Our Available Dogs

Roscoe (ADOPTED!) is an Australian Kelpie and Cattle Dog mix, with a super sweet, soft, happy personality. He is 1.5 to 2 years old, weighs 51 lbs. and is just a big, happy-go-lucky puppy! He needs a quiet, calm home situation, and would love at least one other dog friend to play with. He is very friendly and polite with people, but is initially unsure when meeting new humans. People must go slow to gain his acceptance. Shouting and sudden actions in a busy household will scare him and send him running.

There is not a mean bone in Roscoe’s body. He loves to meet and play with all dogs. He is submissive to other dogs and accepts reprimands from them very well. He is the best natured, most even tempered dog. He is also very quiet, only giving out one bark, when he is very excited to get another dog to play with him.

Roscoe wants to belong to a family/pack, and to have a human to bond with. He has the velcro nature of a cattle dog and follows his foster mom from room to room. He will check in often with his human, happily wagging his tail when he sees him/her. Although he has the energy to run and play, during the day he is also content to be inside, relaxing near his person, who he looks to for direction. If he understands, he will try to do what you ask. He is a silly guy with a sense of humor, and always has the best intentions. If his foster mom tells another dog to stop misbehaving, Roscoe gently nudges the other dog as if to say, “Stop, Mom says no.” However, when he is told to calm down, he wags and smiles a big “You don’t really mean it?!” grin.

Roscoe is very eager to please, highly attentive to his person/people, and extremely food motivated. Whenever his foster mom calls him, he immediately and very happily comes. Most of the time Roscoe is very polite. He initially would not step inside a doorway until invited or led in on leash. in a few days, he learned from the other dogs in his foster home that it is ok to just come in.

He walks fairly well on leash. He may walk out to the end of his leash in his desire to explore, but will not pull. He is also is completely housebroken. However, in just the first day or two in a new home, he may try to lift his leg to mark in the house, especially if there is another resident male dog. He was neutered on April 7, 2021, and in another month or so his marking behavior may diminish.

Usually after a meal and an outing to do his business, the puppy in him comes out. Bursting with joy, he just wants to play with other dogs and toys, and to race around the house. At these times, he can get carried away and become a pest to the other dogs with his insistence to play. He often seems to not understand when another dog is trying to get away or wrinkling a nose to tell him to back off.  In these moments, he can become mouthy, trying to playfully nibble or mouth on another dog or on the hand/arm of his person. Like an overly stimulated toddler, he can’t stop himself. Sometimes we can redirect him by giving him a squeaker toy to play with, and other times we give him a time-out, by luring him to another area and separating him. He will usually become calm within a minute or two.

He adores food, and will take delicious smelling items off a counter, if within reach. He recently took a carving knife, that was used to cut a rotisserie chicken, off the kitchen counter and dropped it at our feet in the living room! When people are eating, he will often beg for a morsel, usually by placing one paw, and then two paws, on your leg or arm to let you know he would like a bite. Although Roscoe is very drawn to food, he has a very soft mouth and take food very nicely from your hand.

When it’s mealtime, Roscoe is very patient and polite while his food is being prepared. He gobbles his meal like a starving animal. We are teaching him not to go to another dog’s bowl while they are still eating. He has no guarding tendencies around food, toys or anything else.

As a big puppy, Roscoe enjoys all toys. He is a ball dog, and loves both plush squeaker and chew toys. He does not chew on anything inappropriate, and only chews what he is given. He mostly enjoys squeezable balls and squeaky toys. He also loves a peanut butter filled Kong at bedtime.

Roscoe can be a wily escape artist if on a leash or if tied to something. He is a master at chewing cleanly through a leash or rope to free himself. Especially in the beginning, his people must have a securely fenced outdoor area to keep him contained when outside. After he chewed through three leashes in as many days, we just purchased a leash with a metal cable core and plastic exterior jacket. A metal tie-down or leash should not be attached to him for long periods, as he may damage his teeth as he chews it to try and free himself. If a time-out is needed for him, he does best when separated  in an area behind a baby gate.

While Roscoe possesses a wonderful nature and excellent personality traits that cannot be taught, he is not a turn-key dog for people who have never had a dog before. He wasn’t taught much in his past life, and still needs to learn rules, boundaries, basic obedience commands, and to be kept vigilantly secured by his people, as he can be a flight risk when something scares him.

Roscoe is great with people, but must meet them slowly and quietly. If people approach him quickly, staring at him, with hands outstretched, he may run from them. If you quietly come close, sit down and offer treats without eye contact, he will warm up to you in no time. He just needs a little time to figure out that someone won’t manhandle him. It took him several days to trust the humans in his foster home, and within a week he was bonding to his foster mom. When he received a clean bill of health from the vet, he was thrilled to be able to meet the other dogs at his foster home.

We love this boy, and he is very special to us. At the shelter he was terrified, cowering far away from humans. After 3-weeks he gained trust in a few shelter staff and was happy and friendly. When he was being driven to us, he again didn’t know what was happening or who any of us were. He was very afraid of a slip lead or collar going over/around his head. The van door had not been secured, he pushed it and escaped. For 2-weeks he ran from anyone who called or moved towards him. People who saw him said “He’s running scared” or “He looked terrified.” Only by working with two expert dog trackers and trappers, were we able to methodically figure out his movements and work towards setting a large live trap, baited with rotisserie chicken, in an area where he had been seen. Miraculously, we managed to trap him. Folks in Sonoma County may have seen our fliers and postings, in April, about “Redford” (his shelter name) being lost.

For this reason, we feel the need to take extra time and care in transferring him to a new home. Potential adopters must be willing to have an adoption transition process that spans multiple visits between his foster home in Santa Rosa, CA, and his future home, to allow him to make the mental transition to new people and a new situation. Because of the need for several visits to his foster home, and then a few visits to his adoptive home before he stays, potential adopters must live within about an hour's drive to the Petaluma-Santa Rosa, CA, area.

Roscoe should be in a quiet and calm home, and not allowed off leash in public until he is closely bonded to and has a solid recall with his adopters.

If you have questions or are interested in meeting Roscoe, please email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or leave a message at (707) 583-9583. Completing an adoption form, is the first step to meeting him.

Listo (pronounced LEE-stow) (ADOPTED!) is a super loving, bright, eager to please, 7 year old, mini-sized 32 lb., cattle dog with a big personality. He is the best little companion, who is always up for whatever you want to do, including joining your yoga sessions!  Listo has the classic traits that we love about this breed. He is an extremely intelligent, thinking boy, whose joy is pleasing his people, and is as devoted and loyal a “velcro” dog as they come. More than anything in life, Listo wants to partner and be with his own person/people. However, Listo needs an adult-only home (no children), in a quiet, non-urban setting. While is very good around other dogs in public, he should be an only dog at home, and is not good with cats.

He is a super cute, happy guy who will make you laugh, and seems almost human. After a walk on a wet day, he loves the toweling off ritual, and will roll in the towel. If you forget to do this, he will remind you by ‘nosing’ the towel. He is pretty much chill around a quiet house, and loves to cuddle. When his foster mom is busy during the day, enjoys being out in the yard, relaxing in the sun. Listo does not dig and is not destructive of anything in or around the house. When Listo sees you pick up his harness, he becomes very excited and dances around. He loves going outside, walks nicely on leash. Among a long list of commands, he knows “heel.” He goes through a few here:  https://youtu.be/1U4mZICslvw

He is also highly trained and very obedient and trusting of his human(s). Listo also rides well in a car, and is completely housebroken. He is a quiet dog, who rarely barks, and has great manners. On walks, he is excited to meet new people and will run up to greet them. If off-leash in a park or beach, he enjoys a quick greeting other dogs before running to keep up with his people. Listo is the type of dog you can take with you anywhere. He would be great and can easily go on hikes, camping, kayaking, etc.

When in public, Listo interacts well with other dogs. If allowed to play with other dogs, Listo wants to control their movements and will use herding moves, which may annoy some dogs.

As an energetic guy with an active brain he needs to be exercised every day. He loves working/training and learning new tricks. Listo is very food motivated, and looks forward to his training sessions each day, working for treats to help keep his mind stimulated.

While our boy Listo is a joyful, loving, cuddly, best partner you could ever want, he needs a certain type of person and home. Listo requires someone who understands the nature of cattle dogs, and who will be committed to assisting Listo with his needs.

Listo is very anxiety in certain situations, and should not live in a busy urban/city environment or in a home with children. His love of the sun and the outdoors requires a yard to relax in and serve as his safe place if he cannot be with his person. Listo dislikes crates which he considers to be a jail. He is learning to sleep in a crate at night, but will panic in one during the day. Also, while fantastic meeting people and dogs in public, he needs to be an only dog at home. In his home, he has territorial issues and will compete with another dog. Currently, his foster mom is keeping Listo and her sweet, gentle female cattle dog separate when inside, as Listo will guard a variety of things and try to prevent his foster sister from approaching them, including his foster mom. When unknown people first enter his home, Listo is initially wary and protective of his home. When away from home, he looks to his foster sister to follow her lead and they get along great, and he is happy to meet new people.

Listo is very likely to eventually become a special needs dog. In 2019, an eye specialist noted that Listo's vision was diminishing due to a hereditary condition, which usually leads to blindness. It is estimated that he can currently see about 50%. His foster mom says Listo can see fine during the day, and when a place is well lit. He is very smart and adaptable to his surroundings, and has no problem in new areas. His diminishing vision may be a reason that he likes to regularly conduct a patrol through every room in his foster home. (Our rescue has helped two completely blind male cattle dogs before. Both of them quickly learned their homes and yards so well that you almost couldn’t tell they were blind. They love going to new places with their people and following their lead.)

We are hoping that Listo can find a quiet home with adventurous owners who will enjoy exercising and working with him daily, where the owners understand the special needs of this pup, as well as his cattle dog personality, and are adaptable to his vision loss. As with all cattle dogs, ongoing training with positive reinforcement, exercise, and stimulation are necessary for him to have a happy, healthy life. He is abundantly loving and he will always be by your side and would love to provide companionship to someone who can dedicate time to his needs. For all the reasons above, Listo needs a calm home in a quiet, non-urban, area.

Listo’s Story (by his last people):
Listo has been through a lot. Listo was around 1.5 years old, when rescued as a stray and we adopted him. From the start Listo had anxiety and difficultly calming down when triggers (loud noises, garbage trucks, skateboards, etc.) were present. He would bark, pace constantly, with occasional urinary incontinence. Listo was able to overcome all of this, after a great deal of time, training, patience, and love. He is a graduate of various manners and agility classes.

Working with a behavior specialist, Listo has been on daily doses of Clomicalm for over 4 years; and with continued training, he is now able to refocus even when most triggers are present. He consistently shows us that he is highly trainable as we are always working with him on new tricks and behavior changes.

Likely due to his poor vision and being unfamiliar with children, he only recently nipped at a child’s foot and at the heels of several adult guests in our home who Listo did not know well. Thankfully, no harm was done to anyone. We were working with a trainer in our home to address these issues, but due to the pandemic, were unable to continue with the trainer. The recent birth of our son has also caused an increase in anxiety for Listo at home, as well as overprotective behavior.

If you are interested in meeting Listo, please email us for our new adoption form at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or print and complete the form at the Adopt link (blue bar near top of the page):  http://hittgv.org/index.php/adopt. If you have questions, please leave a message at (707) 583-9583.

 

Thelma (ADOPTED!) is an 8-year-old 35-pound Cattle Dog mix, perhaps with Border collie. She is a very well-balanced sweet dog with wonderful manners. You really could not expect to meet a more polite, easy going girl than Thelma. At her core Thelma is good willed. She is slightly reserved but readily meets new people.  Once comfortable with someone she is engaging with a delightfully playful streak.  

Thelma’s person of 8 years passed away, and she does have some grief. She at times seems unsure of what is expected, and her worried little brow can tug at your heart. She was very shut down at the Animal Shelter and refused any interaction. But she is responding beautifully to new situations and experiences with increasing curiosity and courage.

Beyond anything, Thelma seems to have a joy in life that carries her through. When she first arrived at her foster home she quickly explored the entire house, and then decided the couch looked like the place to be. In the first few days she was submissive; she was wary of interaction and seemed to be fearful of  being touched or making eye contact. But in a very short time she has come to trust her situation and her fear has been replaced with a truly lovely joyful personality.

Thelma’s overriding quality is that she is “well-balanced.” She is house trained and accustomed to living inside. She can be left alone and does not display insecurity or separation anxiety. She does not appear to have ever been in a crate, but we are attempting to slowly introduce the crate as a safe place to be.

She is not pushy in any regard, rather she has a very strong ability to be patient. She has excellent manners in the house and is quiet; she is not a barker. She does “talk” on some occasions particularly when she knows preparations are in the works for a walk. She will give a big smile and a little “Arrrwww” to hurry the process along. Thelma also rides nicely in a car. Her one quirk is that she rides on the floor of the car, preferably in the back behind the driver’s seat. She curls up and stays in place until she senses you are at the destination.

Thelma meets new people and dogs nicely; she is slightly reserved but friendly. When meeting with new dogs Thelma is relaxed and is appropriate in her approach. She fully enjoys hanging out with friendly dogs and responds happily if another dog wants to play, chase being her favorite game. But when hiking on the trail she says a quick “hello” and then moves on. If she meets a dog that is not appropriate Thelma will remove herself from the situation. This girl wants nothing to do with aggression or hostility. We have not seen her eat in front of other dogs but there is no indication that she guards her food. She is not toy oriented. She has no idea what a ball is for, nor does she understand frisbees. She does like treats, but is not obsessed with them and will often refuse a treat from a stranger.

She is calm with children and tolerates being petted by them. But she does not appear to have been around children much and is much more responsive to adults. Her response to cats is varied.  In a few cat interactions, her response has been varied, but in the end, because Thelma does have prey drive and will chase if a cat moves, she would be best in a home without cats or other small animals.

Thelma absolutely adores being outside on trails in the woods. That is her element; she becomes all “dog” outside. She is NOT an apartment dog and should be where she can be outside in nature part of her day. Short walks on a sidewalk will not meet her needs. She walks nicely on a leash when out on a hike in the park or woods, but at times will pull slightly, mainly to stop and smell. But in an urban setting her leash skills are not so good - she will weave from side to side and pull. Also, Thelma does not know about cars, and is somewhat nervous and can freeze if they pass too close. She does not want to chase cars, but she does not know to get out of the way. For that reason Thelma should not be in a home where she has to be walked near traffic.

“Sit,” “lay down,” and “shake hands” are alien words to Thelma. She does not seem to have been formally trained. However, she pays close attention to her person and most of the time seems to understand what is being asked of her. As a very intelligent girl who wants to please, she watches closely for cues and responds amazingly on point. She is a fast learner and quickly learned to come on command.

Thelma does show some Cattle Dog breed tendency to be willful, particularly when asked to go on the leash when she is outside. But even then, her personality trait turns “willful” into “playful” and it becomes a game. She makes it clear that she knows she is being “naughty” and will even prance with sly glances over her shoulder staying just barely out of reach. This has become less of an issue since she has learned to come on command. She does have her preferences when out on a trail and will become stubborn when she sees a trail that interests her. She will give in and come with you if you just continue on. As a cattle dog, Thelma is a velcro dog, and staying with her person is her priority. She is not a dog who roams.

Thelma should be in a home where she can walk and run at least one hour every day. She loves being outside on hiking trails and would probably be a great camping companion.

If you are interested in meeting Thelma, please begin by completing our adoption form at the Adopt link in the blue bar above: http://hittgv.org/index.php/adopt. Download and print the form to be completed. If you have questions, email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or leave a message at (707) 583-9583.

Ollie (ADOPTED!) is a 1 yr. 8 month old, 33-34 lb cattle dog with classic breed traits. He is an incredibly smart, very loving, sweet, ”velcro” pup. He is also very athletic. Ollie has clearly had some trauma in his past life, and has anxiety in some situations. He has a lot of personality and definitely will communicate his feelings to you.

Ollie is a very active and high energy dog. He gets so much joy from being outside and he definitely needs his exercise outside in order to be relatively calm in the house. He’s more of a sprinter and prefers agility challenges (incredible with a frisbee!), but he enjoys his ~4 mile run every morning. His excitement is contagious.

Ollie has been living with us in an apartment (1BR/1BA) with no other animals.  About 4 months ago, we agreed to adopt him to get him out of the shelter environment. We wanted to give him an opportunity to settle after neuter surgery and to make progress on some behavior issues.

At home, Ollie follows us around the apartment. My partner and I both work from home, and when we are working, Ollie will curl up on his dog bed. We take breaks during the day to give him short walks and play mental stimulation games like hide and seek.  If Ollie doesn’t get his morning exercise, he’s extra sensitive to outside noises. When my partner and leave the home, and will be away for more than 20 minutes, we’ll put Ollie in his crate and give him a frozen peanut butter Kong, and he seems to do fine, as long as he has his Kong. 

He loves to learn, is eager to please, and is very food motivated! Ollie is happiest whenever he can be with his people and we take him everywhere we can. He loves adventures! He travels well in the car and walks well on leash (using a Gentle Leader Head Harness). He’s been down to the beaches along the Central Coast, up to the trails in Tahoe, and he’s made multiple trips to the Bay Area. Ollie loves meeting new people (outside of his home environment) and gets a little too excited sometimes so we’re working on calm introductions. However, early indications suggest that he may need work on greeting/meeting people nicely in the home. Due to COVID, we haven’t really had anyone else in our home.  When a male friend (wearing a mask) briefly came into our home, Ollie displayed some aggression toward him.

When we first brought Ollie home, he was scared of random things (changing the trash bag, plastic boxes, the refrigerator, moving phone chargers) in the house and would respond by snapping at us. We worked with a trainer to 1) identify when he’s scared/about to snap and 2) provide structure to deal with the scary situation. We haven’t had any issues with him since. Sometimes he can still feel anxious and curls himself into a little ball the corner of the room. We will try to comfort him by coming to him with treats, to pet him, or give him a food puzzle toy to play with. He has a variety of toys (balls, stuffed animals, rubber frisbees & rings) he enjoys, but tends to only play with them if we’re playing with him. However, if we set him loose with his food ball, he independently plays with it and has a blast.

Ollie would do best in a quiet area with some property. We live on a busy street in the downtown area in Sacramento. Ollie becomes very anxious and reactive when we encounter people on scooters/skateboards/hoverboards/rollerblades/etc (but not bikes). Constant exposure to these, as well as passing other dogs has been the hardest thing for us to manage. It can take a couple of blocks before Ollie’s nerves calm down and he can enjoy his walk or run.

Ollie has all the traits of an excellent working/herding dog. His instincts for herding have been mellowed but, when he’s excited or agitated, they come out. As is often the case, traits that are desirable for a working dog on country property, can be very undesirable behaviors in urban and suburban life.

We have been working with a trainer, who taught us to be his “pack leaders,” especially when walking, so Ollie doesn’t feel that the burden is on him to keep scary things away. Ollie needs structure and leaders to remind him that he is not the boss and there are clearly defined rules. Ollie has responded well to training. However, he needs an experienced cattle dog owner who can be two steps ahead of him, and ideally in a quiet/rural situation. Ollie is an intelligent boy, with a busy brain, and who will think for himself if consistent direction is not provided.

Ollie is reactive when seeing other dogs on walks. He will whine, jump, bark, and pull. The shelter told us he could only be in a single-dog household and we agree. We have been working on his dog reactivity on walks, and when we are in control of the situation, he’ll manage to successfully pass a dog 15 to 20 ft. away without reacting.

Ollie also has some resource guarding issues, mostly with food. He may growl and/or be snappy. We have been working with a trainer, and in these situations by “trading up” and giving him a more desirable/tasty item than the one he has. He tends not to guard toys, unless he’s on his bed with it and you try to take it away. He communicates his worry or displeasure through his body language. His his ears will go back, and you’ll see the whites of his eyes, and he’ll usually growl before he begins his snapping gestures.

As with most cattle dogs, Ollie needs patience, calm, unrelenting consistency, and a relationship based on mutual respect. Negative or punishment based (including prong collars or spray bottles) training will NOT work with Ollie, and will never win him over. Ollie needs a nurturing, quiet home environment with adopters who have the time to spend with him daily to physically and mentally exhaust him.

When provided the right direction and given boundaries, Ollie can grow into the ideal, well-behaved dog. We’ve loved working with him and have seen immense progress since we first picked him up from the shelter. He is a very sweet pup who likes to play and will reward you with evening and morning cuddles. Ollie will be your best companion if you’re willing to put in the time.  If you are not interested in continuing training, Ollie would NOT be a good choice for your home.

Ollie is located in the Sacramento, CA area. If you’re interested in learning more about Ollie/initiating an adoption application and/or meeting him, please contact Lauren Greenwood. Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  Phone: 916-802-5350.

Rocky (ADOPTED!) is a 4 year old, 45 lb., male Australian cattle dog. He is a classic cattle dog in just about every sense. He is a velcro dog who will bond closely with his people, and has his own unique personality traits that will make you laugh, touch your heart, and sometimes challenge your brain. We are seeking people who live in a quiet, non-urban setting, who are very familiar with this breed, and who can help our boy become more confident.

Once he is settled in a home, Rocky is just a love. He is sweet, tender boy who loves cuddles. He will sleep through the night on his dog bed in the bedroom. In the morning when he knows you are stirring, he likes to crawl into bed with you and put his face next to yours until you are ready to get up.

Rocky loves soft plush toys and tosses them up in the air for himself. He never chews anything in the house other than his dog toys. He is also very much a ball dog, who loves to play fetch. His favorite thing is a squeaky Kong tennis ball. To get your attention or to play with him, he will squeak it repeatedly. Rocky is also the social distancing police. If family members get too close for a hug or kiss, Rocky will run for his squeaky ball and squeak it incessantly until you stop and move apart.

Rocky is very motivated by food. One of his favorite things is his “snack time” when he gets some treats after returning from a walk. He also becomes super excited and gets the zoomies, dashing around with glee, when he smells barbecue on the grill. He goes wild for the smell (and samples please) of barbecued meat of any kind. Cooking any other food does not get the same reaction from him.

He is much more at ease when meeting women than men. His preferred person and strongest bond will be with a woman. At his foster home, Rocky is a mama’s boy through and through. He is fine with men once he knows them, and loves his foster Dad. However, if Rocky’s foster Mom is at home, and his foster Dad tries to take Rocky for a run with him, Rocky will whine and cry, and pull to return to the house. If his foster Mom is not home, Rocky is fine going out with his foster Dad. Once, when his foster Mom was away all day, Rocky laid by the front door the entire time waiting for her return.

He can be distrustful of strangers, especially men, and may take a few moments to warm up. If he is outside loose, he will bark at people who make him nervous and then run from them. On occasion, he has barked at male strangers who have reached down to pet him. When he is on leash and connected to his person, he is much more confident and comfortable meeting new people. If someone he knows wants to pet him, he has a silly move, and will quickly swing his butt around and sit on that person’s feet to be petted. If he thinks he might be able to get a belly rub, he will enthusiastically throw himself on the ground with a loud flop.

Taking long hikes with his people each day, similar to pack walks, has been a bonding experience for Rocky and his fosters. He routinely takes 10 mile hikes and it is his favorite activity. He would need to walk a minimum of three miles a day to stay calm and happy. He wears a harness on his walks or hikes, and is excellent on leash. When walking in silence for long periods, Rocky sometimes feels a little insecure and will fall behind. If you give him a little hug or cuddle to reassure him that all is fine, he will perk up again and trot on ahead. On hikes in open space, Rocky has had to walk past cows grazing or standing very nearby. He becomes very excited, wiggly, and bouncy at the smell and sight of cows. He’s a cattle dog, after all!

He is good when meeting other dogs on walks. Rocky enjoys meeting females, and is usually fine with males, but sometimes he can become tense with another male. Noisy small dogs annoy him, but he is otherwise fine with them. Rocky completely adores puppies! He will flop down on his side or on his back to lick and play with them. He is very soft and gentle with puppies and lets them sniff and climb on him. His fosters also saw his sweet, caring nature when he first arrived to be fostered. A day or two before Rocky arrived, masked intruders had invaded the property where the fosters lived, terrifying everyone. When Rocky arrived shortly thereafter, as a thin, malnourished, rescue with a broken jaw, he sensed that people were upset or sad, and tried to comfort them.

Currently, Rocky knows several commands: sit, stay, come, leave it. He is completely housebroken, and will let you know when he has to go out. He may stand in front of you and touch your leg with his nose, or come up to you and nudge you. Rocky is not crate trained and will cry if confined in a crate. He loves going for rides in the car. If you say “Want to go for a ride?” Rocky will run outside and wait by the car.

It almost goes without saying that Rocky is an incredibly smart dog. He is also a very sensitive soul, who will need reassurance and reinforcement from his people that he is a good dog and won’t be punished. Rocky is very polite in the house, and has moments when he is very happy and confident, but he is also conflicted. He gave in to the temptation of bread left near the edge of the counter. After jumping up to get it, he brought it to his foster Mom, with his head and tail down knowing he should not have taken it, and when she said “Rocky, no” he cowered under the table. She then tried to tell him he was ok, giving him a treat for bringing it to her, and to let him know he wouldn’t be punished.

Rocky is afraid of children, and especially groups of children. If he sees or hears them he will whimper and cry, and try to hide under something. When he is on leash and with his person, he will feel confident enough to meet an individual child. He is more confident if his person also touches his shoulder and/or talks to him in a reassuring way. Based on his reactions, his foster mom believes that Rocky may have been abused by children and men. We believe that in his previous life, people threw things at him. If you pick anything up from the ground, he will cower in fear. You must offer to let him smell everything you pick up to let him know it won’t be used to harm him.

Because he is a cattle dog, he is a thinking dog, who often has his own ideas and can be stubborn about what he wants. On hikes, he sometimes doesn’t want to take a path that his people want. Rocky will plant himself down and refuse to move in that direction, and will not be lured by treats. If you go the way he has decided against, he will try to herd you back. However, he can be tricked by throwing a ball or stick in that direction, which he will chase.  Also, the only time he may not be eager for a walk is if he get a new toy to play with. He will not want to go very far, because he is eager to return home to play with his new toy.

Rocky does have the desire to chase things that move quickly. This includes squirrels, birds, deer, cats and cars. For this reason, we don’t recommend Rocky in a home with cats. He seemed to be fine on a sidewalk in a suburban neighborhood, when cars passed at a moderate speed, not immediately alongside him. But, if a vehicle is moving fast, and/or very close (just a few feet away), Rocky will be tempted to try and chase it. For this reason, he should be on leash when on walks, and we do NOT recommend him for homes in urban or busy suburban areas, and he would NOT do well in a apartment.

If you If you are interested in meeting Rocky, please begin by completing our adoption form at the Adopt link in the blue bar above: http://hittgv.org/index.php/adopt. Download and print the form to be completed. If you have questions, email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or leave a message at (707) 583-9583.

Niko, a.k.a. Cooper (ADOPTED!), is a 2 year old, border collie and Siberian husky mix. He is a super sweet, wonderfully loving companion. He does not have a mean bone in his body, and was a favorite of several staffers when at the shelter. When he feels safe at home, Niko is calm, and happy to quietly hang out with and follow his person from room to room. He is also is very affectionate. When getting to know his foster dad and feeling safe and happy, he showed some puppy-like traits, doing zoomies and play bows. He has little to no interest in toys or balls. He also does not chew on anything. He is a very quiet dog, and rarely makes a sound

However, this dog requires a very specific type of home situation, as noted below.

1)  Niko has shown himself to be a one-person dog. If there are two or more people in the home, he will choose one person to trust and bond with, and will refuse solo walk with others. It could take up to a year for others to win his trust. We cannot stress strongly enough that Niko needs patience and time (6 to 12 mos.) with a gentle, loving person/companion to begin to blossom. We can see that once he feels secure Niko has a wonderfully happy, loving personality.

2)  We are seeking a quiet rural situation where he could be with his person all or most of the day. Niko loves being out in nature. This is NOT a dog for apartment life, or even an active suburban neighborhood. He needs a calm quiet home, where he will not have frequent encounters with people and other animals, or have vehicles regularly driving past him on daily walks. His true personality shows, when walking on hiking trails in the hills. Once outside on a quiet trail, he happy runs back and forth. If off-leash on a hike, Niko would often check in with his foster dad by touching his hand with his nose, sometimes giving one lick. He loved going far ahead on the trail and then raced back to his foster dad at full speed. The only animal he doesn't seem afraid of are birds. When he sees birds nearby, Niko hops after them, even when seeing a wild turkey.

Niko has probably never walked on leash in the past. When putting on a leash near the door, Niko will flatten himself and cower. Once outside, he is fine. He will pull, and sometimes zig zag in front, when on a leash. When walking outside in town, Niko is very cautious and nervous about meeting people and animals. When other animals approach him he will lay down or try and hide behind his person. If more than one dog approaches, he will begin to tremble or try and jump up onto his person with front paws. If he is introduced slowly to a dog, he is fine, but has no interest in interacting with another dog. He was recently meeting another dog on walks, but after several times, he finally let the other dog know he did not want him close-by. Niko is also afraid of all children. We have not yet seen him around cats.

3)  This is NOT a dog for someone who is not familiar with these breeds AND with a dog who has been mentally and physically abused. Niko is not for a first time dog owner. This pup is an extra challenge because he will need to learn about people, other animals and the outside world in a slow and encouraging way. He will need a very patient, caring and understanding person to teach him how to trust, become socialized and gain confidence. Although he may love his person, he is very afraid of what anyone may do to him. When Niko saw his foster dad pick up a wooden stirring spoon to cook with, the pup put his tail between his legs and turned to hide. For these reasons, it would be best for his new person to begin working with an animal behaviorist trainer to create a long term plan on building Niko’s confidence and socialization.

Niko has a great fear of the unknown. Any change from one situation, such as, going in or out of a building or room, creates great anxiety in Niko. Once he's transitioned to the new location and nothing bad happens, he will relax. Once he has done a certain type of transition multiple times with positive associations, he is no longer afraid. He had been afraid to get in and out of cars, until he realized that car rides mean a walk out in nature. He now loves getting in and out of cars.

Our boy is extremely smart and learns quickly. Niko is completely housebroken. He also knows a few commands: come, lie down, and if you say 'No' he will stop what he is doing and come to you.

Niko does need a good long hike and some active, tongue-hanging out exercise each day. He needs someone with experience with giving a highly intelligent and active pup the mental and physical activity, and who understands how to begin working with him on his fears and self confidence. For all these reasons, we are only willing to adopt him to people who are within a few hours' drive from the San Francisco Bay Area.

If you may be interested in Niko please begin by completing our adoption form at the "Adopt" link at the top of this page: http://hittgv.org/index.php/adopt. Please download and print the form to be completed. If you have questions, email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or leave a message at (707) 583-9583.

Buttercup is the mother of these puppies.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shorty (ADOPTED!) is the quietest and gentlest of the litter. He is a personal favorite of his fosters, who nicknamed him Shorty, as he is the only puppy that inherited his Mom’s short legs. We suspect that he also inherited his mother’s sweet, calm personality. He enjoys a good cuddle and seems to be able to sleep through almost anything – including loud noises and ear chewing by his brothers and sisters. He has white gloves on all four paws and waddling walk that can melt your heart.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grandpa (ADOPTED!) This pup was lovingly nicknamed Grandpa, for his loose skin and long limbs. He is very playful and knows that hopping and rolling around will get him picked up and a well-deserved face full of kisses. Grandpa was the first pup to run and wag his tail. While the other puppies are all still in the puppy pen, his fosters frequently find him laying at their feet, leaving them bewildered as to how he got out of the puppy pen. We aren’t sure if he just wants to be with people, or if he has an adventurous soul.  With his long legs, he is the tallest of the bunch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cinnamon (ADOPTED!) at nearly 6-weeks old is showing what a big heart she has!  She is a very happy and loving pup, who is the first to greet you in the morning, with lots of kisses and wiggling her whole butt and tail. She is so excited and happy to welcome each new day and to love her people and siblings.  She has a comical, silly nature and is very expressive. If anyone is still in bed when she is in the house, she will wake you up by licking your face or nibbling on your toes. She likes to play with the other pups, and she can hold her own! She is a curious and sometimes independent girl, who may break off from the puppy pack to investigate interesting things around the house.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Champ (ADOPTED!) is built like a tank and is the leader of the pack. Champ was nicknamed for his stout build and in-charge nature. He wants to be the lead puppy and has mind of his own, but he is still a softie inside who loves a tummy scratch and falling asleep in your arms.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Scarlet (ADOPTED!) is our only patchwork pup, and our pretty princess. She is curious and smart – watching what the other puppies do, before joining in herself. She is handsy like her mother and uses her paws to reach for your face to bring you in for face licking.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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ABOUT US

Our mission: To rescue, care for, and rehabilitate unwanted, abused, and neglected dogs of herding breeds, concentrating on Australian Cattle Dogs and Border Collies.

Our focus is on their permanent placement into appropriate, loving homes, and informing the public about the special nature and needs of herding breeds.

Contact us at:   This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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We are grateful for any contributions to help us rescue, care for, and transport animals.

If you prefer to write a check, please mail it to: Herd It Through The Grapevine, P.O. Box 9585, Santa Rosa, CA 95405

Herd It Through The Grapevine is a 501(c)(3) approved organization.