Dobby was originally found as a stray in Louisiana with a severely mangled front leg that needed to be amputated. Once recovered, he was adopted by a woman who also had a cat, though given his hound instincts, Dobby had a difficult time differentiating friend from food and was brought to a foster home in New England. The foster home absolutely loved Dobby, but he was unfortunately not getting along with the two other large dogs in the home. They reached out to Our Companions knowing he needed specialized care and training and Dobby became a part of our Sanctuary family in February of 2019.
Despite having three legs, Dobby never let that slow him down. He had loads of energy and was the epitome of excitement! He had a superb prey drive and loved jumping, leaping, and running for critters. Thankfully, the 47 acre Sanctuary has three miles of trails and five fenced-in play yards for Dobby to fully enjoy. He received some basic training prior to his arrival, but had no attention skills and it was very difficult for him to keep focus on his person with the many distractions of the real world. To help, the team worked diligently to ensure Dobby received plenty of exercise without overworking his only front leg. He had a special harness that helped alleviate some of the weight on his leg. A gracious person even donated custom fitted wheels to help Dobby navigate around rougher terrain. It was a slow introduction to the wheels to ensure he wasn’t overwhelmed with the contraption, but with Dobby’s tenacity, he took on the challenge head on and did great! Dobby also attended our positive reinforcement training classes to gain better focus on his person and be less reactive around other distractions. Dobby was progressing each day, gaining better attention and trust in his circle of friends.
Someone caught the eye of Dobby that was looking for a dog-social dog with similar build. She loved caring for dogs with special needs, like her blind dog at home, and wanted to adopt Dobby to give him all the care he needed. After several meetings, field trips, and weekend getaways, they moved forward with the adoption. Though, with the weeks and months that passed, it was apparent things weren’t working out. Dobby’s resource guarding traits escalated, even with items he’s never resource guarded before. It was difficult to manage with the other dog in the home being blind and not understanding Dobby’s resource guarding body language. With our lifetime promise, we welcomed Dobby back with open arms, now knowing what would be a better fit for Dobby.
Dobby acclimated back to the Sanctuary fairly well. We understood that Dobby’s resource guarding could become much more severe in a home with other animals and he now needed to be an only pet. A lovely couple that recently moved to Connecticut came across Dobby and it was “love at first sight”. Though they were first time pet owners, they were completely committed to accepting Dobby and giving him the care he needed. At this time, the events of the Covid pandemic were unraveling and dog adoptions were put on pause until a greater sense of the pandemic was revealed. The couple were incredibly patient and willing to wait for when the time was right. After quite some time, we decided that this would be a great opportunity to try out our dog adoption process with the new norm. Meetings were held outside, with masks, and everyone was socially distant. The couple loved Dobby for his quirky, bubbly personality and appreciated the training and support OC provided. Dobby became the first dog adoption after the Covid pandemic was announced in May of 2020. Being huge hockey fans, they renamed Dobby as Hat Trick, a play that involves three successes in a row. Not only does Hat trick have three legs, but they feel like they truly won being able to adopt such a sweet dog. They sent us this sweet update, “Dustin and I find ourselves asking quite frequently how we got such a “sweet woof” to add to our family. He fits so perfectly into our lives and we wouldn’t trade him for the world.”
Later last year, we followed up with Hat Trick’s mom and dad to see how things were going. They continued to work with Hat Trick with his wheels and gave us this wonderful update, “We did get married on September 19th and Hat Trick LOVED his first “vacation” to Pittsburgh. He was able to meet both sets of Grand’paw’ents and really enjoyed hanging out with mom on the back porch before all of the festivities began! He also was pretty keen on riding the luggage cart in the hotel and deemed the hotel bed as his own for the week.”
Recently, his mom and dad let us know some very exciting news! Hat Trick will be getting promoted to big brother in June! We are so incredibly happy for this wonderful family and wish them many more happy memories!