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  • Writer's pictureKathy Winkler Studio

Grizzly Bear, alias Red Man

I volunteered for a rescue organization after work for a while. After several months, I got Jerry interested in joining me. It was a very rewarding experience, except I wanted to take all of the animals home with me. Jerry and I agreed that we needed to adopt a younger dog to play with Shiloh because he needed another dog to play with. Let me preface that by saying that every night, somewhere after 1 a.m., Shiloh would get up and grab a ball and bounce it against the wall in the hall and catch it. The problem was that he didn’t stop after a few times, it seemed that it went on for hours. Yes, we could have taken the ball, but we knew he would find something else to focus his attention on - not to mention that he hated a crate. Our other dog, Crockett, was aging and simply didn’t want to be bothered with Shiloh.

So, as I was in one building taking care of the dogs, Jerry went into another building for a while, and joined me later where I was working. He said there was a big “red” dog that kept making eyes at him and something struck him about the dog and thought he would be perfect for Shiloh. So, I went down to the other building and there was this 125 lb. gorgeous red dog staring at me.

Our eyes locked, and I said, well the rules were we could bring Shiloh and see if they got along well. So, on our next visit, we brought Shiloh and the two played their hearts out. So, we put in our adoption request and soon became pet parents to Bear or “Red Man”. Turns out, Bear was from a planned breeding in Washington, D.C. of Rottweilers and Chows. He was gorgeous, but looked a bit menacing. We took him to an animal behaviorist because Bear had resource guarding issues, so we wanted to fine tune our skills as to not to lose a hand, etc.

Bear had been out 3 times and the animal behaviorist said normally when a dog is adopted out that many times, they won’t bond. We did a pretty good job, as Bear was pretty smart, however, we always were careful around him and definitely didn’t reach for anything. Bear was about 4 when we adopted him, and he lived another 10 years. We were just happy we could give him a great life, as he sure enhanced ours.

We picked up the pictured orange tabby (Luc) during this period, and he and Bear were best buds, but more on that later.


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