I realize that details have been few and far between up until now about Argus and his Adventure To The Top Of America. If you'd like to start at the beginning, you can go here. And as Paul Harvey would say, here's the rest of the story.
Like I said earlier, Mohawk Monitor Man (M3) told me about Pawsitively Famous. He contacted them for me, and put me in touch with Jess.
Jess posted our flyer on their message board. And within a surprisingly short amount of time, Hayley said that her Mom's rescue group, Prairie Paws Rescue, would be glad to foster Argus and find him a new home.
So Jess put me in touch with Hayley's Mom, Kaye. The only problem was that they are in North Dakota. And we are a long way from there.
Kaye and Jess sent out emails to their contacts, looking for volunteers to help transport Argus. Kaye received a response from the National Brittany Rescue & Adoption Network, who would be transporting a Brittany Spaniel up to South Dakota, and they said Argus could ride with them on their route. There was even someone in Kansas City who could keep Argus overnight on Saturday before the transport left from there on Sunday morning.
We just had to get Argus to Kansas City to meet them, and then Kaye would get someone to pick him up in South Dakota.
Here is an excerpt from an email I received from Kaye (used by permission) after the details were settled:
So glad this is working out....I may be 5 ft tall but I have red hair and when people tell me I can't accomplish something it makes me try harder. This was the case of Argus being so far away.
I am a believer that the good Lord has a part in everything I do and without him nothing would be accomplished....
....I couldn't believe my email I recieved from Nancy who is bringing the Brittany into SD and was crossing paths with the route Argus needed to go. I get about 100 emails a day with routes, animals needing rescue etc. I was so happy to see this one come through as I know God had a big part of making it happen....
....I hope to meet you someday and know that your Argus will be safe with Prairie Paws and find a good home.
Here's my email back to her:
Thanks for your testimony. We too believe that God has a hand on everything and that Argus is going where he is supposed to. It has been a long journey for us all, but I am so happy it is coming to a resolution and Argus will find a new home because of it.
Like I said before, we love Argus and it was a very difficult decision for us to give him up. But knowing that we could not trust him around our 1-year-old son (who thinks dogs are the coolest thing ever, especially Argus) was the deciding factor. It caused us to have to isolate Argus more than any of us wanted, even after having a trainer come to our home to help us work with him. We haven’t been able to spend as much time with him because he can’t be around [C]. It would’ve been easier to make him an “outside dog” and continue to feed him daily and occasionally toss the ball for him. But that wouldn’t have been fair to Argus, and was definitely not the life we committed to provide for him.
I became discouraged when, after emailing the flyer out, posting it at our vet and a few other places around town, posting it on Facebook, and having our friends send it to all of their contacts, no one was interested in taking Argus. I knew that he had a strike against him because he’d nipped [C], and some rescues wouldn’t even consider him because of that. And I certainly wasn’t going to lie about him. I’d never heard of Paws, and when [M3] called to tell us about them, I was hesitant. But God is in the details, and He brought us to you via them.
I was a little overwhelmed at the thought of finding transport for Argus to North Dakota. I thought that shipping him via airline would end up the way we would have to go, that surely there weren’t that many people who could get together all at the same time to make something like this happen. But I was wrong. The network of volunteers that you guys (meaning Rescues in general) have is amazing....
We appreciate all you have done to help us, and will do to help Argus find a new home. When I took him to the vet for his health certificate today, the staff said goodbye to him, and wished him luck in his new home. I was confident in telling them he would be well cared for because I know you guys will make sure he has a good home. It makes us feel good, knowing that Becky is excited to take care of him until that right family finds him....
Your email has brought me to tears. I always cry when people surrender their pet. But we will keep him safe until he finds a new family. Becky can't wait for him....
So the Saturday after Thanksgiving, Husband, C and I drove to Kansas City to take Argus to meet his transport.
It was cold. We drove in snow probably the last hour or so. As we drew closer to KC, Husband decided that he wasn't sure he could handle dropping Argus off. So, I dropped he and C off at Barnes & Noble so they could hang out while I took Argus to meet his traveling buddies.
J was keeping Serafina, the Brittany Spaniel that Argus was hitching a ride with. When I arrived at J's house, we took Argus out back to meet Serafina. They hit it off immediately. I knew he would be fine with his new friends.
It felt strange, leaving him there. I knew he was going to be ok, and that we would be too. But as I drove away, I couldn't help but feel like I was forgetting something. Something important.
We made our way home in the snow, and stopped along the way to soothe our spirits with some ice cream and hot chocolate. Nice combo, huh?
And by the time we finally rolled into the driveway, the feeling of having forgotten something in Kansas City was starting to subside. We were too tired to think about it much more that night.
Sunday morning the dogs were off, bound for South Dakota and North Dakota. The Brittany Network people sent updates at each leg of the trip, so we were able to "follow" Argus all the way to North Dakota.
Here's a picture of everyone who met in South Dakota. David and Kay (not Kaye) from Prairie Paws with Argus on the left; and on the right, LaVina and David from the National Brittany Rescue & Adoption Network with Serafina.
Here's Argus with Kaye after he arrived in North Dakota.
Here's Argus with Hayley. She's the one who got the info about Argus to her Mom, Kaye.
I received an email from Kaye on Tuesday. Just two days after Argus arrived in North Dakota, he'd already been for an adoption interview with a family. They'll have him visit a few more times before deciding if he's the right fit for them.
He's in good hands.
Hands of people who take extra time, spend extra money, and expend extra effort to take care of animals (and people) who need their help. We should all be so generous.
Many thanks to Jess and Pawsitively Famous, Hayley, Kaye and Prairie Paws Rescue, J, Nancy and the National Brittany Rescue & Adoption Network, and all the volunteers everywhere in between.
Several people have asked me what it's like to be dogless. Honestly, I haven't had much time to think about it.
But really, I have to say that it's been very peaceful around here the last several days. And with C being sick with a double ear infection, taking nasty antibiotics, and demanding so much of my attention, it seems strange to describe life as peaceful. But with all that going on, it has been nice not to have to worry about someone else who needed me as well.
But not having a dog is a bit strange. Husband started asking to get a dog before we got married. We waited an entire six months after we got married before getting our first dog. And when we had to put Bogie to sleep, we were dogless for a whole two weeks before we found Argus. That was almost eight years ago.
A lot has changed since we got our first dog. We now have another "dog person" in the house. And while C hasn't exactly looked for Argus, I believe he's missed him.
We all have. I find myself going to check on him, then realize he's not there. I also miss the flip-flap of the doggie door and the jingling of his collar and tags. And I think Husband misses having a buddy with him while he's at the computer.
We'll get another dog eventually. We will be looking for one that is more fitting to our current lifestyle than the Jack Russell Terrier. And obviously one that will love C as much as he will love it.
In the meantime, I'm enjoying knowing that Argus is in good hands. And having one less being to take care of, a much more peaceful household, and much less dog hair to pick off of my clothes makes for a less-stressed me.
But C's been making up for it with snot.
Nobody said life's perfect.