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Author Archives: Moira

Bulle adopted…

I don’t know what it is about fox terriers but as soon as we get one in and we share its profile online its reserved.  I know that they are affectionate, loyal and fun dogs who are also very cute and if they happen to be female then they seldom have long to wait at the SPA

Bulle arrived at the end of August and was reserved very quickly. Today her pound time was up and after a visit to the vets to be sterilised, off she went with her new family!

If you do see a dog who you are interested in, either online or whilst touring the refuge, even although its ten days pound time isn’t up you can still reserve it. There is a risk that the owners will turn up and claim the dog but if you don’t reserve it someone else may pip you at the post.

To reserve a dog, all we ask for is your contact details and a cheque for half of the adoption fee. This isn’t cashed until you pick pay the balance when you collect your dog.

For all female pups who are too young to be sterilised we ask for a 200 euro ‘cheque de cation’.  When you adopt one of our female pups you agree to get her sterilised so the ‘cheque de caution’ is our incentive to ensure that this actually happens.

Before we did this lots of people did promise to sterilise their pups when old enough but then you heard the usual ‘oh she has had a little accident’ could you take 6 pups?

Please sterilise you dogs and promote sterilisation amongst your friends. There are so many myths about sterilisation that it’s only through education that we can control the future doggy population.

Bulle adopted!


Lady Harley leaves at last…

Today’s adoption was one that I thought would have happened much sooner. In March a lovely two year old female shepherd cross arrived who looked just like a male dog we had had called Harley. So what did we call her? Lady Harley of course! 6 months is quite a while for a female dog to be with us but today was her day and off she went!

We also have a very special birthday boy! Benson, who was adopted in May 2013 by our volunteers James and Rebecca is 5 today! This little boy has come a long way from his previous life and to start today off what better than a breakfast of raw chicken!  A little later he was of out for a play date with his doggy friends and then a tasty beef dinner to round up the day! What a life!

I wasn’t at the refuge today so I didn’t actually meet him but we did have a visit from Haggis. He has certainly grown since I saw him last and is looking very handsome indeed.  We love seeing our ex SPA dogs so if you are passing do pop in with them and say hello!

We also have news of a not so lucky boy. Tino was found and brought to the SPA on Monday. He had large wound on his neck so was taken straight to the vets. This morning he came back and it seems that the wound has been inflicted on him by another dog (s)! Poor Tino, at nearly 13 years old he must wonder what on earth is going on!

Like all dogs that are found Tino will have a 10 day wait before he can be adopted. This is in theory, giving the owners time to claim him back. Why so many dogs are not claimed remains a mystery as I would have thought that the SPA would be the first place you think of looking.

If you do lose your dog, contact the Mairie, the vet, the police municipal and your local SPA.  Get the word out there both online ( chien perdu and Pet Alert 11), verbally ( tell everyone you meet, especially dog walkers) and put posters up. Don’t forget to let the database provider for your dog’s microchip know and confirm that your contact details are up to date.

Go to your local SPA and walk around. Leave them a picture and your contact details. Keep going back and walk around. Most lost dogs either turn up on their own or are found and taken to a refuge. Don’t give up hope..dont stop looking!

Lady Harley..adopted!



Benson the birthday boy!

Bensons bday


Haggis….a big boy now!


Labrador puppies who need a home…

At the moment we have five healthy, happy labrador puppies who are all looking for their forever home!

Labrador pups are always popular and I totally understand why. I too am a great fan and have two, a labrador x collie and a labrador x boxer. When you add a bit of labrador to most breeds you generally get an easy family dog but even so you still have lots of training to do!

With any pup you can expect that as well as housetraining you will have to teach it what is acceptable behaviour in your household and what is not and we all have different opinions on this.  I don’t mind my doggies on the sofa but to some people this is quite unacceptable so train your dog to your house rules.

In my opinion socialisation is the way to get a dog that you can take anywhere and enjoy your day out. When you have a pup you have the perfect opportunity to do this and as soon as you get your pup home you can begin.

First of all your pup is going to meet your family members and then needs lots of positive experiences with both humans and other animals. If your pup hasn’t had its second vaccination don’t worry, simple carry it whilst out and about and take it for little trips in the car. These little experiences are so very important and lay the foundations of how your pup is going to react to new people and places in the future.

Once its had its second vaccination, the real fun can begin. I usually look for other puppies of around the same age for a pup to play with and also begin by introducing it to my friend’s steady, socialised dogs who I know really well. At this point I want every experience the pup has to be positive and I am initially quite fussy about who I let the pup mix with.

As puppy gains confidence and physical size so does the circle of dogs he can play with and doggy school /classes really help!

We recommend both Club Canin in Carcassonne and Centre d’Education Canine Azillois. Both have experienced trainers who will help you with both socialisation and obedience. Its great for the dog and for you, so pop along and join in the fun!

Puppies looking for a home..







Astra adopted after less than 3 weeks..

Today we have mixed news from the refuge and good news for our dogs who travel to the UK..

Astra our lovely brindle coloured labrador cross who was reserved at Sundays open day was adopted after less than 3 weeks at the refuge. Small to medium sized females are always popular especially when they are as cute and sweet natured as Astra.  Its lovely when a dog has a short wait for a new home, they move on and generally settle into home life really quickly!

Then an old border collie who was found in Cuxac Cabardes arrived hurt. He is at the vets, having the very best of care so we will see how he is doing tomorrow!

From the amount of adopters who ask us to get a pet passport for them I know that lots of you travel to and from the UK and that lots of you prefer Eurotunnel to the ferry as it’s only a 35 minute trip and you can keep you pets with you in the car.

A week ago I traveled from Carcassonne to Scotland and was really delighted to use Eurotunnel’s new pet check in area. I dreaded using the old one, there was only one door into a tiny office area. Once the dogs were in they had no personal space and had to be up close and personal with other dogs whether they liked it or not. Whoever designed it certainly was not a doggy person!

However, well done to DEFRA who have opened a new pet passport check in with dedicated in and out doors and plenty of space inside. This new area is also air-conditioned, has additional parking and a new and larger pet exercise area where your dogs can have a run around before going through the tunnel.

But the icing on the cake is a drive through pet check in area!!  It wasn’t open when I traveled but is now and sounds like a super idea for those of us who have timid / aggressive dogs who are best staying in the comfort of their own car!

Don’t forget if you do adopt from us we can have your doggy passported for you for only 30 euros!

Astra adopted!


Thank you DEFRA….




A love story and 3 adoptions!

When Suzy started volunteering at the SPA in April, little did she know how much her life was going to change in so many ways.

One of the first dogs she walked was Belle, a large Shepherd cross who arrived at the SPA last September when she was 8 years old. Belle was not a dog many volunteers chose to walk as she was strong and quite reactive to other dogs too.

One Saturday, after their walk Suzy was putting Belle back in her kennel when Belle decided that a free run around the refuge was a much better option and pushed past Suzy, who fell and badly hurt both of her wrists. Belle was captured and Suzy was taken right to casualty where it was discovered that she had broken one wrist and very badly sprained the other. As you can imagine such injuries were very debilitating but nonetheless Suzy is a determined lady and somehow managed to email us the next day saying it was her fault and not Belles!

Despite being in significant pain and discomfort, Belle was always on Suzy’s mind and as soon as she could drive again Suzy was back at the refuge asking to sponsor Belle, buying her a scalibor collar, an easy walker harness and giving her cuddles in her kennel.

Eventually Suzy was given the all clear to walk Belle again and after the first walk decided to reserve her. Only one more obstacle to overcome was the fact that her landlord did not want Belle on the property!

Hey ho…this was nothing to such a determined lady, who simply moved house to somewhere who accepted dogs and whilst this was being organised came and took Belle on days out so that she and Belle could really get to know one another.

Last week Suzy moved house and also adopted Belle yesterday.  I have lots of respect for this brave and strong lady who despite everything, has changed her life for a dog that she loved!

Be happy Suzy and Belle..you two really were meant to be together!

Today we had three adoptions. One pup, one senior and Zara. First to leave was Chapati our 6 month old terrier cross followed by the adoption of Xenon.  Its always heart-warming when an older doggy leaves and Xenon was 9!

Zara arrived at the refuge with her 3 siblings. All were timid and needed time to build up their confidence. Today Zara was the first to leave and one of the others is reserved and will be leaving for the UK soon!

Belle…you are a lucky girl!








A successful Sunday…

Today lots of volunteers have been very busy in lots of ways and everyone’s goal was to help the animals of the SPA.

The ‘car booter’ team were up very early to drive their wares over to Quillan for the Sunday vide grenier organised by Julie. Books, bric a brac, clothes and cakes were sold are the ladies raised 425 euros for the animals of the SPA. A board with pictures of the dogs available and information on adoption was also on display so who knows, maybe today will also lead to some adoptions!

This was also a memorable day for our stalwart car booter Fred. This was his last car boot sale for us and what a magnificent day he had for it. The sun shone, everyone was happy and he raised 145 euros for us. Thank you to Fred and his wife Margaret for supporting the SPA over many years and for fostering and adopting from us too!

How will we spend this money? Well, every cent that is raised goes towards helping the animals of the SPA. Watch this space, I anticipate some very lucky doggies will be travelling soon towards a very bright future!

The next volunteer to be on the go was Shirley. She has been fostering puppy Lilou for us and today was the day Lilou (now Connie)  met her new family.  Many thanks to Shirley for fostering tiny Connie who is off to live with the Ellis family in Toulouse. We know this family well as they adopted Derek, a wonderful spaniel cross from us and we often have updates of his adventures.

Other volunteers were busy online, sharing dog and cat profiles and replying to queries about our animals. 70% of our adoptions come from our website or facebook page so its important for us to keep that updated also.

Today, being the first Sunday of the month, the SPA was open and again lots of volunteers turned up to welcome visitors, show them around and introduce them to the dogs and cats. Lots of dogs were also walked or played in the parks. As well as Lilou we also had the adoption of Belle but this adoption is such a love story that I shall blog about it tomorrow! We also had 3 dogs and 3 cats reserved!

Thank you so much to all of these volunteers who helped in so many ways. It not until you start to consider the amount of work done in one day that you realise how strong a team we have and how we need volunteers with a broad spectrum of skills.

Today we saw fundraisers, fosterers, adopters, walkers, cat cuddlers, IT helpers, administrators, both French and English speakers, all pull together for our animals.  This is what volunteering is all about, making life better for our dogs and cats!

If you are interested in volunteering with the dogs or cats, helping online, fundraising, grooming….no matter what your skills or preferences are, we would love to hear from you. Just email us at website@dogrescuecarcassonne.co.uk.

Lilou ( now Connie) adopted!






The Quillan car boot sale today!




A super Saturday!

Oh my goodness, I can’t believe how lucky we have been lately! A couple of months ago Blackie was adopted after 3 years, last week we saw the departure of Chico who had been with us neatly four years and today saw the departure of Tanguy who had also been with us for 3 years!

Why Tanguy had been overlooked I have no idea. A lovely natured spaniel cross labrador who had the very best of both breed traits should not have had 3 years to wait. He was an easy dog to walk, shared his kennel nicely with many female doggies and matured into a really lovely gent. Tanguy was sponsored by Dominique who must be feeling really happy tonight!

Darwin was the next to be adopted, again a dog who seemed to go unnoticed in kennels and had been with us for 13 months. He was a  two year old border collie cross who was a delight to walk and who was great with other dogs.  Sometimes there is just no telling why some dogs have a long stay with us.

Maybe it’s just down to fate and they are patiently waiting for the perfect family to come along!

A puppy was also adopted. Little Badiane was spotted on our website by Jovanne who came along and met her on Wednesday, reserved her and today she left. This is super news as we hate seeing puppies grown up in kennels.

We still have puppies who are waiting for their forever home. Why not come along and meet them at our open day tomorrow. Volunteers will be on site to say hello and show you around so please pop along, walk a few dogs and join in the fun.






Badiane adopted!


Dont forget..we are open tomorrow


Speedy leaves and a special play date!

Tonight, I am sure that Dominique, the sponsor of Speedy will shed a few tears as she learns that today after 13 months Speedy was at last adopted! That’s 13 months and it was his second stint at the SPA!

Sometimes dogs are overlooked through no fault of their own and this was certainly the case with Speedy. He was a smallish, tan dog who was easy to handle and got on well with others so in theory he should have moved fairly quickly. It’s true that he was a dog who would need an active minded family but most young dogs do. As we say ‘every dog has its day’ and today he left. Be happy Speedy and enjoy your new life!

Those of you who follow the facebook page will have seen the photo of our two lovely Griffon Bleu de Gasgcognes together. What a stunning pair they make and both families are great ambassadors for our hunting breeds that arrive at the SPA.

Lilly Blue was adopted by Yvonne and Henny and lives in near Roujan. Maddie was adopted 18 months ago by Elinor and Dave and lives in Scotland, so how on earth did they get together? Well you have all heard me say many many times that we offer post adoption advice and as Elinor is very experienced with hound type dogs and their ways we often ask her to chat to adopters of these breeds who have problems. Lilly Blue, like lots of hunting type breeds was having a little problems with recall, which is not uncommon in scent hounds so we put her ’mum’ in touch with Elinor. A friendship developed and as Elinor spends a few months here each summer they arranged a play date for the girls. By all accounts they had a great day as did the families as they have watched the dogs playing and racing around the garden.

It was heart-warming to see how far these dogs had come. Both arrived at the SPA skinny, scared and only used to kennel life. Now both are family dogs, are loved and are very settled confident dogs.

Well done to each of these families for giving our dogs a chance, for having the time,the patience and the love which really can conquer all!

It just goes to show you what super family dogs the hunting breeds can make!

Speedy adopted!!!!


Lilly Blue and Maddie,the stunning griffon blues


Grey and Funky adopted!

Today one of my favourite boys was adopted. Grey or Mr Grey as I called him was adopted after 6 months at the refuge. When he arrived we all remarked how handsome he was and that he certainly had a bit of ‘bully’ in him but not enough to cause any concern at all. I am amazed that he wasn’t snapped up a lot quicker than he was as he had the most wonderful wiggly waggley body language. He was always delighted to get out of his kennel for a walk or a cuddle and he was a favourite with lots of the volunteers!

Next to leave was the very handsome Funky. Funky was a very large and impressive Beauceron who took his guarding duties seriously. Luckliy this young boy was definitely all bark and no bite and he proved to be a happy friendly boy who was fine with other dogs too.

Two more of our puppies were reserved so two more little girls will be leaving soon. A few weeks ago we blogged about the adoption of tiny Louizou, now Bambi. Her very clever young owner Maisie has decided to write a blog which will chart her puppyhood and keep us all updated on her progress. This is a great idea and we would love some more of our puppy parents to do the same. (http://bambigrowingup.blogspot.co.uk/)

Often people have no idea what to expect who they take home their new puppies. We all have had our ‘first’ pup and I know that when I look back on mine I cringe at some of the things that I allowed him to do and I thought was quite acceptable. We all learn as we go and I am sure that new puppy parents would love to read other puppy blogs.

So what are the first issues that most people encounter? Well the first one is of course housetraining. On the DRC facebook page we have help sheet and one of them is all about how to housetrain your pup. It is available on both English and French.  Just like toddlers some pups learn quicker than others and the main thing is to be consistent, supervise the pup, take it out often and be prepared for accidents!

Maisie is very lucky that Bambi sleeps during the night. Lots of young pups bladders are just not big enough so you need to make the choice of taking them out during the night or cleaning up in the morning. I usually put a young ups cage beside my bed and take then out when I hear them wake during the night. I don’t make a game of it, just out of the cage, onto the grass, back in the cage and lights out. This only lasts a few weeks until their bladder is big enough to hold on until morning.

We do of course offer advice to our puppy parents and all receive information on crate training, housetraining and preparing for puppies arrival.

We did have one arrival… Salambo. More information on him tomorrow!



Funky was adopted too..



Salambo arrived..



Lincoln and Soho leave…

I mentioned in last nights blog that we had had quite a few arrivals since Saturday and only one of them has been reclaimed.  What is really frustrating is that bar one, none of them were identified.

So why are these lovely dogs arriving at the refuge and why are nobody looking for them?

All of these dogs were found straying and were brought by either a member of the public or the police municipal.

Anyone can lose a dog, it can happen in the blink of an eye and as dogs are living beings, just like humans they make mistakes and can run off after a scent, a rabbit, a cat, no matter how well trained they are.  This is why we advise people to have their dog identified and to have a collar with a disk on their dog.  If your dog does goes missing and turns up somewhere, whoever finds it can simply call you up. Even if you don’t like collars, if the dog is identified it can be reunited with you really quickly. If however it isn’t identified several things may happen, the finder may just decide to keep the dog (its wrong but it happens) , the dog will end up in a refuge and if not claimed could adopted or even worse put to sleep after 10 days! Of course we don’t euthanize but lots of refuges do!

It is however unlikely that all of the dogs that have arrived have run off and got themselves lost. Lots of dogs have been allowed to stray. When a dog is allows to stray he is a nuisance to the general public. He poops where he likes, follows other dogs or people and can cause accidents.  That is why people bring stray dogs to us, because they are scared for both the dog and the public’s safety.

If your dog is picked up whilst straying and brought into us then you can easily get it back. If it is identified and the database details are up to date we will call you up and you can collect the dog without charge. If its not identified you can still have your dog back but it will cost you the price of a microchip. This is paid direct to the vet, not us and will ensure if the dog strays again and is brought in we can contact you quickly.

I should mention that it’s the law that states that all dogs must be identified.

Two dogs did leave today. Lincoln our 5 year old Griffon cross was adopted and Soho the Labrador who arrived a couple of days ago was reclaimed. Lets hope that the tide has turned and that there will be many more departures and than arrivals!

Lincoln adopted



Bulle..a new arrival



Tippex..another arrival




Tag…another arrival