Thursday, October 22, 2009


Scotlund - one of the Lucky 7

Scotlund - the day he came off the transport truck from the puppy mill seizure.

A few days later, after being shaven to rid him of the mats and lice that had been living on him for who knows how long.

Scot, today, 3 weeks after being in the care of NEBCR. His worms are gone, his lice nits are almost gone, his anemia is almost gone, his UTI is gone, his giardia (fingers crossed) is gone and he is beginning to act like the 8 year old puppy that he is. He is learning his name, probably the first name he has had in a long time. He greets us with wiggles and wags and a toy in his mouth. He is delightful.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

We Need Your VOTE!

NEBCR is currently involved in a voting contest to win much-needed grant money.


The rescue name is New England Border Collie Rescue, and the state we're incorporated in is CT. Once you enter the name and state, NEBCR will appear in the list. Just click the "vote" button. You can vote once each day, and any and all votes are greatly appreciated! If you have any dog loving family/friends, feel free to pass this along and encourage them to vote every day!

Thank you for your support!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The Lucky 7 inspires a poem

The following poem was written by the 16 year old daughter of one of our volunteers, inspired by the story of The Lucky 7 and puppy mill dogs everywhere...

His Tomb
by Alexandria Malfitano

In the dark and dreary room,

he sat in his personal tomb.

Stack upon stacks of crates,

cutting tiny paws

that have never felt the cool grass beneath them.

The dark blanket covers his dwelling,

hiding his face from mine,

and I feel weak.

The foreboding air tells a story of horror.

Be loved,

or be nothing.

His small life has only begun,

and yet he has been slated for death.

I look under the cover, and he looks at me.

A face so full of fear and desire,

a body emaciated from lack of food,

fur that has never been brushed,

eyes that have never been met with love,

and it breaks my heart in two.

He is but a product to sell,

and nothing more to those who own him.

I snap the photo, and whisper,

“I’ll come back for you.”

His eyes light up with hope,

then turn dull again.

He hides back inside himself,

the only safe place left.

I will break open this puppy mill,

and save his life.

No longer will he and the others,

live in their own tomb,

but with real families,

who will love them and care for them.

I will help him.

I will help them.

We can save them.

An update: The Lucky 7 dogs have all been moved to their foster homes and are in the process of settling in. Some are doing better than others, but all are making progress. Their foster homes will continue to post updates here whenever possible.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

The rest of the story...

10/12/09: It appears there was a miscommunication as to how many dogs were remaining to be transported.

There were reportedly 40 dogs remaining after the first group of dogs were relinquished. Of this 40, 5 were allowed to be sold as part of the plea agreement, 4 are to be spayed/neutered and returned to the owner as pets and 1 puppy died.

So in the end, there were far fewer dogs that needed to move to rescue groups than was originally thoughts, and it didn't make sense to ship just a handful of dogs so far if not necessary.

The BC rescue groups in TN were asked to take a few extra dogs, and the final transport took place dispersing the remaining dogs amongst several BC rescue groups in TN, MD and OH. We have been assured by our HSUS contact that all of the remaining dogs are now safely in the hands of reputable rescue groups.

NEBCR would once again like to thank everyone involved in helping get these dogs to safety - especially all of the other BC rescue groups that have taken in these dogs to assure they are safe, healthy and on their way to their forever homes!

BREAKING NEWS 10/08/09: The remaining dogs from the seizure of the Border Collie Rescue of Middle Tennessee, where the owner had been breeding and selling puppies for many, many years (shipping them all over the world), have been released pending a plea deal by the owner/director Richard Swafford.

While it has been reported that Swafford "sometimes" bred puppies to sell to support his "rescue" organization, at the time of this seizure he had 22 puppies on the ground, and one female that NEBCR received was in heat.

NEBCR and the entire border collie community are very grateful that this breeding operation has finally been shut down!

(photo courtesy of

A big day at the vet

On Tuesday, NEBCR volunteers Kathy and Emily loaded up 6 of The Lucky 7 (+ 3 other new dogs in rescue) and headed out to the vet. In addition to full workups, Dr. Michelle was able to give us her best estimate as to the ages of these dogs (they did not come with any records whatsoever). Here's the rundown of how 6 of The Lucky 7 made out...

Andy - approx. 2 years old
A lice nit was found, but no live lice. Andy was neutered.

Faith - approx. 4 years old
Little Faith has a pretty significant heart murmur. Her spay was postponed pending a visit to the cardiologist and an ECG.

Emily - approx. 4-5 years old
Emily checked out fine and was spayed.

Spice - approx. 5-6 years old
Spice had some very bad teeth that needed to be pulled. She was also spayed.

Smokey - approx. 18 mos-2 years old
Smokey was diagnosed with kennel cough and his neuter was postponed pending treatment with antibiotics.

Sugar - approx. 4 years old
Sugar also has kennel cough and is in heat, so her spay surgery was also postponed.

Enormous thanks to Dr. Michelle and the staff of Greylock Animal Hospital for "service above and beyond the call of duty!" They were all wonderful with the flood of border collies invading their facility and we thank them for their kindness and wonderful work!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

What a difference a week makes!! :)

Scotlund, aka Scottie: Though he is as sweet as he was on Day 1, he has transformed from a dog that could barely stand/walk, ridden with lice, eyes nearly shut from discharge, skin irritations, and fur that was matted and greasy and sticky and stinky to a pup that has discovered the joy of rolling in the grass, playing with his new foster sister, and playing with TOYS! (see his video from a previous post) Most importantly - he has a light back in his eyes.

Unfortunately Scottie's medical woes continue. After developing a sneeze/cough over the weekend, he went back to the vet to see what was going on.

The vet said he was worse off then she expected. He has a heart murmur but this could be because of the anemia. The lice aren't too much of a concern. He is getting medicated baths twice a week that should take care of those.

She was not concerned about the growth on his chest but slightly concerned about the one near his armpit. She will remove them when he is neutered.

He has a urinary tract infection and has been switched to a stronger antibiotic to help fight that. He also has a respiratory virus or bronchitis and now needs to be quarantined from his foster siblings.

Because of the anemia - caused by the severe infestation of lice and fleas - he is very susceptible to everything.

The good news is that he is settling in and very comfy in his foster home. He has a cushy bed, in a nice warm house, plenty of toys and all the pets and attention he can ask for.

From his foster mom, "...he still remains so very sweet. After a short walk tonight, he is now in his crate, snoring. :-)"

Sugar: Initially the most outgoing of The Lucky 7, she greeted our volunteer Craig the second she stepped out of the HSUS trailer a week ago. Today, she remains as sweet as a BC girl can be ;) She loves her people and can't get enough pets! Her leash-walking skills are improving slightly - wrapping her leash around you once every 10 steps instead of once every 2... and she has taken to clicker training quite quickly.

Spice: A very people-oriented girl, Spice will politely give you her paw to remind you that she is still there and would like a treat, if you please. From one of our volunteers, "I'll be darned if I didn't see her playing fetch by herself (yes, she can throw the ball for herself!)."

She has tried to initiate play with Smokey by play-bowing, twirling and hopping around like a madwoman, but Smokey wasn't sure how to reciprocate at first!

Spice has also had a chance to try her paws at agility and she thinks this is a fun game!

Faith: Though she still darts in/out of her crate, Faith is a lovebug with people, happily wagging her tail as she goes for her walks exploring.

Emily: The sweet little girl is starting to think about shedding her shyness. She is cautiously coming up to sniff new people, coming out of her crate on her own, doing a lot more walking vs. slinking and even ran around a little bit!

Smokey: Little Smokey has probably changed the most of all The Lucky 7. After initially feeling that the only way to walk was scuttling around on his tummy, this little boy has decided that walking is not so bad, and running around is even better!

He has also been a champ at greeting strangers and doG help you once he thinks you're Good People! He will absolutely ensnare you with his frolicking, muppet-head and puppy eyes! Today, he picked up his first toy and played and wrestled with it in the house. :)

Smokey also discover an excellent new game that involves lots of treats from his new friends!

Here's some video of Smokey's first big play session...

Andy: Sweet Andy is still slightly conflicted about meeting new people. He generally prefers to sit from afar and watch the goings on. Once he knows you, though, he will happily come up to greet you with a super-waggy tail for a treat and maybe a quick pat.

Andy feels much more comfortable with other dogs than people - sadly typical of a dog that was raised without much human contact and not socialized out in the world. Luckily Andy has lots of doggie friends to lean on...

We just can't express enough gratitude at all the people that have helped with the daily care of these dogs. It's been a big job, and not at all a glamorous one, but the results of all this good, hard work is already showing! THANK YOU ALL!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Don't forget to vote in the Shelter Challenge!

The grant money from this contest will REALLY come in handy right now. Please help us spread the word and win!

NEBCR has moved up to #1 in the state of CT - please vote every day!

(shelter name "New England Border Collie Rescue", state of incorporation = CT)

More updates/photos on The Lucky 7 coming soon!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Scotlund perks up!

Sweet Scotlund appears to be feeling a bit better, and is very much enjoying some of the toys that have been generously donated to The Lucky 7...

Thursday, October 1, 2009

They're Clean!

After 3 days of bathing, scrubbing, clipping and shaving, The Lucky 7 are finally clean!

Poor Scotlund took the worst of it. Because his coat was so encrusted with feces and filth, and he was loaded with lice and biting fleas, his coat had to be shaved completely. While he probably looks even more pathetic without all his hair (and when shaving him we discovered at least one open sore)...

...the sweet ol' guy is starting to feel a bit better (and check out those ears!)

Everyone else is looking and smelling much better too!

The gang is getting as many walks and free time as possible, and are starting to explore their surroundings. Generous donations of toys and supplies have been arriving at the farm (THANK YOU ALL!) and some of The Lucky 7 are already checking out the new squeaky toys!

For now they are clean and safe. Once they've been fully vetted and spayed/neutered, the real rehab work can begin. But for now, they're taking things one day at a time....