We suddenly lost our dog “Dolly” who was 11 yrs old on Xmas Eve last year.  Dolly had been a part of our family for 9yrs as we got her from the pound when she was 2 years old after she had been re-homed 3 times prior to us. 

Although we had decided that we would wait a while before we got another dog, the void that was left from Dolly was so great that we started looking within 2wks of loosing her.

We looked up the AWL website every day and visited most days.  We did like a few days but never ended up with one until 6wks later when we found 2 dogs that we liked, “TJ” 12mth old staffy crossed wired haired terrier and “Zehia” a 9mth old wolfhound cross.

Finally after 3 visits on consecutive days to see the dogs, “TJ” impressed us as he suddenly seemed settled and was fetching and sitting on my daughters knee so “TJ” it was.

We had been warned by the AWL that he was an escape artist and might be a handful but I saw great potential in him and knew that if I put in the work he would be a great dog.

Well here we are 5wks on since we got “TJ”, he has been such a great little dog.  His obedience is improving all the time and now he can sit, shake both hands, drop, beg and wait.  I am still teaching him to sit and stay (does it 80% of the time) and walk on a lead without pulling.

Yes he did escape a day after getting him when we opened the gate however he only ran into our neighbours house and jumped up onto the lounge beside him to watch the cricket. TJ will now stand and wait at the front gate for me and doesn’t run out when I walk out through the gate. He will sit at the door and wait for me to re-enter without trying to go out the door.  Now this is real progress as many of the AWL staff will know!!!!!!!!!

TJ has slept outside on our balcony EVERY night, he knows when it is bed time and happily goes outside and gets into his chair or bed.  He doesn’t bark or scratch at the door at all.  Now for the mischievous side to him,  he is a real character who charms most people with his good looks.  He will happily go when asked in to wake up our 14 and 16 year old daughters by jumping up on them in bed. He loves to explore in their rooms and how gradually learnt (and is still learning)  what he can and can’t play with.  At times he still likes to relocate the odd shoe or item however if I ignore him he will usually walk away or I can distract him with his toys.  We have just started taking him to the dog park which he loves as he is a very social dog.

TJ rides in the car and has his own seatbelt on however still likes to stick his nose out the car window.  He enjoys going for a walk 3-4 times a week but most of all he just loves playing and being around others.  I can leave him at home during the day if I need to go out, I always give him a wobbly kong with treats in it and throw out a few small treats in the back yard for him to find.  Most of the time when I return, (3-4hrs later) he is usually fast asleep on the balcony or in his chair.

We love having TJ around and although he still has further training to undergo, he is responding well to my training and settling more every day. He enjoys chasing the lizards in the gardens and happily watches the kangaroos and golf buggies on the golf course without looking to jump our 4ft fence at our back boundary. “TJ” is such a funny and loveable dog who just wanted to be part of the family.  He loves interacting with our neighbours and if TJ sees them in the back yard will go and sit on a chair at the side fence waiting for them to come and give him a pat and a treat.

“TJ” wants to make a visit back to the AWL in the near future just to say hello but not stay!!!!  We have attached some photos of TJ, he has his own photo album.

Thank you to everyone at the AWL, (especially JAKE, Monique and Anna), who were so understanding and patient with us whilst we waiting for the right dog to come along.  Look forward to bringing TJ back for a VISIT soon.