Thursday, July 30, 2009

Lilly - stirring it up in USA

Lilly in the Orchard, enjoying romps off leash

Two exciting updates rolled into one, from Lilly's new family:
Amy writes to confirm something that we were all hoping to hear and never doubted... that Lilly really is a fine ambassador for Singapore's strays! She's been out and about at dog-friendly events and has stirred up interest in international adoption. Hey hey hey, just what we wanted to hear!

Amy says: "Lilly is truly very special. I believe that her way of making one feel special and delighted to have her attention, will make her a wonderful therapy dog, once she socializes a bit more." Let's all keep paws crossed that over time, and with Amy's training, Lilly will be assessed as suitable for such work. What a strike for Singapore Specials that would be.
Lilly's skinny dipping gets her into trouble:

I rushed home from work today, having received a distressed call from my girls that Lilly had disappeared in the orchard on a walk. I ran to the top hill of the orchard and whistled. Lilly raced up in minutes - smiling and dripping wet. When we walked together towards one of the ponds, she took off and was skimming the water in a graceful splash - looking back as if to encourage us to join her. Bindu did, and then the girls.

Lilly loves running free - but will be on leash with the girls, as she will not come to them when they call her. I'm not sure if she just trusts me more - she never strays out of my sight, or if she figures that they're just kids, and no need to mind them. But they have some training with treats to do.
Lilly is playful like a puppy with Hudson and Bindu - wisely she avoids Izzy, who nips everyone she plays with.

Hugs from us all - especially Lil Lil (as my girls have taken to calling her)
Amy and family,
Brimfield, MA : USA
"Dogs are our link to paradise. They don't know evil or jealousy or discontent. To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring -- it was peace. "-- Milan Kundera

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Lilly - in the big outdoors!

Dear Singapore family

I'm one of the pack now. I prefer to be the lead dog - hold my tail high, and smile back at my humans with lots of love...
... and when Amy is at work, I chew marrow bones and get lessons from the girls.
I am happy and everyone is happy with me, even old Izzy. Though she steals my bones, I just take hers and we all get along.

Amy sends her best regards!
Much Love,
Lilly (American Canine Citizen)
Brimfield, MA

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


by the luckiest 'mom' in the world!

Dear Sherry and Jacque and Carol,

Lilly is Home! Please forgive me for such a long pause in communication - I decided to play hookie from work to spend a few sweet, quiet days with Lilly in Woodstock (no internet access).

She was never more than a few feet from my side - always watching me intently. On the 3 hr ride up to Ma, she perched on the arm rest with her head nearly on my shoulder. She was beginning to relax.

Lilly is cuddled beside me now as I write - with the most soulful eyes I've ever seen. She is a joy. True to her name, a special lady - dainty and elegant - and with a Brave Heart.

We have all settled in together at home in Brimfield today - having a romp in the orchard with her new pack, Lilly was tolerant of the sniffing and attention - but held her own. In the house, Lilly gracefully endured some unpleasant behaviors from Izzy (17lb 10 yr old female Boston Terror) and Bindu (Big, 1 yr old spayed, female rescue) and a cold shoulder from Hudson (Bigger, 4 yr old intact male). I wish I could tell you that our canines offered a warm welcome, but despite their initial inhospitable behaviors, Lilly is not in retreat - she bravely stands by me, polite, but firm.

Lilly has 3 new feline friends (we are relieved she doesn't chase them) - and didn't chase the chickens! I will post photos as soon as I am able. We are thrilled to have Lilly here with us, and I beleive she is beginning to feel at home.

I thank you all for sending Lilly to us - much more news to come!

In thanks, Amy

Friday, July 17, 2009

Lilly touches down!

Email from Susannah Goodloe, one of the SSOS team who made Lilly's journey to USA possible. What a sweeties, sitting in the back seat of Susannah's car, looking a doll!

Hi Sherry
I genuinely enjoyed bringing Lilly upstate today. Everything went pretty well and she was very calm throughout the day. Before leaving JFK she had a few bites of kibble and some water and we even took advantage of a sliver of grass.

We were met by Amy's cousin, who said that Amy's sister Hillary would be bringing Lilly up to see her this weekend.

Since the crate was big I put it in the back and let her sit in the backseat. She was an angel for the whole ride and even napped. What a sweetie! I'm sure she'll be quite something once she gains some confidence.
I've attached some photos of our journey (which are also posted on facebook).

Farewell to Lilly

Lilly & Christine, Terminal 3

Departure Day: Thursday, 16th July 2009, 2100 hrs:

Happy and relaxed after two woppingly long walks, Lilly hops into the back of the car, and heads off to the airport - with Martin, Sherry & Christine for company - to check in for her Singapore Airlines flight to New York City, and a new life as a much-loved pet!

Angela & Lilly at check-in

It wasn't hard for passenger Angela to find us; we were the ones with a dog crate covered in love messages - and of course a fine looking dog. Walking happily on leash with Christine, tail wagging high, we headed to the priority check-in counter (no-one there, we got first class service thanks to Angela's "gold" travel card), up on the scales to discover dog-in-crate weighed 29 Kgs, then round the corner to the Excess Baggage Charge desk. Singapore Airlines now charges on a "per piece" concept so lovely Lilly's fare was an affordable S$ 300 - Bow Wow Economy Class!

Sherry, Lilly & Christine
My calm exterior cracked a little when Lilly got anxious and "asked" to be let out of the crate, but taking deep breaths I ignored her, managing to say a grateful thanks to Angela for being such a hero as she headed off to the departure lounge, with all Lilly's paperwork in hand. Christine finally dissolved when Lilly was wheeled away, but through tears said she knew this was a great chance for Lilly. I believe so too.

Courtesy of Carol & Paul, Lilly's inflight entertainment was a delicious marrow bone that will last the whole journey. Jacqueline gifted Lilly with her special St. Christopher's charm to keep her safe on the journey, and I gave up a sweaty old t-shirt so she could sniff and daydream about our walks on the beach. Home then for a long anxious wait until we hear of Lilly's safe arrival.

The night before : Lilly's Champagne Farewell Party with the PJs

"What's going on 'ere?" an inquisitive and indignant Lilly asks, "That's my bedroom wall you're writing on!"

Tim and Jacqueline arrive for Lilly's farewell the night before departure with the customary bottle of fine Champers to celebrate Lilly's voyage to America, and after numerous hugs and I-love-yous with the golden girl Lilly, they write a special "bon voyage" message on Lilly's crate.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Farewell to Lilly

by Carol Peiffer

Carol & Lilly out walking
Lilly, our first SSOS rescue dog (Singapore Special OverSeas) is on her way to our friend Amy's house near Boston, USA.

My son, Paul, and I said our good-byes a couple days earlier so as not to upset Lilly on her day of departure - I was bound to bawl! There were many happy tears here in Singapore, as she became a fast favorite to all who came to know her. We were all delighted to know she was heading to such a wonderful home.

Lilly will spend her summers swimming in the Atlantic and winters playing in the snow in the mountains. At her home, she will spend time with her new family along with two dogs, two cats, farm animals, wild animals and a large extended family of friends on a huge farm land with lots of acres to play on.

She will no longer have to hide from cruel dog catchers and abusers, and never go hungry again.

Thank you to everyone for your prayers and support. Best wishes for Lilly and her new life.


Wednesday, July 15, 2009

What a difference a boy makes!

Lilly's last day's in Singapore and Daisy's progress:

A little over a week has gone by since Daisy came to me for fostering - time, I felt, to step up her socialisation with the help of some willing and dog knowledgeable friends, Carol and her son Paul. A great way to introduce dogs to new people (or to other dogs) is through walking together, so we rendezvous'd at East Coast Park yesterday morning - an area where Daisy already feels relaxed - and off we set along the empty footpaths. Four people, four dogs. It took only a couple of moments for Daisy and Lilly to fall into stride beside Paul and 20 minutes later, by the time we headed down to the beach, Paul and Daisy were best mates!

Fully clothed (no bathers!), Paul and I waded into the sea, quickly followed by Daisy (stark naked) who didn't need too much encouragement. She's a great swimmer, happily circling me and Paul in fluid doggy paddle, not at all concerned by the gentle waves as Lilly sometimes is.

With only a couple of days before Lilly heads to USA, I decided to carry Lilly in deep, just to see how she'd get on. With a calmness so typical of Lilly, she doggy paddled back to shore, wondering what all the clapping was about. It was so wonderful watching her that I took her in again!

Not all dogs are destined to feel comfortable around children, and Daisy is possibly one of them. She's scared of sudden movements and loud noises and when in fearful mode, she's less happy to be handled, taking a warning nip if she feels threatened. Already I've witnessed a tremendous improvement though and with a little time and patience, and as her good experiences with people and her trust in them grows, she may overcome this. After all, she's still very young and has only been in a safe home environment for a few days. My strategy will be to try and avoid placing her in any situation that
elicits a fearful nip.
Next morning, Daisy broke new ground, boldly walking out of my front gate, across 3 roads, past moving cars and a barking dog, and onto the pedestrian pathway through my local park. On leash of course, and with 3 K9 pals. A miracle! Last time I tried this, we had to turn back within a few minutes, and I kicked myself for putting her through so much terror so early. She even managed to walk past a great big digger machine with just a slight quickening of her pace. I've noticed that rather than crouching and trying to pull away from scary moving objects (such as walkers and bikers), Daisy now stops and stares at them, not pulling away, before turning and walking on. I'm reading that as a good sign!