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Adoption of Olaf…

When two dogs arrive at the refuge in a traumatised state, cowering at the back of their kennel, trembling when approached and terrified of a leash……we know that their experience of humans hasn’t been positive and that they have been let down by their previous owner.

Brothers, Olaf and Oleg arrived in such a state and it was pitiful to see how scared and distressed that they were. Although they didn’t know it arriving at the SPA was the very best thing that could have happened to them.

At the SPA they will receive vet care, regular food, love and patience and that really is the start of a new life for them.  Slowly, terrified dogs do heal, but it does take time and a lot of patience to regain their trust in human beings.

Today Olaf was adopted, and his new family understand the level of patience and love that he will need.  Such families are hard to come by and we are so grateful to these special people who give our scardies a second chance.

Olaf adopted.

Now all we need is another special family for Oleg but until his time comes he will be well looked after by our super staff and volunteers. At only 3 years old he will soon bounce back and will make a great pet for the right family.

Oleg needs a home too…

If you could offer a home to Oleg then please get in touch. You can phone the SPA ,send a message or send an email to website@dogrescuecarcassonne.co.uk.


Five Adoptions on a Busy Saturday

It was another busy day at the ScPA, but one which bore fruit, with five dogs leaving for new homes.

First off were the two pups, Loli and Pop. They arrived on the same day, and have both just finished their pound time. Loli is a very pretty tricoloured crossbreed who attracted a lot of attention when her photos were put on Facebook.  She left this afternoon with a family who were over the moon to be able to adopt her, and we wish them many happy years together. Pop is a small and very active lad who will bring endless hours of amusement to his new family, who were also delighted with their new family member. Thanks to them for offering a home to a refuge pup!

tricoloured puppy



Next to leave was Tasmania. This girl arrived some five weeks ago and is a very lively one year old labrador cross. She sits demurely in her kennel and then surprises everyone with her incredible bouncing once out on a walk. Her new family fell head over heels with her, visiting several times last week and finally coming to collect “their little tasmanian devil” today. They know there will be lots of fun and games with this active dog, but her new dad seems more than prepared for the challenge ahead!

black lab cross

Tasmania – ADOPTED

We then said goodbye to Naila. This rather chunky dog has been at the refuge since the end of April this year. She arrived with a plate in her leg following an operation, which implies that someone must have loved her, however, she was not reclaimed. Until his recent adoption she had been sharing her box with Flavien, and before the staff had found her a new kennelmate, she caught the eye of a family and off she went to her new home. We are overjoyed for Naila; she had  certainly had enough of being at the refuge, and we don’t blame her! Her new family have promised to stay in touch, so we look forward to seeing photos of Naila in her new life.

pale brown staffie type dog


Last but by no means least was the departure of Zara. She is a rather matronly dog who arrived about a month after Naila. A calm, steady dog of some five years, Zara fitted in so well with refuge life that she became almost invisible. Fine with everyone, calm on the lead and very unassuming, she is one of those dogs who  does not attract attention. But as with all our dogs it is just a question of attracting one person, providing it is the right one! Zara left with her new family today! What joy!

big tricoloured shepherd cross


We also had reporter Alain Galtier from Web TV Media H&M at the refuge and we took the opportunity to present to him (and hopefully the wider world) some of our dogs who have been at the refuge for years but so far have not had found a new home. Let’s hope today brings them luck as it has five other dogs!

Taser is introduced to the reporter !

Two Yorkshire Terriers are adopted

Today saw the departure of two yorkshire terriers who arrived on the same day from the same village. Both were identified and neither owner came to collect their dog. What are we to make of this? Usually dogs this small who arrive at the refuge attract a lot of attention from potential adopters, then are reclaimed by their owners. This time, however, there are two very happy families!

The ScPA was reasonably sure that Lady Gaga (she was called that when she arrived, honest) would not be reclaimed, as her owner gave her away for free on the internet a month or so ago. Poor little girl; her new home didn’t last long, did it? She is a lovely little dog, only three years old and we are so pleased that she can finally settle down in a loving home.

yorkshire terrier

Lady Gaga – ADOPTED

Christian’s new family are delighted too. This little lad is a year or so older than Lady Gaga, but is still very young! We hope that he too has many many years of happiness ahead of him.

yorkshire terrier

Christian – ADOPTED

So if anyone tells you that it is impossible to adopt small young sociable dogs from refuges, think about today’s two adoptees. And we have another yorkshire terrier who has just arrived too. This lad, Urgo, is also identified and is 11 years old, but let’s hope that he is adopted soon too. If his owner  doesn’t come and reclaim him, that is. As Yorkshire lovers know, eleven years old is no age at all for this breed.

Urgo – we are looking for his owner

Yet more adoptions are scheduled for tomorrow, so a bientôt!

Adoptions of Kansas and Bang

We had two adoptions today and both of them are cause for celebration.

First to leave was Kansas, a puppy who has been at the refuge for way too long. He was the last remaining puppy from the Wizard of Oz litter, and he, like us, must have been wondering if his turn would ever come. He is now five months old, and if you bear in mind that he and his siblings arrived at the SPA in mid June, you will see why!

Today a young couple came to meet him, and I think it is the first time he has been on a walk without another dog by his side. It was heartbreaking to see him standing confused by the refuge gates and then lying in the road outside, scared to leave a place that to him represents safety. He wasn’t to know that there is a whole world out there. All he needs is love and patience, and today he found a family with plenty of both. Be happy, little guy!

Kansas – ADOPTED

Next to leave was Bang. In Tuesday’s blog I mentioned that all our volunteers crack sooner or later, and end up adopting. However what happens when a volunteer cracks, but for various reasons cannot take the dog? This is sometimes due to incompatibilities with other animals, or because there is no room at the inn. For Bang it was both!

This little boy has been with us since February, when he and his 4 siblings somehow escaped from the abandoned warehouse which was their makeshift home. Ingrid adored  Bang from day one, but integrating him with her dogs was just not possible. So there was that problem. Then she and Marjorie adopted another refuge dog, meaning that there was no room either. This meant that Bang has had to wait for another home, although his time at the refuge has passed doubly quick, as he has been out on walks and day trips on a regular basis, courtesy of Ingrid, naturally!

On Saturday Ingrid introduced Bang to a family  and they fell for Bang straight away. Today he left for his new home and although Ingrid will be sad, if we can’t adopt a dog ourselves, the next best thing is to find them a wonderful home, and this is what Bang now has.

small tricoloured dog


More good news is due tomorrow, so see you then!

Three leavers

After literally months without a drop of rain, the skies above Carcassonne are making up for lost time, with a deluge falling in the past day or so.

One little lad who missed it all is Tim, as he left yesterday. He will have spent the night safe and warm in his new home, the lucky boy. This little dog is the brother of Smash, who was adopted on Saturday, and we are really pleased that he didn’t have too long to wait. He was far more TIMid than his brother (hence his name), and it is always fascinating to see how different can be the characters of pups from the same litter.  A bit like children from the same parents, they all have their own personalities!

We wish little Tim a long and happy life with his new family.

fluffy border collie cross


Two more dogs left today, so although they had one last stormy night, they too are in the warm now.

First of them was puppy Robin. He arrived in quite poor shape. Despite being just a puppy, he already had several injuries, including broken bones which had healed at different times, implying that this boy had already had a very hard life. One of the injuries involves the top of his thigh bone, and so any adopters would have to be prepared to operate should this be necessary. As this will involve a long period of post -operative inactivity, it was important to find the right family, and one without other dogs who might cause further damage to the leg or disrupt the recovery.

After a couple of false leads, this family came along on Saturday, and today they left with a very happy Robin. I have to say, he is a gorgeous affectionate pup who bears no malice, despite having every reason to be wary of humans.

beauceron pup

Puppy Robin – ADOPTED

We also said goodbye to little Lassie. She arrived in mid September and was identified. However when the ScPA phone the owner, he said he had given Lassie away and would try to find the number of the new owner. Inevitably that came to naught, and Lassie was looking for a new home. She left today with one of our volunteers, so we know we will have news!

Most volunteers end up cracking in the end, and taking home at least one animal, by the way. So be warned if you are thinking of joining the team!

small terrier

Lassie – ADOPTED 

There have also been a couple more reservations, too, so watch this space.

Adoption of Minta

As soon as Minta arrived in early August she became one of my favourites. A big griffon cross, pure white with a black patch over one eye, this girl was just adorable. What’s more she was young, sociable and very affectionate. Why were people not clamouring to offer her a home?

Today Minta’s day came, and in fact it came twice. A family visited her from the UK on Thursday with a view to adopting her, but by the time they had made their minds up today (just three days later) a second family had come to the ScPA and offered her a home. It is sad for the first family, but of course it is wonderful for Minta. And as was the case with Flavien, who also had two families offering him a home earlier in the week, it shows that sometimes it is just a dog’s turn!

Personally I am delighted for Minta. Had she been smaller she would doubtless have left far sooner, but even two months isn’t long to wait compared to many of the dogs at the refuge.

white griffon with black eye


That was the only adoption of the day for the dogs, but was another good day for the cats. The weekend totals were 11 cats adopted with 5 more reserved. For dogs it was four adoptions and three reservations, so there is more good news to come before too long.

Three adoptions!

Today was day one of the national “Weekend of Adoptions”, which I think used to be named after Francis of Assisi. In any case, you didn’t let us down, as three dogs and eight cats found new homes today. We are Dog Rescue Carcassonne, so we are here to tell you about the canine leavers!

First to leave for a new home was puppy Smash. He arrived with his brother Tim towards the end of September and we are pleased that he hasn’t had long to wait. His new family came all the way from Bordeaux to collect him, so many thanks to them for offering a home to this young lad.

fluffy puppy

Puppy Smash – ADOPTED

Next we said goodbye to Blaise, another puppy, but one who has been with us slightly longer, arriving a week or so before Smash. He is a cute little fellah, but has a big personality, and it has been funny seeing him boss the bigger puppies around in the park. His new owner was so delighted to adopt him; she just couldn’t stop smiling, it was lovely to see.

yorkshire cross puppy

Blaise – ADOPTED

Finally we said goodbye to German Shepherd Lucy. She was brought in for rehoming by her owner who was not able to cope with such a large dog. What is that we say about making sure you get a dog who suits your lifestyle? In any case, the family who adopted Lucy today have been along several times to walk her and to make sure she is compatible with their male dog, and we are sure that Lucy’s life will be nothing but wonderful from now on.

german shepherd


Day two of the Weekend of Adoptions tomorrow, so let’s hope for lots more good news.

Adoptions of Litchi and after two years, Flavien!

There were two adoptions today.

First to leave was Litchi. who had been with us since the end of August. Her former owner had a very unstable life, and despite still being officially homeless, Litchi seemed quite happy at the ScPA, sharing her box and playing regularly in the park, as well as enjoying walks with volunteers. She is very young and lively, though, and needed more exercise than is possible at a refuge where there are over a hundred other dogs clamouring for attention.

Litchi will love having a home of her own again, but this time a good one. Her new owner has adopted from the ScPA before and wanted to offer a home to another lucky dog, and we are sure that Litchi will be very happy.

mid brown dog with black muzzle

Litchi – ADOPTED

The day’s second adoption was that of a dog who had been at the ScPA a bit longer…in fact quite a lot longer. In three days time Flavien would have been with us for two years exactly.

This fabulous looking dog was brought to the refuge having been found wandering. His former owner got in touch via Facebook to tell us about her dog but never came to collect him. Yes, some people do that, believe it or not. So Flavien, who was five at the time, settled down for what has turned out to be a long wait. Of course he has had plenty of walks, thanks to his sponsor mum, Florence, as well as other volunteers and employees. And although he is a bit picky about the company he keeps, Flavien has learned to share his kennel, which has helped keep his spirits up.

Today his turn has finally come and Flavien has a new home. And it really was his turn as there were not one, but two families offering him a home on the same day. As we say, every dog has his day!

Black and tan shepherd cross

Flavien – ADOPTED

Don’t forget that the SPA Carcassonne is open on both Saturday and Sunday, and it is officially the national “Weekend of Adoptions”, so if you are thinking of adopting a dog or cat, why not pay us a visit. We have several dogs (and many) cats who have spent even longer than Flavien’s two years at the refuge; it would be wonderful if more of them could find homes.

Another catch up and some sad news.

Despite the fact that I blogged yesterday, there is still news to catch up on! Note to self: must try harder!

Yesterday two more dogs left the SCPA, and one left his foster family. This means that the day was even better than we thought!

First off, Enok. He was found in a nearby village and although he was extremely quiet upon his arrival, he soon perked up, proving himself to be a calm and well-behaved lad who is good with other dogs and cats. A lovely boy, he has been very popular on walks, mostly because he is so good on the lead. He has come out of his shell quite a bit in the last two months or so, and this progress should be even quicker now he has a home.


Next we had the adoption of Munchkin, who is almost the last puppy from the Wizard of Oz litter. These  are lovely dogs who are now five months old and more than ready for new homes. Let’s keep our fingers crossed that Kansas too finds a family before too long.

Munchkin – ADOPTED

Finally Leuky. He was brought to the ScPA by his owner who had bought this pedigree Australian Shepherd from a breeder three years ago but never really had the time to look after him. What do we keep saying about making sure you get a dog who is suitable for your lifestyle? There is no point getting a dog who needs lots of exercise if you hate it yourself!

Due to this lack of movement, Leuky was obese upon his arrival. He weighed 50kg, which is twice his normal body weight. This is a form of animal abuse, to be frank, and so it is lucky that the dog was brought in for rehoming. Luckier still that employee Carole decided to take him home to foster, as had he remained at the ScPA, his walks would have been far fewer. And this boy needs to lose some of that excess blubber! His new family have promised to carry on with the good work started by Carole and we hope that he will soon be looking far healthier. Many thanks to Carole for looking after him and for finding him his new family.

Australian shepherd


Finally today, some very sad news which has hit us hard at DRC. And for a change it concerns a human, not a dog. This morning we heard that our friend Nicki Penaluna had passed away following a brave fight with cancer. Nicki had devoted much of her life to rescuing dogs in need, primarily dobermans and golden retrievers, two breeds she adored. Whenever we had a dog of either of these breeds for rehoming, Nicki was my go-to person and we have spent many hours chatting online and in person over the years. Her name appeared on the blog most recently when we thanked her for her help in rehoming doberman Red, but she had helped on many occasions in the past, not only dogs in Carcassonne or France, but all over Europe.

Red is just one of the many dogs helped by Nicki.

Nicki will be sorely missed by her family but also by her many friends in the dog rescue community and elsewhere. The many animals who have been rehomed with her help stand as a suitable legacy to a truly wonderful person. The association Doberman Sans Frontieres, of which she was a keen member, will continue her good work, as no doubt will the golden retriever association and others with whom she worked, but there will only ever be one Nicki. As all the dogs she has helped over the years leave this world, she will have more and more company on the other side of Rainbow Bridge.

RIP lovely lady.

Two adoptions and lots of sunshine

The refuge was buzzing today. After a couple of cool(er) days, we had a glorious day, and volunteers were out in force walking the dogs and playing with the cats. We cannot thank our volunteers enough, seeing all the dogs out enjoying the sunshine brightens up the day.

We have a couple of adoptions to tell you about, too. The first of them took place yesterday, and was of spaniel puppy Skin. He arrived just a couple of weeks ago and we are delighted that he has found a home so quickly. Breton spaniels make great family pets, as well as being lively and inquisitive on walks, they are affectionate and loyal companions. Skin is a lovely lad and we are sure he will be very happy.


Today we saw the departure of Jaja. This little fox terrier cross was brought in towards the end of June by her owner, who had found Jaja two years earlier. She was now moving house and did not think that the move would suit Jaja, who was still very nervous.

Jaja’s time at the refuge has been spent mostly in the company of Bang, and it is thanks to him and to the regular walks given by volunteers Ingrid and Dominique (sponsor mums of Bang and Jaja respectively), that she has gained in confidence as much as she has. Yes, she is still a timid dog, but her new family has a lot of experience with nerous dogs. They are at home all day and have lots of love and patiences so it looks as if Jaja is a very lucky girl!

fox terrier cross


Let’s hope for yet more good news; the week is not even half way through.