpful, so if anyone has things that they would like to see addressed in upcoming seminars, please let us know.

Our own Luvin’ Labs Watson was also a wonderful assistant in the demonstrations with Alexa, and whoever adopts this gorgeous, sweet boy will be so fortunate.   He is available for adoption with his buddy, Sherlock who he is very bonded with.

A very big, heartfelt THANK YOU goes out to Arie and her dog, Sarge for putting on this seminar for our fosters and for the helpful handouts.  And thanks too, go out to Dogtown for allowing us to use their facility, and to everyone who turned out for this seminar.  We also had another very nice demo dog who helped Arie, but I am sorry I missed his name!

If you are interested in becoming a Foster Family for Luvin’ Labs, we need you!  Click here for our foster application.

Nelda, Luvin’ Labs Foster Coordinator

Watson proper dog meeting

 

4/21/2014 UPDATE:  From Lola’s owner:  Thank you Luvin’ Labs for the help bringing Lola home. She was gone for two weeks but we never gave up hope. We knew that with your help lots of people in the ABQ area had an eye out for her! She was being sheltered by a family just a few blocks from home . . . Has already resumed her daily schedule of chasing sticks, kissing the kiddos and sleeping in the sun!

 

If you’ve seen Lola or know where she might be please call or text 505-239-8449; a reward is offered.  Lola was last seen 4/8 in the vicinity of Rio Grande and Indian School.

Lola

Screen Shot 2013-10-01 at 4.09.02 PM

This pretty 5 year old female yellow lab is Lacie and she’s missing.  She was last seen in Rio Rancho on October 1st and her family is so anxious to get her back.  She’s about 85 pounds, microchipped (0006ABAC36), and has what looks like a smiley face on her stomach.  If you see her or know where she might be please call 1-800-252-7894.

HV

 

Have you been wanting to volunteer with Luvin’ Labs, but only have a couple of hours a month to volunteer?

Luvin’ Labs is looking for people who are willing to volunteer to help with our home visits. This is the final step in our process before our dogs go to their forever homes. Every home visit volunteer will be trained and given a form with specifics to look for.

Our goal is to have volunteers in all areas of Albuquerque and Santa Fe.

What better way to help a lab find their forever home!

Please, call (505) 362-0331 or email us at applications@luvinlabs.com if you are interested in helping with our home visits.

 

 

Reprinted with permission from Debbie at thankdogphotography.com

I recently read an article by a woman complaining about her difficulty in adopting a dog from a rescue organization.  Several commenters agreed and relayed similar experiences.  It got me thinking…

First, I don’t know the author.   Nor do I know anything about the rescue organization she was trying to adopt from (I think everyone was from New York).

Second – I’m far from an old hand at this.  I’ve fostered 1 adult dog and 7 puppies, including Jet.  And these are only my own thoughts and opinions – I’m not speaking for any rescue organization or volunteer.

So… do I think it’s “harder” to adopt from a rescue organization than from your local shelter?  In a word, yes.  But there are a number of good reasons why…

We have the time to be more selective.  The dogs in the rescue organizations are no longer on death row.  The threat of euthanasia is gone.  They aren’t going to die if they aren’t adopted in just a few days. Once a dog is within the rescue organization, he or she is safe.  We can take the time to do home visits, check vet references, etc.  We can care for them through all their vetting, illnesses or whatever.  The urgency is gone.

We become attached.  Most rescue organizations are all volunteer, and the dogs are in foster care.  This means they live in our homes and share our lives – sometimes for months.  Jet has been with me for almost 3 months now.  The little stinker sleeps in my bed.  Belle, the Queen of Disdain, has fallen for him.  So do I want him going somewhere that’s “fine” or “okay”?  No, not really.  I want him to go to the perfect home for him.  Even if/when that home comes along, will I cry?  Almost certainly.  Do we all seriously consider keeping (one or more) of our fosters? Of course.  Am I considering keeping Jet?  You bet.  The attachment we have to our fosters makes us really want to find great homes for them – homes where they’ll thrive and be happy.

We know the dogs.  I know Jet.  I know he’s a high energy puppy who loves other dogs.  I also know he’s noisy (I hear him from the driveway – coming and going), he can be destructive (so far, the tally is one shoe and a bathroom cabinet), he’s smart but stubborn, he has sweet moments, and he has a well-documented tendency to eat inappropriate things. Because I know him, I know what type of home he needs – and what type of home would not be a good fit.  We have turned down an application on Jet – very nice and well meaning people, but everything about the circumstances spelled disaster and future behavioral issues.

We’ve had dogs returned.  You might be surprised by how often this happens – sometimes a few days or weeks later, sometimes months later. Frequently the issue is a mismatch of energy between an existing pet and the new dog (or a clash of personality).  Sometimes it’s a new boyfriend or girlfriend who doesn’t like the dog or the dog doesn’t like him/her (though I would guess it’s always the former).  Other times it’s a realization that they don’t have the time needed for the dog they adopted (some are high maintenance, no doubt about it!).  By being more particular with the original adoption, we hope to avoid this.  We can’t always.  Don’t get me wrong – we want them returned to us versus the shelter.. but we also obviously would prefer neither.

We’re all volunteers.  Most of us have other jobs.  So if it takes a little while to respond – or if the whole process is slower than you hoped, please have patience.

Basically, yes, it probably is more of a process to adopt from a rescue organization.  But it’s because we truly want to match the dogs up with the best homes — and vice versa.  If you let us know about you, your lifestyle, your family, etc., we’ll do our best to pair you up with a dog that will be a good match for you.  We’re not trying to be difficult, we just honestly want what’s best for everyone involved (especially the dogs, as that’s where our attachment lies).
So what if you’ve found a dog you’d like to adopt?  Here’s a few tips to help the process along:

  • Show your excitement.  Ooh and aah over the dog and how wonderful and adorable  s/he is.  It shouldn’t really matter, but it does.  We want the dogs to be loved and adored.
  • Think about it.  Sure that dog’s adorable, but do you have the time to housebreak him? To train him? What if he pulls a Jet and runs up $1000 worth of vet bills by eating a still-unknown something?   Let us know you have given the idea of adding a new dog to your family some thought.
  • Complete the application.  Yes, sometimes they’re a little long.  They ask for stuff like your vet’s name.  Trust me when I say we look at them.  If you have pets but don’t have a vet – a red flag is raised.
  • Work on any behavioral problems your current pets have.  Some are fine (Belle countersurfs when I’m not home – not good behavior, but I know now not to leave anything on the counters).  But if your dog doesn’t like your son or snaps at your husband or is repeatedly getting in fights, it’s not cute.  It’s a sign that there’s an issue and you’re not doing anything to resolve it.  We figure the same will happen to your next dog.
  • Demonstrate you have some basic knowledge about dogs.  Don’t let your kids grab at unfamiliar dogs.  Learn some of the basic signs dogs give you when they are uncomfortable, anxious or unhappy.  It’s not hard, it only takes a minute, but it shows us you are serious about being a good and responsible owner.
  • Listen to us.  Dogs often act differently at adoption events than how they do at home.  If we say a dog is very high energy, but he doesn’t really appear to be… listen to us.  Adoption events are stressful for some of the dogs – a necessary evil, I suppose.  The dogs don’t always act like themselves.  Likewise, if we say the dog would do better as an only dog, don’t assume that because your dog gets along with everyone, he’ll get along with the new one too.

Yes, our dogs are rescues, sometimes from awful circumstances, other times not.  But just because they made it to a shelter does not mean they do not deserve a good home.  Indeed, many of them have gone through enough already – they deserve us spending a little time and effort to make sure the next chapter in their lives is a happy one. That’s all we’re trying to do.  So please be patient and understanding – it’ll be worth it.

to volunteer with Luvin’ Labs please email colleen@luvinlabs.com or call 505/362-0331

A few years ago, Julien Roohani of Portland, Oregon, was at work when her roommates spontaneously decided to go on a hike. Not wanting to exclude Julien’s six-month-old Shepherd/Border Collie mix, Niña, they threw her into the back of their pickup truck and set off for an adventure.
Niña had never been in a truck bed before. Whether she was scared or just spotted something of interest, she managed to jump out during the drive. Panicking, the roommates called Julien, who rushed Niña to an emergency veterinary clinic where she was diagnosed with a broken spine and other severe injuries. Julien had no choice but to allow her young pup to be humanely euthanized.
Unfortunately, stories like Niña’s are all too common. It is never safe to drive with an unrestrained pet—especially with that pet in an open truck bed.
“When you drive with a loose dog in the back of your truck, you’re taking a huge risk and placing your dog and other motorists in danger,” says Chuck Mai, a vice president with AAA Oklahoma. “Even if a dog is trained, we’re talking about an animal who responds to stimuli on impulse. This irresponsible decision can start a deadly chain reaction on the road.”
Is It Legal?
Transporting unrestrained dogs in low-sided truck beds has been banned in a handful of states, including California and New Hampshire, and municipalities including Indianapolis, Cheyenne and Miami-Dade. However, in the vast majority of jurisdictions, it’s not even illegal to transport children in this manner, so we must rely on common sense and education to protect children and pets alike.
How You Can Help
One can feel terribly helpless witnessing a loose dog in a pickup truck. The best course of action is to try to get the vehicle’s license number (if you can do so while remaining safe) and call the local police. Rather than dialing 911, Jill Buckley, ASPCA Senior Director of Government Relations, suggests storing your police precinct’s phone number in your cell phone.

A Rescued Dogs Prayer

Thank you for rescuing me … I know you’ve thought long and hard about a new friend
Something about my soulful eyes and soft fur touched a very special part of you.
I wanted to share with you a bit of me,
and what might help me to be the best pup for you.
Up until a few weeks ago I had the perfect dog life,
and then one day, a day like every other,
Ended with me being abandoned.
I’ve been at the shelter, on the end of a chain,
In a field, or sitting on the side of the road
Waiting, scared, moved from place to place
With no idea of who to trust or what is going to happen.
Thankful for the fresh water, food, a warm place to sleep and sometimes kind people.
And then you chose me …
Please give me time to adjust to you and to learn your expectations of me.
All I want is to please you, I just do not know how to yet.
I ask you to please give me patience and understanding.
I don’t yet know what you want of me.
Teach me softly, consistently,
Outside, down, fetch, sit, good dog!
If you don’t understand my behavior,
It may be because I have been abused, abandoned, neglected.
Sometimes I may be afraid of you, of other people, of loud noises or sudden movements.
Time and patience will help me learn to trust again.
Please forgive me if I am protective of my food.
I was so very hungry for a very long time.
Someday I’ll understand that my food bowl will never again be empty.
Adopt me because you want me,
Because under my faults and flaws you see who I really am,
You understand that each of us is not perfect,
That our imperfections actually show our individual beauty.
And last but not least, please give me the precious time
I need to adjust to your house, to your home, to you.
I will bond to you … be it today, or tomorrow … or next week
And I promise with all that I am that I will be
Your most loyal, loving, forever friend.

By Luvin’ Labs


A Rescued Dogs Prayer was written with input from all of us at Luvin’ Labs to try to help new owner’s understand that their newly rescued lab needs some time to adjust.  Thanks to each and every one of you for your input!

Pictures are of Sir Lancelot, a 3 year old yellow Labrador Retriever rescued from the Garland, Texas shelter by many rescues working together.  He was an owner surrender who knows sit, shake, and lie down and was just left there, and rescued hours before being put to sleep.  The “Sad Lab” picture at the top of post circulated all over the internet waiting for a rescue to commit to him.  The “Happy Lab” picture at the bottom was after he was rescued, and safe, in boarding.  We are happy to say that Sir Lancelot is living his happily ever after with his new family in Albuquerque, NM!

Today is a sad day for the rescue community around the world. Every once in a while, a story comes along that seems to unite the world. Lennox, a family pet, the victim of breed specific legislation, was just that sweet soul. Lennox was euthanized today in Belfast, Northern Ireland because he looked like a banned breed, a pit bull. His family fought for 2 years to free him, to no avail. They were not even allowed to see him before he was pts and last they heard, they might get to have some of his ashes. Our hearts go out to his family and we wish Lennox peace and freedom at the rainbow bridge. To read more about Lennox, please visit the link: http://www.lifewithdogs.tv/2011/03/lennox-sentenced-to-death-in-trial-by-tape-measure-appeals-planned/

Luvin’ Labs alumni Rigel his brother Tenner play in the snow!


 

It came to me that every time I lose a dog, they take a piece of my heart with them. And every new dog who comes into my life gifts me with a piece of their heart. If I live long enough, all the components of my heart will be dog, and I will become as generous and loving as they are.
~ Unknown

 

When God made me, he spelled his name backwards and called me Dog.

I am a dog. I am a living, breathing animal. I feel pain, joy, love, fear and pleasure.

I am not a thing. If I am hit – I will bruise, I will bleed, I will break. I will feel pain. I am not a thing.

I am a dog. I enjoy playtime, walk time, but more than anything, I enjoy time with my pack – my family – my people. I want nothing more than to be by the side of my human. I want to sleep where you sleep and walk where you walk. I am a dog and I feel love…I crave companionship.

I enjoy the touch of a kind hand and the softness of a good bed. I want to be inside of the home with my family, not stuck on the end of a chain or alone in a kennel or fenced yard for hours on end. I was born to be a companion, not to live a life of solitude.

I get too cold and I get too hot. I experience hunger and thirst. I am a living creature, not a thing.

When you leave, I want to go with you. If I stay behind, I will eagerly await your return. I long for the sound of your voice. I will do most anything to please you. I live to be your treasured companion.

I am a dog. My actions are not dictated by money, greed, or hatred. I do not know prejudice. I live in the moment and am ruled by love and loyalty.

Do not mistake me for a mindless object. I can feel and I can think. I can experience more than physical pain, I can feel fear and joy. I can feel love and confusion. I have emotions. I understand perhaps more than you do. I am able to comprehend the words you speak to me, but you are not always able to understand me.

I am a dog. I am not able to care for myself without your help. If you choose to tie me up and refuse to feed me, I will starve. If you abandon me on a rural road, I will experience fear and loneliness. I will search for you and wonder why I have been left behind. I am not a piece of property to be dumped and forgotten.

If you choose to leave me at a shelter, I will be frightened and bewildered. I will watch for your return with every footfall that approaches my kennel run.

I am a dog – a living, breathing creature. If you choose to take me home, please provide me with the things that I need to keep me healthy and happy.

Provide me with good food, clean water, warm shelter and your love. Do not abandon me. Do not kick me. Do not dump me when your life gets too busy. Make a commitment to me for the entirety of my life, or do not take me home in the first place.

If you desert me, I do not have the means to care for myself. I am at the mercy of the kindness of people – if I fall into the wrong hands, my life will be ruined.

I will experience pain, fear and loneliness. If I wind up in an animal shelter, I have only my eyes to implore someone to save me, and my tail to show you that I am a friend. If that is not good enough, I will die.

I am a dog. I want to give and receive love. I want to live. I am not a thing. I am not a piece of property. Please do not discard me. Please treat me with kindness, love and respect. I promise to repay you with unconditional love for as long as I live.

By Jim Willis, 2001

When I was a puppy, I entertained you with my antics and made you laugh. You called me your child, and despite a number of chewed shoes and a couple of murdered throw pillows, I became your best friend.  Whenever I was”bad,” you’d shake your finger at me and ask “How could you?” — but then you’d relent, and roll me over for a bellyrub. My housebreaking took a little longer than expected, because you were terribly busy, but we worked on that together.  I remember those nights of nuzzling you in bed and listening to your confidences and secret dreams, and I believed that life could not be any more perfect.  We went for long walks and runs in the park, car rides, stops for ice cream (I only got the cone because “ice cream is bad for dogs,” you said), and I took long naps in the sun waiting for you to come home at the end of the day.

Gradually, you began spending more time at work and on your career, and more time searching for a human mate.  I waited for you patiently, comforted you through heartbreaks and disappointments, never chided you about bad decisions, and romped with glee at your homecomings, and when you fell in love.  She, now your wife, is not a “dog person” — still I welcomed her into our home, tried to show her affection, and obeyed her.  I was happy because you were happy.  Then the human babies came along and I shared your excitement.  I was fascinated by their pinkness, how they smelled, and I wanted to mother  them, too.  Only she and you worried that I might hurt them, and I spent most of my time banished to another room, or to a dog crate.  Oh, how I wanted to love them, but I became a “prisoner of love.”

As they began to grow, I became their friend.  They clung to my fur and pulled themselves up on wobbly legs, poked fingers in my eyes, investigated my ears, and gave me kisses on my nose.  I loved everything about them and their touch — because your touch was now so infrequent — and I would have defended them with my life if need be.  I would sneak into their beds and listen to their worries and secret dreams, and together we waited for the sound of your car in the driveway.

There had been a time, when others asked you if you had a dog, that you produced a photo of me from your wallet and told them stories about me.  These past few years, you just answered “yes” and changed the subject.  I had gone from being “your dog” to “just a dog,” and you resented every expenditure on my behalf.  Now, you have a new career opportunity in another city, and you and they will be moving to an apartment that does not allow pets.  You’ve made the right decision  for your “family,” but there was a time when I was your only family.

I was excited about the car ride until we arrived at the animal shelter.  It smelled of dogs and cats, of fear, of hopelessness.  You filled out the paperwork and said “I know you will find a good home for her.”  They shrugged and gave you a pained look.  They understand the realities facing a middle-aged dog, even one with “papers.”   You had to pry your son’s fingers loose from my collar as he screamed “No, Daddy!  Please don’t let them take my dog!”  And I worried for him, and what  lessons you had just taught him about friendship and loyalty,  about love and responsibility, and about respect for all life.  You gave me a good-bye pat on the head, avoided my eyes, and politely refused to take my collar and leash with you.  You had a deadline to meet and now I have one, too.  After you left, the two nice ladies said you probably knew about your upcoming move months ago and made no attempt to find me another good home.  They shook their heads and asked “How could you?”  They are as attentive to us here in the shelter as their busy  schedules  allow.  They feed us, of course, but I lost my appetite days ago.  At first,whenever anyone passed my pen, I rushed to the front, hoping it was you that you had changed your mind — that this was all a bad dream … or I hoped it would at least be someone who cared, anyone who might save me. When I realized I could not compete with the frolicking for attention of happy puppies, oblivious to their own fate, I retreated to a far corner and waited.

I heard her footsteps as she came for me at the end of the day, and I padded along the aisle after her to a separate room.  A blissfully quiet room. She placed me on the table and rubbed my ears, and told me not to worry.     My heart pounded in anticipation of what was to come, but there was also a sense of relief.  The prisoner of love had run out of days.  As is my nature, I was more concerned about her.  The burden which she bears weighs heavily on her, and I know that, the same way I knew your every mood.  She gently placed a  turniquet around my foreleg as a tear ran down her cheek.  I licked her hand in the same way I used to comfort you so many years ago.  She expertly slid the hypodermic needle into my vein.  As I felt the sting and the cool liquid coursing through my body, I lay down sleepily, looked into her kind eyes and murmured “How could you?”

Perhaps because she understood my dogspeak, she said “I’m so sorry.” She hugged me, and  hurriedly explained it was her job to make sure I went to a better place, where I wouldn’t be ignored or abused or abandoned, or have to fend for myself — a place of love and light so very different from this earthly place.  And with my last bit of energy, I tried to convey to her with a thump of my tail that my “How could you?” was not directed at her.  It was you, My Beloved Master, I was thinking of.  I will  think of you and wait for you forever.  May everyone in your life continue to show you so much loyalty.

The End

A note from the author:
If “How Could You?” brought tears to your eyes as you read it, as it did to mine as I wrote it, it is because it is the composite story of the millions of formerly owned pets who die each year in American and  Canadian animal shelters.  Anyone is welcome to distribute the essay for a noncommercial purpose, as long as it is properly attributed with the copyright notice.

Please use it to help educate, on your websites, in newsletters, on animal shelter and vet office bulletin boards.  Tell the public that the decision to add a pet to the family is an important one for life, that animals deserve our love and sensible care, that finding another appropriate home for your animal is your responsibility and any local humane society or animal welfare league can offer you good advice, and that all life is precious.  Please do your part to stop the killing, and encourage all spay & neuter campaigns in order to prevent unwanted animals.

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“I looked at all the caged animals in the shelter…the cast-offs of human society. I saw in their eyes love and hope, fear and dread, sadness and betrayal. And I was angry. “God,” I said, “this is terrible! Why don’t You do something?” God was silent for a moment and then He spoke softly. “I have done something,” He replied. “I created YOU.” ~ Jim Willis ~

Her eyes met mine as she walked down the corridor peering apprehensively into the kennels.  I felt her need instantly and knew I had to help her.

I wagged my tail, not too exuberantly, so she wouldn’t be afraid. As she stopped at my kennel I blocked her view from a little accident I had in the back of my cage. I didn’t want her to know that I hadn’t been walked today. Sometimes the overworked shelter keepers get too busy and I didn’t want her to think poorly of them.

As she read my kennel card I hoped that she wouldn’t feel sad about my past. I only have the future to look forward to and want to make a difference in someone’s life.

She got down on her knees and made little kissy sounds at me. I shoved my shoulder and side of my head up against the bars to comfort her. Gentle fingertips caressed my neck; she was desperate for companionship. A tear fell down her cheek and I raised my paw to assure her that all would be well.

Soon my kennel door opened and her smile was so bright that I instantly jumped into her arms.

I would promise to keep her safe.
I would promise to always be by her side.
I would promise to do everything I could to see that radiant smile and sparkle in her eyes.

I was so fortunate that she came down my corridor. So many more are out there who haven’t walked the corridors. So many more to be saved. At least I could save one.

I rescued a human today.

by Janine Allen