Safe Harbor Lab Rescue successfully places about a dozen labs a month into loving homes. Adoptive families love to share their joyful experiences with us. Over 1,880 of those success stories are listed on the following pages. We'd like to thank these very special people for sharing their stories with us!
Molly arrived at the home of longtime Safe Harbor volunteers and super-fosters, Sue, Joe, and Dixie; and immediately realized that she had landed in Lab paradise. She quickly decided that she wanted to adopt this wonderful family as her own and take care of them forever. Being a girl of considerable charms, Molly was soon able to convince them that they all belonged together — and they are now a happy family of four!
Sue tells us:
Well, it was love at first sight when Joe met our 57th foster dog Molly at Alameda East. This beautiful 18 mo. old black Lab with a large head and adoring brown eyes captured our hearts from day one. Her sweet low key mannerisms clinched the deal. After recovering from numerous health issues during her first month with us, we are truly amazed by her still mellow temperament.
Her 9 year old Lab sister Dixie is a Safe Harbor alum (our first foster) and thinks that Molly is pretty keen. They go almost everywhere in tandem. After they have been outside, one won’t come in until the other one does. They really watch out for one another. When Molly got her Christmas moose toy from Santa, she was so proud of it and loved carrying it around the house and continues to be so gentle with it and all the other stuffed toys. Molly does, however, have one vice—squirrels and rabbits! We are working on learning how to stay in control on our walks or not jump over the fence when those little rascals pop up. Otherwise, she seems very happy and content to be with us and participating in our everyday household activity.
She is such a love and has totally added another element of Lab joy to our household.
"You never know where or when you'll meet your new family, so always put your best paw forward and just be your loveable Lab self!," little Lily sagely advises all of her four-legged friends who are still waiting for their new families to find them. A chance encounter with her new dad, Ron, led to the home of her dreams for this charming little six-month-old pup, and she's happily living the forever after.
Lily (now Stella) has been an amazing addition to the family. After my previous black lab died, my standard poodle, Rio, was in mourning, almost as much as myself. After a period of time I decided it was time to bring a new friend into our lives. I met Stella at the vet's when I was picking up Rio after he had had surgery. The volunteer with Safe Harbor had brought her in for her initial check up after being brought from Oklahoma. As soon as I saw her, I fell in love with her bright brown eyes and her beautiful spirit. When the volunteer told me she was available for adoption, I went home, filled out the adoption paperwork, and the rest is history.
Coming into the home she has been a little rough around the edges, but then again, she's a puppy. She's very intelligent and has been learning pretty easily. The best part is how well she gets along with Rio. The two of them play constantly and I can see that Rio is coming out of his funk. I tell Stella everyday that she's not going anywhere, and I think she's starting to believe that she is now in her forever home.
Two-year-old Logan is a beautiful, tall, slim, young boy who is all legs and Lab love. He's having the time of his life in his new home with Kelsey and Alex, and is taking every opportunity to stretch those long legs, whether it's racing around with his new canine sister, taking a walk with his parents, or trying to climb into any "available" lap for a snuggle.
Logan's new family sent us an update on their sweet, energetic boy:
Logan, or "Raz" as he is now named, is doing great. He gets along very well with his big sister, who is also a black lab mix, and he loves to cuddle. You cannot sit down anywhere in the house without him following you and trying to sit on your lap. At 67lbs, he thinks he can do that with no problem!
He's still skinny and we're trying to fatten him up, but both dogs get a lot of exercise playing the in yard together. The only thing we need to break him of is the chewing. We don't leave anything of value in his midst, but while we're gone, both dogs have access to the outdoors through the mudroom (storage, tool area, etc). He likes to take the paint cloths and distribute them around the room as well as anything else he can get his mouth on. We learned quickly that shoes cannot be left in there, but overall it is mostly toys that he shreds to oblivion! We tend to come home to a room full of fabric and stuffing. We're finding different indestructible toys for him to have! We love him and he fits into the family quite well.
He's a great dog and we're happy to have him.
Got Pugs? Ginger Marie has pugs and parents and more in her new forever home! At eleven-years-young, Ginger Marie is very excited to be beginning this next, great chapter of her life, and is thrilled that Sabrina and Wayne chose her to be a part of their wonderful family. Ginger Marie's future will now be filled with all the love and companionship that this sweet Lab girl deserves.
Sabrina tells us:
GM is doing great! Settled in nicely with her mastiff, pug and bulldog siblings. Loves to play ball! Total daddy's girl! Daddy been sick so she has been cuddling with him. Not leaving his side. Taking her to the vet tomorrow. Think she might have a bladder infection. But other then that she is awesome! So glad we adopted her. Seniors rock!
George is now Boots, and he's on the ground and off and running! Boots is making great strides in his wonderful new home with Stuart and Mary's family, as his new dad tells us:
Boots was a Hanukkah/Christmas surprise for the family. My son, Noah and I schemed and worked behind the family’s backs to find Boots and bring him home. It was a beautiful surprise that left my wife and one daughter with tears of joy. It was serendipitously 6 months to the day that we sadly had to put down our last dog.
Eight month old Boots has made himself right at home in the Parker household. Though he was abandoned as a pup in the wilderness, he has quickly discovered the joys of being spoiled in the great indoors. We’re still working on trust issues. He has his skittish moments, but we are really beginning to see the excitable, fun loving puppy that he is. Life with Boots started out a bit like Groundhog Day with each day starting with Boots afraid of us and his own shadow and slowly warming up. It’s only been a week, but he has completely attached himself to my wife, Mary.
We have all fallen in love with Boots. We can all see the dog and great member of the family that he will become, once we can help him grow out of his fears from his early abandonment. He loves the dog park and playing with other dogs. He may from Okie, but he absolutely loves playing in the Colorado snow.
We are just getting to the point where we can begin to start some training. It seems that it won’t be too hard. Boots already loves to please. Although, teaching him where he can/can’t sleep may prove to be challenging. It’s amazing that for a smaller dog he can take up as much room as he does. There’s no curling up with Boots. He’s all about being completely stretched out.
We are so grateful for Safe Harbor Lab Rescue and all they did to rescue and save Boots. We feel so lucky to have our Boots in our home.
Mary and her mother, Helen, have doubled their Safe Harbor Lab fun with the addition of gorgeous, seven-year-old Leisel. Leisel was pretty excited to learn that not only was she getting a family of her own, but she was also getting a new name to start her fabulous new life with. Now happily answering to the name "Cheyenne", she is experiencing the joys of family life, and slowly learning the art of dog play from her new beautiful, blonde sister, Bella.
Mary sent us an update soon after Cheyenne moved in with the family:
We have only had her 1 week tomorrow, but she and our first rescue Lab, Bella (got her Aug 1 of this year), are doing great together. She loves playing in the snow, and is learning to use the doggy door. She and Bella sleep on pillows in my bedroom, and my kitty does well because Cheyenne essentially ignores him. She doesn’t quite know what to do with toys yet, but Bella is sure working on teaching her to play! She does very well on leash when we go out of the yard, and is a very good eater. Her foster family fed her outside, but she now eats just a couple of feet from Bella, and does well. We are looking into what if anything can be done with her eyes to make her more comfortable- they look much better with regular cleaning. She has such a wonderful conformation when standing- you would think she was a show dog!
Thank you all for the opportunity for us to give such a sweet dog her forever home.
An adorable, chunky pup named Sebastion packed up his food bowl, lots of puppy love and kisses, and the pitter-patter of giant puppy paws and brought them all with him when he moved in with his new family, which includes his parents, Hilary and Todd, human sister Payten, and Lab sister, Sadie. "This is the best move I've ever made, and I know I'm here to stay", woofed this very good boy when we asked him how he liked his new home.
Sebastian's new family filled us in on a few more details:
Sebastian has been re-named Kobe. And I have to say, he is just absolutely the perfect puppy!! We are so lucky to have found him!
At almost 5 months old, it's unbelievable how laid-back and well-behaved he is. Thanks to his foster Mom, he came to us already knowing how to ask when he needs to go outside. He only had a couple of accidents the first couple days he was with us, and has had ZERO since. He's pretty good on the leash already and really doesn't jump up on people all that much. He is amazing in the car- he just lays down and sleeps the entire ride. And he just learns so fast- he's a very smart puppy!
Kobe is still teething, so we do have to keep our eye on him constantly, as he has taken a liking to my slippers (and various other things, including our hands and feet). He gets adorable little spurts of puppy energy but mostly enjoys snuggling- he thinks he is a lap dog, and that will get pretty interesting once he gets to full size. And I think he will be a really big dog. His paws are enormous and in the few weeks we've had him, he's already gotten a lot bigger. He's already as tall as his 12 year-old lab sister, Sadie!
Kobe absolutely loves the snow. I'm not sure if he had seen any yet before we adopted him, but he went crazy the first time it snowed! He loves running laps around the back yard and burying his face in the snow. We have a hard time getting him to come back in the house sometimes. :)
A big thank you to everyone at Safe Harbor Lab Rescue for letting us adopt this sweet boy! We feel like we hit the lab jackpot!
After a lifetime of being a momma dog, eight-year-old Rossi had a dream of being part of a loving family of her own. She confided in Safe Harbor that she preferred a quiet home, and while she waited she worked hard losing some of the extra weight she needed to lose.
All that patience paid off when two days before Christmas she met her new family - Brenda, David (not pictured) and their three grown children who were home for the holidays, Mitch, Meghan and Matt. Also part of the family is 12 year old yellow lab, Norma, who was a bit camera shy.
Rossi was very excited to explore her new home and yard and on Christmas morning was especially happy to see a present for her under the tree. We wish for many more happy Christmases for her.
Puppy Lotus found her forever home Lisa and Brandon, and they recently sent us a note to let us know how their adorable little bundle of puppy joy is doing:
Lotus who we named Sadie is doing fabulous. We could not have asked for a better dog and more perfect for us. She is loving, sociable, learns quickly and such a cuddler! She is doing wonderful in her training and we couldn't be happier to have her as part of our family. She has made great friends with my in-laws dog and loves chasing her around the yard. She also loves the snow and chasing the squirrels in our back yard. When we take her places she loves meeting new people and other dogs, She even seems offended if they don't want to say hello :) Let me know if you would like to know any more about our sweet Sadie. I could talk about her a lot!
It was a proud moment for Java when he donned his racy blue Safe Harbor bandanna and officially became a member of Tim's family. He puffed out his chest and had a little extra strut in his step because now he was a forever dog! Five-year-old Java has found the family of his dreams with his doting dad, Tim, and big Lab brother, Hunter, and he looks forward to a lifetime of happy new years together.
Java's new dad writes:
Java is one sweet boy. He quickly took to me and Hunter (13yo SHLR alumni) and is settling in very nicely. He is always curious about what I'm doing, and is definitely my shadow. He absolutely loves car rides to the dog park, grocery store, trips to Breckenridge, and just loves to tag along anywhere I am going. He quickly discovered my basket of dog toys, and definitely has a fondness for squeaky tennis balls and nylabones. Besides eating, his favorite thing in the whole world is to drop the squeaky tennis ball in my lap and play fetch. While I'm working in my study (I usually work from home), he politely sleeps in his large crate next to my desk (which includes three fluffy dog beds of course). He's already spoiled. I am working on his leash manners and greeting other dogs while on walks. The slow feed bowl is a new game for him to enjoy, which is designed to help him control his passion for quickly gobbling up his dinner. He loves to sleep by my side while I'm reading in my chair in front of the fireplace. He doesn't complain about anything, and is truly a joy to be with. In short, I'm very excited to have him in the family and he is perfect example of man's best friend.
The handsome young fellow with the chocolate coat and wagging tail who can be found trotting around Gary and Judy's house these days is a lucky little Lab boy named Marko. At about 8-12 months of age, Marko still has a lot of growing up to do, both inside and out; but this little charmer has been on his best behavior for his new parents and is letting them know how happy he is to be a part of the family. Good boy, Marko!
Marko's mom writes:
We are so in love with this dog. He is so smart and is learning so much every day. He has come into our home and hearts and we can't imagine how we lived without him - Gary actually takes him to the pet store (we have NEVER done that before) We got an invisible fence and it took him about two days to figure it out. We have three acres and he enjoys just about all of it. You can see by the mud on his nose he checks everying out. I told Sherri that we think he is really older than a year cause he is so good and smart!! There is still a lot of puppy in him though and he loves it when we take him to a park in our neighborhood and play catch and chase. Thank you all for what you do to unite these pups with good homes!
After Gus the Labrador joined Tina's family and had a chance to settle in, we received a very special note from his new sister, Willow:
Dear Safe Harbor Lab Rescue,
My name is Willow and I'm a labrador. I wanted to thank you for the best present ever...my new brother! We are like twins from a different mother because we are both three year old yellow labradors.
Momma gave Gus a new name, Omaha, since he came from Nebraska. He's like a celebrity because we hear his name a lot on TV Sunday afternoons! We like to play tug, wrestle, play tug, go for walks and did I mention play tug o war? He might get to learn to play agility like me, but I don't like water so I'm not going to join him for dock diving! Omaha makes a very good pillow for me, but sometimes I have to be the pillow. All my other pup siblings love Omaha, too, even though he's a bit of a toy thief sometimes.
Thanks again for rescuing my new brother!
Willow the labrador
PS My Mom typed this for me cuz I don't have thumbs.
Fitting right in: Gus (far left) is pictured with his new siblings.
Porsche (formerly Sophia)
This holiday season, two-year-old Sophia received the gift of a lifetime of love and comfort when she joined her new family. Her new mom, Fay, is making sure that this little girl has everything she needs and more. Sophia, who now is known as Porsche, is very excited to have a backyard where she can run and play and romp through the snow; and a nice, warm home where she has a couple of beds of her very own to choose from when it's time to curl up for a long winter's nap with her family nearby.
Porsche's new mom tells us:
Porsche has adjusted very well to being in our home. She eats good and runs in our yard whenever she is outside. She is a happy contented dog - she chewed her kennel the first day we had to leave her, but she is fine now. I take her for a walk everyday. She likes the kennel, but in the evening, when I am in the living room she lays on her bed - she sleeps upstairs on another bed in our room - she sleeps all nite, and in the a.m. she is ready to eat and go outside. She sometimes cries in her sleep - she also whimpers sometimes so I scratch her ears and she is comforted. We are sooo very happy to have her.
Seven-month-old Roan is quickly learning how great it is to be a well loved family member and is enjoying every minute of his new life with Shannon and Cordell, and his new Cocker Spaniel brother, Cyan.
Now know as Remington (or Remi), this happy, handsome pup has been busy working his way through the big box full of toys and chew bones which he found waiting for him in his new home. Remi's new family says that he is definitely a lap dog and will crawl into Cordell's lap while he's watching TV in the evening, and sleeps there for hours.
Remi spends the night on a dog bed in his parent's room, but after Shannon gets up for work in the morning, Cordell lets Remi join him on the bed until he gets up. His new parents tell us: "He is already a very spoiled little boy! We love him so much!"
Betty (formerly Ginger)
Two-year-old Ginger hit the jackpot when she was chosen by Marilyn and Rick to join their family. In addition to her terrific parents, Ginger has two new canine brothers and a feline sister to keep her company, so this beautiful little black Lab girl will never be lonely again. After Ginger had a chance to settle in, her parents filled us in on her new home life:
We have had Ginger (renamed Betty) for almost three weeks and things are going better than I expected they would! Our 2 year old border collie, Gus was always trying to get our 13 year old lab, Jack to play and unfortunately Jack has a lot of orthopedic problems and just wasn’t a good playmate to a very energetic border collie. We lost our other lab (and Gus’s playmate), 11-year-old Maddie last year at Christmas time and thought a young energetic lab might be just the ticket to keep both Gus and Jack happy. We brought Betty home the Sunday before Thanksgiving after meeting at a dog park. We decided to try a foster to adopt because things were a little rough and tumble between Betty and Gus that first day. It only took until Tuesday for us to decide to make the adoption official and it’s been great! Betty and Gus play non-stop together and Jack gets the peace and quiet he deserves. Tillie the cat is not very amused with the new addition, but happily, Betty seems to like her just fine.
She knows sit and down and we are working on stay and leave it. We are working on a couple of bad habits Betty brought with her, like counter surfing and pulling on the leash. We used a great trainer, Kari Bastyr at Wag &Train for help when we realized Gus the border collie was smarter than us and she was able to help us learn how to help him become a wonderful dog, so we know just where to turn if we need help with Betty! We are amazed at how quickly she’s settled into a nice routine with us and it feels like she was meant to be here! She is a sweet, happy, loveable, kind of goofy lab, and a wonderful addition to our family! We are so thankful to Safe Harbor and her Foster Mom Kathy for taking such good care of her and allowing us to be her forever family.
AJ (formerly Jamison)
Jamison has found his home with Sunne and Bill. This lively young fellow is quite the character and has been keeping his new parents amused with his teenage Lab antics, as Sunne tells us:
Jamison, who is now AJ, is settling nicely. His biggest gift to us is the laughter that he brings. Even at about a year old - he is silly! Meeting AJ for the first time, he was pretty nutty. It took a couple days for him to settle into our house and about a week to believe that he was really staying with us. Generally, he is very good. We can leave him in the laundry room when we leave and he is happy to play with his kong and nap. He has mastered the soccer ball full of food, which he rolls around to dispense kibble. He loves all of his toys, especially squeeky toys - they provide hours of chewing enjoyment. He is a pretty good fetcher, still mastering the drop command. He loves our steep victorian stairs to go up and down and up and down. Plays hard until nap time (for 15 minutes), then is ready to start again.
When we got AJ, it was pretty clear that he was not used to or happy about walking on a leash. With the help of a gentle leader, he is learning good leash manners. The progress in three short weeks has been great. It is still a little dicey when we see other dogs and there is more work to do. He has started running with me a couple times a week, which is also helping our leash work. He is a very smart boy - almost immediately, he learned sit, down, watch me, leave it and treat. He is starting to know his name, and we are working on come, stay, spin and stand.
He is learning that yarn is not a toy and that he cannot come up on the bed. One of his favorite silly things is to jump onto the bed, and as he is being exited from the bed, he plays dead. Flopping on top of us. He is exploring car rides - not sure if he should be driving or enjoying the breeze. He had gone to daycare, where he spends his time playing on the toys and wrestling with the other dogs.
For Bill and I, the best part is when he comes running in with a toy to show us, gets really excited about playing or runs up the stairs with a big toy in his mouth. He is silly, funny and lives for a good tummy scrub (especially if he can chew on a toy while we are rubbing his ribs). He loves treats and has gained a few pounds, still 5-7 pounds below his ideal weight. At bedtime, he pulls the blanket up to cover himself (and occasionally, fights the blanket). He sleeps through the night.
We could not be happier with AJ. After some more work, and obedience class, we know that he will be a very well behaved boy and continue to make us laugh.
Buddy (formerly Mac)
You can hear the pitter-patter of six happy little feet around Kim and Eric's house these days, now that 9-month-old Mac has joined SHLR alumna (and proud representative of the tripod Lab club), Abby, in this wonderful family. We caught up with Kim and Eric recently and they gave us this great report on how well their new pup is adjusting:
We changed Mac’s name to Buddy. For some reason, he just seemed like a Buddy, a pal, a longtime friend, so the same just fit. At first, Buddy didn’t know how to use the dog door or go down stairs. He had just had his front leg amputated a few weeks earlier and was still figuring things out in the getting around department as well. After a couple of days, he was bouncing around the house like he’d always lived with us. We hadn’t had a young dog like him ever before and were quite surprised at his very high energy level. We quickly realized that we needed to provide him with a lot of daily exercise, many chew toys, and a lot of stimulation (and also keep out of reach anything we didn’t want used as a chew toy). After several sessions with our dog trainer and quite a few Amazon.com orders for dog treats and toys (using Amazon Smile benefiting Safe Harbor, of course), we all settled in very well together.
Buddy is an extremely loving dog and so very curious. He lays right across my body or lays his head on my hip when he jumps on the bed in the morning, before curling up and going back to sleep. He often tilts his head the way dogs do and furrows his brow when he hears a sound he doesn’t understand. Sometimes I make howling noises just to see this adorable expression. We have learned that Buddy is a very silly dog, but also a quick learner. When our other tripod from Safe Harbor, Abby, is chewing on a toy that Buddy wants (and Buddy wants whatever toy Abby has), he stands in front of her and howls and barks until she gives it up. Abby is quite indulgent of her older brother and usually lets him have it after just a few minutes. He is doing very well on walks and responds to many commands. He has already learned many basic commands and is very attentive to us. His missing leg does not seem to bother him any longer, but he still does slip once in a while and flop over a bit. His favorite thing to do is to go on walks, or even better, to the dog park to play with other dogs. He loves to explore the park and smell everything he can get his nose on. He has grown a little bit since we’ve gotten him, and we have started calling him a Labrosaurus because he has such a giant head is so long and tall. When he stretches out, he can almost span our entire couch, paw to paw. We love Buddy and are so happy that we were lucky enough to find him.
Thank you, Kim and Eric, for showing these beautiful dogs how great life can be on three paws!
Aaron and Mary gave themselves the gift of 365 days a year of chocolate covered love this holiday season, and they made a three-year-old boy named Cooper's dreams come true. "I'm home for the holidays and forever after!!!", woofs our charming Cooper, "and every day with my new parents feels just like Christmas!"
Cooper's parents sent us an update on their beautiful new boy:
We are absolutely in love with Cooper! It's a match made in heaven. He is settling in just fine, he's not too fond of being alone but luckily it's not that often. He is so well trained and lives to please us, we are one very lucky family to have found such an amazing dog. His health and weight are coming along, the vet has no concerns about his Addison's Disease and the prognosis is a long and healthy life! Many thanks to the Safe Harbor Lab Rescue and to Cooper's Foster Dad, Dan for taking such good care of this sweet dog!
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