Tuesday, 3 November 2015

The Name's Rudy and, apparently, I'm on my way!

I'll have to qualify that straight away. I don't even know what my name is! In fact I'm not even supposed to know what a 'name' is. There are things happening to me - and around me, that I don't understand... Since just after my eyes opened and I could actually see for the first time, I have been in what I've heard people call an 'animal shelter' with my brothers and sisters... I recognise the words because they are said here all the time... but I don't know what the words mean.
Here's another word, one that I've heard humans use and, by association and because I heard it again recently and close by this time, I think I've just been 'castrated'. All I know about that is - it hurts like hell - especially after the anaesthetic wears off!

This word 'castration' is something that I've heard just before others around me have disappeared and, when they get back - just before they disappear forever, people start making a fuss of them and begin talking about a 'journey' to somewhere else. It hasn't always been mentioned by its clinical name... this 'castration', but referred to as 'nut-job', 'the chop' and other things. Apparently it's done to prevent me being a dad one day. No reference to me... no-one asks! Someone just decides it's a good idea that I never get to know what it's like to have a family of my own. You go woozy and fall asleep and wake up feeling sore in the wedding tackle area.  There are humans around me here, in this place (I think it must be called Gouves) - another word I've picked out of the air around me.. and they speak of animals being 'adopted'... You just get used to something and then it's 'all change'. I am being spruced up for my own 'journey'. Into the unknown... I'm probably about 5 or 6 months old whatever that is, and... I'm on my way!

We... (that's us, Chris & Micki Slade)... first came across Gouves Animal Shelter because of a 'share' on FaceBook (whatever you might think of it - this is one of the more beneficial purposes of social networking). A friend - a real life one - who works locally here in Worthing, shared a photo of the above mentioned dog (of course he doesn't even know what he is)... Micki picked up on it and shared it to my timeline... Oh how Handsome is he?! Who wouldn't agree?
I've always had a curious mind and wondered how an animal shelter and the volunteers that run it - in a place seemingly over-run with often unwanted and unloved dogs and, consequently, litters of 'accidental' pups - how they cope and respond to their inbuilt, instinctive need to help find homes for their 'charges'? I/we are finding out on the inside track. I sent an e-mail to a name I found linked to the Gouves FaceBook page. I'd asked what costs were attached to offering a home to one of their residents. I still don't know what name he has been given by the shelter's volunteers... The only reference I've been using is 'FaceBook Dog No.4 October 14th. The first response from the address I'd found, filled me in on the cost of each individual process. Vaccination, MicroChipping, Passporting... the dreaded 'Nut-Job' ... teeth cleaning (Ooh la lah!)... the crate... transportation and logistics et al. After a week or so it's all systems go!! 'Rudy' (working title) has been reserved for us and... and even as I write, may be having his teeth cleaned and his breath permanently sweetened (oh yeah?). Because - it's been confirmed that on 11th/12th November he is due to be flown from Greece to Belgium from where he will be collected (I'm supposing/hoping together with other 'sore bottomed' pals) in a van. Our local 'FaceAche' friend, Debs, has already accepted several cats from the Gouve's shelter and tells us that she collected her new special friends via a 'meet' arranged at a motorway service area in Kent. To me this all sounds very exciting - almost covert! Puts me in mind of an exchange of spies on a disused eastern european airstrip... on a damp winter morning... but with dog biscuits, poo bags and warm blankets instead of lugers, white macs and trilby hats!!
Needless to say I am looking forward to welcoming Dog No.4 into the family - I hope you like your new name son! - Watch this space!!

He tells me that I will be having my very own blog... whatever that is!
Gouves do have a website - but most of the traffic is via their facebook page...





  1. Hi, we have new homepage and we added your happy story there as link. Is this ok with you? https://sites.google.com/site/gouvesshelter/

    1. Hello, That's brilliant! I'm so pleased you've liked to my blog. No problem! I will also link this this story to your new front page. We are really looking forward to 'Rudi' arriving. If it all comes together (I'm waiting to hear from Vicki Light as to 'rendezvous' details). I will be writing more blog entries about him settling in with us!... regards - Chris