Since the first article about GBR rescuing dogs from Taiwan was published, volunteers have made several trips to Seattle, one to Los Angeles and one to San Francisco to meet dogs coming from Taiwan. The total number of dogs rescued from Taiwan is 30 and one from South Korea. Pictures of some of those dogs are scattered throughout this article.
It was pretty exciting for those volunteers who drove to SeaTac to meet the first group of dogs to arrive from Taiwan. We didn’t know what to expect and in what shape the dogs would be. We were surprised and shocked when the Sky Caps brought crate after crate after crate out to the baggage area. We soon learned that a total of 21 dogs had been sent from Taiwan, though only five were for Golden Bond Rescue. Other than the goldens for GBR, all the other dogs were Formosan Mountain Dogs sent to the U.S. by Animal Rescue Team Taiwan (ARTT) for a Seattle based mixed breed rescue.
After the goldens were released to GBR by their flight escort, they were taken to a grassy/dirt area just outside the Arrival Terminal. One by one, the dogs were taken out of their crates to get a drink of water and to pee. Once the essentials were taken care of, GBR’s newest goldens began to act like typical goldens: PET ME! PET ME!
With each additional group of goldens to arrive, we found them all to be pretty much the same in stature and in temperament. Physically, they usually arrive shaved with a lion-type hair cut. Only their heads and the tips of their tails are left with long hair. This makes them easier to keep clean, tick and flea free, and are cooler in the hot and humid Taiwan climate. They are stockier than the golden we generally see in the Pacific NW. We’ve found that their rear leg muscles are mildly to severely atrophied. This is because they have been kept in kennels for long periods without exercise.
All vaccinations have been given before coming to the U.S and they have been neutered. In addition, they were tested for heartworm (treated if positive) and several tick borne diseases (treated as well, if positive). They have been dewormed, and microchipped, plus for as long as they were in their Taiwan rescuer’s care, they were given a monthly flea/heartworm preventative,
When the dogs arrive in Oregon, they are immediately taken to a GBR vet where they get a thorough exam, fecal and urine analysis tests, as well as a blood test. A few of the dogs have had allergy issues (no surprise there!), a few have been anemic, and some with ear infections. Overall, they come to GBR pretty healthy.
Temperament-wise to a dog, they have all been so calm, so sweet and a delight to have in a home. They don’t bark much but usually need some help getting the hang of living in a house. Most of the dogs (a few have come from Taiwanese foster homes) have been living on the street for months or years then moved to a shelter and don’t know the comfort of a soft bed and regular meals.
Because we found the dogs to be so calm and well adjusted when they arrive, we have been placing them in pre-approved foster-to-adopt homes. Whether placed in a foster-to-adopt home or a regular foster home, they all need quiet time in order to adjust to their new environment, new food, new language (no they don’t understand English commands or their names), and chillier weather. Just as a person who has flown for many hours must get over jet lag, so do these dogs. They need time to figure out what’s what.
GBR will continue to help as many of the Taiwanese goldens as we can; however, that does not mean we will ignore our local goldens and golden mixes needing help. Unless a dog is aggressive toward people and/or severely aggressive to other dogs, GBR will not turn down a golden who needs our help!