My passion for rescuing dogs started at a very young age. I was forever bringing home little animals to save them. I was raised with the knowledge that there were not enough homes out there for all the unwanted and abandoned stray dogs.
I have over 30 years experience working with dogs- from dog obedience training schools, to my Mobile Dog Washing/Hydrobathing service, to Veterinary Nursing. For the past 10 years I have been a member of the great team at Ourimbah Veterinary Hospital. My passion throughout the years for rehoming dogs has never faltered, I have lost count of the number of dogs I have re-homed with wonderful loving families.
In 2012, life gave me the opportunity to dedicate a lot more of my time to rescuing dogs. I began volunteering as a foster carer for an Australian based dog rescue group. At times we’d have up to 15-20 dogs in our care! Some were on death row in shelters across the Sydney area and just needed a safe place to live temporarily.
It’s an unfortunate reality when some shelters reach full capacity, they have no choice but to euthanise to make room for the next lot of dumped dogs or puppies needing a kennel.
In a period of 24 months I’ve re-homed approximately 110 dogs and puppies! At times I’ve have pregnant females or a mum who’d already given birth to a litter of pups. I then added to our already purpose built foster dog yard (approx 900sq metres) a concrete play area so we can quarantine mums with puppies to reduce the risk of disease and keep the area hygienic.
During my time with the rescue group I became a Foster Care Co-ordinator for NSW and in this time another volunteer and myself toyed with the idea of starting our very own dog rescue for Working dog breeds! From this came the dawning of our rescue Herd2Homes!
We have been operating as a Dog Rescue since mid August 2015. Since then we have already re-homed 12 dogs including 2 puppies and currently have 25 dogs and puppies in foster care, with 6 carers!
|Our goal is to save and rehome puppies and dogs from working properties and farms in sometimes remote areas. To educate people and encourage the surrender of dogs and/or pups to our rescue rather than ‘fixing the problem themselves’.
Especially when living many miles from vets or any townships! We want them to know we are here to help them and their dogs, they are not alone.
Stories of survival
Four young Kelpie puppies were about to meet their end on a property in northern NSW, lucky for them a young female worker found us on social media and asked us to take them in. With a team of dedicated dog loving friends- one helper drove 4 hours one way and then back, our next volunteer drove 3 hours to collect and drop off two pups to a carer before heading back to the Central Coast with the remaining two rescued pups!
The next weekend we receive another plea to collect a beautiful female Australian cattle dog and her 11 little newborn puppies, sadly they were to be drowned- again our 4 wonderful volunteers drove out to Tamworth to collect her with the puppies and brought them back to safety to Central Coast for an overnight for a rest – then onto Bathurst and the final leg down to Deniliquin which was about a 12 hour drive to where the co-founder of Herd2homes lives on a 900acre property!
Some foster dogs have been impounded for months through no fault of their own. We rescue working dog breeds as they particularly cannot cope well being locked up for hours and hours each day, sometimes for several months.
We will be testing some of the working dogs coming into our care to see if they have the ability to work and herd sheep, if so, they will go onto a working farm to see if they have potential to be homed as a true working dog!
Many of our dogs coming into care are quite happy to lounge around in the sunshine not wanting to work stock or go for marathon runs so we have dogs to suit most families!
We do have a compulsory questionnaire before we discuss any potential dogs for adoption as to assess their level of commitment to the breed as far as nurturing their mental and physical stimulation on a daily basis. Most of the time these dogs have found themselves in the pound because their ‘energy’ levels were not matched well with the families wanting to have them in their lives!
One of our 11 week old puppies will be trained up to be NSW Search and Rescue dog!! Others have part-time jobs on dairy farms where they can laze away the afternoons with their family! Some are companion dogs for active families!
Fostering is the most rewarding experience you can wish for – to see these beautiful dogs running around playing and running up to give thanks with a kiss and look at you with such gratitude , well money can’t buy you that! You don’t need to be at home all the time nor a ‘dog trainer’ to be a carer. These dogs just need a place to rest safely until their forever home is found :)