Sasha Swingtail

Sasha is a Husky, just being a Husky, but seemingly she got a bum rap.

Last Updated: Jan. 31, 2021

Base Info

  • Arrival date: Jan. 09,2021
  • Breed: Husky mix
  • Sex: Female
  • Age: Youth, Adult, Mature, Senior
  • Birthdate: Dec 2019
  • Weight: 45 Pounds on Jan. 9
  • . 50 pounds on Jan. 26
  • Spayed: Yes
  • General Health: Excellent
  • Temperament: Mild, low key for a husky.  Affectionate.
  • SAFER Test performed: No
  • Departure date: January 30, 2021


Sasha’s owner refused to crate Sasha while away at work all day, so their house got torn up.  Her biggest issue was that she’d bolt out the door and once out recall was iffy.  She liked to wander along the highway (very dangerous).  Owner gave up on trying to keep her safe and a friend of the family picked her up (after a skunking) and took her in, then contacted us.  She loves to chase skunks and has been skunked twice.  Her friend, Kate cleaned her up both times.  She loves car rides.

Sasha’s Progress Summary

Detailed notes on this foster dog’s progress are posted below the summary.

Relational Behavior

  • Relates well to other dogs: Yes.  Standoffish at first, but gets along fine once she’s acclimated to them.
  • Can eat food/treats near other dogs: Yes:
  • Preferred style of play: Undetermined
  • Is affectionate: She’s loving and cuddly and follows her people around all day.
  • Is good with:
    . Men: Yes
    . Women: Yes
    . Children: Yes
    . Cats: No violence or even teeth baring, but she grumble/growls at them.  Loves to chase skunks so probably best to avoid black cats with white stripes.
  • Jumps up on people: Yes but she’s just wanting to cuddle and is gentle about it.  Still … I’m discouraging it.
  • Mouths: No
  • Walks well on a leash: Excellent!


  • Comes when called: Yes
  • Sits on command: Not yet
  • Down / Off: Yes
  • Shake / Paw: Not yet
  • Kennels on command: Yes, with a bribe.

House Dog Training

  • Willingly enters her crate: Yes, with a bribe and as long as she hasn’t been crated too much.
  • Is calm/quiet while in crate: Yes, mostly.
  • Understands going outside to potty: Yes
  • Alerts me of need to go outside: Yes, but it’s subtle, unless she’s crated.  Then she yells for me.
  • Is destructive of bedding and/or toys: No
  • Engages in kitchen counter cruising: No, she has not done this so far.
  • Stays off people furniture: Sort of.  She has not gotten on our sofa except when I’m on it, then she wants to be on my lap.


💕 Victor Classic – Professional Dry Dog Food
.      1 cup + 3 oz. home made stew AM
.      ¾ cup + 3 oz. home made stew PM
💕 PMFC Peanut butter cookies
💕 Retriever Beef Basted Sticks
💕 Jones Beef Hooves
💕 Pig Ears or Oinkies as weekend treat.


Progress Updates

Jan 9

Sasha just arrived.  We went for a walk in the yard and she came inside for a tour and meet the other dogs.  She’s a little wary of the “strangers” (dogs) though they are all reacting well to her being here.  She went willingly into her crate and has been resting there while I process her intake.  We’re in the same room.  If I leave for a few minutes she calls me, but is remaining calm.

Sasha walks well on a leash.  Kate, her former caretaker, says she could drop the leash and Sasha would continue to walk alongside her.

Jan 10

Saturday afternoon, Sasha spent most of her time in a crate getting used to our other 4 house dogs.  After supper Sasha came out and hung with me at the sofa while most of the rest gathered around the fireplace.

Sunday morning we went to Liberty Church of Cosby, and took Sasha with us. We can do that because we are currently meeting as Parking Lot Church, using an FM transmitter so we can listen on our car radios.  Sasha loves to ride, and she was deeply interested in parking lot church.  So many cars, a few people milling around, stuff going on up front, and she watched it all.

All that paying attention was exhausting, so on the way home she took a snooze.

When we got home, Sasha took a potty break, we all had lunch, and as I’m writing this up she is sound asleep on the carpet next to my desk chair.  Blondie Bear is napping a few feet away.

Jan 11

On her first night here we left her crate in the den.  She did okay with sleeping in there by herself, but did “call” me 4 times during the night to go outside.  Each time we went out, she did pee but I got the distinct impression that this was incidental.

Last night I wiggled her crate into the bedroom and she slept with the rest of us — and slept through the night.  When I got up at 4:30 she watched me go, but made no fuss.  She slept until Marie got up at 5:30.

Also, she has lost her wariness of the other house dogs.  They are now getting along fine.  She is not fond of Timmy or Blade (outside dogs) but likes Scout.  And he likes her.  If he would come out of his kennel, I think they’d play well together.

So far she has shown no inclination to play with the house dogs, although the other night Josephine hid behind a tree and jumped out at Sasha as she passed, dropped into a play bow, then scampered around her in an attempt to get Sasha to chase her.  Sasha was tempted, but refrained.  Maybe later.  Josephine is half her size, but I don’t think Sasha would hurt her while playing.

Jan 15

Sasha has been a full-time house dog, mostly free ranging it for almost a week now and she has done excellently! She does have some separation anxiety issues, but has learned to control those well. Yesterday we needed to go away twice for a couple of hours each time with a little over an hour between sessions. Sasha crated easily each time. The first session she remained calm as we left and was excited to see us upon our return, but not frantic. The second time we left she cried as we headed to the car, but upon returning we found her still in her crate and no damage to either the crate or her bedding. We think having other dogs in the house (and some of them in crates) relieves her loneliness.

Because of her reported wanderlust and escapism traits I have been taking her outside for potty breaks on a leash. Yesterday I started letting her accompany me outside without the leash. Most of the time she stayed near me, took care of her business and headed back to the house. After being cooped up so much yesterday, and it being a pleasantly warm sunny afternoon, Sasha engaged in some zoomies around the yard, but always in big circles around me. When she’s worked out the pent up energy she zoomed back to the back door of the house and waited for me. Inside she was well behaved.

She has been sleeping in her crate, in our bedroom, at night. She has behaved extremely well. Tonight I will take her crate in there in case it’s needed, but will invite her to sleep on a dog bed like the others.

Jan. 26

Sasha is home from her surgery. They say she did really well and everyone thought she was just the sweetest girl! As would be expected, she is in pain. But she did eat dinner and she is walking around, slowly. Even went outside for a potty break. Right now she’s tucked up under my chair so close it’s hard to get in and out without stepping in her. But if it maker her feel better to be close, that’s fine. It does make it easier to reach down and give her scritchies often.

Jan. 27

Sasha is a sensitive gal. She’s not dealing with the pain well despite giving her a Tramadol (pain reliever). She’s not crying, just fidgeting a lot because she can’t get comfortable. So we were both up most of the night as she needed lots of comforting.

She’s sleeping now (of course) 🙂

She did eat dinner last night, so that’s good. She lost part of that due to anesthesia induced nausea. It takes a while for that to go away. Today will get better for her. The first 24 hours are the worst. Dogs (animals in general) have amazing recuperative powers.

Did you know that giving a dog a good, deep ear rub releases endorphins in their body that make them feel good? It’s true!
And of course you know that petting a dog releases endorphins in us, so it’s a win-win situation.

At breakfast this morning I brought Sasha’s favorite bed out to the kitchen so she could be comfortable yet near us as we ate our breakfast.

Jan. 28

Miss Swingtail’s tail was swinging again by yesterday evening. She spent a good part of yesterday outside lounging in the sunshine. After dinner last night she decided to snuggle with Marie and Josephine.

You have to look close to even see Josie! But she was quite comfy down there.

We had a better night last night. I was up a few times to get her to stop licking. She has discovered the fabric is stretchy and she can get her nose in there to lick the incision. Sometimes she’s just licking a foot. But I have to check just the same. So I keep a small flashlight on a cord around my neck, Sasha sleeps next to my side of the bed, and I seep lightly. Listening. At least I got to be in the bed last night.

I gave her that last name because of what she does with her tail: it’s a long tail to start with. Instead of wagging it the way most dogs do, hers sweeps around in a full arc, touching her ribs on both sides on each stroke. It’s a slow motion too, just a relaxed, comfortable swinging motion. Swingtail.

Special Notes

Sasha likes to hold hands. She finds this soothing, and will come and ask for it when she needs it. If you stroke the top of her paw with your thumb, it is especially soothing. She is not highly anxious, she just gets nervous.

Sasha does not shed like normal huskies do, but she enjoys being brushed. She has an itchy spot on her right rear leg. I don’t see any issues with her skin, but when she starts chewing on that spot I get her brush and work on the leg for a minute or so an that seems to take care of the issue. I use a slicker brush (like THIS ) but you can find one locally, and other brushes may work as well.

Sasha is reliably housebroken. She will go stand by the door to the outside (once she knows which one that is) or will come get me and lead me there. Most of the time she will insist that I go out into the yard with her or she won’t leave the porch. But I need only be where she can see me. She will wander off to do her business, but keeps an eye on me, then comes running back to go inside. Unless it’s nice weather, then she sometimes want to linger. As she becomes confident in her surroundings (see the 3 days, 3 weeks, 3 Months rule) she will probably go out without accompaniment.

She likes to ride in the car and will sit in the back seat or the front. She does not jump around or get crazy, but I recommend using a harness and seat strap for safety. The strap buckles into the seat belt buckle and the harness prevents breaking her neck (as a collar would) in the case of a sudden stop.

Sasha is a talented escape artist and has more than once slipped past me, without my knowing, as I’m closing the door so that I turn around and she’s sitting there grinning at me, “Where are we going Dad?”

She is now comfortable enough here that I can go into the kennel building or into my workshop (the old trailer) for a short time and leave Sasha in the play yard with the other dogs and not worry that she will go over a fence to come looking for me. If I’m planning an extended work session, Sasha, Buddy and Callie all get crated to prevent issues.

Sasha uses a 36″ wire crate. These fold down for ease of transport. I line the bottom with a soft blanket and a pillow. I leave the door open so she can go in there to rest when she wants to. Sasha does not tear up her bedding. She crates easily when I give the “In your room” command and poke a dog cookie though the bars so she goes inside to get it. She prefers to sleep in there at night. With no other dogs around she may not feel as strongly about that.

Sasha is wary around new dogs. Once she is assured she is not about to be eaten, she gets along with calm dogs fine. I can even hand out treats to them as a free-range pack and she waits her turn. Sasha has become a well behaved, sweet, gentle, reserved little lady.


Sasha and Geoff
This is MY Hooman, Geoff, and I’m gonna keep him!

January 30, 2021: Happy tails, Sasha! We will miss you, but we’re happy you’re launching into a life with Geoff where you will be loved and well cared for. Drop us a note when you can!

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Timber (Timmy)

An emergency situation brings this big handsome boy to us so another rescue could work with him safely.

Last Updated: April 3, 2021

Base Info:

  • Arrival date: Jan 4, 2021
  • Breed: American Staffordshire
  • Sex: Male
  • Age: Youth, Adult, Mature, Senior
  • Birthdate: Dec 2018
  • Weight: @60 Pounds on Jan 4
  • Neutered: Yes
  • General Health: Excellent, Good, Fair, Poor
  • Temperament: Rowdy but affectionate.
  • SAFER Test performed: No
  • Departure date: April 2, 2021


He was chained to an outbuilding and starved before being taken from his owner by Greenville Animal Control.  A rescue worker, Heather, pulled him via Cat’s In the Cradle New Life Sanctuary to prevent euthanasia and wanted to foster him.  But she lives in an apartment and has cats.  Timmy loves cats, especially with a dab of mustard.  She has been working with him while boarded at Animals West veterinary office the last few days to help him learn how to walk on leash.  But he needed a better environment, so he came to Piney Mountain Foster Care until he can be transported to Animal Rescue Network of New England.

Timmy’s Progress Summary:

Detailed notes on this foster dog’s progress are posted below the summary.

Relational Behavior

  • Relates well to other dogs: Seems to.  He did well with a dog that he was tested with at the shelter.  My whole gang greeted him upon arrival without incident. Timmy has been on a lead in the yard with Blondie Bear. He is “socially awkward” but not aggressive.
  • Can eat food/treats near other dogs: Yes, he and Blade often push their bowls against their separating barrier and eat inches apart without issue.
  • Preferred style of play: He doesn’t play.  I don’t think he knows how.
  • Is affectionate: Yes.  sometimes he just wants to melt into you because he’s so much enjoying being petted.
  • Is good with:
    . Men: Yes
    . Women: Yes
    . Children: Probably.
    . Cats: NO! Definitely not.
  • Jumps up on people: Not that I’ve seen
  • Mouths: Only occasionally, when he tries to play with you.
  • Walks well on a leash: Yes.


  • Comes when called: Most times
  • Sits on command: Yes
  • Down / Off: Not yet
  • Shake / Paw: Not yet
  • Kennels on command: Yes


💕 Victor Classic – Professional Dry Dog Food
.      2¼ cups + 3 oz. home made stew AM
.      1½ cups + 3 oz. home made stew PM
💕 PMFC Peanut butter cookies
💕 Retriever Beef Basted Sticks
💕 Jones Beef Hooves
💕 Pig ears


In chronological order, newest at the bottom. Some pictures are linked to a more detailed Doggy Tale about that update, click those to open the related story.



Progress Updates

Progress notes are listed below, in chronological order, newest at the bottom so you can read through this dog’s history in order.

Jan 5

Timmy arrived yesterday evening and sent us into a flurry of construction because we needed to increase the height of the privacy wall between Timmy and Blade.  They weren’t getting along.  I blame Blade for that, he was being a butt-head about having a new neighbor and his dinner being late.  They settled down that night and both slept soundly.

This morning I took breakfast out to them and Timmy was curled up on his Kuranda (dog bed) in his bedroom, under his heat lamp and was SO happy.  It make my heart ache that this sweet boy was so badly mistreated.

Our arrangement for this boy is something new for us: PMFC is basically boarding him.  Heather will be coming to do his training.  When he’s ready he will transport to Animal Rescue Network of New England to be adopted.

Jan 8

Timmy has been here 4 days.  Heather comes in the evenings to train him after she gets off work, I continue and reinforce during his daily play sessions.  He’s doing fine.  He is quite affectionate, shows no hostility toward my other dogs.  He’s even learned to ignore Blade.  He loves lounging under his heat lamp – which I leave on for him during the day because it’s chilly and he’s too thin to ward off the cold himself.

Jan 15

Timmy is doing much better at walking on a lead. Far less pulling and easily corrects when he forgets. He and Blade are playing games with each other through the barrier between them. Timmy has been in the yard with Blondie Bear on the loose. That was a little awkward for Timmy, but it turned out well. He sniffed her thoroughly, propositioned her, she said, “Not interested, sonny” and he wandered off to pee on something.

He now routinely sits on command, in fact he often anticipates and sits before I give him the command, so then I have to redirect by stepping away and asking him to “come” then sit. Most of the time he complies if we’re in his kennel. Still iffy with the “come” command in the yard.

His transport date has been set for Feb 26. Heather will make arrangements for Health Certification and getting him to Bulls Gap to meet the transport truck.

Jan. 28

I took Timber off the lead-line for a few days, just letting him out to run unfettered. The first time he walked out the door, stopped, came back and nosed my hands, “You forgot something.” I had to convince him that it was okay, he can go out without it. It brought him such joy! But that lasted only a couple of days before he began getting haughty and refusing to come when called. If I’d go take hold of the handle built into his harness he’d reach around and mouth my arm. It was done gently, but saying, “Don’t do that.” So I’d go get a leash. He does fine on a leash. So it was back to using the long lead.

About 60% of the time he responds to the “Come” command with an enthusiastic gallop across the yard to receive his small treat and petting. Other times he goes stone cold deaf! Sometimes he works his way over to me slowly, meandering along to eventually stand before me expectantly.

Timber is doing well with the “In Your Room” command, which means to return to his kennel. If I do this when he’s within 30 feet of his kennel he will comply. About half the time he will comply from across the yard. But it does depend on if he’s done all his business. If not he will hasten his search and take care of that before complying. Sometimes if I’m occupied (doing a poop pick-up in the yard or something) Timber will decide he’s done playing in the yard and I’ll find him sitting in his kennel waiting for me. What a good boy!

He is really well behaved while “trapped” in his bedroom at night. I put him to bed around 8:00 PM by taking him out for a leash walk so he can pee. Then back to his kennel. I go around and go inside, he comes in through his doggy door and I give him some small treat and close his doggy door. He will stand up and lean against the fencing so I can scratch the side of his face for a while. If I go inside with him he gets too excited, jumping around. Not enough room for that in there. Then he settles on his bed and sleeps. When I return at 6:00 AM to take him out again for a walk, he appears to have just been awakened, I could probably let him go longer, but I don’t want to risk making him have to spoil his bedroom. As long as I let him out every 2 to 3 hours, he will keep his entire kennel clean, preferring to use the yard to potty.

When Blade and Blondie Bear are in the yard together they roughhouse. Timber watches and gets quite vocal. When I’ve put Blade up and let Timber out he goes bounding over to Blondie, intent on roughhousing with her too. But Blondie gives him a “Not so fast, Junior” look that stops him in his tracks. Then they walk around together and peer through the fence. I give him high marks for his ability to reign in that exuberance.

April 2

Timber went off to New Hampshire last night.  The Gabipentin / Trazadone cocktail we gave him did the trick.  He snoozed for a little while but most of the time he was awake and watching out a side window or sitting between the seats so Marie could scratch his head.  But he was not threatening to eat the other cars on the road.  A good things since there were a lot of cars on the road. 

The only time he got excited was when we passed the Pizza Plus place in White Pine.  I guess he had a bad case of the munchies and wanted to stop for a pie.  We didn’t stop and he quieted down.

We arrived at the truck top 10 minutes early and the H.E.A.R.T.S. LLC transport was already there.  The driver said that new truck is a hauling monster.  Even coming up steep grades, it glides along like it’s got no load at all.  They made great time as a result.

Timber hopped right up into the trailer when they opened the door.  They closed the door behind them while they got him settled in the crate: in case he broke away from them and got loose in there, at least he was contained.  It took a few minutes before they came out again, so it’s possible he gave then a challenge.

By the time they opened up again and showed me the special box they had for him, he was calm.  Confused and sad, but calm.  It broke my heart when he looked at me saying, “What’s going on Doug, aren’t you coming too?”  But that’s just part of doing what I do.  Timber is alive because people cared, intervened, and saved him.  I was part of that process. Now he’s going off to a new home and a new, much better, life.  That is what rescue is all about.


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